Your Roving Reporter Returns!
I was afflicted with a particular ailment that comes only at certain times of the year – yes, it was the dreaded “last school week before holidays” syndrome. You know the feeling – when something you desire seems so near, and yet at the same time, so far away. During this time, I lost my will to write anything – be it academic or for my own leisure. I’ve been cured since the holidays have finally arrived.
Your roving reporter was investigating the ongoing standoff between the VPP proponents and the non-VPP followers in Life Bible-Presbyterian Church and all the churches affiliated with her. It seems that most parishioners (if such a word could be used on Protestants of this particular strain) are unwilling to comment. Those who commented only did so to be freed from this reporter’s doggedly persistent questioning.
The main point of contention in this conflict is whether or not the King James Bible is the inerrant, infallible and inspired Word of God (in other words, 100% accurate down to every dot and comma). The teaching had its beginning in June 2002, with the FEBC (Far Eastern Bible College) wanting to defend the King James Bible position by publishing a paper in “The Burning Bush”.
They had asked; must we possess a perfectly flawless Bible translation in order to call it the Word of God? If so, how do we know it is perfect? If not, why do some limit the Word of God to only one 17th century English translation? Where was the Word of God prior to 1611?
Indeed, where was the Word of God before 1611? Fundamentalist Protestants all need to be sent for history lessons, for their warped version of history (e.g. read Jack Chick’s The Death Cookie, Lorraine Boettner’s The Roman Catholic Church) begins only after the Deformation – with no recollection of what happened prior to that. Where was the Word of God? The Word of God was with the Church, as it was and always will be. The very Church these so-called Christians have rejected. The very Church they continue to attack till this day. The Church I speak of is the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.
There were some disagreements between the two main parties involved – Dr Jeffery Khoo and Rev Charles Seet over some amendments proposed by Dr Khoo to the paper. Later, Rev Quek Suan Yew joined in the discussions. The VPP proponents citing Psalms 12:6 – 7 as scriptural support for their stand. As the discussions went on, more disagreements emerged. In the end, Rev Charles Seet and Rev Colin Wong resigned from teaching at FEBC. Subsequently, the book KJV Q & A was printed in the following year.
The nominal leader of Life B-P Church, the aged Rev Timothy Tow has said that only the original manuscripts are inspired by God. Those at the other camp believe otherwise – the King James Bible too was an inspired work of God.
I don’t blame you. I don’t fare any better. Not knowing half the persons involved only adds to the confusion. Life B-P Church has been in Singapore since 1950 – that’s only been a good 55 years. Churches founded after the 16th century Deformation seem to have life-spans shorter than that of an average human being, splitting the moment the church leaders have disagreements about something – be it matters of doctrine, styles of worship, approaches to preaching/proselytizing or whether or not the church floor should be carpeted. The words of many pious Orthodox women ring with more truth than ever – these churches are without the grace of God.
Your reporter does not hold the King James Bible to be inerrant and infallible. As a mere translation – the work of sinful men – it cannot claim to be inerrant. Remember how St. Jerome’s great work, the Vulgate, translated beams of light as horns? Hence, Michelangelo’s sculpture of Moses in the Vatican had horns. Every translation has its errors, and so too, does the King James Version.
As mentioned before, Protestantism divides. It does not reconcile.