Aren't "Original Autographs" Better Than a Good Translation?

From "The Answer Book" ©1989 Samuel C. Gipp. Reproduced by permission

QUESTION: Shouldn't we be loyal to the "original autographs" and not a mere translation?

ANSWER: We should put as much value on the "originals" as God does.

EXPLANATION: It is impossible to be true to the originals because the originals have long been lost. This well established fact should be enough to make the sincere student of Scripture realize that an affirmative answer to the question is an impossibility.

But it does not explain the above answer. Just how much value does God put on the originals?

To get the answer we must explore several chapters in the book of Jeremiah beginning with the famous passage in chapter 36 concerning the roll that Jeremiah had written.

In verse 21 the roll is brought before King Jehoiakim and read by his servant Jehudi.

According to verse 23 Jehudi read three or four leaves and King Jehoiakim cut it up with a penknife and cast it into the fire on the hearth until it was destroyed.

Thus ends ORIGINAL #1 !

Then the Lord moved Jeremiah to rewrite the roll adding some words to it. (Jeremiah 36:32)

Thus ORIGINAL #2 is born.

We are shown the text of this second original in Jeremiah 45-51 where it is reproduced for our benefit.

Jeremiah told Seraiah to read this roll when he came into Babylon. (Jeremiah 51:59-61) Then Jeremiah instructed Seraiah, after he finished reading the roll, to bind a stone to it and cast it into the Euphrates river (Jeremiah 51:63)!

Thus ends ORIGINAL #2!

But wait! We have a copy of the text of the roll in chapters 45-51. Where did it come from? It came from a copy of original #2 which we can only call ORIGINAL #3!

So there are two very big problems for those who overemphasize the "originals".

(1) Every Bible ever printed with a copy of Jeremiah in it has a text in chapters 45-51 which is translated from a copy of the "second" original, or ORIGINAL #3.    

(2) Secondly, NO ONE can overlook the fact that God didn't have the least bit of interest in preserving the "original" once it had been copied and its message delivered. So WHY should we put more of an emphasis on the originals than God does? An emphasis which is plainly unscriptural.

Thus, since we have the text of the "originals" preserved in the King James Bible we have no need of the originals,even if they were available.

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