Tag Archives: kjv

Evolution of John 3:16

Evolution of John 3:16 from the first Old English translations to the 1611 King James:

Anglo-Saxon gospels (c.1000): God lufode middan-eard swa þt he sealde his ancennendan (sic) sunu. þt nán ne forwurðe þe on hine gelyfð. ac hæbbe þt ece líf;

Wycliffe (1395): For God louede so the world, that he yaf his `oon bigetun sone, that ech man that bileueth in him perische not, but haue euerlastynge lijf.

Tyndale (1525): For God so loveth the worlde yt he hath geven his only sonne that none that beleve in him shuld perisshe: but shuld have everlastinge lyfe.

Coverdale (1535): For God so loued the worlde, that he gaue his onely sonne, that who so euer beleueth in hi, shulde not perishe, but haue euerlastinge life.

Great Bible (1540): For God so loue þe worlde, that, he gaue is only begotten sonne, that whosoeuer beleueth in him, shulde not perisshe, but haue euerlastyng lyfe.

Matthew’s Bible (1549): For God so loueth the worlde, þt he hath geuen his only sonne, that none that beleue in him, should perishe: but should haue euerlastinge lyfe.

Bishop’s Bible (1568): For God so loued the worlde, that he gaue his only begotten sonne, that whosoeuer beleueth in hym, shoulde not perishe, but haue euerlastyng lyfe.

Rheims NT (1582): For so God loued the vvorld, that he gaue his only-begotten sonne: that eury one that beleeueth in him, perish not, but may haue life euerlasting.

Geneva Bible (1587): For God so loued the worlde, that hee hath giuen his onely begotten Sonne, that whosoeuer beleeueth in him, should not perish, but haue euerlasting life.

King James (1611): For God so loued ye world, that he gaue his only begotten Sonne: that whosoeuer beleeueth in him, should not perish, but haue euerlasting life.

So what did Jesus actually say?

Οὕτως γὰρ ἠγάπησεν  θεὸς τὸν κόσμον ὥστε τὸν υἱὸν
αὐτοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ ἔδωκεν ἵνα πᾶς  πιστεύων εἰς
αὐτὸν μὴ ἀπόληται ἀλλ᾽ ἔχῃ ζωὴν αἰώνιον.

Or more probably,

ܗܟܢܐ ܓܝܪ ܐܚܒ ܐܠܗܐ ܠܥܠܡܐ ܐܝܟܢܐ ܕܠܒܪܗ ܝܚܝܕܝܐ ܢܬܠ ܕܟܠ ܡܢ ܕܡܗܝܡܢ ܒܗ ܠܐ ܢܐܒܕ ܐܠܐ ܢܗܘܘܢ ܠܗ ܚܝܐ ܕܠܥܠܡ