Thursday, March 25, 2010

Cockatrice? Really?

The cockatrice is a mythological creature with the body of a dragon or serpent, and the head and legs of a rooster. According to myth, they are the product of a rooster egg (a rare thing indeed!) hatched by a serpent or toad. A magical creature, it can kill with a glance, and its breath is poisonous. The terms "cockatrice" and "basilisk" are usually used interchangeably.

It is listed here in the King James Version: Proverbs 23:32, Isaiah 11:8, Isaiah 14:29, Isaiah 59:5, Jeremiah 8:17.

John Ankerberg said this about the Cockatrice and other mythical creatures in the KJV:

Finally, mythical animals, such as the unicorn (Deut. 33:17; Ps. 22:21; Isa. 34:7, etc.), the satyr (Isa. 13:21; 34:14), the dragon (Deut. 32:33; Ps. 44:19, etc.), and the cockatrice (Isa. 11:8; 14:29; 59:5; Jer. 8:17) represent translations acceptable to men in 1611, but today these translations have either been corrected or it is admitted the exact meaning is unknown. Thus, unicorns become “wild oxen,” satyrs become “wild goats,” a term con- nected with the demonic “goat idols” in Leviticus 17:7; cockatrice becomes “snake” or “viper.”
All of this proves that the King James Version now in use in many of our churches is not a perfect translation.
Consider some more examples of the difference between the 1611 edition and our modern KJV. In 1611 the KJV had “Then cometh Judas” in Matthew 26:36. Today it is rendered in the KJV as, “Then cometh Jesus.” Wouldn’t you say this is a rather big differ- ence?

Well, what do you think? Have you ever seen a Cockatrice? According to Ankerberg, the translators of the KJV did. The Bible translation I use doesn't mention the cockatrice! What should I do?

1 comment:

Rob said...

I just chanced upon this blog while doing some study about the cockatrice and I must say: I have yet to see a KJV 1611 say, "Then cometh Judas"...

All the ones I read say "Iesus".

Also, it has been widely disputed about "unicorns" in the Bible and the definition is quite simple. According to 1800's Webster Dictionaries a rhino was considered a "uni-corn" by virtue of its one large horn.

So there we are: some things may be "lost in translation" so to speak, but for the hungry believer answers can be found. The biggest problem is getting those who DON'T believe to understand because they call translations "flaws" or "mistakes" or "errors/inconsistencies."

Be blessed, friend, and feel free to reply: