Eugene Cho

pretty much everything gets burned but the king james version

burning_bookFour people sent me this link today. Ignored the link initially but finally took a look.  And then I couldn’t help myself with my thoughts:

What the hell?

Why so prejudiced? Why can’t they symbolically burn “blog” urls so I can make it on one of these news stories.

And why aren’t any books written by Asian authors being burned? Why isn’t this church burning Francis Chan?🙂

My favorite part of the story:  BBQ, Chicken, & Fries are served during the Halloween Book & Bible burning event…

We all know it’s pretty crazy but how do you explain this to someone [Christian or non-Chrisitan] that asks,

“How do you explain that?”

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30 Responses

  1. […] pretty much everything gets burned but the king james version « eugene cho – view page – cached Four people sent me this link today. Ignored the link initially but finally took a look. And then I couldn’t help myself with my thoughts: — From the page […]

  2. Janice says:

    Honestly, I see nothing wrong with this. King james version is the original version. Other versions has alot of words left out, such as HELL, Jesus Christ, holy spirit. Over thousands of words left out…
    By that, I mean, some critical pieces of text have been intentionally removed or reworded to mean something different. While I have a KJV (King James Version), I’ve also used other translations and concordances to study to try to pull the full meaning of the Bible. Unfortunately, the first study Bible I was given is watered down (which explains why I couldn’t find certain passages when I looked for them). That version was the NIV (New International Version). Although I never used the NIV as my primary source, I have used verses under that translation hoping people who don’t normally read the Bible would understand the message without me including “thee”, “thou” or “thus” and coming off as distant. Apparently, some of the newer translations are also guilty of this which means that many Christians are not able to access the full power of God’s Word.

    Many of us purchased or were given these versions to help us understand the Bible because our speech has changed from the time the KJV was written; however, many are relying solely on these versions which have purposely been edited to remove the deity of Jesus, cause confusion in Scripture passages, and so forth. I would strongly urge all to check out information on these Bibles to see if you have been given an ineffective weapon. If your Bible jumps from “deliver us from the evil one” to talking about forgiveness of sins in Matthew 6 (Lord’s Prayer), you can believe it omits other vital passages and has decreased the impact of the Scriptures. I’ve never gotten rid of any Bible, but in this case, I will make an exception.

  3. Jimmy_C says:

    Please forgive my mountain brothers & sisters. The NC hills are a beautiful & magical place that is still isolated in many ways. They want to do right, but their lack of love and education is showing.

    To learn more about them I might suggest two book:

    “Black Rednecks & White Liberals” by Dr Thomas Sowell

    “Our Southern Highlanders” by Horace Kephart.

  4. Peter Armstrong says:

    I’m sure Eugene Petersen is getting a kick out of The Message being burned. The funniest part for me was that they spelled Mark “Driskel” wrong in the list of authors whose books they plan to burn.

  5. Joe T. says:


    You see nothing wrong with burning Bibles?


  6. Janice says:

    I’ve given a reason why I don’t see anything wrong with burning or tossing these bibles away.

    I have an entire bookcase of the NIV, Message, Nkj, NCV and many more.. I have tossed them all away and only kept the Kings James version.

  7. Zach says:

    I suppose this is what happens when you focus on a doctrine of hell and damnation. Baby gets thrown out with the bath water a wee bit too much.

    The KJV has its own issues:

    Also, which version are we keeping, and which are we burning?

  8. Dave says:

    @ Janice:

    You really have no idea what you are talking about. Other versions have not left words out, but they have actually done a better job at translating the meaning of the original texts. Accessing the full power of Gods word does not rely upon reading the bible in Old english. God can work in regular english, as well as every other language. Hes a powerful God.

  9. Kevin says:

    @ Janice:

    KJV is not the “original” version by any means. If you want to go there, the original version was written in hebrew. So does that mean we need to burn every bible that isn’t written in hebrew?

  10. The KJV was, IMHO, a project influenced heavily by the political intentions of a man with huge political power. It is, as such, symptomatic of government and power-politics interfering in Christianity. Why then must some people endlessly seek to defend it.

  11. dmowen says:

    You know what book I think we should burn? Fahrenheit 451! We don’t need that kind of anti-book burning propaganda corrupting young minds!

    On a more serious note, even though I disagree with these folks and think the book burning is silly & counterproductive, I think their motivations are sincere.

    Since this is happening at a Baptist church I’ll mention that one of the things I admire about the historical Baptist tradition (in which I grew up) is the concept of the “Baptist Freedoms” including the autonomy of each local congregation and each individual to interpret the Bible and form their doctrine under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I’ll give these folks the benefit of the doubt and assume that this is what is happening here.

  12. Sara says:

    Is this pick on @Janice day? I would guess that each of you have some ideas about the Bible, Christianity, Faith, etc, that the rest of us might take exception to.

    Janice – the NASB has the section of Matt. 6 you refer to. It’s in parentheses and the footnote says it was not found in the older manuscripts. The ones that weren’t available to the 17th century scholars. This could possibly mean that “For Thine is the kingdom and the power…” was not in the original text of Matthew. I’m not passing judgement on either translations, I just find the history of the Bible fascinating, not threatening.

  13. Eugene Cho says:


    we’re all growns up. and having a civil conversation.

    but shouldn’t we agree that burning bibles is a bad thing?

  14. Sara says:

    I hate it when I have to be a grown up😉

    I find the whole book burning thing disturbing. Do I find the burning of Bibles more so, I don’t know. Is the Bible a physical representation of God? Is it just pages in a nifty leatherite cover? Do we worship the Bible? If the Bible is being destroyed to keep people from reading it, yeah, that’s bad. If, in their minds it’s symbolic of removing evil, that’s on them.

  15. dazuma says:

    aah’s wha’ dey cawll a goood ol’ fay-shun publicity stunt. Payss da sweet tea, y’all..

  16. your friend says:

    What message do we give to those who are yearning to see Christ, the LIGHT, if we make a FIRE with His precious Word???

    Whatever translation, it is NOT even close to the original meaning of the WORD INCARNATE, who, by the way, STOOPED DOWN in order that we finally .

    To when it comes to the WORD INCARNATE we need HUMILITY, not hairsplitting fights and burning Bibles!

    Translation is translation, what counts is our HEART.

    Why are we wasting so many words over just words? Why don’t we start standing in awe of the WORD INCARNATE and with it, attract others to HIM!

  17. your friend says:

    (Sorry, the last message had missing words)

    What message do we give to those who are yearning to see Christ, the LIGHT, if we make a FIRE with His precious Word???

    Whatever translation, it is NOT even close to the original meaning of the WORD INCARNATE, who, by the way, STOOPED DOWN in order that we finally “get it”.

    To “get it” when it comes to the WORD INCARNATE we need HUMILITY, not hairsplitting fights and burning Bibles!

    Translation is translation, what counts is our HEART.

    Why are we wasting so many words over just words? Why don’t we start standing in awe of the WORD INCARNATE and with it, attract others to HIM!

  18. if the King James version was good enough for Paul it’s good enough for me.

    … uh, wait a second …

    hmm, nevermind.

  19. Andy M says:

    Sorry, but your comment is neither appropriate or helpful. Janice is allowed her own opinion and conclusions, and her trust in the KJV is not to be put on the same level as being a Nazi.

    I had a few co-workers a couple years back who were Baptist Fundamentalists, and strongly believed that the KJV was, at least, the only reliable version. One went a bit further than that, saying that the other versions weren’t just unreliable, but actually the work of Satan himself. Now, I want to add that these were very wonderful people and I enjoyed some great conversations with them (I’m sure I was quite controversial in their eyes). One of them showed me his bible, which had an article in the back pages written by some guy who explained in detail how the NIV, and various other popular versions were the work of the devil. I had him make me a copy, and I went through the article to research whether there was any truth in what the guy said.

    Here is what I found, I’ll focus on his criticism of the NIV for brevity. First, for the most part, when he pointed out something that was omitted from the NIV, he was correct, but there was always mention of it in the footnotes, never completely omitted. Second, he claimed that because the NIV omitted certain verses, it denies some essential doctrine(s). But the fact is that even when he pointed one verse out to confirm his claim, I would find several other verses in the NIV that affirmed the very doctrine he claimed it denied.

    I see nothing wrong with the KJV other than it is outdated and hard to read. I cringed when my sister-in-law and her husband replaced their NIV with KJVs, only because they do not even speak modern English that well, so they have no chance of truly understanding the nuances of the KJV. But no version is the “ultimate” edition of God’s Word.

    I understand if you have a preference for the KJV, some people just like it better and that is fine. What bothers me is that you and so many other people believe that it is the “original”, and while I don’t want to be rude I just want to point out that the KJV was translated in 1611, but the writings in the NT were written in the first century. English as a language did not even exist yet when they were originally written. It is simply a historical impossibility to say that the KJV is the “original”.

    As far as burning bibles, or even burning books, all I have to say is, what a waste. And pointless in this context, since all the books they will burn will be easily available at their nearest bookstores!

  20. Eugene Cho says:

    sorry. removed chuck’s comment.

  21. Brad V.W. says:

    You all bring up some important points but let’s get back to the food. Is it roasted over the book-burning fire, and if it is, does that mean the food is more holy or more evil?
    It is also interesting that a church which appears quite conservative would consider doing anything to ‘celebrate’ Halloween.

  22. This is almost a “Who’s Who” of Christian authors. I’m with you, PE. Being on this list would almost be a privilege and an indicator that you’ve rocked the boat in some respect. Maybe I should hurry-up, write some earth-shattering book and get it burned next year!

  23. Tim Sneath says:

    I’m just tickled by the fact that this church is called “Amazing Grace”…

  24. Corey says:

    At least Muslims agree on the wording!

  25. a reluctant blogger says:


    but shouldn’t we agree that burning bibles and books is better than burning…

    Maybe I better not finish that. But we are improving, aren’t we? Slowly? It may have already been commented on, but still…

    Ok, maybe here’s a better testament — certainly G-d can forgive such wicked deeds against words?

  26. Kacie says:

    I have distant relatives that would hold to this view, it drives me absolutely crazy, though, because it makes no sense. The KJV was, when it was first translated, the best English translation of the Latin Bible that we had at the time. Newer translations translate straight from the oldest texts possible, from Hebrew and Greek.

    Translation is never a perfect, linear thing – there’s a lot of debate about HOW to translate. Regardless, though, the KJV is an outdated translation as we have much better documents to work from nowadays!

  27. I’m with Tim on this one, just amazed (agape?) at the fact that church is called Amazing Grace.

    And I meant the English word “agape” as in, “mouth wide open, slack-jawed in shock” not the Greek word “agape.”

    I also have distant relatives who hold to this position, and they are/were (one has passed on to glory) very sweet people… but I could not have a conversation with them on this. It was like trying to have a conversation with a brick wall. I just had to move on and know that they mean well.

  28. […] (who worked hard to dispel white southern stereotypes by being interviewed in overalls) plans to burn any bible that isn’t a King James bible on […]

  29. Tiggy says:

    Why do Baptists like the King James version? King James wouldn’t have liked the Baptists! I thought they would be against anything monarchical – especially a quite openly gay monarch.

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One Day’s Wages

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Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer. Seattle. 7:00pm. Desperately holding on to summer. #goldengardenpark #nofilter

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