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"...The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
I Timothy 3:15

The Word That Scares

Many Fundamentalists

Allen P. Dickerson

"The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever." (Psalm 12:6-7)

In the last several years a number of fundamentalists have developed a real phobia for the word "militant" and have stripped it from their vo­cabulary; it is probably consid­ered to be "unsophisticated".

Another word that seems to have a scary connotation is the word "preservation". Funda­mentalists believe that God gave His precious word by di­vine inspiration in the original manuscripts, but lots of funda­mentalists do not believe that God can preserve what He gave.

When you see the word "preservation", you are im­mediately referring to the au­thorized King James Version which is a true translation. The revisers and the paraphrasers who have butchered up the Word of God in creat­ing the RSV, the MV, the NASV, the NEV, Good News for Modern Man, the NKJV and scores of other revisions and paraphrases certainly could most assuredly not lay claim to "preservation".

Fundamentalists say we have the inerrant Word of God; inerrancy demands preservation. The reason we have the perfect revelation of God in the original manuscripts is that God moved upon holy men, turn­ing their mind into His labo­ratory and superintending the recording of His Word, thus giving it to us by His sovereign action.

It was later translated out of the original languages by bril­liant, godly men, but by no means sinless men. If the product of these men's labors is called by we fundamental­ists, an inerrant Bible, then somehow God must have pre­served its purity and inerrancy for us.

I am convinced that when I step into my pulpit and say to God's people, open the Word of God with me to book, chap­ter and verse, I believe I have in my hands the very inspired, inerrant, preserved Word of God. Translation does not destroy inspiration.

I do not believe that the Authorized King James is the closest thing we have to the Word of God. I believe it is the Word of God.