Friday, March 21, 2014

Is the KJV Really the Bible People Read the Most?

I just read an article on the Christianity Today website that shows results of a survey on Bible reading. The article says that despite the NIV being the bookstore bestseller, the majority of people who read the Bible, do searches online for the Bible, or otherwise look at the Bible choose the King James Version. The number of those choosing the KJV is actually increasing, according to this survey.

What doth this mean? Well, at face value it speaks to the staying power of an English translation that has been around over four hundred years and shaped the English language. But I'm not sure it means that people are really reading it (or the Bible) more. If this survey is including web searches, the KJV, by virtue of its free access and availability as the primary search version of various freeware searches online, will get more hits than anything else. And there are probably more houses than we'd care to know that own a King James Bible that was given to them or came to them in childhood or is a family or marriage Bible, and that is the only Bible they ever look at, when they look.

Maybe I'm wrong, and if so, we can expect a rising generation of King James speakers. But this survey may actually indicate less serious reading of the Word by younger people, for whom the King James is not just unfamiliar, but in many cases incomprehensible.

Read the full article and its links here.