To often people stand and say – I believe in the KJV-1611, that it alone is the Word of God. (Yes, you can here the capitalization). Yet, as often is the case with those that have not studied the issue, they are mistaken.
First and formost is the issue that no one uses the KJV-1611 anymore – and really haven’t since a decade or so after it was printed – I’ll get to that on another post. The other issue is that of the prevelant KJV’s in use, there are two different versions. The Oxford Standard Edition contains three distinct ‘errors’ which are not found in the Cambridge. (I prefer the Cambridge, not based on any theories, but in my opinion the quality of the production of those bibles cannot be beat.)
Logic dictates that if you hold that the KJV is the only bible translation known to man, then you should use the right one, correct? That means that a vast majority, nearly all study bibles based on the KJV, must be discarded. Why? Because they are all using the Oxford Standard Edition of 1769. There goes the Scofield, the Thompson Chain Reference Bible, and any other study bible not based on the Cambridge KJV.
KJV-only author D. A. Waite maintained that “there are slight errors in the Oxford edition which do not conform either to the Hebrew and Greek or to the original Authorized Version of 1611” (Defending the KJB, p. 252). Waite wrote: “I have found at least 3 errors in the Oxford edition of the KJB” (Foes, p. 117). If these three variations or differences can be labeled “errors” by a KJV-only author, are there no other such differences that can be accurately considered errors? David Sorenson noted that “the Oxford Edition is the more commonly used one in the United States” (Touch Not, p. 18).
In one example in Jeremiah 34:16, the present Oxford KJV has “whom he” while the present Cambridge KJV has “whom ye.” Waite wrote: “In Jeremiah 34:16 the Oxford University Press King James Version is wrong, false, and in error” (Foes of the KJB Refuted, p. 66). Concerning this same verse, Thomas Holland claimed that “the error was limited to the editions published by Oxford or those based on the Oxford edition” (Crowned with Glory, p. 101). He also identified it as “a printing error found in some current editions” (p. 100). David Daniels wrote that the Oxford printers “mistakenly printed ’whom he’ instead of the correct ’whom ye’ (Answers, p. 127). David Sorenson maintained that the Cambridge edition has the “correct translation” at this verse (Touch Not, p. 19). On the other hand, Scrivener pointed out that the rendering “whom he” was introduced into the KJV in the 1629 and 1638 Cambridge editions (Authorized Edition, p. 225). Two of the KJV translators themselves were among the editors of the Cambridge editions that introduced the rendering “whom he” into the text of the KJV. At this verse, the later Oxford editions were following earlier Cambridge standard editions. The 1762 Cambridge edition, one 1790 Cambridge edition, one 1824 Cambridge edition, one 1833 Cambridge edition, one 1842 Cambridge edition, one 1844 Cambridge edition, one 1865 Cambridge edition, one 1869 Cambridge edition, one 1872 Cambridge edition, and one 1887 Cambridge edition all have “whom he” at this verse, indicating that several Cambridge editions in the 1800‘s likely had this rendering. Peter Ruckman defended both renderings “ye” and “he” at this verse and suggested that either does “not alter the truth” of the statement in this verse at either edition of the KJV (Scholarship Only, p. 71). While the 1948 Pilgrim Edition printed by Oxford University Press in New York had “whom he” at Jeremiah 34:16, the 2003 New Pilgrim Bible with consulting editors Jerry Rockwell and Douglas Stauffer has “whom ye.” The 1997 Oxford World’s Classics edition of the KJV printed by Oxford University Press has “whom ye” (Jer. 34:16).
In 2 Chronicles 33:19, the present Oxford KJV has “sins” while the present Cambridge KJV has “sin.” Waite maintained that the rendering “sins” is “an error in the Oxford editions” (Foes, p. 66). David Daniels referred to “sins” as “the Oxford error” (Answers, p. 130). Concerning “sins,” Daniels claimed: “Cambridge University Press did not make the printing error. And all Cambridge-type texts have the correct readings” (p. 129). In contract to inaccurate KJV-only claims, Scrivener indicated that the rendering “sins” was first introduced into the KJV’s text by the 1762 Cambridge edition (Authorized Edition, p. 222). Those Oxford editions and other KJV editions that have “sins” at this verse in effect picked up this “error” from the 1762 Cambridge edition. A Cambridge edition printed in 1790 still has “sins” at this verse. One 1824 Cambridge edition, one 1833 Cambridge edition, one 1842 Cambridge edition, one 1844 Cambridge edition, one 1865 Cambridge edition, one 1869 Cambridge edition, one 1872 Cambridge edition, and one 1887 Cambridge edition also have “sins” at 2 Chronicles 33:19, which may indicate that this rendering was also found in some other Cambridge editions between 1762 and 1887. An 1762 Oxford edition, an 1782 Oxford edition, and an 1804 Oxford edition of the KJV have “sin” at 2 Chronicles 33:19. In a KJV printed in 1897 by the American Bible Union with a title page where it is stated that “the text conforms to that of the Oxford Bible printed at the University Press, Oxford,” it has “sin” at 2 Chronicles 33:19. The New Pilgrim Bible has “sin” at 2 Chronicles 33:19 while the 1948 Pilgrim Edition still had “sins.” .” The 1997 Oxford World’s Classics edition of the KJV printed by Oxford University Press has “sin” (2 Chron. 33:19). David Norton indicated that the 1602 Bishops’ Bible with KJV translators’ annotations in the Bodleian Library has “all his sinnes” at 2 Chron. 33:19 (Textual History, p. 264).
The third “error” according to Waite is found at Nahum 3:16. At this verse, the present Oxford KJV has “fleeth” while the present Cambridge KJV has “flieth.” The 1795 Oxford KJV edition has “flieth” at this verse. Waite contended that “’flieth’ is the correct translation” (Foes, p. 66). The 1762 Cambridge edition, one 1790 Cambridge edition, the 1817 Cambridge Stereotype Edition, one 1824 Cambridge edition, one 1833 Cambridge edition, one 1842 Cambridge edition, one 1844 Cambridge edition, one 1865 Cambridge edition, one 1869 Cambridge edition, one 1872 Cambridge edition, and one 1887 Cambridge edition all have “fleeth” at Nahum 3:16. Waite maintained “that the Cambridge edition of the King James Bible is more accurate than the Oxford edition” (p. 65). When was the Cambridge edition made more accurate than the Oxford edition? The 1948 Pilgrim Edition has “fleeth” at Nahum 3:16 while the 2003 New Pilgrim Bible has “flieth.” The 1997 Oxford World’s Classics edition of the KJV printed by Oxford University Press has “flieth” (Nah. 3:16).