When anyone translates the Bible so long received by us all,
and selects to render it as clearly as possible in our modern
English language, it is only fitting to explain the reasons to
depart from tradition.
Firstly, the Bible transmitted down to us, the noble
King James Version, was written in a version of English
that is departed from our current world during the course
of the last two centuries. Not everyone has the 1828 Webster’s
Dictionary, which gives the meaning of words at the time of its
publication, and it is to this day an important tool in the
comprehension of the King James Bible. When rendering the
Greek language into our current English language it is also
difficult to always select a concise English word that provides
the gentle reader with the correct concept in the human mind.
It is typical of the inspired prophets’ writings to have words
that have multiply meanings which should not be lost in
translation, lest salvation slips away out of our reach.
There is a careful balance between assuring transmission
and the highest possible accuracy.
Secondly, there are many new translations which have
selected ease of reading, to provide the most understanding
to as many people as possible. However ease of reading
obscures meaning because of the depth of meaning of the
original language that is lost when selecting words more
commonly understood. Therefore, this current edition
includes footnotes to explain English words when a less
well known concise English word is needed to retain
the original concept.
King James had definite goals which have benefited people
to this day. The King James Bible was a critical step to bring
us to this day. With his goals largely met, is it then not time
for us to go on to perfection? In the book, The Translation
That Openth the Window, © 2009 The American Bible Society,
there is an entire chapter regarding The Hampton Court
Conference, which is when the making of the King James Bible
began. James goals included popularity, continuing tradition,
and the replacement of the Geneva Bible with a translation he
approved of, to be used by all the English Churches. James
reigned in a difficult time, and unity was an important
requirement driving his rules for his new bible’s translation.
James did not want true names and terms absolutely used,
but he wanted a continuance with tradition, and set a rule to
use certain terms and names already in use. He did permit
the modification of chapter divisions, but to the reason
possibly needed, that was not in the record of events
transmitted to us today. Especially troubling is that he set
a rule that the text be “as little altered as the Truth of the
original will permit”. Why did this noble king want the truth
to be altered any at all? The record does not reveal
The primary goal of this Literal English Translation is to
Know the Truth to receive the benefit of salvation. Also,
it is hoped that the clear language, and the footnotes used
to explain lesser well know meaning that are important
to understanding our Bible, will bring to the gentle reader
the benefits of understanding their Bible for them self.