In the brief citation from Pulpit Crimes posted below I made a very quick comment about the rendering of the KJV at I Timothy 6:10. Here is what I had written on the text a dozen years ago now in The King James Only Controversy:
The Root or A Root?
Another favorite passage of KJV Only adherents is found in Pauls first letter to Timothy:
1 Timothy 6:10 1 Timothy 6:10 1 Timothy 6:10 KJV NASB NIV For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith, and pierced themselves with many a pang. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
Two issues are readily seen by comparing these translations. First, is the love of money the root of evil, or a root of evil? Secondly, is it a root of all evil, or of all kinds of evil? Once again we encounter a situation in which something can be said for each translation. The word for root in the Greek does not have the article before it, hence the more literal translation in this case would be a root, not the definite the root. The text is not saying that the love of money is the only origin or source of evil, but that it is one of great importance. And is it all evil, or all kinds of evil? Literally the Greek reads, of all the evils, the terms being plural. The modern translations see this as referring to all kindsof evil, while the KJV takes all evil as a whole concept. The KJV translation is a possibility grammatically speaking, but it seems to miss Paul’s point. The love of money gives rise to all sortsof evil things, but there are, obviously, evils in the world that have nothing to do with the love of money. A minister friend of mine pointed out with reference to this passage that it is difficult to see how rape, for example, can be blamed on the love of money. Such is surely a good question for a person who would insist upon the KJV rendering. In any case, the modern translations are certainly faithful to the text of Scripture and adequate in their translation of the passage.
Now that you have the background of my brief comment, check out this blast from “Plain Path Puritan” (ironic, of course, since it is a documented fact many Puritans detested the KJV). Instead of commenting on the subject I was addressing (I would have to assume he actually agrees with me on the subject matter), the KJV Onlyist in him forced him to focus on the singular comment about the KJV. He identifies me as an “anti-KJV crusader” which is dishonest at best. It is a falsehood that has been refuted repeatedly in the past. KJV Onlyism and the KJV are two separate things; and even the King James translators would have opposed KJV Onlyism, so I think I am in good company. Then he links to a page that once again demonstrates just how desperate the KJVO camp can become—which still strikes me as so odd when Calvinists fall into this kind of circular thinking. Is there any meaningful response to what I wrote above? Surely not. The writer instead proves that the Greek and English definite articles differ in usage, something any person beyond the second month of beginning Greek knows quite well, and which has nothing at all to do with my comments. It does, however, provide the writer with something to fill in some space in an otherwise vacuous response. Then The Expositor’s commentary is cited—partially. I truly wonder if this writer has any idea what sources he is using or relying upon, for the writer does not show any recognition in his comments. The comment is based upon asserting that we should not expect precision in ethical statements. Well, I disagree, and we must remember, this source does not have the same high view of the inspiration of Scripture that Plain Path Puritan would, allegedly, confess, so why quote it, I wonder? I would direct the reader to the calm and clear discussion provided by Dr. Knight in TNIGCT on 1 Timothy (pp. 257-258). The rest of the linked response is a study in futility in trying to desperately find some reason to disagree with me! The fact is, the writer knows well I am right: I was addressing the claim that the KJV’s rendering is the only possible one and that all that differ from it are by nature in error. Notice that in my analysis of the passage I noted the grammatical possibility of the KJV rendering, and disagreed with it on contextual grounds. I stand firm there: the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil. Who can dispute this? But if one demands that the love of money is the exclusive root of all evil, this assertion is very easily refuted. So what is the point? The point is that the KJV rendering is unnecessarily restrictive and hence inferior to that found in modern translations.
So anyway, Plain Path Puritan then goes on to make the outrageous statement, “They seem to have adopted the Muslim’s approach that lying to Christians is OK if it is done to further their cause…” Why do KJV Onlyists have to demonstrate such consistent lack of charity? What is it about their movement that would cause them to say such things, especially when they have not provided any foundation upon which to slander fellow believers? It is truly amazing. Of course, he goes on to talk about “devil manuscripts” and the like, so I guess once you’ve blown the proverbial gasket, everything else is fair game. He does seem to condemn me to perdition, for he speaks of “them” and says “until their inevitable destruction in eternal hellfire.” Ironic for him to mention both Muslims and Roman Catholics here, given my debates and writings in those fields (debates and writings that have no modern counterpart in the ever-shrinking world of KJV Onlyism).
Finally, “Plain Path Puritan” writes, “When they get ‘heated’ they can’t help themselves but to sound like Roman devil-priests, which has been documented in James White’s case (“Christians who are not ordained clerics shouldn’t have opinions about the manuscripts”)…” Excuse me? Those are quotation marks. Where on earth have I ever said such a thing? Falsely attributing such words to me is libelous, is it not? I ask Plain Path Puritan document his assertions or withdraw them and post an apology, and I invite my readers to challenge him to do so as well.