Alexander Campbell, like all Protestants, believed the Bible was the only authority for Christian teaching and practice. Yet he also believed that the King James Version universally accepted among English speakers had lots of problems—problems that were potential obstacles to his reform. In two Charis lectures Douglas Foster, author of a forthcoming (Eerdmans 2019) biography of Campbell, examines Campbell’s new version of the New Testament first published in 1826, and his translation of Acts for the American Bible Union in 1858. How did Campbell’s work contribute to the wave of American Bible translations in the nineteenth century? What prompted the vicious and unrelenting criticism of his work from almost every Christian group—to the point of his threatening legal action for libel? What implications does Campbell’s work have for the way we look at and use the Bible today?
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