My Journey From Contemplative to the KJV
October 3, 2019
Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061
The following is published by permission of the author, Marybeth Lane:
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I became a Christian when I was a teenager through a para-church organization, and I always had a love for God’s word. I was adopted into a family that attended the local Methodist church sporadically. My grandmother gave me a Bible when I was in second grade. I treasured my time alone in God’s word, and that craving to know the scriptures grew throughout my life. The primary version that I used during my formative years was the NIV ‘84, which I assumed was sound. When I was in college, I started to lead Bible studies for high school girls. I truly loved teaching God’s word. It wasn’t until I was married that I began to develop an interest in other versions of the Bible. In my thirties, I was leading several groups of women and teenagers. The main question that I kept hearing from these women had to do with which version of the Bible was the most accurate. I kept hearing from other leaders that the NASB was the most accurate version. So, I would simply regurgitate that answer to others…until about ten years ago.

At that point in my life, I decided I was going to read a new version of the Bible every six months. I read the majority of the popular Bible versions over the next few years. It was interesting to see how my views on God would change with each version. For instance, when I read the The Message version I found myself becoming very mystical in my response to God…sound doctrine was slowly replaced with pseudo-spiritual experiences. (**For more information regarding those contemplative experiences, please see a brief summary at the end of this article.) While reading the NKJV, I was struck by the word “slave” that was used instead of the word “servant.” I adopted this kind of slave-like position towards God, which was very unbiblical. Finally, after reading through many versions, I was faced with the fact that the only well-known version that I had left to read was the dreaded King James Version!!

I thought the KJV was going to be very difficult to read, but after doing some research on the reason behind some of the language that is used, I began to appreciate the “ye” and the “thou.” The most shocking verse for me to read was Acts 8:37. I couldn’t believe that the other versions that I had been reading did not include this extremely important passage on believer’s baptism. Consequently, I started to research what else was missing, and I was flabbergasted to find all of the changes that had taken place. (***For more information on the changes, please see the link below.) I had always believed that the Bible was the infallible word of God, but how could all of these versions be right when they didn’t agree? Now I felt it was more important then ever to figure out what was going on. My husband would come home from work to find me sitting for weeks on end on our king size bed with books spread out everywhere as I was desperately trying to unlock the reason behind the changes. Brother Cloud’s writings on the subject were especially helpful to me during this season.

My husband, Ed, was supportive of my research yet extremely skeptical of my discoveries. Also, Ed had many whole passages of the NIV ‘84 memorized. The thought of changing to the KJV felt totally overwhelming to him. Ed had been an attorney for over 20 years and was trained in law school to search for evidence, no matter the cost. Ed started digging into the research that I presented him, and within six months he became convinced of the authenticity and reliability of the King James Version of the Bible to the exclusion of all other English versions. It was a blessing that Ed and I could share this common love for God’s written word.

The greatest testimony to me regarding the truth of the King James Bible was far more than simply the facts that I uncovered, but it was the unexpected fruit that began to manifest in my life, my husband’s life, and in our marriage. This word truly was quick and powerful, and sharper than a two-edged sword. Nothing in the KJV was watered down. While I am far from perfect, I did start to notice the things of this world having less and less power over me. My husband was led to give up his full time law practice to become a street evangelist, while at the same time God was leading me to keep my place in the home. The powerful words of the KJV Bible gave me the grace and power to walk out this new calling of ours without me trying to take over God’s role of being our financial provider. Our Father truly knows what we need, and we have never been without. I also noticed I had a deeper desire to please the Lord with the way that I lived my life. The fruit in my life was the greatest convincing factor that I was reading the perfect, infallible word of God. No other version of the Bible yielded the kind of fruit that Ed and I were experiencing.

Due to my exposure to the Message Bible, along with reading
The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer (and other similar books), I found myself studying Roman Catholic contemplative mystics. This ultimately led me into a full-blown contemplative prayer life. The frightening thing is that I strongly believed that Tozer, who is highly respected in evangelical circles, was a doctrinally sound teacher. There are many “bridge” authors who teach mostly solid doctrine, but subtlety lead people away from the truth of God, and onto the treacherous path of heresy. Tozer praises the Catholic mystic Teresa of Avila (who levitated and had physically painful visions of demonic entities stabbing her) as a godly example to follow. After reading some of her writings, I began studying the works of other authors, such as Henri Nouwen, Dallas Willard, and Richard Foster. These authors led me further down the path of occultic teaching masquerading as Christianity, to mystics such as Madame Guyon, Francois Fenelon, and Brother Lawrence. I continued down this path until I began studying the writings of Thomas Merton (a Buddhist, Catholic monk) and Thomas Keating. These men were clearly both practicing and teaching interfaithism. I could not go any further. I knew in my heart that if I crossed this line, I would have officially launched myself into complete apostasy.

I am eternally grateful for the KJV Bible, Brother Cloud’s teachings on the dangers of the contemplative movement, and for discernment ministries like Lighthouse Trails Research. After a diligent search, my husband and I found a solid King James Bible teaching church. The Lord greatly used His true Word, plus a few sound ministries, to bring the light that I desperately needed to see what it truly meant to follow after the real Jesus of the real Bible.

I repented from and renounced all of the contemplative practices that I had participated in, such as, centering prayer, repetitive prayers, healing prayer, visualization, and spiritual disciplines. Consequently, I focused on my KJV Bible and a few KJV teachers that I knew I could trust, to grow me by way of sound, biblical doctrine. One of my favorite verses, and one that has proven true in my life, is the last part of Hebrews 11:6, “He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” The Lord has been so very faithful to lead me out of darkness and into His marvelous light.

Lastly, I will leave with you a link to my husband’s blog on the KJV version. Ed has run far ahead of me on this issue and has a firm grasp on the history of the Greek manuscripts, which underpin all of the Bible versions, along with the other evidence (deletions and additions to the text), which are crucial for understanding exactly what has happened to God’s eternal written word over the last 150 years. For more information on this topic, please click the link below.

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