Anonymous editors, possibly of the gay community, have set out to reinterpret the King James Version of the Bible by creating a new translation entitled "The Queen James Bible", making the translation favourable to gays and lesbians.
The King James Version of the Bible is one of the foremost and leading documents which denounce same-sex attractions and unions.
It is difficult to ascertain who the actual creators of the new version are, as the largest popular online retailer, Amazon.com lists the publisher as Queen James.
This new version, which was released at the end of November, is said to be making an attempt at preventing any homophobic misinterpretations of the Bible.
The publishers have claimed that the use of the word ‘homosexuality’ was not used in the Bible until 1946 when the Revised Standard Version had been released and that people had misunderstood the original meaning of the text.
Of the original text of the Bible, the eight scriptures that have been most frequently cited to denounce homosexuality have been altered in the gay version
The editors have cited that the original scriptures were wrongly construed to reference homosexual behaviour and have now made “homosexual interpretations impossible”.
One of the scriptures that were amended was Genesis 19:5. Originally, the scripture read, “And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? Bring them out unto us that we may know them”. In its amended form, it now reads “And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? Bring them out unto us, that we may rape and humiliate them.”
At least two clergymen have shunned the alterations made by the ‘Queen James Bible’.
Pastor and vice-president of the Jamaica Association of Evangelicals, Peter Garth, stated, “It is no threat to the Church. I do not think the Church will be alarmed by this. Individuals cannot just change the Bible based on the original texts.”
“This sounds like a grand circus and if you change the word to fit your lifestyle then you have tainted the word,” he said.
Senior pastor of a New Testament Church of God in Portmore, St Catherine, Philbert Johnson noted that, “Man should not add or subtract from the word of God as they will pay the ultimate price, which is enshrined in Revelation 22:19,” the pastor explained.
Shane Bennett, a born again believer, stated, “I do not think people would gravitate to this or take it as a truth. It’s not going to create any new wave of doctrine. One must not think too highly of it as it is just lies,” Bennett said.
When a representative of J-Flag was contacted and asked of the relevance of the Bible to the gay community, he said that he was unaware of its existence but mentioned that he didn’t think there was need to create another version as many already existed.
The new Bible is being retailed for approximately $US35 on Amazon.com and the name chosen is due to allegations that King James was called Queen James due to the various homosexual relationships he is said to have had.
Meanwhile, checks made with some of the island’s popular book retailers such as the Kingston Bookshop, Sangster’s Book Stores and the Bible Society of Jamaica have revealed that they were unaware of the existence of the biblical text and so cannot state whether or not they will be introducing the book to the Jamaican market.