Majestie: The King Behind the King James Bible - eBook  -     By: David Teems
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Majestie: The King Behind the King James Bible - eBook

Thomas Nelson / 2010 / ePub

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Product Information

Format: DRM Protected ePub
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2010
ISBN: 9781595553812
ISBN-13: 9781595553812
Availability: In Stock

Publisher's Description

In the Beginning, James.

Orphaned, bullied, lonely, and unloved as a boy, in time the young King of Scots overcame his troubled beginnings to ascend the English throne at the height of England’s Golden Age. In an effort to pacify rising tensions in the Anglican Church, and to reflect the majesty of his new reign, he spearheaded the most important literary undertaking in Western history—the translation of the Bible into a beautiful, lyrical, and accessible English.

David Teems’s narrative crackles with wit, using a thoroughly modern tongue to reanimate the life of this seventeenth century king—a man at the intersection of political, literary, and religious thought, yet a man of contrasts, dubbed by one French king as “the wisest fool in Christendom.”

Warm, insightful, even at times amusing, Teems’s depiction of King James has all the elements of a grand tale—conspiracy, kidnapping, witchcraft, murder, love, despair, loss. Majestie offers an engaging new look at the world’s most cherished, revered, and influential translation of Sacred Writ and the king behind it.

 “Engrossing and entertaining…a delightful read in every way.” – Publishers Weekly


Author Info

David Teems earned his BA in Psychology at Georgia State University. He is active in ministry, speaking and playing worship music. David's wife of twenty-five years, Benita, and their sons Shad and Adam all live in Franklin, Tennessee.

Majestie, a semi-biography of King James by David Teems, offers an interesting look into the peculiar life of the monarch as it relates to the KJV Bible. Not a complete biography, yet much more than a lesson in history, the book traces both the life of James Stuart and the blooming literary culture in England as they culminate in the creation of the first widely-distributed English Bible. Teems attempts to explain the contradictory nature of the king, and how his character contributed to a wholly unique version of the Scriptures.

According to Teems, King James was something of a paradox. He was brilliant yet foolish, majestic yet vulgar, loving yet sadistic. Similarly, the writing style of Majestie is an odd, and perhaps awkward, mix of down-to-earth conversation and august Middle English. As the book progresses from the childhood of King James to the literary cultivation of the new Bible, the tone varies from exciting narrative to extended excerpts of various seventeenth-century commentaries. Whereas such selections support his statements with research, the frequency with which they appear may drown more than actually enlighten readers.

As Majestie explores the ins and outs of King James’s character, it concludes that no king but he could have brought about the Bible that we now call the King James Version. After all, Teems asserts, James was not only the king of Great Britain during the Golden Age of literature, he also was a published scholar, a flawed but visionary leader, and a firm believer in divine right. Like Queen Elizabeth before him, he was a middle-of-the-road Protestant and a wily politician. In the context of English history, the King James Bible arrived much as Jesus had—“when the fullness of the time was come” (Gal. 4:4, KJV).

As a whole, Majestie emerges amidst flurries of quotations—allusions of grandeur—and wandering prose as a satisfying and informative narrative. At times, its references are obscure. Other times, it beats concepts over the head. However, the content is digestible, if not always rewarding. Particularly fascinating is the study of the challenges, successes, and evolution of English Bible translations. Under scrutiny, it is almost uncanny how Majestie, as a book, reflects its portrait of King James and his Bible: filled with marvelous language, but often bumbling; far-sighted, but imperfect. I recommend this book for adults with an interest in history or the origins of the modern Bible. – Daniel Morton,

Publisher's Weekly

For generations, Protestant Christians trusted the King James version of the Bible as the only Bible, dictated to good divines word for word, inerrant in every way, and motivated by a true devotion to God and to the Most Holy Faith. Over time, however, scholars have come to dismiss the idea of the inspiration of the King James version, opening the way for a variety of modern biblical translations. So who was this king who commissioned this version of the Bible? Teems's engrossing and entertaining study of King James I offers a multifaceted view of this 17th-century scholar/scoundrel, a man of counterpoints and contradictions. James is presented as a study in contrasts--a man given to saintly proclamations and vulgar outbursts, but a man who yearned for his own immortality as well as the perpetuity of the monarchy and the patriarchal order, all enshrined in the pages of his Holy Bible. Teems, an active Bible teacher and musician, pulls together the story of this enigmatic king with humor and pathos. This early entry in a full-court press of books marking the 400th anniversary of the translation is a delightful read in every way. (Oct.) Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

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