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In the Beginning: the Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language, and a Culture

by McGrath, Alister E.

  • ISBN: 9780385498906
  • ISBN10: 038549890X

In the Beginning: the Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language, and a Culture

by McGrath, Alister E.

  • List Price: $24.95
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Doubleday Books
  • Publish date: 01/01/2005
  • ISBN: 9780385498906
  • ISBN10: 038549890X
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Description: The King James Bible is the most familiar and widely read Bible translation, recognized for centuries as both a religious and literary classic. Named for the king of England who ordered its production in 1604, the translation made it possible for ordinary Christians to discover biblical stories and teachings without the intercession (and interpretations) of an elite clergy. Its language has been an inspiration for virtually every great writer, and also provided the style and vocabulary for such different forms of expression as Negro spirituals and the Gettysburg Address. Now Alister McGrath explores the origins of this monumental work and delves into the political, religious, and technological forces that brought it into being.

McGrath shows how the development of the printing press, the rise of the English middle class, and the acceptance of the English vernacular fueled the demand for a Bible that could be understood by all English-speaking Christians. He elucidates the complexities of Church history, explaining in accessible language the far-reaching ramifications of the Reformation, and provides a concise, informative history of the Bible translations that preceded the King James version. In an entertaining, authoritative look at the translation process and public and clerical reactions to the initial publication, McGrath sheds light on the specific language problems and the sensitive questions of interpretation that presented formidable challenges to England's great classic scholars.

Featuring compelling comparisons of historic translations of many well-known passages and thoughtful commentary on the power of religious prose, "In the Beginning" reverberates with McGrath'ssuperb understanding of religious and intellectual history.

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