Scofield’s Abominable Study Bible

I love the Bible, but I’ve hated reading it this past year, and the reason for my hatred has been C.I. Scofield.

By my count, I’ve now read through the entire Bible five or six times. I’ve read through the New International Version two or three times—once in High School when my faith came alive, once (I believe, but I’m not certain) in College, and once again in Seminary. When I was ordained I read it again, but this time for variety I read the New Living Translation. Afterwards, I read through the New American Standard, which is the version I personally use for preaching today. Last year, wanting to read still another translation, and always planning to spend time in the most famous of translations, I set myself to read the King James. The experience has been most miserable.

Scofield_Handsome VolumeThe edition I’ve read was a gift from my grandparents back in 1998 (likely a graduation present) and is quite handsome to look at—a hefty, burgundy leather volume with gold edges. It feels nice to open, and sits nicely in the lap, and looks impressive on my shelf, although its bulk rendered it inconvenient for travel so that I quickly found myself reading it only at home during my morning devotions. Devotions are meant to be a time of stillness before the Lord, a daily period of attentiveness to the word where we seek to hear His voice and attune ourselves to His presence throughout the day. They are not, as a rule, a good time for experimental reading, and yet into my efforts to engage the King James text an unsolicited voice kept inserting itself, noisily, bombastically, irritatingly. It was the voice of C.I. Scofield.

ScofieldCyrus Ingerson Scofield was a civil war veteran who came to Christian faith as an adult, later pastoring churches in Dallas and Massachusetts. Affiliated with D.L. Moody, Scofield later began work on his reference Bible, through which he popularized a new system of theological interpretation called “Dispensationalism,” developed by an Anglo-Irish man named John Nelson Darby. When Scofield’s Bible was published in 1909, at a time of great expectation about the end of the world, his interpretive matrix took fundamentalism by storm, quickly becoming one of the best selling Bibles in history. This is the Bible that created “The Thief in the Night,” Hal Lindsay, Christian Zionism, and Left Behind. In other words, it is the Bible which has dominated a very visible portion of the Christian imagination for the last 100 years.

In full knowledge of this, for over a year I pressed through with my reading—once through each book, four times through the Psalms, 1377 pages in total, countless marginal notes and footnotes. I read every word (and whether I’m a fool or a glutton for punishment has yet to be determined), and I read the whole thing partly because my dear deceased grandparents had given me the Bible. Ditching it felt a bit like ditching them.

The first of my problems with the Bible were its invasive edits into the text. Scofield (or possibly 1967 editors) had taken it upon himself to update a selection of language in the King James. But rather than offer marginal notes explaining difficult language, the text has forcibly replaced the “difficult” words with edits, and the reader must look to the margins to find the original. Many of these are completely unnecessary—for example, “nigh” has been replaced with “near,” “suffer” with “permit,” and “rent” with “torn.” These alterations are unnecessary, and have the effect of reducing some of the majesty of the text. After all, I’m not reading the King James because I want it to be a modern book. But every five to ten verses or so there was notation that indicated a word had been changed. This made reading a constant battle between the text and the margins.

Scofield_Text DetailBut Scofield’s Reference Notes are where the real grievances emerge, and I’ll narrow my vast,  overwhelming, and yearlong discontent to three categories of offense. A first offence is that the notes reveal an agenda other than opening the text. Scofield’s notes, by and large, don’t illuminate the text (which is the primary purpose of a Bible with study notes, as far as I’m concerned). There is a spirit of defensiveness in Scofield’s notes—he comes out swinging at a number of imaginary opponents, eager to defend the text against all foes. Notes then exist to engage in a fight to which the reader may or may not have any awareness. Just now, flipping through at random, I opened to Micah 4, where the footnote from verse 1 says the following:

Micah 4:1-3 and Isa. 2:2-4 are practically identical. The Spirit of God gave both prophets the same revelation because of its surpassing importance. It is impossible to prove that either prophet was quoting the other.

Here we can easily imagine Scofield’s perceived nemeses—those who would claim that the Bible is not, somehow, perfectly inspired (because Micah might have borrowed from Isaiah). So the note exists not to illuminate what Micah might be saying in chapter four, but to argue with an imaginary opponent who might claim that because there is a similarity between Micah 4 and Isaiah 2 the Bible is somehow falsified. Scofield’s way through this difficulty is to appeal to the Spirit’s revelation to both men—which certainly might be the case, but also does not have to be the case. And yet anchoring the Bible in Spiritual authority fits within Scofield’s underlying program of rendering the Bible impervious to various “modern” attacks. The agenda for the vast majority of notes is similarly cantankerous and argumentative, and regularly fails to open the text for interpretation. The dominant spirit is one of protection, not illumination.


Scofield_Nice on the Shelf

It looks so nice on the shelf. I guess you can’t judge a book by its formatting.

A second offence is that the notes reveal a fundamentally flawed methodology. When Scofield does interpret the text, he interprets it quite badly. As one example, consider his comments on Leviticus 2:1-11, where Moses describes the “recipe” for grain offerings in the tabernacle. Scofield writes:

The meal offering: (1) fine flour speaks of the evenness and balance of the character of Christ, of that perfection in which no quality was in excess, none lacking; (2) fire, of His testing by suffering, even unto death; (3) frankincense, of the fragrance of His life before God (see Ex.30:34, note); (4) absence of leaven, of His character as ‘the truth’ (Jn.14:6, cp. Ex.12:8, marg.); (5) absence of honey—His was not that mere natural sweetness which may exist quite apart from grace; (6) oil mingled, of Christ as born of the Holy Spirit (Mt.1:18-23); (7) oil upon, of Christ as baptized with the Spirit (Jn.1:32; 6:27); (8) the oven, of the unseen sufferings of Christ—His inner agonies (Mt.27:45-46; Heb.2:18); (9) the pan, of His more evident sufferings (e.g. Mt.27:27-31); and (10) salt, of the pungency of the truth of God—that which arrests the action of leaven.

This is an interpretive attitude that operates under the assumption that no text has value if it does not somehow point to Christ. The recipe in the text cannot be, simply, a recipe for a grain offering—it has to be something else. And while there might be a kind of devotional benefit in meditating on what the different elements of the grain offering represent, this interpretation stretches the bounds of reason by forcing the reader to interpret the text artificially. Meaning is in this way critically divorced from context.

An even clearer example is in Psalm 40, where David sings about waiting for the Lord and experiencing His salvation. To this Psalm Scofield offers the following interpretive comment:

The 40th Psalm speaks of Messiah, the Lord’s Servant obedience unto death. The Psalm begins with the joy of Christ in resurrection (vv. 1-2). He has been in the horrible pit of the grave but has been brought up. Verses 3-5 are His resurrection testimony, His “new song.”

Let’s be clear—Psalm 40 might be speaking about Jesus, but it most certainly is speaking about David first. This kind of “interpretation” places the whole meaning of the Psalm on its fulfillment in Christ, but it also by proxy eliminates our own engagement with the song. By being purely about Jesus, it can no longer be about us, and this is one of the effects of Scofield’s readings—when he interprets a text, his meaning eliminates personal application. Knowing what it’s “about” reduces our own responsibility to read the text devotionally. It is a kind of knowledge that replaces obedience.

A third offence is that the notes expose a theology that reads the Scriptures. This is one of my greatest pet-peeves, especially because I have such a great love of the Word. It is the attitude of a reader or interpreter who has forfeited his capacity to read the text for itself in favor of reading it through the lens of his preferred theological construct. In this, theology reads the Scriptures, rather than Scripture governing theology. This has a double effect on the reading of the Bible—on the one hand, when such a reader approaches the Bible, he is often looking, not for a fresh hearing of God’s voice, but for a confirmation of his preexisting theology. On the other hand, when such a reader encounters passages that don’t fit his or her preconceptions, those passages are often ignored or explained away. The lens of the theological construct, in other words, blocks the reader from perceiving God’s word as it is.

In Leviticus 16:6, where the text makes mention of atonement, Scofield offers the following note and comment about the theological principle of atonement:

Atonement. The Biblical use and meaning of the word must be sharply distinguished from its use in theology. In the O.T., atonement is the English word used to translate the Hebrew words which mean cover, coverings, or to cover. Atonement is, therefore, not a translation of the Hebrew but a purely theological concept.

What does it mean to “sharply distinguish” the Biblical use of a word from its theological use? Is that even possible? Doesn’t the theological use derive all of its meaning from the word’s use in Scripture? But here theology reads the text, rather than the text informing theology, and this kind of reading encourages a student to establish his own theological framework and then apply that liberally to the text. We believe what we think, then we read the text accordingly.

And, of course, the single greatest, ongoing, overarching element of this in Scofield’s Reference Bible is the issue of Dispensationalism, which is a massively unhelpful, thoroughly human, unhistorical, and false theological construct into which Scofield’s Scriptures are made to fit no matter what. The chief problem with Dispensationalism, however, remains one of methodology—it is a theology that reads the Scriptures, rather than the Scriptures reading the theology.

Dispensationalism Chart

The chart reads the text, rather than the text critiquing the chart.

I still love the Bible—in fact, it is precisely because I love the Bible that I hate what Scofield has done to it. And, as a matter of fact, I should say, in an attempt to separate the King James from Scofield’s foibles, that there’s nothing particularly wrong with the King James Version. And yet after a year in the text I can’t say that there’s anything particularly commendable about it either. For my part I am unconcerned about archaic language, and I find that alternative wordings very often illuminate texts in fresh ways. The single biggest problem I have with the King James itself is versification and the lack of paragraphs. Paragraphs, not verses, are the primary unit of thought, and when a Bible decontextualizes its own text for the sake of an artificial and arbitrary versification, this inhibits the proper reading of the text. In other words, when I approach a passage visually and expect that each verse is a unit of meaning, I from the start am not attending to the contextual meaning. Yet context is king, and therefore the versification of the King James militates against meaning. This is a fairly serious problem, and we see its continuing influence in modern theology today. In part, it makes a thing like Dispensationalism possible.

As far as readability goes, the Psalms are the litmus test of a translation for me. They have been my constant devotional companion for more than ten years now, and so even as I read straight through the rest of the Bible, I would work my way through the Psalms again and again. The first reading was wretched, the second was unmemorable, but I found that by the third reading through the Psalms I was enjoying them in the King James again. One key was my ability, after the first readings, to willfully ignore Scofield’s notes. Another was my increasing familiarity with their language. But four read-throughs is a steep price to pay for general comprehension, and I see no good reason to recommend the KJV to any new Christian.

Scofield_Top ViewThe past year has been difficult devotionally, and I can say with confidence that the Scofield Reference Bible is by far the worst Bible I have ever experienced. Will I read the King James again? Quite possibly–in fact, I’ve chosen to work my way through the Psalms again, and am reading the Sermon on the Mount as well. But I will purposefully avoid all those abominable notes at the bottom of the page, and thus save myself from further angst, frustration, and despair.

84 comments on “Scofield’s Abominable Study Bible”

  1. gabriel says:

    i’ve not read scofield but know the basics of the dispensationalist heresy . i have read parts of the kjv WITHOUT any scofield notes though and it is a pleasure and blessing. why bring scofield into this in any case? the whole issue of dispensationalism is man made anyhow and as such an addition to scripture and hence an abomination – a pity though that so many people were brought up with the notion that scofield was a prophet of sorts receiving God’s insight into the way His word should be rendered…
    bottom line, the kjv sans mans opinions and absurd conjectures is able to speak for itself.🙌

    • jmichaelrios says:

      Well, strictly speaking I didn’t bring Scofield into this, my grandmother (who gifted me the bible) did!

      • gabriel says:

        we shall believe that God has used your grandma to learn us something 🙂

      • Pwhi Sto says:

        Thank you for your review of the SRB four years ago (I’ve only just found it!)

        As stated elsewhere, you shouldn’t visit Scofield’s sins upon the AV (KJV); he chose that version because the RV wasn’t “… in any sense the people’s Bible of the English-speaking world” – it’s not to blame.

        Your demolition of Scofield’s Dispensational theology methods have stunned me – I’ve owned an SRB since 1957, and I wouldn’t have read it as much over the years without his notes, chain references and the textual corrections he added to comply with Wescott and Hort et al.

        Scofield eschatology notwithstanding, I’ll “keep watching the skies”.
        Malcolm Carr

        • gabriel says:

          “Scofield eschatology notwithstanding, I’ll “keep watching the skies””… in other words Scofield’s opinion is your plan B [or plan A?], does that not make you ‘lukewarm’? and what happens to the lukewarm? they are vomited out by Christ! Revelation 3:16 “So, because you are lukewarm and neither cold nor hot, I will spew [emeo = vomit] you out of My mouth!”
          God bless

      • Cher says:

        The fact that you begin with blame rather than a honest opinion of the man’s work were immediate red flags to me that you don’t seem to have the heart of Christ that would intelligently, in a Christ-like way, simply approach the work for what it SAYS it is; not a commentary but rather a means to bring tools to average believers to know the Bible better.
        I think it’s an amazing feat the man did for his time! Why do you stand to pick at it with, frankly, kind of silly reasons? Beyond that, you seem to read his comments in a different light than most of us, which should tell you something as well.
        I’d say, look at this work through the eyes of Jesus at Scofield, a mortal man, who tried his best to assist the church in knowing God. Nothing is perfect except the Word itself. Even your comments are flawed as all man’s are. So, lighten up and try again. Maybe this time you will allow the Lord to work out I’m you what He had worked out in countless others; a helpful tool to bring certain parts of a multi-faceted book together, imperfect or at times perfect, and let Thr Holy Spirit be responsible for the rest.
        I’ll be praying for you!

        • gabriel says:

          Hi Cher
          “…a means to bring tools to average believers to know the Bible better”
          Nope, that is not true. Scofield was building on the dispensational agenda of Darby, a compartmentalization of Scripture which is not in the Book but a man-made construct favoring not SOLA SCRIPTURA but those who were of the opinion that God saves in different times by different means, which as has been shown elsewhere is rank heresy.
          “…I think it’s an amazing feat the man did for his time!”
          Men have gone to far greater extremes to fool [willingly or unwittingly] the uninitiated long before the dispensationalists manifested themselves – this opinion of yours, like the others in your comment, are conjecture and not based on fact!
          “I’d say, look at this work through the eyes of Jesus at [sic] Scofield”
          This is the weakest point of your ‘argument’. For what Scofield has done is eisegesis, not exegesis – he was promoting his, the Plymouth Brethren, and thereby man’s agenda vs that of God as expounded in the words of Christ, the Bible.
          The rest of your statement/s further degrade as they are NOT build on rock but sand notwithstanding your apparent willingness to help. The latter is further hampered by an obvious scepticism regarding the inerrancy of Scripture “…imperfect or at times perfect…” AND THIS IS THE PROBLEM, YOU DOUBT GOD INSTEAD OF MAN.
          We all need Christ, I pray the Holy Spirit endow us with the necessary discernment.
          In Christ

        • jmichaelrios says:

          Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Cher.

          Perhaps an analogy will help us here. Imagine that I offered you a book of history. It would contain all the major events, with nothing significant omitted. The point is to note that the primary text is unobjectionable. But imagine that it was also a book edited by, say, Marxists, and every explanatory note and footnote added to the text interprets events in light of the march toward progress, the rise of the proletariat, and seizing the means of production. Whatever the value of the historical text–and no matter how useful it had been in helping students through the years make sense of history!–in hindsight I think you would have serious reservations about recommending that book for someone else to read.

          Whatever the merits of the KJV, I think Scofield was dangerously wrong.

  2. Mike Lachance says:

    I respect Scofield for what he undertook at the time… it was a monumental task, and I doubt few modern Christian apologists of any stripe would question his motives. However, I must agree as I was gifted a very nice Scofield reference Bible (KJV) by my late mother and it was in fact the first Bible anyone had ever given to me as a gift. I cherish it for that fact.

    Upon my first (and only) attempt to read it however, I was struck by the same potholes, speedbumps, loose gravel, oil slicks, screws, nails, squirrels, deer, moose and cats all of which were layed out before my travel up Genesis Avenue. Needless to say, I quickly found the first side street and sought another route (NIV).

    I do value the Hebrew/Greek analysis Scofield presents though, and for that alone I believe his work is of great value strictly as a reference library. Reading it as a devotional Bible though is “nigh” impossible without monk-like solitude and isolation for days, weeks, months, etc.

    • jmichaelrios says:

      Hi Mike, I’m glad my personal pain was… helpful to you? 🙂

      I think the NIV has gotten an undue amount of criticism over the years. For all its errors, it was a readable bible, and people did indeed read it! Regarding that, one of my teachers, when people asked him, “What translation of the bible should I read?” would answer, “Whatever version you WILL read.” Reading any bible is better than reading no bible at all.

    • gabriel says:

      hi mike, you state “I respect Scofield for what he undertook at the time… it was a monumental task, and I doubt few modern Christian apologists of any stripe would question his motives.” – which forces me to respond.
      a- scofield tried to, and succeeded in giving substance to and reinforcing darby’s wrong interpretations that God dealt with different sections of mankind in different ways in different times… is not God the same from eternity to eternity? if He should change His mind can you trust Him with your eternal soul?
      b- in order to achieve this ‘monumental task’ he blindly followed the subtle but definite changes that darby made to the original kjv in order to suit the dispensational construct.
      c- scofield can thus NOT at any cost be even called an apologist [even less so than the errant cs lewis] for he clearly got things wrong
      d- as for his motives he was clearly trying to do the impossible, make tiny man understand the infinite God…
      my advice to you, the Word, Scripture, is the Word of God. Jesus Christ is there, from page one to the end. if the Holy Spirit does not open your eyes to see Him, no one will, least of all scofield; concentrate on Christ and get rid of the opaque glasses scofield and kie have enslaved you with.
      God bless

  3. Randolph Henry says:

    Well! After reading that commentary I feel like I’m in a cult. The Scofield bible has been a great blessing to the Christian world for over a hundred years. I find the dispensations teaching and doctrinal theology of great help in my studies. I guess everyone is entitled to an opinion. If it’s not for you then don’t use it would be my advice.

    • gabriel says:

      “I find the dispensations teaching and doctrinal theology of great help in my studies.” that is a subjective opinion NOT borne out in scripture – it fits the human ‘mindset’ for the person of Christ as sole method of salvation for all peoples everywhere at anytime is bypassed with a human construct, ergo, the dispensationalist is bound up in a cult, do not ignore THAT feeling as it is not your feeling but your conscience speaking, cf Romans 1:20.
      God bless!

      • Richard C says:

        You’ve just replaced one set of biases with your own. You are just talking about your pet beliefs. I think you should take a little step back and look at what you’re saying. At one point, you mentioned sola scriptura (which is an error in itself) and that’s a good start but let’s take your bias out as well. We simply do not know God’s mind. All we can do is pray and teach the word to people we know. I know you are on the right track

        • gabriel says:

          God reveals His mind in Scripure in as far it is necessary for us to know, hence Sola Scriptura… not seeing this, if you are in Christ will make Romans 14 applicable to you – if you are not in Christ, well, what can I say?
          Solus Christus
          gabriel smit

    • jmichaelrios says:

      Hi Randolph, I’m glad that Scofield’s bible has blessed you. God uses broken lights all the time to make Himself known, but I think it’s also important to acknowledge that dispensational theology is one of those broken lights.

      • Malcolm Carr says:

        Hello, jmichaelrios.
        Just to make clear, my first post here (as a newbie), on November 22, 2020 at 11:31 pm, was addressed to you courteously, but perhaps wrongly divided from its proper place; I seem to have obtained replies from others, in some disdain.
        Best wishes, and thank you for your SRB criticism.
        ‘Pwhi Sto’.

  4. Anita johnson says:

    I love the scofueld Bible

    • gabriel says:

      you must love the Lord… the book called Scofield bible is just a stack of paper with man made opinions…
      God bless

      • Malcolm Carr says:

        So no priests, pastors, ministers, vicars, rabbis are allowed to guide us?
        God forgive.

        • gabriel says:

          dear Malcolm, indeed you are right, God uses other human beings to guide us; the keyword being ‘guide’, He could not have said it better in Matthew 23:23&24 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you give a tenth of your mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected and omitted the weightier (more important) matters of the Law—right and justice and mercy and fidelity. These you ought [particularly] to have done, without neglecting the others.
          >>>You blind guides<<<, filtering out a gnat and gulping down a camel!” [see Lev. 27:30; Mic. 6:8]
          God bless

  5. brotherbenzie says:

    It’s funny how pretty much anybody can portray themselves as some kind of Bible “scholar” and trash a study Bible that’s been respected by millions for over a century.
    It’s not to your liking fine, but it has been a help and a blessing to millions.
    All this coming from a man who decorates his page with “graven images” which is a violation of which commandment?

    • gabriel says:

      hi bb, i see you did some due diligence… always good to live out acts 17:11:-)
      regarding ‘millions for over a century’ kindly note that, lacking sound understanding of doctrine it is not only possible, but most likely that millions were mislead. jn darby and his followers, especially scofield undermined the central tenet of God’s truth and that is that man has always been saved and will always be saved in just one way, by grace through faith. the dispensational school of scofield postulates that until the death of Christ man was saved by adhering to the stipulations of the law of moses and since then by grace, which is patently heresy. it has been grace since the fall.
      if you are interested in the exact source, see scofield’s comment on john 1:17 in the 1917 scofield bible commentary/notes which reads “As a dispensation, grace begins with the death and resurrection of Christ …The point of testing is no longer legal obedience as the condition of salvation, but acceptance or rejection of Christ, with good works as a fruit of salvation” – now this perversion of the gospel has been swallowed hook line and sinker by millions -and if your foundation is built on the sand of man’s conjecture, like in this case, the whole structure will be swept away by the truth in Christ.
      the bottom line is Christ, not scofield.
      in Christ

  6. […] Protestants in the twentieth century were totally wrapped up in Christian Zionism and the heretical Scofield Bible. All of the men whom he supported for President lost, and after his first Senate run, Smith got […]

  7. Marion Whitehead says:

    It was a different time, a different era and lead and is still leading people to Christ. I read and enjoy many translations. They minister in different ways. The effectiveness of this translation can’t be denied even if you do not care for it.

    • gabriel says:

      hi marion – the scofield study bible is NOT a translation, neither was it based on a ‘translation’ [that of jn darby] but it took the kjv and in many places ADJUSTED it to fit in with his ‘theology’…

    • jmichaelrios says:

      Hi Marion,

      The problem–as I’ve tried to be quite clear–is not one of translation, but of the explanatory notes. Scofield, regrettably, explained the bible in ways that obscure the bible’s message. In today’s world, there are countless superior resources to choose from. I’m recommending that we choose from those 😉


      • gabriel says:

        Hi Jeremy,
        I respect the patient and ‘longsuffering’ way in which you deal with some objections. especially the analogy you used in your reply to Cher – that was quite brilliant!
        In light of your sentence “…But imagine that it was also a book edited by, say, Marxists, and every explanatory note and footnote added…” what needs to be observed is that Scofield did exactly that, he did not bring out a second or additional book containing his ideas but merged it with the text of the KJV [which he also ended up corrupting in places] in the same covers fomenting in the buyer and reader the belief that his opinions are gospel truth, to use that expression – and hence millions of searchers for the truth have for more than 100 years been mislead NOT to think for themselves but to ingest the patent falsehoods of the dispensationalists. Christ refers to this here I think, 1Peter 4:17 “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” in other words the rot will begin within the church.
        In Christ

  8. Ted J L says:

    JM, If you haven’t already done so, I recommend you do a study of the history of the English Bibles to include the two underlying texts and the two underlying methods of translation. I have, and my conclusion is that any good translation will be made from the majority text, aka the received text aka Textus Receptus. There are plenty of KJBs with uncommon words defined to help with the early modern English and one I have, published by Penguin Classics, is formatted into paragraphs. On CI Scofield, I get that you were honoring your grandmother but that can’t be healthy to expose yourself to such a subtly corrupting and distracting influence. PS.101:3

    • gabriel says:

      well spoken ted j l !
      i can for the love of it not understand how ANYBODY can debate scripture without referring to parts of it as it is the final authority – and yet, even in the above comments ABOUT the bible, few bother to call upon it; a truly sad state of affairs and, to quote God: Hosea 4:6 “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.”
      in Christ

    • Malcolm Carr says:

      Scofield based his study Bible on the Authorised Version, and gave reasons for that choice in the Foreword. You can disagree with his dispensational interpretation in the Notes and Summaries, but his textual basis cannot be criticised.

      • gabriel says:

        Albertus Pieters, heralded as “…one of the most illustrious sons of the Reformed Church in America” wrote in his “A Candid Examination of the Scofield Bible” [Douma Publications (January 1, 1938)] that “Dr. Scofield never by any chance intimates that he may be mistaken, or that any other view is possible but the one he lays down.” – it is a pity that the Scofield fan club, numbering millions, have inherited that same self trait of religious superiority, or lets call it by name, PRIDE. What does the God of heaven and earth say about pride “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” – so much for dispensionalist high handedness.
        Regarding the fact that Scofield enclosed his comments within the same covers as God’s word, Pieters argues “…it was recognized that fallible interpretation should not thus be associated with infallible revelation. Had his notes been published separately, by themselves, as a commentary, they would by this time [1938] have been forgotten.”, in the end the ‘Scofield Bible’ is exactly that, Scofield’s Bible, NOT the Bible of God.
        In Christ

        • Malcolm Carr says:

          There are several modern books comparing the many different English versions, and none make any accusations about Scofield’s textual basis, since it was the KJB, like others of the time. ‘Fallible interpretation’ in his notes is a matter of personal belief, but not an excuse for accusations of heresy. What is called PRIDE could be seen as assurance.

        • gabriel says:

          I can not comment on generalizations like “…several modern books…”, hence I quote my sources. Regarding “‘‘Fallible interpretation’” is not merely a matter of personal belief, for the latter way of looking at it presupposes the odd chance that a created being might harness ‘infallible interpretation’ of God’s word, thus understanding God – a heresy embodied in the Pope of Rome and his organisation. But how can I say that? For I can quote my authority:
          Isaiah 55:8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, says the Lord.”
          With reference to your pride/assurance argument, interesting, but it proves my point, that the man had the audacity to be ‘sure’ that he could interpret the word of God correctly – no room for argument or doubt; no humility, no repentance!
          In Christ

    • Ted J L says:

      Just to clarify my comment regarding Bible versions, the majority text is opposed to the critical texts, modern versions, and the novel science of “textual criticism” developed in the 1800’s right along with Darby’s novel doctrines. In fact, Darby rejected the Textus Receptus and made his own critical manuscript long before Westcott and Hort did theirs. I don’t trust any new thing related to the Bible or Christian doctrine that came out of the 1800’s, at least not anymore. Ask for the old paths and walk therein. The Textus Receptus and the 5000 manuscripts in agreement is better than the 50 of the critical text that disagrees with the majority and even with each other. The king James is translated from the Textus Receptus, whereas the modern versions come from the critical text. Many books have been written on the subject and it’s something I recommend all workers and ministers look into.

      • Ted J L says:

        One passage that speaks to the “which Bible version?” issue is Mat.14, specifically v.23-24. It’s why you should know something about who produced the source manuscript and who translated it into your Bible. I have faith that the majority text was kept by believers and the King James was translated by men who love Jesus. Not so sure about the critical text and it’s modern translations.

        • gabriel says:

          hi ted, i think that should be john 14… 🙂

        • Ted J L says:

          Yes, thank you for that Gabriel! John 14:23-24, not Matthew 14…Paramount to my point that we get that one right!

        • Malcolm Carr says:

          So why didn’t Our Lord quote scripture in original Hebrew, instead of His usual reliance on the Septuagint [Greek]? If the oldest text is always best, despite its scribal errors and well-meant corrections, all readers fall into misunderstanding. Wescott and Hort strove to produce a relable Greek translation for the benefit of bible scholars; they didn’t intend to destroy any tenets of the faith (Isaiah’s ‘virgin’ notwithstanding).
          And as for the Dispensation phobia, aren’t all Christian versions divided into Old and New Testaments – testament meaning dispensation in anybody’s dictionary?

        • gabriel says:

          dear malcolm, a question deserves another. how was abraham saved?
          please quote scripture for your answer.
          in Christ

        • Ted J L says:

          Malcom, I never said the older text is always the best. The Alexandrian text which makes up the majority of the critical text was picked from a pile slated for destruction due to it being considered an inferior copy full of errors. It was still in good shape because it never got any use.. Likewise, the oldest Bibles on my bookshelf are in the best shape because they never get used. They’re still Bibles and so aren’t something to lightly dispose of either. That was the same situation with the Alexandrian. It is a false assumption that older is better and that repetitive transcription of the Scriptures introduces errors. The Holy Spirit in, and the utmost reverence from, the children of God in transcribing God’s Word, is not an error prone situation. (Jn.14:23) If the workers are unbelievers then all bets are off. (Jn.14:24) There’s enough biographical info on the KJB translators, Westcott and Hort, and the modern Bible version translators to be able to discern for any inquiring mind and spirit.

          Now regarding dispensations, if you mean to imply Israel is a separate body from the Church, I wholeheartedly disagree with those “dispensations”. Is Christ divided? No. Going forward from His resurrection, no Jews will ever see the Kingdom except by becoming born again believers in Christ. You can arrange “dispensations” otherwise without necessarilly doing any harm to the text, but the heresy is the one Darby cooked up about a past and future Israel being separate from Christ’s church. We have always been saved by, and only by, God’s grace through faith. (Gen.15:6; Rom.4:3)

      • jmichaelrios says:

        Hi Ted,

        Apologies for my delayed response.

        My undergraduate degree was in Biblical Greek, and during my MDiv I focused quite heavily on exegesis. I’m very familiar with the debates and practices about how the text was formed, and I think your appeal to the TR is misguided. Textual Criticism is an excellent science, very often supervised by intelligent and faithful men (esp. the late Bruce Metzger). The current Greek text we have (NA27/28) is *by far* the best text available.

        For a brief introduction to Metzger’s work, check out his chapter in Lee Strobel’s “The Case for Christ.”


        • Ted says:

          Okay then you’ve studied textual criticism etc. No need for me to belabor it. On an unrelated topic, I looked at your bio and see you are in the Alliance churches. I am not, but if you’re looking for a Pastorship, New Beginnings in Madison, Wi is currently without one. I think you also said you grew up around nearby Chicago so I thought you might be interested in that bit of info. Ted

        • Malcolm Carr says:

          Hello JMichael. I’m encouraged by reading your post of July 26 @ 12:39, because, as a relatively uneducated student, my trust is in the best texts, approved by the latest scholarship, from Metzger onwards.

          No book that I’ve consulted referred to “the Alexandrian text which makes up the majority of the critical text was picked from a pile slated for destruction due to it being considered an inferior copy full of errors. It was still in good shape because it never got any use”.

          Scofield used the KJV for his Study Bible, even though he had the RV to hand; his marginal notes only corrected textual errors that the later, Wescott & Hort Greek, translation identified.

          I fear that KJV-only people are guilty of a fetish or obsession as misguided as their demonisation of C.I. Scofield.


        • gabriel says:

          “Scofield used the KJV for his Study Bible, even though he had the RV to hand; his marginal notes only corrected textual errors that the later, Wescott & Hort Greek, translation identified.”

          scofield led the way for westcott&hort… nope – if you compare the pieces scofield ‘corrected’ to those w&h changed, those are different texts!

          “I fear that KJV-only people are guilty of a fetish or obsession as misguided as their demonisation of C.I. Scofield.”

          if someone changes core doctrines which God has explicitly stated in His Word – that person is no saint, but indeed possessed by a demon; hence the demonisation of scofield is not the result of a figment of the imagination, but the reflection of a fact.

          but what would all this be without a question you seem to avoid, i.e. ‘how was abraham saved?’

          so, malcolm carr, answer that question and we’ll take it from there.

          in Christ

        • Ted J L says:

          The critical text lineage is referred to as the “Alexandrian text” family. The other family is the “Textus Receptus” family. “Codex Sinaiticus…was found in St. Catherine’s Greek Orthodox monastery at Mount Sinai. This Alexandrian manuscript had been in a waste basket ready to be burned by the local monks…Tischendorf “discovered” this ancient manuscript there in 1844.” Several Scholars have determined that 99 percent of the critical text is comprised of Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus. Moreover, Codex Vaticanus occupies the majority of the 99 percent. (Sorenson, David H., “Touch Not the Unclean Thing: The Text Issue and Separation”,2001, p.24)

        • jmichaelrios says:

          Hi Malcolm and Gabriel,

          I think there are two discussions here, that we would do well to keep separate. One is on the value of the KJV, the other is on Scofield’s theology.

          Regarding the KJV, I think it’s a good Bible. It’s got problems, but then so does every translation. That being said, the fetishistic love of the KJV is weird, and I honestly don’t really understand it. Do you love the King James? Great! Just recognize that it has some problems.

          Regarding Scofield, I’ve only looked at his notes, which are a primary source of premillennial dispensationalism in American churches today. I don’t know much about his life and times–and really don’t need to, since the theology is there for us to evaluate. I think the theology is bad, whatever the merits of the man. I also think the love for Scofield is a little odd, since it sometimes looks like the worship of a man to me! What a weird state of affairs when you’re not allowed to criticize a theology because we love the theologian–where criticism is considered unchristian! That’s not how things work…

          At any rate, I want to take a moment to encourage us to be charitable in how we discuss these things. In other words, we should be seeking light, and not heat, in how we advance these discussions.

  9. gabriel says:

    thank you jmichaelrios, this is your cyberturf and we are but guests 🙂
    i am NOT a kjv only person, in fact english is not even my native tongue, so i am blessed to have access to a number of different translations.
    the arguments and hyperbole of this and that translation are not what its about – it boils down to the Truth in the end, for what shall set us free?
    academic speculation, even if you are blessed with the intellect of a metzger or his lost pupil ehrman is all to no avail if your eyes have not been opened – as my question re abraham will be able to indicate a gross error, one of many, and in relation to sound theology the final nail in scofield’s coffin.
    in Christ

    • Malcolm Carr says:

      Abraham’s unwavering faith and obedience ‘saved’ him, although I doubt whether the term salvation would have meant much. His faith certainly save Isaac!
      The Abrahmic covenant shouldn’t be seen as a test of Scofield dispensationalism: Abraham ‘giving his only-begotten son’ is linked to Christ’s crucifixion in Scofield Bible chain references, so no controversy there.

      • Malcolm Carr says:

        Typo: ‘certainly SAVED Isaac!

      • gabriel says:

        Now here we get to the crux of the matter – or rather CRUX.
        To be saved is to be right with God – it is not something in parenthesis [‘saved’?], as Scofield would like to classify ‘the Church’ as plan B of God’s redemptive plan, no, it has been plan A from eternity past. So saved can not be something one person does to another, it is the work of God. And then, there is but one Way – see John14:6 – plan A 🙂 – neither can salvation [or LIFE] be generated by man [see reference to Eph 2:4].
        Yet Scofield would like us to believe that God has changed His method of salvation with Christ’s entry – or rather departure – in the visible realm to make it possible for gentiles to also become part of His kingdom. Is Christ not God? Is anything impossible with God? Can He fail? The god of the dispensationalist obviously can fail as he has to revert to plan B, national Israel [which actually was plan A]. Now we sit with two ways of being redeemed, one for the Christian and another for the Jew – not according to God though!
        But lets get back to Abraham, yes, indeed, his faith which was inculcated by the grace of God [Rom4:16] saved him, definitely not obedience! Neither did it save David or Moses, for they were both murderers – only the grace of God saved them.
        Regarding Isaac, Abraham did not save him, neither did Abraham’s faith, if it were left to Abraham’s faith he would have surely killed his son were it not for God’s direct intervention. Just another example of Abraham’s frailness – faith and all, you see, grace is the driving force.
        So what saith Cardinal Scofield? He states quite unequivocally and with much authority that “As a dispensation, grace begins with the death and resurrection of Christ … the point of testing is no longer legal obedience as the condition of salvation, but acceptance or rejection of Christ, with good works as a fruit of salvation” – now this does not gel with what God tells us, but I’m quite sure God had it wrong somewhere and sent the Cardinal to enlighten us regarding what He actually meant – not unlike the Magisterium and other puppets of the Pope. So according to Scofield nobody prior to the death of Christ COULD HAVE BEEN SAVED FOR IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP THE LAW! Yet what does God say in Eph 2:5 “…hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)” – in other words God made us alive, even Abraham NOT BY THE LAW but by grace, for “…by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight” Romans 3:20.
        As stated earlier, forget Scofield and his word, concentrate on Christ and His word, for only the latter will save you.
        Interesting to note that all pro-Scofield dispensationalists rather quote him than God – modern idolatry.
        in Christ

        • Ted says:

          Asking for the old paths, I find review of the Nicene, Apostles’, and Athanasian creeds helpful for recovery from going too far off into the weeds. (Prov.18:1; Jer.6:16)

        • gabriel says:

          Indeed, Jeremiah 6:16 resonates well with John 14:6 – and those not in the Way are indeed amongst the tares.

  10. Raging Bee says:

    So this version of the Bible is what gave us Hal Lindsey, the Left Behind novels and movies, and a whole raft of End-Times “prophets” who have all been proven WRONG? That says a lot.

    • gabriel says:

      hi raging bee, we have to make a clear distinction between the ‘bible’ and the interpretation thereof. the book known as the ‘scofield bible’ is not a bible. it is a commentary on the bible by c scofield which CONTAINS largely the kjv [translation] of the bible hence it is also known as the scofield reference/study bible, which rather reflects his method of reference. i say largely for jn darby and scofield made certain alterations in order to suit their personal dispensational paradigm – which you will NOT find in the word of God.
      as mentioned elsewhere sadly scofield has deliberately intermingled his commentary with scripture and presented it as a unit in order to bamboozle millions into taking his point of view as being of authority, which it is not – as such the word of God has become a consumer object, something the american and western public fell for hook line and sinker, as using the mind has become a rarity.- just look at recent and incumbent us presidents.
      in his notes to the bible i dare say scofield used more words ‘elucidating’ scripture than God used presenting it to us – i use the word ‘elucidating’ for that activity is solely the realm of the Holy Spirit, not man.
      it is upon this dispensational paradigm, or worldview, that writers, politicians, pastors and millions of others have built a whole ‘end times industry’ – something not contained in scripture..
      i agree with you that those marketing this heresy are in inverted commas, and so is their future if not otherwise preordained.
      in Christ

  11. Stephen James Ford says:

    The issue with C I Scofield is that Dispensation Premillenialism is His entire hermeneutic (or pre-supposition) for interpreting the Bible. But Dispensation Premillenialism is mainly about the end times – prophecy that is as yet unfulfilled (so nobody knows for sure!) A friend of mine has commented that there were plenty of prophecies of Jesus’ first coming. Israel and the Jews by and large believed them – but when the Lord was born, He was more or less unrecognised. He didn’t fit their their pre-conceived ideas about what He ought to be. “He came to His own and His own received Him not…” It seems too optimistic to suppose that Scofield and his followers are any better in their predictions about His second coming, and subsequent events.The purpose of the Bible is to teach us what to believe about God (including the way to be accepted with Him) and what behaviour He requires of those who claim to follow Him. It is not to devise clever schemes and diagrams of how the end times might pan out.

    • gabriel says:

      hi Stephen – yes, i agree with what you say except for one statement “…including the way to be accepted with Him…”. this runs contrary to predestination in as far as it is not a matter of we being able to make us more or less acceptable, for He has chosen in eternity past [for instance Gal 1:15]. again, the main misrepresentation of Scofield is – previous comment refers, 30 July 2021 – that he blatantly denies that salvation has always and will always be through grace alone by faith alone, indeed he goes as far as to state that up and until the death of Jesus Christ salvation was a matter of keeping the law [sans grace & faith], works thus. as such he, as well as Darby and the whole dispensational worldview is built on sand.
      in Christ

      • Stephen Ford says:

        gabriel, I do not in any way disagree with what you have written. My comment “…including the way to be accepted with Him…” was intended to mean “by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone” – the grace includes the gift of faith in Christ, and faith itself is exclusively the work of the Spirit in our hearts. “You must BE born again…” which is not a call to do something, but a simple statement of fact. It indicates that something must be done TO us, and take place from outside, rather than something we can generate from within. Nevertheless it is essential. So what can we do? Actually, absolutely nothing. As long as we think we can do somthing, we are lost and will remain lost. We are left only with looking away from ourselves and every pretence of self-sufficiency. If the risen Christ does not save us, then it is impossible for us to be saved. He saves and calls according to the eternal decree of election. Yet to our view, it is “when we believe” . But we only believe (and thus “make our calling and election sure”) when we are enabled to do so by the illumination of the Holy Spirit. It is not possible for anyone simply to “decide” to believe. The question is not “WILL you believe/trust in Jesus Christ?” as “Are you convinced that He is both able and willing to save you?” This neatly harmonises Christ’s statement “All that the Father gives me WILL come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.” – they are not dragged kicking and screaming against their will. Ultimately they come willingly. But their willingness is created by the working of God Himself, based on the eternal contract whereby the Father gave them to Jesus the Son.

  12. Ted says:

    Suggested further reading: “A candid examination of the Scoffield Bible : a lecture delivered before the Ministerial association of the Christian Reformed church, at Calvin college, Grand Rapids, Michigan, June 1st, 1938” by Pieters, Albertus, 1869-.

    Available free of charge in the text section of the Internet Archive.

    • Pwhisto says:

      Ted, I hope it was your accidental typo that rendered ‘Scofield’ with two ‘f’s; if not, we can hardly accept Pieters, Albertus, when he can’t name his subject accurately!

      • Ted says:

        Pwhisto, The misspelling was due to a data entry error in the Internet Archive’s (aka Open Library) database, not in the title of the actual work. -Ted

        • gabriel says:

          yip, see https: // www /title/candid-examination-of-the-scoffield-bible-a-lecture-delivered-before-the-ministerial-association-of-the-christian-reformed-church-at-calvin-college-grand-rapids-michigan-june-1st-1938/oclc/1041665343 remove spaces 🙂

    • gabriel says:

      excellent critique, especially the comment by dr tt shields on page 11 :”I readily recognize that the Scofield Bible is very popular with novices, that is, those newly come to the faith, and also with many of longer Christian experience who are but superficial students of Scripture. Ready-made clothes are every where popular with people of average size On the same principle, ready-made religious ideas will always be popular, especially with those indisposed to the exertion of fitting their religious conceptions to an ever-increasing scriptural knowledge. That common human disposition very largely explains the popularity of the Scofield Bible.”
      i would add here the authors own comment regarding scofield’s methods “Dr. Scofield in this was acting the part of an intellectual charlatan, a fraud who pretends to knowledge which he does not possess; like a quack doctor, who is ready with a confident diagnosis in many cases where a competent physician is unable to decide. Yet the method was truly efike a quack doctor, who is ready with a confident diagnosis in many cases where a competent physician is unable to decide.”
      which closes the chapter on the so-called ‘scofield bible’ and the cornerstone of dispensationalism and the millions haplessly trodding down that path to hell, for hosea 4:6 comes to mind : “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.”
      in Christ

      • Ted says:

        Gabriel, I’m glad you liked that reference. If I had authored your post in quoting Pieters, I would probably have used the bracketed “sic” or a footnoted explanation in the reference to “Dr.” Scofield, i.e., “Dr. [sic] Scofield”. At the time it was written, the only biographical information available on Scofield was a friendly but inaccurate tribute by C.G. Trumbull that has since been discredited by (at least) two actual biographers–Joseph Canfield and D. Jean Rushing. Pieters didn’t know that Scofield took the Dr./D.D. title upon himself.

        • gabriel says:

          indeed, but then few even bother to get the meaning of sic. there is no evidence at all that cyrus ever obtained his phd or let alone any post grad – he most probably had the graduation ceremony in his closet or during one of his flights of fancy of which his writings provide ample proof.
          the main point regarding the method of salvation, i.e. through faith by grace – which has always been God’s method, is not discussed by pieters! that is to me the crux of the biscuit – pardon my way of formulation. cyrus deviated from faith [through grace] as the means of salvation and stated that works [law keeping] was the means by which man obtains salvation up till the death of Christ, which is rank that respect even pieters evidences a lack of understanding bordering on ignorance. the works of darby and scofield and kie lack the central tenet of God’s eternal plan, faith and grace [in ALL so-called dispensations] – as such there is no gospel, no eternal Christ, no salvation but just another glorified piece of rapture fiction!
          in Christ

      • Ted says:

        gabriel, I think your criticism of Pieters and thereby the SRB, regarding the matter you’ve become attached, may be unwarranted. “On the great fundamental issues of the Christian religion, such as…justification by faith…it rings clear as a bell.” (Pieters, p. 6, regarding the SRB.) Justification and the role of works before vs after salvation are well understood in the Reformed tradition. For that matter, apart from Roman Catholicism, I don’t know if there are any Christian denominations that are still confused about that. Dispensationalists error in that regard pertains to their definition of the church as being separate from Israel, which Pieters addressed in his lecture. Kind regards!

        • gabriel says:

          dear ted,
          your comment confuses me. “…regarding the matter you’ve become attached,” – i suppose you are referring to salvation by faith alone, if so i would hope we are as Christians, as you later refer, all “… not confused about that”. being confused about that would make a mockery of our confession, and i dare say, salvation. if, with regards to the latter i have misunderstood you, kindly pardon me.
          without again going into the detail of scofield’s and thus dispensationalists belief regarding faith [actually grace!] with reference to his comment on john 1:17 in his 1917 book [“…grace begins with the death and resurrection of Christ…”] i would, without fear of contradiction make the statement that – especially in the light of your comment that “…I don’t know if there are any Christian denominations that are still confused about that…”, that dispensationalism can not be Christian, which makes them at best as sect and at worst a cult for adhering slavishly to the conjectures of either darby or scofield..
          i do take note of their concept of the “church in parenthesis” and its error, for after negating ‘grace’ and concomitant ‘faith’, the doors are thrown wide open for every other heresy imaginable – for negating those concepts negates Christ.
          in Christ

        • Ted says:

          Gabe, Dispensationalist congregations don’t tell new disciples that they are justified by works in today’s “church age.” The error about what happens before or after that is irrelevant to what they proscribe for salvation to individuals today. Their error is exposed and refuted through understanding the church to be a continuing body under a new covenant. Suggested further reading: “The Destruction of Jerusalem” by George Holford, published 1812. Peace at such a time.

        • gabriel says:

          thank you ted, i think i follow your argument. what the dispensationalists – at present – thus neglect is to tell the truth about the nature of God by entreating their congregations with the false notion that grace and faith are the way by which God saves at present ‘in this dispensation’, the vomit of this falsehood is hard to suppress, indeed Christ could not suppress it – revelation 3:16 – neither will He.
          thank you for the reading suggestion, i will try to get hold of it.
          i believe that part of my problem is that i have no practical experience of this cult, i.e. i never had the dubious honor of attending a service under this teaching; then again it is my habit, more a compulsion, to walk out of a ‘worship’ service were such prevarication is proclaimed.
          in Christ

        • Ted says:

          Brother Gabriel, good of you to mention Rev.3:16 in the Lord’s admonishment of the church at Laodicea. I want to put that in context and draw your attention to v.21. To every single church in these three chapters, the collective admonishment is followed by an address to individual true converts within the churches in the form “to him that overcometh…blessing”. I see no indication that overcoming involves leaving one church to go find another, then another, and so on. As long as the church has an organization and disciplinary function per Mat.18:15-20, I believe we are expected a to put forth a wide forbearance as we would our own families. If we are to love the brethren, shouldn’t we be as slow to separate from them as we are from our natural families? You’ve read 1 John and know that our love of God will be judged in a big way by our love for the brethren. Jesus will decide if and when a church’s figurative candlestick will be removed, but until then I believe he wants us to be committed to a fruitful membership in imperfect circumstances. Best regards! Ted

        • gabriel says:

          hi ted, as we used to exclaim in the 60’s ‘peace brother’ 🙂
          may your Christ season and that of all our readers be a blessed one filled with the spirit of love, understanding, truth and righteousness, His righteousness.
          in Christ
          gabriel 🙌

  13. gabriel says:

    kindly note the authors final comment on the “scofield bible”:
    “this book must be pronounced…one of the most dangerous books on the market… Its use should be persistently and vigilantly opposed; and our congregations should be diligently instructed in a better interpretation of the Word of God.”
    why dangerous? for salvation will not be found in its pages – it is NOT the gospel!
    in Christ

  14. Heather C. says:

    Hello, my name is Lady Heather, and indeed I am also a beloved child of God, who is seeking to find a Bible version, that really opens up the scriptures, in such a way, that brings fresh new understanding, especially for our current times.
    I just wanted to say, that although you have many points regarding why you despise this Bible version with C.I. Scofield’s interpretations, would it be possible for you, to consider, that perhaps God, does indeed reveal hidden things within His Word, and uses analogies and examples to help the reader, better understand Him? In fact, this would directly align and support the character of Jesus Christ, that is described all throughout the Bible, beginning in Genesis. Jesus in His ministry, spoke in parables, and compared spiritual truths with examples and analogies. This, is indeed accurate. And we can also say that if, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today, and forever,” then that would indicate that He indeed can speak the same way, He did during His time here on Earth. Why do I mention this?

    Because in your critique of this Bible version, you mentioned some things, that are quite alarming in your understanding of who God is.

    For instance, you stated, in the title of this article, that this study Bible, is an “abominable” version. Is that correct? But you also go on to further criticize your fellow brother who has gone on into glory with the Father, through Jesus Christ, who is the same Lord and Savior for us both and all mankind. Though Scofield, is in his eternal dwelling place among the saints of God, it is no light thing, to discourage others from reading his notes and wisdom, to which the Spirit of God, revealed unto him.

    Did not our Lord say, “For by your words, you will be justified, and by your words, you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:37.
    This is indeed, a very stern warning for us, as believers and followers of Christ, to obey and live soberly by. Please know, I say this with all love and grace, that you might receive this admonishment from the LORD, Himself. For He, commands us, to reprove, correct, rebuke, and encourage with all patience and long suffering. 2 Timothy 4:2.
    And there is no favoritism with God, for we all, both men and women, children as well, are one in Christ Jesus. Those who are His and who belong unto Him, I’m speaking of, here. And yea, at times even a child can be used by God, for His purposes as well. We are told, that we must humble ourselves and become like little children, or we will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven. This, of course does not mean in literal terms that we act immature and unlearned of who God is, as young children, even though they perhaps know more of Him, than we do. But it simply means, that we believe as a child believes their father or mother, when they are told, certain things. They are able to be molded, and brought up according to their parent’s counsel and instruction. They know their father and mother, will provide for them, and they have no reason to doubt that they love them and care for them, if indeed the parents model Christ like behavior. They know their mother and father, and are acquainted with how they are instructed by them, and their relationship with them, is a close bond. This, I point out, because you also mentioned another thing, that is quite disturbing.

    That was, about Psalm 40, being about the Lord Jesus Christ. You claim, because it is that- a claim, not based on truth, that the Psalm, “may” be referring to Jesus. And also, you claim, “it most certainly is speaking of David first.” And also, “By being purely about Jesus, it can no longer be about us.”

    These my friend, are quite revealing about your understanding and lack of knowledge of who Christ is to you.

    Why do I say this? Because, we know or should know, that Jesus Christ, is highly exalted above all things and He is indeed the very Word of God, made manifest. He is the truth, and every scripture that is written, was God breathed, and He inspired it. You can not reason the Word of God, with your own interpretations or what you learned in seminary. Man’s intellectual knowledge of God, is inferior to the truth which only God, Himself, can reveal unto you. Or anyone for that matter. Myself included. I say this, because that is exactly what you have done here. Is not the Bible, God’s plan of salvation for all men? Who gives this salvation? Is it not God, the Father, through Jesus Christ, who gave atonement for sins? Yea indeed, it is all about Christ. It is His life, that He laid down for the world, and if we say we are Christians, then we know that our lives are in hidden in Christ. And we no longer live for ourselves but for His glory. We also know, that no man, has equality with God. David, being a son of God, was given an earthly kingdom to rule, but it is Jesus Christ, who king David, spoke of, through the Holy Spirit. And this indeed, was a foreshadowing of the King of kings, who will rule in the Kingdom of God, to come. And who does reign with His Father, in Heaven, seated at the right hand of God. Therefore, kind David, is not above Christ, and he exalts the LORD, all throughout the psalms. Did not, John the Baptist, say also, by the Holy Ghost, “He must increase, and I must decrease.” John 3:30. It can not be about us anymore. We are told, many times, that we are brought with a price, therefore we ought to honor God with our bodies and that includes how we use our words, “for out of the abundance of the heart, his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45. That verse speaks about the good and evil that a person speaks, whether they have good in their heart, or evil. And the Word of God, shows us how we ought to live, and abide in Christ, that we would be imitators of Him. Beloved, I could continue on here, but I shall say that, Jesus is our life, and so the life we live in the flesh, we live unto Christ. Therefore, what we say, ought to be a reflection of who He is, and that we would represent Him well, among a dying world. Both of sinners and disobedient and lukewarm Christians, who also practice sin and wickedness. And it is not, an easy thing, I would know. Because I am also at times weak, but I consider, that Christ died for me, and He has been gracious unto me, that He would continue to give me opportunities to help a fellow brother or sister, and also any one who I am called to witness to, for His sake and for the Kingdom of God. It is not my own doing, but He that started a good work in me, and He shall indeed, bring it unto completion. I pray that He would do the same for thee, as well.

    God bless thee, and keep thee, in this hour, that we are entering into, for we ought to redeem the time, for the days are evil. And yea, the days of Noah, to which Christ spoke of, are being played out once again, in front of our very eyes, so therefore let us live soberly and judge in righteousness, also reckoning the times; that we might be found worthy when our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ returns for His own.
    Be blessed and encouraged, in the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, unto the Glory of our Father who art in Heaven. May He be glorified, always and forever more, Amen.

    • gabriel says:

      dear lady heather, thank you for your tuppence allow me to cast my mite – so to speak 😊
      1st off, i do not believe that jmichaelrios was referring to the bible per se as being abominable, he was referring to the book ‘the Scofield study bible’ – in other words the unit containing both Scofield’s commentary together with the word of God. Scofield, JN Darby and the arising dispensationalist phenomenon have twisted the truth inherent in scripture to such an extent that it has become ‘another gospel which is not the gospel anymore’ [cf Galatians]. to refer to the Scofield document as a revelation of God – i.e. Truth – is in itself proof positive that you are still blind to the Truth! for Scofield & kie contradict the essence of God’s character towards us, GRACE.
      which brings me to the next point. your unqualified declaration about the sainthood of Scofield. have you any proof of his ever witnessing to being called by God? how can a man stating that Abraham was saved by obedience to the law [works salvation!, see Hebrews 11] and believing the ‘church age’ to be God’s plan b [in parenthesis] lay any claim to understanding the essence of salvation?
      it is not necessary to reflect on any other aspect of your comment then the above in order to eliminate even the faintest possibility that you have any scriptural grounds for your assumptions – though cladded in Bibelese, your foundations are built on sand.
      yet, you are indeed right regarding the fact that we as Christians – which you claim to be – have to point out error where need be as Paul did Peter. the aim of such critique is helping your bother. in as far as i have pointed you to your error, as many did with Scofield, i do not do so lightly and without trepidation for it calls for the major process of removing the beam from my eye – the goal though is to remove the speck in yours, an imperative!.
      in Christ

    • Ted says:

      Lady H., here is an excerpt of one review of the 1917 Scofield Bible from a seminary professor in 1938: “It is evident that we can not discuss this subject [Scofield’s eschatology] in detail here; but even without such discussion it is immediately clear that no such programme can be justified except by laborious exegesis of numerous passages of Scripture, each of which is open to different interpretations and most of which have received from the Christian church at large a very different interpretation from the one held by Dr.* Scofield and his school. One doubtful exposition must be piled upon another, and then others again on those, before you can arrive at any such scheme as this. If any can convince himself that it is true, let him believe it. That is his privilege; but no man has a right, without the assignment of reasons and without due recognition of divergent views, to present this completed structure to the uninformed as scriptural teaching; thus to all intents and purposes writing over it: “THUS SAITH THE LORD.” Yet this is what Dr. Scofield does, and an examination of his work shows that this is one of the main objects, if not the chief object, of his writing this book. From start to finish it is a partisan book, definitely, both openly and under cover, an instrument of propaganda in favor of an exceedingly doubtful eschatology.” (“A Candid Examination of the Scofield Bible”, by Albertus Pieters, 1938, pp.25-26)
      *There is no evidence that Scofield ever earned a doctorate or any other college degree. (See D. Jean Rushing’s biographical dissertation on Scofield for more information)


  15. Pamela Balcom says:

    I am also reading my father’s scofield kjv. I wanted to read through the same Bible my deceased father had used throughout his preaching and teaching ministries. I love the KJV, but have used many other versions and love them all for various reasons. However, I have begun to be disgusted too by the inserts of Scofield in the text. It seems high handed of him to put his translation in as if it is authoritative and unquestionable. I know many fine people used this particular Bible in the last century, but I will say a definite no to reading it twice, in spite of seeing my dad’s notes in it. I am glad you wrote about this as I feared my thinking was askew. That’s why I looked up why scofield changed the kjv. Thank you!

    • gabriel says:

      hi Pamela, it is interesting to note though that not the JW, not the SDA, not the LDS, not the Muslim or Scofield nor even the devil can corrupt the word of God… see Isa. 55:11 – praise be to the one and only Lord 🙌

    • Pwhisto says:

      Scofield did not ‘change’ the AV, as his forward explains. He added marginal, textual corrections in line with the Revised Version of 1885. Most modern versions accept the RV changes, based on 275 further years of scriptual scholarship.

    • jmichaelrios says:

      Hi Pamela. Thanks for reading! I think you can trust the actual text of the KJV in your dad’s Scofield bible, you’ll just have to make a habit of ignoring Scofield’s notes.

      A little history. In the 16th century, a scholar named Erasmus assembled about nine Greek manuscripts to build an authoritative Greek text–now called the “Textus Receptus.” Erasmus did a really great job, and the text was really useful, but in the intervening 400 years we’ve discovered another 5000+ manuscripts and fragments, and it’s become clear that some of the Greek choices Erasmus made were from faulty texts.

      When they translated the King James Version, they relied on the Textus Receptus, which means that several passages which in all likelihood *aren’t* actually in the Bible got embedded in what would become the most popular translation of all time. A great example is the longer ending of Mark, which no early manuscript contains.

      If you’re ever interested in learning more about this process (it’s called “Textual Criticism”), there’s a lovely chapter about it in Lee Strobel’s “The Case for Christ.”

      • gabriel says:

        but how does the man on the street – joe soap [and many a pastor mind you] – read the 1917 scofield document? obviously he wrongly believes that the ‘dr’ has the ‘divine’ authority to interpret the Word for him, and thus he eats the forbidden fruit, believing it to be wholesome, as eve did – hook line and sinker. scofield says, not God. for more on scofields changes to the av, see here https : / / www .christianstudylibrary. org /article/ scofields-study-bible-use-critical-text-and-av [remove spaces]
        in Christ

    • Ted says:

      It wasn’t until 1984 that the posthumous details of Scofield’s life were published that ironically rendered him unqualified to teach or clergy in the Fundamentalist churches that relied on his novel work, which perhaps your father was unawares. A condensed version of the 1984 expose’ is available online entitled “Analyzing Scofield” edited by E.M. Weston and Rev. C.G. weston. Also “Cyrus Ingerson Scofield: Charlatan and Heretic” by Stephen Sizer has good biographical info regardless of what you think of the Darby/Scofield Dispensationalist doctrine.


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