e don't normally delve into the debate over Bible versions. The issue seems to attract people who are overzealous or slightly unhingedand always in a bad mood. Besides, James White's The King James Only Controversy covers all the important ground far better than we could ever say it in blog-post-sized bites.
Still, there is one issue I'd like to address that seems to come up whenever someone has been reading too much Ruckmanite propaganda. Here's a sample question from a reader who wrote me looking for a debate about whether the King James Version is inerrant and verbally inspired:
Uh, you might want to read Spurgeon again. Spurgeon loved the KJV but did not regard it as infallible. He gave preachers this advice:
Do not needlessly amend our authorized version. It is faulty in many places, but still it is a grand work taking it for all in all, and it is unwise to be making every old lady distrust the only Bible she can get at, or what is more likely, mistrust you for falling out with her cherished treasure. Correct where correction must be for truth's sake, but never for the vainglorious display of your critical ability. [Commenting and Commentaries, p. 31.]
In message 1604, "Heart Disease Curable," Spurgeon says,
Concerning the fact of difference between the Revised and Authorised Versions, I would say that no Baptist should ever fear any honest attempt to produce the correct text, and an accurate interpretation of the Old and New Testaments. For many years Baptists have insisted upon it that we ought to have the Word of God translated in the best possible manner . . .. By the best and most honest scholarship that can be found we desire that the common version [KJV] may be purged of every blunder of transcribers, or addition of human ignorance, or human knowledge, so that the Word of God may come to us as it came from His own hand.
And in his autobiography, recounting the laying of the foundation-stone of the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Spurgeon explains why they chose a Grecian design for the building: "Greek is the sacred tongue, and Greek is the Baptist's tongue; we may be beaten in our own version [the KJV], sometimes; but in Greek, never" (Autobiography, vol. 2, p. 327).
Spurgeon used, and preferred, the Authorized Version. He did not regard the translation as inerrant.