Ruckman’s view of the KJV translators

Considering that Ruckman teaches that the KJV translators' product is infallible, an examination of his views concerning them is in order. His views may surprise you. We will document our conclusions straight from Ruckman's own writings. Ruckman's teaching that the KJV is an inerrant translation naturally places extra scrutiny on its translators, which clearly makes him uncomfortable, judging by his reactions.

Ruckman often claims questions about the KJV translators are irrelevant

We don’t have to waste 5 minutes with nonsense about marginal readings, variations in editions, what the AV committee thought about previous translations, baptismal regeneration, eternal security, the sacraments, Postmillennialism, or Baptists. (Ruckman, Peter. The Scholarship only Controversy, p. 70)

Profession of its translators…no real Bible believer would pay any attention to anyone’s profession where Final Authority was involved. (Ruckman, Peter. The Scholarship only Controversy, p. 69)

Fundamentalists” humanists will even recommend the opinions of the AV translators [1611] to get you to destroy your faith in the text they produced; (Ruckman, Peter. The Book of Hebrews. Pensacola, FL: Bible Baptist Bookstore, 1986, p. 190)

Being a humanist, he thinks that you must put the same “weight” on what the AV translators professed as he does. (Ruckman, Peter. The Scholarship Only Controversy. p. 391)

You say, “Well, why don’t you find out if all the AV 1611 translators were saved before you accepted their scholarship?” I never dealt with them or their scholarship for a minute. (Ruckman, Peter. The Anti Intellectual Manifesto. p. 67)

His first, initial “assault” will be one hundred perfect humanistic. He will go into the humanistic backgrounds of the humans who produce the AV of 1611, and prove to you that nothing SUPERNATURAL was involved in what they did. If, at this point, you believe him and sell your birthright for a mess of pottage… (Ruckman, Peter. The Christian Liar’s Library. 1997, p. 257)

It matters nothing to us whether or not the King James translators agreed with us about ANYTHING they did. We have what they did. If they had been “off” on a dozen points of opinions about the Septuagint or translations or the sacraments, it didn’t affect their PRODUCT ANY. God had his hands on their product, and the product is what we are concerned with. We are not in the least intimidated by articles from amateur scholars who talk about the AV translators “repudiating Ruckman” (see Appendix XVI). We are concerned with THE BOOK they produced, and the God who allowed them to produce it. Humanistic opinions about humanistic scholars and their humanistic traditions are immaterial. (Ruckman, Peter. The Pastoral Epistles. 1989, p. 277)

Who cares what the King James translators thought about their work? (Ruckman, Peter. The Pastoral Epistles. 1989, p. 446)

Did you notice how Ruckman used either "humanists" or "humanistic" seven times in the above quotes for those who would dare question the KJV translators in some area? One of the reasons Ruckman is wrong in dismissing these questions as irrelevant is because they are the same type of questions he asks about other revisers. That Ruckman does not want these questions to be asked about KJV translators reveals a double standard. These questions that disturb Ruckman also strike at the heart of his teaching of KJV inerrancy.

Ruckman admits they were wrong in their theology

…the King James’ translators. Their theology was defective but their PRODUCT was the greatest Book ever written in the English language. (Bible Believers' Bulletin. July 1990, p. 8)

It [the KJV] was put together by men who did not even know the doctrinal content of what they were writing when they wrote it. (Bible Believers' Bulletin. July 2011, p. 9)

What has “unbelieving” and “liberal scholarship” got to do with the product? The translators who put out the King James Bible were baby-sprinkling, Amillennial, and Postmillennial. (Ruckman, Peter. Bible Believers' Bulletin. Jan. 1996, p. 2)

The AV translators were just as wrong on this point [Septuagint] as some of them were on baby sprinkling. (Ruckman, Peter. Pastoral Epistles. 1989, p. 446)

He said, "The King James translators refute Dr. Ruckman. Dr. Ruckman says there is no B.C. Septuagint; the King James translators said there IS a B.C. Septuagint, therefore the King James translators refute Dr. Ruckman." Well, Dr. Ruckman repudiates them, too. I'm not a baby sprinkler; some of them were. Do you believe in baby sprinkling? Some of them did. I'm not post-millennial; some of them were. (Ruckman, Peter. Why I Believe the KJB is the Word of God, 1983, p. 11)

What would happen if Ruckman applied his views consistently

We already documented that Ruckman admitted that none of the KJV translators were premillennialists. This should not be a surprise because such a position, regardless of how Biblical, would have been rare in their day. Although we believe the premillennialist position is the most Biblical, Ruckman, as usual, goes overboard in declaring views contrary to his own as satanic heresy:

Therefore, Postmillennialism and Amillennialism should be treated by any Bible-believing historian as two of the most dangerous anti-Christian heresies in history;…either position is Satanic… (Ruckman, Peter. The History of the New Testament Church. Vol. 1, p. 32)

If a man is not Premillennial, he is a Bible-denying heretic. (Ruckman, Peter. The Books of the General Epistles Vol. 1. 2005, p. 423)

What is remarkable about these statements by Ruckman is that if they were applied to the KJV translators, it would turn them into Bible-denying heretics holding to a satanic position! This is proof that Ruckman's views cannot be taken seriously and often fall apart if taken to their logical extent. Not everything Ruckman says about the KJV translators is dismissive. In spite of all he admits, he still insists their product is infallible. In the first statement we quote below, Ruckman implies that the KJV translators were inspired, although he does not say it outright:

No, don’t give us this gas about the King James translators. They could not possibly have known about this fine a distinction. They were “led,” and they were led straighter and truer than any missile fired from a launcher. (Ruckman, Peter. The book of Minor Prophets Vol. 1 Hosea-Nahum. 1978, 1984 reprint, p. 206)

Thank God the AV translators (more than 370 years ago) had more spirituality and scientific methodology (and intelligence) than our modern Conservative and Fundamental seminary graduates. (Ruckman, Peter. King James Onlyism Versus Scholarship Onlyism. p. 69)

We are concerned with the product of the AV translators. We have never accepted them as the final authority on anything. (Ruckman, Peter. The Scholarship only Controversy, p. 70)

The problem with the above quote is that Ruckman does indeed accept the KJV translators as the final authority in several areas. That would be their translation decisions, their interpretations (as required during the translation process) as well as textual decisions as they chose between several TR editions and in some rare cases departed from them in their honorable translation we know as the KJV. The fact that Ruckman is dismissive about the KJV translators holding to views for which he accuses others of being Bible-denying Satanic heretics reveals that Ruckman is inconsistent and should not be taken seriously.

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9 Responses to Ruckman’s view of the KJV translators

  1. david Lovely, PHd says:

    Could you research and comment on the the subject of soul winning regarding Ruckman, youth camp contributions over his entire ministry, foreign missionary contributions, his home living standards and conditions, and what he is annual salary is as well as net worth .

    • Al says:

      A person’s soul winning has nothing to do with the false doctrines they teach. Even an unsaved person, if they repeat the gospel, can help get a person saved since it is the Holy Spirit who draws and saves. So, all the details you ask for are unrelated to the real issues at hand.

  2. Webmaster says:

    I don’t understand how your request relates to the issue at hand. My approach has been to reveal what Ruckman teaches straight from his own writings and recordings.

  3. Seth L. Smallwood says:

    I always thought that his views and even his jokes were a bit out of line. His commentaries are okay, but I see them as merely broken clocks. They only work twice a day, if not at all. He seems to confront his opponent and bashes them, either in debates, or in sermons. I would like to say his preaching style is polemically textual, because I have yet to see any strong expository preaching (then again, I have only heard a few of his sermons).
    I agree with this statement, “The fact that Ruckman is dismissive about the KJV translators holding to views for which he accuses others of being Bible-denying Satanic heretics reveals that Ruckman is inconsistent and should not be taken seriously.” Ruckman is probably the only one that I would not take totally serious. If he does say something in his commentary that I believe would best fit what needs to be said, then I would use it. If not, then I would not. It’s that simple.
    There are some things that he writes and he says that does seem disturbing, and, like I said previously, merely polemical, confrontational towards his critics. Whether or not that should be omitted, I am not certain of. One must discern such things.

  4. John Machen says:

    By the way, how many wives has Pete Ruckman had, at last count?


  5. Nate Beck says:

    I've always thought that what the KJV translators believed about some things is irrelevant.

    King David wrote most of the Psalms, but wouldn't have known what pre-millenialism even was!

    Isaiah, who wrote one of the greatest prophecies of Christ in Isaiah 53, wouldn't have known a thing about God manifesting in the flesh as a man to die on a cross!

    Did the King James translators produce a great and accurate translation of the Bible? Yes, they did! So, I understand Dr. Ruckman was inconsistent here, but at the end of the day, no Christian should really care about what the KJV translators believed about anything, except they did believe that they were translating the very words of God!

  6. Sam says:

    Much of my sentiment already is echoed by Nate Beck.

    The Bible is clear even its human authors did not understand what they were writing.

    Same deal with the KJV translators. Not an inconsistency.

    For someone who researched everything Ruckman says, you fail to get the underlying logic and reasons why said supposed inconsistency actually makes sense, and that only be pointed to a bias that everything Ruckman does is automatically wrong and thus whatever opposite is available, that must be the truth.

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