King James Revival?

I serve with a baptist church which means, among many other things, that we’re the target of marketing for many, many flavors of “baptist” ministries. Most of that marketing makes its way quickly into the trash. But I was intrigued by a piece that came across my desk recently.

“Revival Fires!” The header piqued my interest. I think it was mainly because I don’t talk like that. Makes me feel a bit less spiritual to admit, but it’s true. I don’t often go around using the word “revival.” It doesn’t mean I don’t hope and pray for it. I just don’t use the word much. Besides, I already noted I serve with a baptist church. Baptists don’t talk like that, do they?

But there it was. Right next to the phrase “revival fires” was the tagline, “positive voice for…baptist distinctives!” I guess some baptists do talk like that. Now I was curious.

As I paged through the publication, a theme began to arise. Many of the advertising organizations began by describing themselves with the words “King James Bible.” Ah yes, the King James only folks. If you’re unfamiliar, they subscribe to the use of the King James Version of the Bible exclusively. Thou shalt use no other version of Scriptures.

What I found interesting in this publication of “Revival Fire!” was that these ads touting the primacy of the King James Bible nowhere mentioned the name of Jesus. Curious indeed! Now I know King James has revived interest in basketball in Cleveland but surely that’s not the King James or the kind of revival they’re looking for in “Revival Fire!”

To be fair, I’m not against King James (the basketball player or the version of the Bible). If thou likest to read the King James Version, thou ought to have the liberty to do so. But let’s be very clear, it is King Jesus, not King James, who will bring revival! Jesus alone is “the resurrection and the life” (Jn. 11:25) and it is in Him we find life (Jn. 1:4). Let’s not let anything distract us from Jesus.

 

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