Wednesday, December 14, 2011
National Geographic on the King James Bible
As 2011 comes to a close, so does the year long celebration of the 400th anniversary of the King James Version of the Bible. The December 2011 issue of National Geographic features a cover article by Adam Nicolson, author of God's Secretaries: The Making of the King James Bible. It is interesting again to note that the 400th anniversary milestone of the KJV has been acknowledged more in secular circles than in evangelical ones. In the article, Nicholson observes:
You don't have to be a Christian to hear the power of those words—simple in vocabulary, cosmic in scale, stately in their rhythms, deeply emotional in their impact. Most of us might think we have forgotten its words, but the King James Bible has sewn itself into the fabric of the language. If a child is ever the apple of her parents' eye or an idea seems as old as the hills, if we are at death's door or at our wits' end, if we have gone through a baptism of fire or are about to bite the dust, if it seems at times that the blind are leading the blind or we are casting pearls before swine, if you are either buttering someone up or casting the first stone, the King James Bible, whether we know it or not, is speaking through us. The haves and have-nots, heads on plates, thieves in the night, scum of the earth, best until last, sackcloth and ashes, streets paved in gold, and the skin of one's teeth: All of them have been transmitted to us by the translators who did their magnificent work 400 years ago.