Another King James Bible Believer

1 Peter 2:2 "desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby."

1 Peter 2:2 and the Vatican Versions

King James Bible 1611 - “As  newborn babes, desire the sincere milk OF THE WORD, that ye may grow thereby.”

ESV 2001 - “Like newborn infants, long for the pure SPIRITUAL milk, that by it you may grow UP INTO SALVATION.” -
εἰς σωτηρίαν

NASB 1995 -  “like newborn babies, long for the pure milk OF THE WORD, so that by it you may grow IN RESPECT TO SALVATION.”

Note - The NASB is being less than honest in how they have paraphrased εἰς σωτηρίαν in this verse.  The Greek word εἰς does NOT mean "in respect to". The NASB has translated this same word as either "to" or "for" a couple hundred times, but only once as "in respect to".  For example, right here in 1 Peter the NASB has translated εἰς as "TO obey" v. 1; "TO a living hope" v.3; "TO obtain" v.4; "FOR a salvation" = the exact same Greek εἰς σωτηρίαν v.5; "come TO you" v.10; "FOR a sincere love" v. 33; "FOR ever" v.25; "TO this doom" 2:8; "FOR God's own possession" 2:9; "FOR the punishment" 2:14; "FOR this purpose" 2:21.

NIV 2011 - “ Like newborn babies, crave pure SPIRITUAL milk, so that by it you may grow UP IN YOUR SALVATION.”

RSV 1952 - “ Like newborn babes, long for the pure SPIRITUAL milk, that by it you may grow UP TO SALVATION.”

Darby 1890 - “ as newborn babes desire earnestly the pure MENTAL milk OF THE WORD, that by it ye may grow UP TO SALVATION.”

Bible in Basic English 1961 -  ”Be full of desire for the true milk OF THE WORD, as babies at their mothers' breasts, SO THAT YOU MAY GO ON TO SALVATION.”

Common English Bible 2011 - “Instead, like a newborn baby, desire the pure milk OF THE WORD. Nourished by it, YOU WILL GROW INTO SALVATION.”

Dan Wallace’s NET version - “And yearn like newborn infants for pure, SPIRITUAL, so that by it you may grow UP TO SALVATION.”

Jehovah Witness New World Translation 1961 - “as newborn infants, form a longing for the unadulterated milk BELONGING TO THE WORD, that through it you may GROW TO SALVATION.”

Catholic Douay-Rheims 1582 - “As newborn babes, desire the RATIONAL milk without guile, that thereby you may GROW UNTO SALVATION.”

Catholic St. Joseph New American Bible 1970 - “Be as eager for milk as newborn babies - pure milk OF THE SPIRIT to make you GROW UNTO SALVATION.”

Catholic New Jerusalem bible 1985 - “Like new-born babies all your longing should be for milk - the unadulterated SPIRITUAL milk - which will help you GROW UP TO SALVATION.”

There are two main areas of concern regarding this verse. One has to do with translation and the other is textual. You will notice that the King James Bible and even some of the ever changing Critical Text versions make reference to “the milk of THE WORD” (NASB, BBE, Darby, CEB). 

It is the written words of God that He has provided as our spiritual food for our proper growth into the maturity of being conformed more and more to the image of Christ our Saviour.

As our own Lord said in Matthew 4:4 “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”

However in many of these modern Vatican Versions (and that is exactly what versions like the ESV, NIV, NASB, NET are - See ) and in ALL of the Catholic versions  there is no longer any reference to “the milk OF THE WORD”, but rather to something far more vague, nebulous and open to a wide variety of interpretations like “spiritual milk”. (NIV, ESV, NET, RSV)

Jamieson, Fausset and Brown comment on this phrase - "of the word--NOT as ALFORD, "spiritual," nor "reasonable," as English Version in Rom. 12:1. The Greek "logos" in Scripture is not used of the reason, or mind, but of the WORD; the preceding context requires that "the word" should be meant here."

John Wesley comments: "The milk of the word - That word of God which nourishes the soul as milk does the body, and which is sincere, pure from all guile, so that none are deceived who cleave to it."

The second issue of even more theological importance is a textual one. ALL the Catholic bible versions and today’s critical text versions like the ESV, NIV, NASB, NET etc. ADD the words “TO SALVATION”  - εἰς σωτηρίαν - to the Traditional Greek text that was used for the Reformation Bibles in a multitude of foreign languages. 

And these additional words “that you may grow UP TO (or INTO, or TO) SALVATION fit perfectly with Catholic doctrine whereby salvation is viewed as an ongoing process one can never be sure of and is never taught as an accomplished fact because of what Jesus Christ has already done for His people.

The reading found in the King James Bible that OMITS those additional words “into salvation” is that of the  Majority of all Greek texts and is also the textual reading found in Tyndale 1535, Coverdale 1535, the Great Bible 1540, Matthew's Bible 1549, the Geneva Bible 1587 - “As newe borne babes desire that sincere milke of the woorde, that yee may growe thereby”,  Mace N.T. 1729, Wesley’s translation 1755 - “As new born babes desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby”, 1770 John Worsley N.T., Webster’s Bible 1833, Living Oracles 1835 - "earnestly desire the unadulterated MILK OF THE WORD that you may grow buy it.", 1869 Noyes Translation, Young's 1898, the Apostolic Bible Polyglot English Text 2003, the Hebrew Names Bible, the NKJV 1982, Green’s literal 2005 and the Third Millenium Bible 1998.  


Other English Bibles that read like the King James Bible in 1 Peter 2:2 are The Word of Yah 1993, The Tomson New Testament 2002 - "the sincere MILK OF THE WORD that you may grow by it.", The Evidence Bible 2003, Bond Slave Version 2009, Holy Scriptures VW Edition 2010 - "pure milk of the Word that you may grow by it.", Conservative Bible 2011, Far Above All Translation 2011, the World English Bible 2012 - “long for the pure milk of the Word, that with it you may grow”, and The Holy Bible, Modern English Version 2014  - "As newborn babies, desire THE PURE MILK OF THE WORD, that by it you may grow"

Among foreign language Bibles that read like the King James Bible without adding “into salvation” are the following: the French Martin 1744 and French Ostervald 1996 "pur afin que vous croissiez par lui.", Luther's German Bible 1545 and the German Schlachter Bible 2000 - "MILCH DES WORTES" = "milk of the word", the Hungarian Karoli Bible, the 2009 Romaina Fidela Bible, the Italian Diodati 1649  and La Nuova Diodati of 1991 - "IL LATTE PURO DELLA PAROLA, acciocchè per esso cresciate." = "the pure milk of the word that by it you might grow.",  the Africaans Bible (South Africa) 1953 - "melk van die woord, dat julle daardeur kan opgroei" = "the milk of the word, that you may grow", the Dutch Staten Vertaling Bible, the Polish Biblia Gdanska, the Spanish Cipriano de Valera 1865 and the Reina Valera Gómez Bible 2010 - "desead, como niños recién nacidos,  LA LECHE NO ADULTERATE DE LA PALABRA, para que por ella crezcáis" = "desire the unadulterated milk of the word", the Portuguese Almeida Corrigida E Fiel 1681 and A Biblia Sagrada em Portugués - "para que por ele vades crescendo", the Modern Greek, Stephanus 1550,  Beza, Elziever 1624, Scrivener 1894 - "επιποθησατε ως νεογεννητα βρεφη το λογικον αδολον γαλα, δια να αυξηθητε δι' αυτου"

The reading of the King James Bible is that found in the Majority of all remaining Greek texts, but the addition of the words "grow up TO SALVATION εἰς σωτηρίαν is found in P72, Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, A and C.  This may sound impressive until we begin to examine more closely these Alexandrian Greek manuscripts and begin to see that they not only disagree with the Textus Receptus and the Majority of all Greek copies, but they are in constant disagreement with each other! 

At this point I would like to note just SOME of the examples in this short epistle of 1 Peter where all five of these Greek manuscripts disagree with each other and how the Nestle Aland, UBS Greek critical text itself continues to change. In 1 Peter 1:4 where it says this inheritance is reserved in heaven for YOU, P72 says "for US". In 1:6 where it says "If need BE, ye are in heaviness" - εἰ δέον ἐστίν - the verb  ἐστίν is omitted by Sinaiticus original and Vaticanus, but is found in the others and Sinaiticus correction added it again. The previous Nestle critical text omitted the verb, but now they have put it back in the text.

In 1:8 it says: "Whom having not SEEN" is the reading of the TR and these others, except A which says "having not KNOWN". In 1:9 where it says "receiving the end of YOUR faith", Vaticanus omits the word "YOUR", but it is found in the others. In 1:16 where it says "for I am holy" - ὅτι ἐγὼ ἅγιός εἰμι" both Sinaiticus and Vaticanus omit the verb εἰμι and so did the earlier Nestle text, but it is found in P72, A correction and C and now the Nestle text has put it back in! 

In 1:21 where it says "who by him DO BELIEVE in God" the Majority as well as P72, Sinaiticus and C all have a verb -πιστεύοντας εἰς θεόν, but Vaticanus and A have an adjective meaning "faithful" - πιστοὺς εἰς θεὸν.  In 1:22 where it says "love one another with a PURE heart" - ἐκ καθαρᾶς καρδίας, the word pure καθαρᾶς  is found in the Majority, P72, Sinaiticus and C but is omitted by Vaticanus and A. The earlier Nestle critical text omitted the word, but now they have put it back in the text! To this day among the Critical Text editions the RSV, NRSV, NIV, NASB and Common English Bible still omit the word "pure" but the ESV, NET, ISV and Holman put it in. In 1:25 where it says "And this is THE WORD which by the gospel is preached unto you" manuscript A omits "the word" τὸ ῥῆμα.

In 1 Peter 2:1 we read in the list of sins the word "ENVIES" φθόνους, but Vaticanus alone says "MURDERS" φόνους, and where all the others read "HYPOCRISIES" plural - ὑποκρίσεις - Sinaiticus alone reads "hypocrisy" singular - ὑπόκρισιν. In 2:3 where it says "the Lord is GRACIOUS" -χρηστὸς - P72 says "the Lord is CHRIST" - Χριστός. And in 2:24 where it says: "Who his own self bare OUR - ἡμῶν- sins in his own body" P72 and Vaticanus say "bare YOUR sins in his own body" - ὑμῶν.

In 1 Peter 3:16 it says "whereas they speak evil OF YOU AS OF EVILDOERS" - ὑμῶν ὡς κακοποιῶν - These words are in the Majority of all manuscripts, the TR and in Sinaiticus, A and C, but P72 and Vaticanus omit them and so do the NASB, NIV, ESV, NET, Holman and the Catholic versions as well.

In 1 Peter 4:1 where it says "Christ hath suffered FOR US in the flesh" - ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν - these words are in the Majority of mss., the TR and in Sinaiticus correction and A, but are omitted by Vaticanus, P72 and C and by the NASB, NIV, ESV, NET, Holman and the Catholic versions.  In 4:3 where it says "For the time past of our life may suffice US to have wrought the will of the Gentiles" Sinaiticus says "YOU", while C has US and Vaticanus, P72 and A omit the word altogether.  In 4:8 where it says "love SHALL COVER a multitude of sins" (future tense - καλύψει) - is the reading in the Majority of all mss., the TR and in P72 and Sinaiticus, but Vaticanus and A say "love COVERS a multitude of sins" (present tense - καλύπτει )- and so do the ESV, NIV, NASB, Holman, NET and all Catholic versions. In 4:19 we read: "commit the keeping of THEIR souls to him in well doing" but Vaticanus alone omits this word "their" but it is found in the others.

In 1 Peter 5:2 we read: "Feed the flock of God which is among you, TAKING THE OVERSIGHT THEREOF" -  ἐπισκοποῦντες. This is the reading found in the Majority of all texts, the TR, Sinaiticus correction, P72 and A.  However Vaticanus omits it and so did Westcott and Hort as well as the earlier Nestle critical text. But now they have added this reading back into their more recent Nestle text. However it gets even stranger. Sinaiticus, P72 and A all contain two extra words that are not found in the others including Vaticanus.  These extra words are found now in the ESV, NIV, NASB, NET and Holman where  they say: "exercising oversight,  not by compulsion but willingly AS GOD WOULD HAVE YOU." 

These extra words are κατὰ θεόν and literally mean "according to God". These extra words were not found in Westcott and Hort nor the Majority nor the TR nor even in Vaticanus, but they are found in P72, Sinaiticus and A. Westcott and Hort originally had "but willingly" - ἀλλὰ ἑκουσίως-  but the Nestle texts later added - ἀλλὰ ἑκουσίως κατὰ θεόν - and that is how the modern critical text reads. The critical text RSV did not adopt this reading nor did the critical text Rotherham's Emphasized bible of 1902 and the recent Amplified of 1987 has now dropped it, but these others still have it in their texts, but usually accompanied with a footnote - "Some manuscripts omit 'as God would have you'" (ESV). The earlier Catholic versions like the Douay-Rheims  of 1582 and  the Douay of 1950 did NOT include this reading, but the more modern Catholic versions like the St. Joseph NAB and the New Jerusalem do.

In 1 Peter 5:8 we read: "as a roaring lion walketh about seeking WHOM - τίνα - he may devour." This little word "whom" (τίνα) is omitted by Vaticanus, but found in the others. Westcott and Hort originally omitted it from their text, but later on Nestle put it back in with NO brackets and then later on Nestle [bracketed] it again. 

In 5:10 we read: "who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ JESUS." - ἐν χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ.  This is the reading in the Majority of all texts, the TR and in P72 and A, but Vaticanus and Sinaitcus omit the word JESUS - ἐν Χριστῷ.  Westcott and Hort originally omitted the word JESUS and so did the earlier Nestle critical text, but now they have put the word back in their texts [but in brackets]. Among the critical text versions the NASB, RSV, ESV, NIV and NET still continue to omit the name JESUS but the Holman Standard and the new ISV 2012 now put it back in!

We see the same pattern among the other Vatican Versions in that the previous Douay-Rheims 1582 and Douay of 1950 read "Christ JESUS", but then the 1970 St. Joseph NAB and the New Jerusalem of 1985 omitted the name of JESUS. Oh, but wait a minute. They are not done yet. Now the 2009 Catholic Public Domain Version has come out and they put the name of Jesus back in their text and now it reads "called us to his eternal glory in Christ JESUS" once again!

In 1 Peter 5:11 we read: "To him be GLORY and dominion for ever AND EVER. Amen." = Αὐτῷ ἡ δόξα καὶ τὸ κράτος εἰς τοὺς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων. Ἀμήν. This is the reading of the Majority of all manuscripts and that of Sinaiticus, but Vaticanus, P72 and A omit the words "GLORY" - ἡ δόξα - , and Sinaiticus and A include the words that make up "AND EVER" - τῶν αἰώνων -, but Vaticanus and P72 omit them.

And finally when we get to 1 Peter 5:14 we read: "Peace be with you all that are in Christ JESUS. AMEN." Here the name JESUS as well as AMEN are found in the Majority of all texts including Sinaiticus, while Vaticanus and A omit both "Jesus" and "Amen" and P72 omits ALL eight Greek words entirely - the whole phrase!

If you are using one of these new Vatican Versions like the ESV, NIV, NASB, NET, Holman etc. then you will never be sure of what they will come up with next in their efforts to evolve, change, modify and develop their "interconfessional" text put together by Catholic and  Evangelical scholars. They will continue to alter and tamper with the text, and if they ever got it right, then they would be out of a job.

 This "$cholar$ game the bible agnostics refer to as the "science" of textual criticism is indeed a Wonder to behold. It's a Wonder what they will come up with next.

All of grace, believing The Book - the Authorized King James Holy Bible. 

Will Kinney


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