As we stated at the beginning of our devotions on Bible translations, there is probably no subject in regards to the sacred Scripture that is more misunderstood and controversial than the subject of translations. For instance, today’s advocates of “King James Onlyism” apparently see some intrinsic value in an Old English translation of the Bible over modern-day English translations. Their argument for doing so is based primarily on, the seniority of the King James Version. Since it is older, it’s Old English “thou” and “mammon” are seen as preferable to the “you” and “money’ of modern-day English. If this is so, then, why don’t King James Only advocates prefer the older Wycliffe translation of the Bible to the more modern King James Version?
As hard as it is for modern-day readers to read over the “thees” and “thous” of the King James Version’s Old English translation of the Bible, it would be much harder for today’s “King James Only” advocates to read over Wycliffe’s really Old English translation. Take for an example, Wycliffe’s translation of John 3:16: “For God louede so þe world, that he ȝaf his oon bigetun sone, þat ech man þat bileueþ in him perische not, but haue euerlastynge lijf.” I guess this explains the absence of any “Wycliffe Only” movement within the church today.