The Providence Of God
In The Creation Of The King James Bible
By John Henry
March 26, 2016

"For the Word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." (Hebrews 4:12)

"Of his own will begat he us with the Word of Truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures." (James 1:18)

"Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the Word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." (1 Peter 1:23)

God originally gave man living or inspired Scriptures, and likewise the translation of the Authorized Version (AV) carried with it that same life or inspiration. Life comes only from life, and therefore if the King James Bible is not inspired then it must be dead, but history speaks counter wise to this. The Holy Spirit infused life into the AV by His power, and through the spiritual gift of "interpretation of tongues" that He gave to yielded men of God. At least some of the translators of the AV had the gift of "interpretation of tongues" and as the translation work passed in review or for direct translation God gave them the exact words He required, and the life of the providentially selected eclectic assortment of inspired manuscripts of the Scriptures was infused into the King James Bible.

The word "inspiration" is defined first and foremost by Comparing Scripture with Scripture, and also by looking at the etymology and definitions of the word. A close study of the Bible proves that "inspiration" has to do with it's having been given life, and that "derivative inspiration" is that which come from a living parent manuscript.

God superintended in every way, in the timing of the translation, in the preparation of the language of the translation, in putting the desire to have the translation made in the heart of the King, etc., etc. The providence of God's hand is seen in every facet of the preparation of the way for the translation of the Authorized Version:

1. When the King James Bible was translated the quality of the English language was at its pinnacle.

2. When the King James Bible was translated scholarship was at it's peak.

3. The printing press had 170 years of development and was becoming efficient.

4. King James despised the heresies of Roman Catholicism, and was totally separated from that false church. Spain was the great defender of Catholicism. In 1588, sixteen years before James ascended the throne of England, the Spanish Armada sailed against England with the intention of overthrowing Elizabeth I of England in order to put an end to English involvement in the support of Protestants in Spanish Netherlands, and to stop British trade and shipping in the Atlantic and the Pacific. The providential hand of God was clearly seen in the events leading to the defeat of the naval super power of that time. In 1588 there were unusually strong North Atlantic storms, as a result many more Spanish ships and sailors were lost to cold and stormy weather than in combat.
It is estimated that 5,000 men died. A total of 84 ships of the Armadas fleet of 151 were destroyed. Just 67 ships were able to get back to Spain. In England, the boost to national pride lasted for years. The repulse of Spanish naval might gave heart to the Protestant cause across Europe, and the belief that God was behind the Protestant cause was shown by the striking of commemorative medals that bore variations on the inscription, "1588. Flavit Jehovah et Dissipati Sunt" (1588. Jehovah blew, and they were scattered) with "Jehovah" in Hebrew letters. The defeat of the Spanish Armada cleared the way for the British Navy, and merchant shipping to make Great Britain a center of world trade and economic might.

5. The defeat of Spain also helped make the English the end time universal language. At the time the Authorized Version was written there were only about 600,000,000 people on the Earth. Now more than that speak English. The world did not reached a billion people until about 1804. It only took 123 years (1927) for the next doubling. Then 47 years later in 1974 the population was four billion; then 15 years later (1987) there were five billion; by the end of 1999 it was over six billion, and in March of 2012 we have now reached seven billion people alive on the Earth. English is spoken in every corner of the world.

6. Having providentially prepared the English language, the translators, etc., the Lord looking 165 years into the future already knew about a nation which would be born as a result of the preaching of the King James Bible, that would emerge and become the main base to take His Word to the world. "Behold, thou shalt call a nation that thou knowest not, and nations that knew not thee shall run unto thee because of the LORD thy God, and for the Holy One of Israel; for he hath glorified thee." (Isaiah 55:5) From this Nation the Bible went forth to the darkest nations and was translated into the languages of those nations.

"The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will." (Proverbs 21:1)

"Where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What doest thou?" (Ecclesiastes 8:4)

The Hampton Court Conference of January 1604 was a meeting called by King James in response to a petition for reform by 1000 Puritan ministers called the Millenary Petition. On the second day of the Conference "... the idea for the Authorized Version was born. The Puritan, Dr. Rainolds, proposed that a new translation of the Bible be undertaken. According to the 'official' account: '... [Rainolds] moved his majesty that there might be a new translation of the Bible, because those which were allowed in the reign of king Henry the Eighth and Edward the Sixth were corrupt and not answerable to the truth of the original." [1] The Puritans had their origin with the Lollards, named for the Waldensian preacher, Walter Lollard, a Dutchman, who came into England preaching the Gospel of Christ in the reign of Edward III (r. 1327-1377). Henry Knighton (d 1396), the English chronicler, wrote: "More than one-half of the people of England, in a few years, became Lollards." Walter Lollard was burnt for his faith at Cologne. [2] We can therefore see the Waldensian connection with the Lollards who also rejected infant baptism. The Waldensian were the original Puritans who were branded as Anabaptists by Rome. They protected the pure Word of God through the centuries from the time of the apostles of Jesus Christ. They planted scriptural local self governing churches, and were never in fellowship with Rome, and therefore were not Protestants. The Puritans of England later reverted back to infant baptism and persecuted Baptists in early America.

King James wrote to Bishop Bancroft on July 22, 1604: “Whereas we have appointed certain learned men, to the number of four and fifty, for the translating of the Bible,…Furthermore, we require you to move all our bishops to inform themselves of all such learned men within their several dioceses as, having especial skill in the Hebrew and Greek tongues, have taken pains in their private studies of the Scriptures for the clearing of any obscurities either in the Hebrew or the Greek, or touching any difficulties or mistakings in the former English translation, which we have not commanded to be thoroughly viewed and amended, and thereupon to write unto them, earnestly charging them, and signifying our pleasure therein, that they send such their observations either to Mr. Lively, our Hebrew reader in Cambridge, or to Dr. Harding, our Hebrew reader in Oxford, or to Dr. Andrewes, Dean of Westminster, to be imparted to the rest of their several companies, that so our said intended translation may have the help and furtherance of all the principal learned men within this our kingdom." [1]

Pastor Bruce Lackey (1930-1988) pastored the Lakewood Baptist Church of Chattanooga and two other churches before that. He taught at Tennessee Temple in Chattanooga for nineteen years and was Dean of the Bible School for a time. He was proficient in the Greek language and defended the Greek Received Text, as well as the King James Bible as the preserved Word of God. Dr. Lackey wrote:

"It is correct to call a translation of the Bible 'the inspired Word of God,' if it is a correct translation from uncorrupted manuscripts. In 2 Timothy 3:15-17, Paul refers to the Scriptures that Timothy had and calls them inspired. Timothy did not have the originals; he had only a copy. It is possible that he had the Old Testament in Hebrew, but more likely that he had the Greek translation of the Old Testament, since his father was a Greek and he lived in Derbe and/or Lystra, which were definitely Greek-speaking. Every reference in the New Testament to the scripture refers to copies of the autographs (original manuscripts) in Hebrew or to translations in Greek. No one had the autographs at that time. The scriptures which Timothy had were called 'holy,' that is different; set apart. They were 'set apart' in the sense that they were inspired and preserved, as God had promised in Psalm 12:6-7; Psalm 100:5 and other places. ... If only the autographs are inspired, no one has the inspired scripture. Thus, no one could obey Matthew 4:4, "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." Did God intend for only those who had the autographs to obey this? Or did He intend for only those who could read Hebrew and Greek to obey this? The answer must be obvious to any thinking Christian. When God made this statement, and when Christ repeated it, did He not know that the scripture would be copied and translated many times? Again, if only the autographs are inspired, we cannot ... have the benefit of 2 Timothy 3:16-17, being instructed and 'throughly furnished unto all good works.' Without the uncorrupted Word of God, we have no salvation. 1 Peter 1:23- 25 teaches that we are born again, of the incorruptible 'word of God, which liveth and abideth forever,' and states that 'this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.' ... I believe that the King James Version is a correct translation of uncorrupted manuscripts in both Hebrew and Greek and is worthy of being called the inspired Word of God." [3]

Dr. Ronald D Lesley writes, "Those holding to original inspiration only, are not willing to rely on the past leadership of the Holy Spirit to preserve His Word. They are not willing to see His leadership in bringing together those men who assembled the 'Received Text,' and translated it into English. This is the same position of liberals and modernist who say it is up to man to determine what is the Word of God. Those holding this view are usually men of the Greek and Hebrew languages who elevate themselves to be the authority of what is the Word. ... This leads to the weakening of faith in others as to authority of the scriptures. ... All liberals set themselves up as protectors of those ignorant masses who need them. They fail to understand the protection and preservation of the Word of God by God Himself." [4]

One can be saved by reading a tract with only a few verses of Scripture in it, and it is likely that the most corrupt translations, at least some, contain inspired portions, however, man is commanded to "live ... by every word of God."

"And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live." (Deuteronomy 8:3)

"... It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." (Matthew 4:4)

But woe unto those who change God's holy word for He has said:

"Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you." (Deuteronomy 4:2)

"Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar." (Proverbs 30:5-6)

"And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely. For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." (Revelation 22:17-19)

"I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name." (Psalms 138:2)


1. Vance, Laurence M., The King James Translators, (July/Sept. 2004). Also see Todd, John Henry, A Vindication of our Authorized Translation and Translators of the Bible (1819); Todd, John Henry, An Authentic Account of Our Authorized Translation of the Holy Bible, and of the Translators: with Testimonies to the Excellence of the Translation (1834); McClure, Alexander, The Translators Revived (1858); Paine, Gustavus, The Learned Men (1959), reissued in 1977 as The Men Behind the King James Version; Opfell, Olga, The King James Bible Translators (1982); Nicolson, Adam, God's Secretaries (2003).

2. John T. Christian in his A History of the Baptists, Vol. I, Chap. XIV, pp. 173, 183 (1922) says: "'I have seen enough to convince me that the present English dissenters, contending for the sufficiency of Scripture and for primitive Christian liberty to judge of its meaning, may be traced back in authentic manuscripts to the nonconformists; to the Puritans; to the Lollards; to the Valdenses; to the Albigenses; and, I suppose, through Paulicians and others, to the apostles.' ... Walter Lollard, a Dutchman, of remarkable eloquence, came, according to Fuller, into England, in the reign of Edward III., 'from among the Waldenses, among whom he was a great bard or pastor.' His followers rapidly increased so that Abelard declared 'our age is imperiled by heretics, that there seems to be no footing left for the true faith.' Knighton, the English chronicler, says: 'More than one-half of the people of England, in a few years, became Lollards' (Knighton, col. 2664)."

3. Lackey, Bruce, Inspiration & Translation, O Timothy Magazine, Volume 9, Issue 11, 1992.

4. Lesley, Ronald D.; Facts From History About Our King James Bible, Chapter II, The Inspiration of Scripture,1997.

5. Federer, William J., The Spanish Armada: Spain, England, America [& the KJV], March 22, 2016: Video - Part 1 & Video - Part 2

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