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Authorized: The Use and Misuse of the King James Bible

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ISBN: 9781683590552

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The Legacy of the King James Bible

The King James Version has shaped the church, our worship, and our mother tongue for over 400 years. But what should we do with it today?

The KJV beautifully rendered the Scriptures into the language of turn-of-the-seventeenth-century England. Even today the King James is the most widely read Bible in the United States. The rich cadence of its Elizabethan English is recognized even by non-Christians. But English has changed a great deal over the last 400 years—and in subtle ways that very few modern readers will recognize. In Authorized Mark Ward shows what exclusive readers of the KJV are missing as they read God’s word.

In their introduction to the King James Bible, the translators tell us that Christians must “heare CHRIST speaking unto them in their mother tongue.” In Authorized Mark Ward builds a case for the KJV translators’ view that English Bible translations should be readable by what they called “the very vulgar”—and what we would call “the man on the street.”

 

Praise for Authorized

This lightly written and frequently amusing book gently hides the competent scholarship that underlies it. For those who are convinced of the superiority of the KJV, whether for stylistic, cultural, pedagogical, theological, or traditional reasons, this is the book to read. Mercifully, Dr. Ward does not pummel his readers or sneer at those who take another position. Patiently, chapter by chapter, example by example, he makes his case—all of his work geared toward fostering more and better Bible reading. Highly recommended.

—D. A. Carson, research professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

Mark Ward’s Authorized: The Use and Misuse of the King James Bible is a cogent, concise, clear, and helpful book on the subject of Bible translations. It is full of information about how language changes and doesn’t change, and full of wisdom about how Christians should respond to these processes. The book is useful both for beginning Bible students and for linguists.

—John Frame, professor of systematic theology and philosophy emeritus, Reformed Theological Seminary

Authorized is a little book that packs a punch. It deals with a common issue in a helpful, humorous, and respectful way. It is worthy of any Christian’s time.

—Tim Challies, author, blogger

Just because you know all of the words in an old sentence of English doesn’t mean you know what they meant when they were written. Mark Ward shows us, with a light but authoritative touch, that if we want the Bible to speak to us the way it did to those alive when it was written, we must adjust the vocabulary with meanings only scholars can make out—a revelation of a new kind.

—John McWhorter, associate professor of linguistics, Columbia University; host of the Slate podcast Lexicon Valley

You read the book...

...now watch the new movie based on Authorized. Mark Ward builds a case that our Bibles should be readable by what we would call “the man on the street.” He shows what exclusive readers of the KJV are missing as they read God’s Word. Watch the movie with a free trial to Faithlife TV Plus.

 

Contents

  • Introduction
  • What We Lose as the Church Stops Using the KJV
  • The Man in the Hotel and the Emperor of English Bibles
  • Dead Words and “False Friends”
  • What is the Reading Level of the KJV?
  • The Value of the Vernacular
  • Ten Objections to Reading Vernacular Bible Translations
  • Which Bible Translation is Best?

Product Details

  • Title: Authorized: The Use and Misuse of the King James Bible
  • Author: Mark Ward
  • Publisher: Lexham Press
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Pages: 168
  • Format: Logos Digital, Paperback
  • Trim Size: 5x8
  • ISBN: 9781683590552
Mark Ward

Mark Ward received his PhD in New Testament Interpretation from Bob Jones University in 2012; he now serves the church as a Logos Pro. He is the author of multiple high school Bible textbooks, including The Story of the Old Testament and Biblical Worldview: Creation, Fall, Redemption. He has written for publications such as Modern Reformation, Answers Research Journal, and FrontLine—as well as supplying dozens of articles on Bible study and exegesis for Faithlife blogs. He has also written introductions to the Bible and to both testaments that are being used in Bible translation projects around the world via Bibles International.

Sample Pages from Authorized

Reviews

13 ratings

4.74.74.74.74.7

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  1. Terry Vance

    Terry Vance

    2/25/2021

    55555
  2. Anthony Perry

    Anthony Perry

    6/30/2020

    55555
  3. Michael Conn

    Michael Conn

    12/1/2019

    55555
    Authorized provides a much needed look into what makes our English Bible's so precious to us. Each chapter is filled with honest questions and helpful explanations about an apparently waning affinity for the King James Version. The personal examples and illustrations provided by Dr. Ward help unpack the vital aspects of communication, language, and vernacular that have influenced translators in their work over the centuries. Dr. Ward's book is also a helpful introduction for anyone interested in discovering what gave rise to the various English translations we have today. Though the "KJV Controversy" may subside in the not too distant future, this book provides a helpful, lasting look at how we should both approach and enjoy the wealth of scholarly work put into our modern day renderings of God's timeless truth.
    Reply

  4. Robert Polahar

    Robert Polahar

    10/23/2019

    55555
  5. SEGBEAYAH K.(FELIX) DJOGBESSI
  6. joe_bourne1951@hotmail.com
  7. Joseph Bailey

    Joseph Bailey

    12/14/2018

    55555
    This is the best book I have read so far on the KJV controversy. I agree with Mark that the textual arguments are beyond the grasp of most lay people but the importance of having a vernacular translation and what constitutes a vernacular translation are key for every believer to grasp, both for their own should and in communicating to the lost. I have almost exclusively used the NKJV since I was converted 10 years ago but this book has opened my mind to read more widely in other contemporary translations as language has changed even since the NKJV was published. I have begun to do this with profit to my soul. I'm not sure if you still read these comments, Mark, but I received the TBS quarterly record a a few days ago and noticed they had an article that seemed to be written in response to questions raised by their supporters who have read your book. You can find the article on page 14 of the December Quarterly Record (available on their website - can't link to it in the comments). I would be interested to hear your response to the article. Perhaps you would consider doing a blog post on it at some point? Thanks
    Reply

  8. Joshua Tan

    Joshua Tan

    12/7/2018

    55555
  9. Clay Cadwell

    Clay Cadwell

    11/28/2018

    I have used the ESV, NIV, NASB and the NLT. I can tolerate the ESV and have even enjoyed the NASB. Nothing, however, compares to the beauty and splendor of the KJV (authorized).
    Reply

  10. Pastor Corey

    Pastor Corey

    11/16/2018

    55555
    I purchased the physical version of this book after you did a Twitter chat about it. Excellent research and well written. As someone who has traveled overseas and worked with Bible translators your example were well thought out and on point. I even purchased a copy for Bible College library I work at. I think I will purchase a digital version to add to my Logo library in the near future as well.
    Reply

$8.99

Print list price: $12.99
Save $4.00 (30%)