A Letter From David Cloud


All emphasis from original

Received January 22, 1986

Dear Brother Carter:

Warmest Christian greetings in Jesus' most lovely name. I trust all is well. Recently I was given a copy of your excellent study, THE THINKING, THEORIES AND THEOLOGY OF DRS. WESTCOTT AND HORT. Your study was included with a packet of other materials on the subject of Bible texts and translation which was sent, I believe, by D.K. Madden in Australia. The sender's address was torn off of the packet when it arrived here and there was no personal letter inside. But I believe it was from Brother Madden. It is in regard to your study that I am writing.

We are church planting missionaries and have worked in Nepal for 7 years, but also have a literature ministry which, through a monthly magazine and books, extends to India and other parts of Asia. In the States we have a small publishing outreach called Way of Life Literature. At the end of this letter I will include a more complete overview of our testimonies and ministry.

I would like permission to print and distribute your study in the States and here in Asia. We are preparing to expand the distribution of Way of Life and I very much desire to make your important and timely study available to people. Many in our circles have been led astray by Stewart Custer's booklet, The Truth about the King James Version Controversy, in which he contends that Westcott and Hort were orthodox in their doctrine and sincere in their work. He discounts out of hand the material from which you quote. Why Custer is so eater to defend these two men is beyond me, unless it is because he is determined to cleave to their textual product and therefore must attempt to clear their name. He claims to be answering ... for surely Custer knows that there are large numbers of truly godly and scholarly men who believe the TR is the pure, preserved Word of God and that the Westcott-Hort-Nextle-UBS text is corrupted. ...

My brother I hope that you write to me and let me know if it is O.K. for us to proceed with the printing of your study. We will print it in booklet form (in the format of the enclosed booklets), saddlestitched. Also please let me know a little about yourslef, your church affiliation, etc. We have supporting churches in British Columbia, Washington State and Idaho, and I hope to be able to meet you on one of my trips to the States, perhaps even later this year. I will be coming in January and February, but will be spending that time in California, Texas and Iowa, and I do not foresee being in B.C.


I thoroughly agree with your statement on page 14 of your study -- "it is my conviction that the greatest attack of the devil on the church in the twentieth century is the new Bible version movement." ...


"I, too, am convinced that the battle over the Textus Receptus (and sound translations which are based upon it) is the most important battle there is, and yet it is one into which very few fundamental men have entered. But without a pure Bible we have no solid foundation for any truth. The field is being handed over to the devil by inattention and unconcern. It is the widespread ignorance over the issues surrounding Bible texts and translations which is making it possible for the pure Word of God to be replaced by corrupted texts and versions literally throughout the world. The United Bible Societies, the International Bible Society (NIV), Living Bibles International and Wycliffe Bible Translators are systematically replacing the Received Text and the pure Reformation method of translation. You know this is true in America, but it is true for every other country as well. Most fundamentalists are not in this battle, largely, I believe (as you noted in your letters), becuse of the negative influence of the large fundamental schools in this area. The evangelicals have become new-evangelical and their supposed warriors of the faith such as -- -- and -- -- and other men connected with the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy are paper tigers. They are contening for the purity of the non-existent original manuscripts while seemingly caring nothing for the purity of existing texts and versions. Many of these men, while professing that the originals were inerrant, actually recommend such vile things as the Living Bible and the TEV. This is more evidence of the duplicity of evangelicalism. In this matter the devil has played the old military trick of diversion. He has put up a diversionary issue of the errancy of the originals and we have some men valiantly fighting against that error, while the real battleground, the practical battleground is that of the errancy or inerrancy of existing texts and translations of the Bible. While these misguided warriors fight against the diversionary force, the enemy marches victoriously through the wide gape left undefended. I honestly believe the pure text is being lost before our very eyes in our generation. And it is worldwide phenomena.


In your study you quote from correspondance written by a man who worked on the translation committe of the Amplified Version. Is there a reason why you did not give the man's name? Did he request that his name not be given? It would be very helpful to be able to include his name.

The Lord's richest blessing be with you in these evil but opportune days.

In the service of the only Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,

David Cloud