An E mail exchange with Bible Agnostic Doug Kutilek
Mr. Doug Kutilek is a fairly well known critic of the King James Bible. He has his own website filled with many articles he has written discussing his own textual theories and pointing out what he thinks are “great defects” and “serious flaws” in the King James Bible.
His site is found here: http://www.kjvonly.org/doug/index_doug.html
In response to one of Mr. Kutilek’s articles titled “Why Psalm 12:6,7 Is Not A Promise Of The Infallible Preservation Of Scripture” I wrote an article defending the position that Psalms 12 does teach the truth that God has promised to preserve and keep His words, and that where they are found today and for almost 400 years now is in the King James Bible.
I then wrote Mr. Kutilek informing him that I had written this article and wanted him to be aware of it in case he decided to respond in any way.
Here is a copy of my email to Mr. Kutilek.
On Sun, 27 Dec 2009 07:15:34 -0700 Will Kinney <[email protected]> writes:
Hi Doug. I was asked about your article on Psalm 12 by a Bible believer in the Philippines and so I decided to finally put this article together. I certainly do not expect you to like or receive it, but thought you should know how I responded to your article. Keep em coming. You just give me more good things to study.
Then Doug Kutilek sent me this letter that included a link to one of his articles about “final authority in hand” and I then responded:
On Dec 28, 2009, at 8:02 AM, [email protected] wrote:
“It is therefore entirely in keeping with this evidence to conclude that we DO HAVE here presumptively the exact reading of the original words as given by the Holy Spirit to and through Daniel (cf. 2 Peter 1:20, 21). Since in this particular place we have perfectly preserved for us the exact original words, who can dispute that we do have the absolute authority of the inspired original here? And if that is the case, then it is entirely proper and right--indeed, it is the only valid course of action--to appeal to and rely on those inspired and infallible original words for determining what is or is not the correct translation of those words into English. Anything else, anything less, would be inadequate.” (end of email from Doug Kutilek)
I then responded: Hi Doug. Thanks for writing. You keep talking about "the exact original words", and "the original language texts" as though you actually have them, and you know you do not.
The best you seem to be able to come up with is "to conclude that we do have HERE (in this one spot as opposed to ALL of it) PRESUMPTIVELY (one can never be quite sure) the exact reading of "the" original words..."
That's good, Doug. Really a strong stand for infallibility;-)
You end up with no final written authority and no Standard. I know you have heard all the arguments before as I have heard yours. We probably will not budge each other on bit this side of glory.
Many of your objections to the KJB have to do with those printing errors. I have addressed this.
The history of the KJB perfectly reflects the history of how God has preserved His complete words. Some will see this and others will not.
I guess when we both get to glory we will be shown which view is the correct one.
Then Mr. Kutilek wrote another email to me
On Dec 29, 2009, at 3:02 PM, [email protected] wrote:
I seem to have missed your answer to my question:
"Where is your "original" KJV and when did you or any living soul actually see it?"
Surely you must have answered so simple a question as that, but I couldn't find it in your reply.
Note well: If you do not have the translators' original manuscript of the AV submitted to the printer in 1610/1611, then you do not have the ORIGINAL KJV, only divergent and defective printed copies, and can never be sure which variant reading is the true "original."
So, please answer my one question straight out:
"Where is your "original" KJV and when did you or any living soul actually see it?"
Hi Doug. I have never seen the "original" KJB. You can buy a reprint of it from Thomas Nelson Publishers if you want. I have a copy. You can also see the original 1611 readings over at Studylight.org and there is another online copy of it found here.
Unlike you, Doug, God has given me the faith to believe there really is such a thing on this earth as "the book of the LORD". You may have heard of it. It's called the King James Holy Bible.
On the other hand, your position is that of the Bible Agnostic. You simply do not know which texts are the right ones and you have no complete, inspired and infallible Bible to give to anyone. I have read enough of your writings to see this obvious truth about your present position regarding "the Bible"
Do I need to have an exact copy of the original 1611 Holy Bible (that it what it was called then) to believe I have God's complete and perfect words in print today? No.
Your position leaves you with no "originals" (you know, those invisible, imaginary thingies you keep telling us is your Standard), and no complete and infallible Bible now.
So, I'll stick with what I believe and you can have your biblical agnosticism.
And finally Mr. Kutilek wrote his third email to me saying:
On Jan 4, 2010, at 1:43 PM, [email protected] wrote:
You lambaste me for not having the "original Hebrew and Greek" (though my claim doesn't differ at all from what the KJV translators themselves claimed on their title page and in in their "Translators to the readers" prefaced to the 1611 printing) and you boast that you, in contrast, DO have the "original KJV." Yet, when I ask for your original KJV, all you can do is direct my attention to printed copies, or worse, copies of copies of copies (the Nelson reprint of an Oxford reprint--1911--which is taken from the 1611 printed edition).
I sure enough have had a copy of the Nelson reprint (I passed it on to a friend); and I have long had the 1911 Oxford reprinting of the text of the 1611 edition (the "he" Bible, Ruth 3:15). My brother has a full-sized facsimile reprint of the 1611 edition, and I have examined that; and even better, I have examined with my own eyes and handled with my own hands copies of the KJV actually reprinted in 1611 (the first time was in the library at the University of Chicago in 1975), including both "he" and "she" editions.
But, the fact remains--NONE of these is the ORIGINAL KJV. There are merely printer's copies of the original MANUSCRIPT submitted to the printers by the translators. That manuscript original KJV was by all accounts LOST during the great London Fire of 1666 and has not been seen since then (no "perfect preservation " there!). In short, your "original" KJV is as certainly "lost" and inaccessible to you as the "original" copy of Genesis or Romans is to me, and since the two earliest editions differ in over 2,000 places, there is no way to be sure, where they differ, which one preserves the true original reading. Further, it is just possible that they both have the same error in the same place and NEITHER contains the precise wording of the lost original. There is simply no way to tell.
You do not have the original KJV. None of your cohorts in KJVOism have the original KJV or have ever seen it. All you have are fallible, mutually differing copies.
Your claim is bogus. By your own standard of evidence and requirements, you have no Bible. "No ORIGINAL KJV manuscript = No Bible"
My Third response to Mr. Kutilek.
Hi Doug. First of all, I never said that “the original King James Bible hand written copy sent to the printers” was my final authority. I said and still say that it is the printed text of the King James Bible that we have today. I have one right here on my desk as I write this email to you.
Even the American Bible Society, no friend to the King James Bible, had this to say about the "revisions" of the King James Bible. The American Bible Society wrote, "The English Bible, as left by the translators (of 1611), has come down to us unaltered in respect to its text..." They further stated, "With the exception of typographical errors and changes required by the progress of orthography in the English language, the text of our present Bibles remains unchanged, and without variation from the original copy as left by the translators" (Committee on Versions to the Board of Managers, American Bible Society, 1852).
Your complaint that unless I have “the original” handwritten copy of the King James Bible then I do not have an infallible Bible is simply a PRETEXT and a very lame EXCUSE for your basic Bible Agnosticism. You couldn’t care less if the original King James Bible hand written copy existed or not. If it existed today enshrined in a glass case at a museum somewhere in London, England for all the world to see, it would make absolutely no difference to you one way or the other, nor would it budge you in the least from your own present unbelief in the existence of any Bible in any language that IS the complete, inspired and 100% true preserved words of God.
Even if the original hand written copy of the King James Bible existed, you would still not believe what it says are the true words of God. You would still claim that it is based on the wrong texts and is poorly translated in numerous places, just like you do on your website.
You would still claim that to refer to the Spirit of God as “it” is what you call “the Greatest Defect in the King James Version”, even though I have soundly refuted this silly objection of yours -
or that the phrase “God forbid” is wrong because, in your own words: “the word “God” is not found in the original text; and neither is the word “forbid.” Other than that, it is a fine representation of the original! ”
Again, I have refutted your silly criticism of the King James Bible and many other translations as well for this perfectly accurate translation of “God forbid” -
Or you would still claim that 1 John 5:7 does not belong in the real “Bible” you can never identify for us, nor in those long lost and invisible “the originals” you keep trying to make us think you have access to and is your imaginary “Standard”.
Let’s contrast your position of being a Bible Agnostic (you don’t know what God really inspired in many places of Scripture) versus that of the King James Bible believer.
Are you a Bible Believer or a Bible Agnostic -
I and many thousands of other Bible believers actually believe God meant what He said about preserving and keeping His words in “the book of the LORD” till heaven and earth pass away. We believe God in His sovereignty has in fact given us such a Book and this Bible is the Authorized King James Holy Bible of 1611.
Do we need “the original hand written copy” to believe we have God’s pure words in print today? No. We can easily determine exactly how the SPECIFIC underlying Hebrew and Greek texts read that were accurately translated into this greatest of all Bibles. Those specific words are what God originally inspired and what He has preserved in history and now are found in the English translation known today as the King James Holy Bible.
You, on the other hand, “prefer” the ever changing Critical Text that most modern versions like the NASB, RSV, ESV, NIV are based on, but not even they are your “Final Authority”, are they Mr. Kutilek.
All your modern versions often reject these same Hebrew words in numerous places and can’t even agree among themselves. Want proof? Here it is:
And your “critical text” based on what you call “the oldest and best manuscripts” is a pathetic joke that keeps changing its punch line with each new edition to come down the pike every few years.
Instead, you have made YOURSELF your own final authority, and then have the hubris to include many others in your collective “WE”. Here are your own words:
Doug Kutilek reveals his own bible agnosticism in his article “Westcott & Hort vs. Textus Receptus: Which is Superior”. http://www.bible-researcher.com/kutilek1.html In this article Mr. Kutilek writes:
“The defects of the Westcott-Hort text are also generally recognized, particularly its excessive reliance on manuscript B (Vaticanus), and to a lesser extent, Aleph (Sinaiticus). Hort declared the combined testimony of these two manuscripts to be all but a guarantee that a reading was original. All scholars today recognize this as being an extreme and unwarranted point of view. Manuscript B shows the same kinds of scribal errors found in all manuscripts, a fact to be recognized and such singular readings to be rejected...”
“What shall we say then? Which text shall we choose as superior? We shall choose neither the Westcott-Hort text (nor its modern kinsmen) nor the textus receptus (or the majority text) as our standard text, our text of last appeal. All these printed texts are compiled or edited texts, formed on the basis of the informed (or not-so-well-informed) opinions of fallible editors. Neither Erasmus nor Westcott and Hort (nor, need we say, any other text editor or group of editors) is omniscient or perfect in reasoning and judgment. Therefore, we refuse to be enslaved to the textual criticism opinions of either Erasmus or Westcott and Hort or for that matter any other scholars, whether Nestle, Aland, Metzger, Burgon, Hodges and Farstad, or anyone else. Rather, it is better to evaluate all variants in the text of the Greek New Testament on a reading by reading basis, that is, in those places where there are divergences in the manuscripts and between printed texts, the evidence for and against each reading should be thoroughly and carefully examined and weighed, and the arguments of the various schools of thought considered, and only then a judgment made.
We do, or should do, this very thing in reading commentaries and theology books. We hear the evidence, consider the arguments, weigh the options, and then arrive at what we believe to be the honest truth. Can one be faulted for doing the same regarding the variants in the Greek New Testament? Our aim is to know precisely what the Apostles originally did write, this and nothing more, this and nothing else. And, frankly, just as there are times when we must honestly say, "I simply do not know for certain what this Bible verse or passage means," there will be (and are) places in the Greek New Testament where the evidence is not clear cut, and the arguments of the various schools of thought do not distinctly favor one reading over another.
This means there will at times be a measure of uncertainty in defining precisely the exact wording of the Greek New Testament...”
In the same article, Mr. Kutilek criticizes various readings found in the King James Bible (and many others as well) in this manner. Pay close attention to the specific words he uses when he does this. He reveals his own biblical agnosticism by such statements as the following: "Returning to the specific texts, Westcott-Hort vs. the textus receptus: in truth, both texts necessarily fall short of presenting the true original. [Note- How does Mr. Kutilek know this? Does he have his own personal copy of "the true original" to compare them to? Of course not.] ...Additionally, in a number of places, the textus receptus reading is found in a limited number of late manuscripts, with little or no support from ancient translations. One of these readings is the famous I John 5:7. Such readings as this are also PRESUMPTIVELY NOT ORIGINAL...Besides these shortcomings, others also APPARENTLY occur in a number of places where a perceived difficulty in the original reading was altered by scribes in the manuscript copying process. PROBABLE EXAMPLES of this include Mark 1:2 (changing "Isaiah the prophet" to "the prophets," a change motivated by the fact that the quote which follows in 1:3 is from both Malachi and Isaiah), I Corinthians 6:20 (where the phrase "and in your Spirit which are God's" SEEMS TO HAVE BEEN ADDED after the original "in your body," which is the subject under consideration in the preceding verses"(end of quotes from Doug Kutilek)
First of all, the obvious question should be asked: “Precisely, who is this WE you keep talking about, Mr. Kutilek? It certainly doesn’t include me nor thousands of other King James Bible believers alive today.
You obviously are of the opinion that ALL the editors and translators of ALL Bible translations out there got it wrong in many places too. In your view, is the NASB, RSV, ESV, NIV, NKJV, Holman Standard, NET or the Daffy Duck version the perfect and infallible words of God? Of couse not.
If, as you say “All these printed texts are compiled on the basis of opinions of fallible men and none of them is omniscient or perfect in reasoning and judgment”, doesn’t this then also include YOURSELF as well?!?!
Didn’t God in His sovereignty use “fallible and imperfect men” to give us the originals in the first place? We Bible believers do not look to the efforts of mere fallible and imperfect men to give us God’s pure words, but to the living God who is sovereign in history and faithful and true to keep His words in “the book of the LORD” till heaven and earth pass away.
Mr. Kutilek, I do not entertain any false hope that you will see the error of your ways in attacking this Book of Books (a.k.a. the King James Holy Bible) and upholding instead your own peculiar theories about how your alleged “Standard” are those non-existent, imaginary, fairy tale fantasies you refer to as “the originals”; but I want those who have ears to hear to recognize the utter vacuousness of your arguments and that your whole foundation for finding out “what God really said” is nothing more than vain speculation and empty air.
Bottom line. We King James Bible believers have “the book of the LORD” (Isaiah 34:16), and your Bible Agnostic side does not.
“Kept by the power of God through faith” 1 Peter 1:5
For many more articles from my site defending the King James Bible as the complete, inspired, preserved and 100% true words of God and the Standard by which all others are to be measured, go to -