Reading the KJV concordantly

For many years now, English speaking members of the body of Christ have tended to prefer literal translations of Scripture, including Bible versions such as the CLV (the Concordant Literal Version), the YLT (Young’s Literal Translation), and the Writ (also known as the Dabhar Translation), to name what are probably the three most popular literal Bible versions among English speaking members of the body of Christ. However, over the course of the last year, I’ve begun noticing another group of believers who appear to be coming to understand scriptural truth while favouring a much less literal translation of Scripture, that version of the Bible being the KJV (the King James Version), also known as the AV (the Authorized Version).

This might seem odd to many believers, considering the fact that a fair number of books, articles, and videos have been published by members of the body of Christ over the years which argue that the KJV is a harmful Bible version, and that it should be avoided because it leads people to believe in Infernalism (and sometimes Annihilationism) due to having been mistranslated. Now, while I’m technically not a KJV-Onlyist myself, I’d like to suggest that the KJV isn’t actually the problematic version many believe it to be, and that, in fact, one can come to believe all of the core doctrines those of us who refer to ourselves as ”Concordant” believers hold to using just the KJV. In fact, I’d argue that God inspired the translation of the KJV to be worded exactly the way it is.

You might ask how I can say that when the KJV seems to have mistranslated so many words from the original Hebrew and Greek Scriptures, words such as עוֹלָם (olam), αἰών (aión), αἰῶνας (aiónas), αἰώνιος (aiónios), שְׁאוֹל (sheol), ᾅδης (hades), γέεννα (Gehenna), and ταρταρόω (tartaroō), which versions like the CLV translated literally. Well, very simply, I can say that because the KJV isn’t translated literally, and so we shouldn’t expect it to render these words the way we might be used to seeing them in our literal translations. While having been translated figuratively in many places can make it trickier to understand the actual meanings of certain words in the KJV if one doesn’t study the KJV extremely carefully, if one does study it carefully and consistently (“consistent” is what the word “concordant” means, after all), and God has opened their eyes to be able to see the truth, one will come to the exact same conclusions that believers who favour literal translations of Scripture have come to about our core doctrines. In fact, I’ve written an entire study demonstrating just that, which you can find here: What the Bible really says about heaven, hell, judgement, death, evil, sin, and salvation

But how can I say that God inspired the KJV to be translated this way when it inarguably leads so many who read it astray? Considering the fact that, until recent times, there seem to have been almost no KJV-Onlyists in the body of Christ, this does seem like a valid question. The answer is, as those who are members of the body of Christ quickly come to learn when we get saved, all is of God, meaning He is behind everything that happens, so that would have to include the translation of the KJV as well. And the fact that one can find the truth about all of our core doctrines if one simply takes the time to read the KJV consistently tells us that the fault isn’t with the KJV so much as with some of the readers of the KJV, and that most people simply haven’t been reading it consistently.

It also means while, until recently, God hasn’t been opening the eyes of KJV-Onlyists to the truth of what it’s actually saying, it appears He’s decided that now is the time for some KJV Bible believers to join the body, and so in the interest of welcoming our new KJV-Only (or even just KJV-preferring) brothers and sisters to the body of Christ, I’ve written this for our members who prefer literal translations to point out that the KJV actually can be used to learn the truth, and to be a little less condemning in our language towards this version. Even if you don’t agree with the idea of KJV-Onlyism, and believe that there are still mistranslations in the KJV, the fact is that God has begun using this version to bring new members into the body of Christ. Besides, we also know that Proverbs 25:2 says, ”It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter,” so consider the possibility that God purposely inspired this translation to make it difficult for those who aren’t willing to dig deeper to discover truth to find said truth.

However, in addition to writing this for older members who prefer literal translations of Scripture, I’ve also written this to help our new KJV-Only (and, of course, KJV-preferring) brothers and sisters understand some of the language those who tend to favour more literal Bible translations use, since it can seem foreign if you aren’t used to it. So, with that in mind, I’ve written a little table here to show what some of the terminology you might hear some of us use means, and what the equivalent words in the KJV are.

CLV-type languageKJV-type languageMeaning
El, Elohim, EloahGod
The AdversaryThe devil, Satan
VivifiedQuickened, Made aliveMade immortal
VivificationQuickeningThe process of being made immortal
EonAge, World, For everA seemingly long period of time with a definite beginning and end, sometimes referring specifically to the Millennium
EonsAges, Worlds, For everA series of periods of time, each with a definite beginning and end (normally referring to the final two eons or ages, meaning the Millennium and the final eon/age on the New Earth)
EonianEverlasting, EternalPertaining to an eon/age or eons/ages, Long lasting
Before times eonianBefore the world beganBefore all the eons/ages began (explaining this would take a much longer article, but most of us believe history and prophecy cover 5 periods of time, which we refer to as eons, or ages)
Eons of the EonsFor ever and everThe final, and greatest, two eons/ages (meaning the Millennium and the final eon/age on the New Earth)
Eon of the EonsFor ever and everThe final, and greatest, eon/age (meaning the final eon/age on the New Earth)
Eon of the eonThroughout all agesThis is a tricky one, but most literalists believe this was also a reference to the final eon/age
Disruption of the worldFoundation of the worldThe time the earth came to be “without form, and void,” at some point after the creation of the heavens and the earth
The unseenHellA figurative term, translated from “sheol” in Hebrew and ”hades” in Greek, with various different meanings depending on the passage in question, but generally used to refer to the state of being unconscious because one is dead
GehennaHellA valley in Israel where corpses will be burned after the Tribulation ends
TartarusHellA reference to a prison that certain angels have been imprisoned in underground
Submerged chaosBottomless pitA prison for the devil during the Millennium
The Snatching AwayThe Rapture (not actually in the KJV, but this is the typical word used for the event)The event when the body of Christ is caught up to the heavens to be with Christ
The Former ResurrectionThe First ResurrectionThe resurrection of the dead members of the Israel of God, also known as the Resurrection of the Just
Evangel, Well messageGospel, Glad tidingsA proclamation of good news
Hebrew ScripturesOld Testament booksThe books of the Bible written in Hebrew
Greek ScripturesNew Testament booksThe books of the Bible written in Greek
EcclesiaChurchA group of believers who have been “called out” from the world for a specific purpose
To die shall you be dyingShall surely dieGod told Adam that he would become mortal so that he would eventually die if he ate the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil
DyingDieMortality leading to physical death was the actual penalty of Adam’s sin, and this mortality was passed on to his descendants (which is why we ourselves now sin)
SpiritGhostWhen used in reference to humans, the breath of life that makes a physical body a living soul (human spirits aren’t conscious, though; it’s our souls that are our consciousness)
CondemnationDamnationTo be found guilty
PardonForgivenessTo have one’s guilt overlooked, avoiding the penalty of their sin
Dais of ChristJudgement seat of ChristA raised platform where members of the body of Christ will be learn what rewards they’ve been given for their actions while mortal

I hope you found that helpful. And if you are a KJV Bible believer and would like to get to know some of your brothers and sisters in the body of Christ who do tend to use more literal translations, I’ve linked to many of them on the Home page of this website.