Ad Gloriam Dei

"Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." - 1 Corintians 10:31

"Let us pursue the things which make for peace and those by which one may edify another"- Romans 14:19

"As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend." - Proverbs 27:17

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Why I Prefer the NKJV

I've been asked about my preference for the NKJV, so I thought I'd put the answer in an actual post. Here are my reasons for preferring the NKJV:

1. I believe that the Traditional Text (a.k.a. the Byzantine textual stream, close, but not quite the same as the Textus Receptus) is the family of texts that God has providentially preserved to be handed-down from generation to generation. I find the arguments for the superiority of the Alexandrian text-type unconvincing, and therefore why should I reject what has been handed-down? Only the AV and NKJV use this as their underlying NT text, however the advantage of the NKJV is that it also gives the alternative textual readings, such as the Hodges-Farstad Majority Text, which tries to basically capture the statistical majority reading for any variant.

2. I believe in accurate translation that tries as much as possible to communicate the text in the words that the Spirit has given, rather than dumping important words like 'propitiation' because we aren't used to it in modern language. Therefore I don't use the NIV as my primary translation. (The NIV is nonetheless one of the better translations and beats my favorites at times.)

3. I believe in using good, modern vocabulary and good, modern sentence structure that isn't awkward. Therefore I don't use the AV as my primary translation.

4. I don't believe in proliferating versions ad infinitum, esp. if it isn't adding any value in my opinion. Was the ESV necessary, when the NASV already existed? I long for the days when one version was used everywhere. The words of Scripture would be more deeply embedded in our minds.

5. I believe that it is wrong to unite with unbelievers in translating the Bible (or any other unequal yoking). Therefore I don't trust the RSV, esp. when a Rabbi translates Isaiah 7:14 as the following: "Therefore The Lord Himself will give you a sign. Behold, a young woman [as opposed to virgin] shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel."

My order of preference is thus as follows:

3. ESV

All of the above are substantially good translations.

Let's not even mention the Good News Bible, the New Century Version, the Message or the Living Bible. Please don't fill me with thoughts of despair!

I wouldn't be without a Thompson Chain Reference either!

See these previous posts.

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Blogger C G said...

Hear, hear! Though it is worth remembering that the Hebrew term in Isaiah 7 can legitimately be translated as 'young woman'. Its quotation in the NT makes clear that the mind of the Spirit is, specifically, a young woman who is a virgin.

Sunday, June 18, 2006 4:55:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


Thanks for your comment. I am aware of the arguments around the virgin vs. young woman translation. I read a really good discussion of this, but I can't think where right now.

It still concerns me that a Rabbi was involved in translation, and no doubt his unbelief affected his translation decision. The ESV corrected this translation.

Sunday, June 18, 2006 5:51:00 pm  
Blogger Philip S Taylor said...

I too long for days when one version is used in the English speaking world. I do not think we will see it though. Between now and Eternity I will just try to read and obey my NASB.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 12:12:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy said...

Yes, I'm in agreement with you on this as well. I do use the NKJV, and the entire congregation did as well back at my church in Arkansas. Here, there are some that are really committed to the NASB, which I've never liked for it's closeness to being a literal translation... at some point, it's no longer a translation... and it's wooden in its presentation.

I too wish we could get away from this bad habit of the lastest & greatest translation... as if that would cause us to read the Bible more than we already do. In the 16th century, there was unbelief because of a lack of the word for the people... today, it's the opposite, from the over saturation of the word. I don't believe this will change until we go back to having the "churc" translate the Bible, and not XYZ Publishing company.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 4:12:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


Glad you agree, although I wouldn't be so hard on the NASB. I used it for quite a few years before my Traditional Text conversion. I didn't find it that wooden at all. In fact, I detect more woodeness in the ESV (although it is worse in the Gospels than elsewhere), which purports to be smoother than the NASB. I do confess there are a few places where the NASB is a bit wooden, e.g. John 1:3.

As I said before (in case you didn't se this):

"In terms of experience, my progress was as follows (as stated previously): RSV -> NIV -> AV (1 year to test) -> NASB -> NKJV -> ESV (to check it out). I also used the Good News at school, so I've seem them all, and I'd assume I shouldn't be too biased by my background, although maybe I've been more exposed to poetry and older writings than most, so it could be that I'm immune to some carry-over from the AV. I also find the RSV wooden, even though I grew up with it first. (I think the ESV has inherited this.)"

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 5:31:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


Like a lot of things which we won't see this side of eternity, I still try what I can to mitigate the damage of the reverse. Not that I think you disagree; just thought I'd state this.

If I weren't a Traditional Text man, I'd be a NASB'er; although with the ESV gaining ground, I might've adopted it, to aim towards the old "one version" ideal.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 5:34:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim, I am writing to say, what are the Behemoth and the Leviathan? Are they dragons that were not allowed to reproduce? My head is so full of questions on this...

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 5:38:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...

By the way, my wife Mary has memorised a lot from the NASB, so she thinks it is better to stick with this version for her, and I agree with her. The differences between the Traditional Text and the modern Eclectic Text are much exaggerated. It is more important that the Word of God is hidden like treasure in her heart (Psa. 119:11).

The problem is that we've had to hunt out old versions of the NASB, as it has had a recent revision. This is making some NASB'ers turn ESV.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 5:41:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...

Michael (my teenage brother-in-law, for those who don't know),

The Behemoth of Job 40:15-24 seems to be like a Brachiosaurus, or a similar dinosaur. Since when does an elephant or a hippo move its tail like a cedar?

The Leviathan of Job 41 is clearly what the many legends around the world call a dragon, not a crocodile as the NIV suggests:

"His sneezings flash forth light, and his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning. Out of his mouth go burning lights; sparks of fire shoot out. Smoke goes out of his nostrils, as from a boiling pot and burning rushes. His breath kindles coals, and a flame goes out of his mouth." (vv. 18-21)

As for reproduction, are you wondering about their extinction? If so, then it should not surprise us given the demise of the dodo, etc. Maybe man destroyed it, and/or they didn't survive the post-Flood climate. There is evidence that suggests that some may still exist, but we don't know for certain.

Please see this article. This website is full of answers to questions.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 6:19:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How does all this relate to the Loch Ness Monster?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 8:57:00 am  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...

Well, oh mysterious, eschatologically-inclined Scot-in-exile, is Nessie a remnant from the past, or are you boys just looking for American tourist dollars?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 12:50:00 pm  
Blogger C G said...

ah - how did you guess?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 1:40:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I am looking for dinosaurs. I want to start my expedition in Africa since that’s where one was last seen in 1904. But, the people who found it, killed it and died by eating it. The living survivor was a vegetarian so that’s how the story got out.


Wednesday, June 21, 2006 3:41:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


Thinking of dinosaur-hunting, eh? When are you marrying the billionaire?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 6:00:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...

Crawford (or is it Darby?),

Can't you guess?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 6:02:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In 9 years, why you ask?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 6:02:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...

Methinks Tim Hammons needs to do a course on "who to marry"!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 6:26:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You did ask you know. Besides... I can pay her back when I get my dinosaur. I bet our goverment would pay through the nose for a dinosour... more for a girl dinosaur so they can reproduce them.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 6:56:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

tell us more about the 1904 incident. fascinating!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 8:40:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, in 1904, some Spanish explorers set off to explore the jungles of Africa. And one day, the bunch of them found a brachiosaurus. They decided to kill it for its meat. But, after they had eaten some, they all died slowly. The meat must have been poisonous or diseased. But anyway, the one survivor, a vegetarian told the story. And then it was printed in this book... I forget the name... we have it somewhere in our house. But it told of dinosaurs and how evolution is wrong. And that inspired me to try to find dinosaurs one day. If dinosaurs can outlive the date of 1000 years that humans thought they all died, they can sure enough live an extra 120 years for me to find them. But to be realistic, I might never get 3billion dollars to do such a thing, or be brave enough to face snake, cannibals, tiger infested jungles. But, it's still a good fantasy. The book also told how a Japanese fishing boat found a dead Sea Dinosaur. But it was dead, and floating on the water.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 10:02:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


I think that the Japanese plesiosaur was actually a shark. See this article.

See the other evidence for plesiosaurs in recent times in the same article. There's a really interesting Australian aboriginal picture.

Do you think you can drag up something on the web about the 1904 incident for our fascinating friend?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006 11:19:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't find anything on the 1904... just a whole bunch of evolution crap. But yeah, maybe the plesiosaurs was in fact a shark... but I still don't agree, after all, I am a kid, and I need things that give me mysterious thoughts. I guess, no one believed him. I have only seen the 1904 guy in one book.

Something to think about: What is at the bottom of the ocean? No one knows! Could Atlantis be true? Could, deep sea monsters be true? No one knows. Until we can make a boat great enough to withstand deathcrushing force preasure. The world is yet but not at all exsplored. It likes gold waiting to be found!

Thursday, June 22, 2006 12:02:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I remember reading that book too. It was all about refuting evolution and giving scientific evidence for Creation/the Flood, etc. I remember it was by some red-haired guy & it was quite a large-paged book. I loved it too!!

As the Answers in Genesis web article says, there is evidence for plesiosaurs existing in recent times. Also, the book we read gave other evidences for dinosaurs existing as well. For instance, I think a 10-foot long fire-breathing "lizard" was found somewhere in Asia, and the evolutionists called it an anamoly (if I'm remembering correctly).

Anyway, there's plenty left to promote mysterious thoughts!! How about inventing a deep sea submersible someday? I guess it would be best to have ones equipped with just cameras rather than people (in case something went wrong!) I wonder if anything really big could survive in those dark depths without light though? What do you think?

Thursday, June 22, 2006 9:09:00 am  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


Such a book should be approached critically when it makes fantastic claims. (Of course, we know from Job that fire-breathing dinosaurs existed, but if they were around today, you would expect the standard reliable sources, e.g. Answers in Genesis, to be aware of a 10-foot long fire-breathing lizard, but maybe they aren't!) The claims may be true, but they may be false, and we need to keep an open mind.

(Here's an interesting article from last July on what I think is an official Chinese government website, by the way.)

Be aware that not all things written by Christians are necessarily true. Remember the following:

1. Not all who profess to be Christians are true believers.

2. Christians can pass on information as fact that hasn't been thoroughly researched.

3. Christians themeselves can be sloppy in their own research. We can remember things wrong too.

4. We are fallible human beings, even with the best of intentions and efforts, and we need others to correct us.

That's why we need the likes of Answers in Genesis.

We should be concerned to know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. We need to be truth-seekers. I want to know the truth, not just be confirmed in what I believe. I want to be corrected if I am wrong. God loves truth. The Holy Spirit is called "the Spirit of Truth".

Childhood is a great time, because we have lots of time to know the truth, esp. if we are home-schooled. Computer games have their place, but better to spend this precious time in knowing the truth, esp. the Truth, i.e. the Bible. I know Mary has a mind filled with God's truth because she memorised so much in her childhood. I wish my family made me memorise more.

"If you abide in my word, you are my disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free." (John 8:32)

"Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth." (John 17:17)

"God is light and in Him is no darkness at all." (1 John 1:5)

"Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'" (John 14:6)

Thursday, June 22, 2006 11:00:00 am  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...

There's a lot out there that we don't know. I guess someone needs to explore these things...

'Course he needs to marry a godly billionairess who will encourage him in the faith, and who endeavours to be competent in homemaking, etc. ;) (Someone who is all for Christian schooling, esp. home-schooling.)

'Course he'll need to strive after godliness for God's glory and to attract this godly billionairess.

(End of lunch, must go...)

Thursday, June 22, 2006 12:22:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes Mary! That was the book. And Tim, I am starting to think that dinosaurs really did die off. But, until someone proves it wrong, it will always be in the back of my mind. I was wondering about dragons? I remember my Mom telling me that dragons, on a certain scale, exsisted. Like in europe and china. China is bases on a dragon, so maybe once, there were dragons living on earth. I am just going to have to find that creations book! IT IS DRIVING ME INSANE! And I will look for it right now, gotta go.

Thursday, June 22, 2006 3:13:00 pm  
Blogger Timothy Davis said...


(I need a break from my training.)

Don't misunderstand me. There may still be dinosaurs on earth and there may even be those dinosaurs that we call dragons. There were certainly dragons in Job's day.

Don't give up the hunt! Do have a good peruse of Answers in Genesis. They have lots of discussions about the various legends surrounding dinosaurs and dragons and I have no doubt, based on the Bible, that these are based on fact. See the links I have already provided in these discussions.

Presumably dinosaurs still existed at the time of the Flood, and therefore Noah would have saved them on the Ark ("And of every living thing of all flesh you shall bring two of every sort into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female." - Gen. 6:19). If that is the case, then they would have existed in the post-Flood world and may still be around today. Cave paintings point to this as they must be post-Flood (i.e. they aren't washed away) and the detail is such that they are probably based on experience rather than legend.

So, 9 years until you begin the expedition?

Thursday, June 22, 2006 4:47:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pastor Timothy has a book in his library that you will find very interesting. It is by his best friend's dad, Jack Cuozzo. The name is something like Buried Alive. Anyway, in it he mentions that there is a cave in France that shows man killing dinosaurs. He also mentions that (preflood)dinosaurs were probably vegetarian because he (a dentist) studied fossil remains of the tyranasaurus rex. At the back of the skull are molar teeth, like that of a cow. Why would an all meat eater need molars? His sharp teeth are all curved. How can a meat eater rip flesh and muscle with curved teeth. He proposes that the curved teeth were for stripping leaves off branches. It's a great book. I think Dr. Turner may address some of this stuff in his Sunday school lessons as well.
As for the eating of the dinosaur in Africa: what if it was samonela poisioning? The reason I'm saying this is that iguanas carry samonela bacteria on their scales. At my old school, we were constantly making teachers and students who handled our pet iguanas, Iggy, Thunder and Lightening, wash their hands after handling them, due to the infections they could get. Iggy died of an infection after an injury by a thief that wasn't treated until we got him back.

Thursday, June 22, 2006 5:33:00 pm  

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