FROM THE NASV TO THE KJV
By Frank Logsdon
S. Franklin Logsdon (1907-1987) was a respected evangelical pastor and popular Bible conference speaker. He pastored Moody Memorial Church in Chicago (from 1950 to 1952). Prior to that he pastored Central Baptist Church in London. Ontario (from 1942-50). He also pastored churches in Holland, Michigan (Immanuel Baptist from 1952-57), and Eerie, Pennsylvania. He taught at London Bible Institute in Ontario, Canada. He preached at Bible conferences (such as Moody Founder’s Week) with well-known evangelists and pastors such as Billy Graham and Paul Smith of People’s Church in Toronto.
In the 1950s Logsdon was invited by his businessman friend Franklin Dewey Lockman to prepare a feasibility study which led to the production of the New American Standard Version (NASV). He also helped interview some of the men who served as translators for this version. He wrote the Foreword which appears in the NASV.
As we see in the following testimony, in the later years of his life Logsdon publicly renounced his association with the modern versions and stood unhesitatingly for the King James Bible. In a letter dated June 9,1977, Logsdon wrote to Cecil Carter of Prince. George, British Columbia, “When questions began to reach me [pertaining to the NASVI, at first I was quite offended. However, in attempting to answer, I began to sense that something was not right about the NASV. Upon investigation, I wrote my very dear friend. Mr. Lockman, explaining that I was forced to renounce all attachment to the NASV. I can aver that the project was produced by thoroughly sincere men who had the best of inventions. The product, however, is grievous to my heart and helps to complicate matters in these already troublous times.”
Logsdon moved to Largo, Florida, in his senior years and died there August 13, 1987.
The Word of God
Its Divine inspiration 2 Timothy 3:16
Its Absolute Purity Psalm 12:6
Its Supreme Authority Psalm 119:128
Its Perfect Unity John 10:35
Its Eternal Permanency 1 Peter 1:25
Other Texts on each branch of the subject abound
THE NEW AMERICAN STANDARD VERSION
Back in 1956-57 Mr. F. Dewey Lockman of the Lockman Foundation [contacted me. He was] one of the dearest friends we’ve ever had for 25 years, a big man, some 300 pounds, snow white hair, one of the most terrific businessmen I have ever met. I always said he was like Nehemiah; he was building a wall. You couldn’t get in his way when he had his mind on something; he went right to it; he couldn’t be daunted. I never saw anything like it; most unusual man. I spent weeks and weeks and weeks in then- home, real close friends of the family.
Well, he discovered that the copyright [on the American Standard Version of 1901] was just as loose as a fumbled hall on a football field. Nobody wanted it. The publishers didn’t want it. It didn’t get anywhere. Mr. Lockman got in touch with me and said, “Would you and Ann come out and spend some weeks with us, and we’ll work on a feasibility report; I can pick up the copyright to the 1901 if it seems advisable.”
Well, up to that time I thought the Westcott and Hort was the text. You were intelligent if you believed the Westcott and Hort. Some of the finest people in the world believe in that Greek text, the finest leaders that we have today. You’d be surprised; if I told you; you wouldn’t believe it. They haven’t gone into it just as I hadn’t gone into it; [they’re] just taking it for granted.
At any rate we went out and started on a feasibility report, and I encouraged him to go ahead with it. I’m afraid I’m in trouble with the Lord, because I encouraged him to go ahead with it. We laid the groundwork; I wrote the format; I helped to interview some of the translators; I sat with the translators; I wrote the preface. When you see the preface to the New American Standard, those are my words.
I got one of the fifty deluxe copies which were printed; mine was number seven, with a light blue cover. But it was rather big and I couldn’t carry it with me, and I never really looked at it. I just took for granted that it was done as we started it, you know, until some of my friends across the country began to learn that I had some part in it and they started saying, “What about this; what about that?” Dr. David Otis Fuller in Grand Rapids [Michigan]. I’ve known him for 35 years, and he would say (he would call me Frank; I’d call him Duke), “Frank, what about this? You had a part in it; what about this; what about that?” And at first I thought, Now, wait a minute; let’s don’t go overboard; let’s don’t be too critical. You know how you justify yourself the last minute. But I finally got to the place where I said, “Ann, I’m in trouble; I can’t refute these arguments; it’s wrong; it’s terribly wrong; it’s frightfully wrong; and what am I going to do about it?” Well, I went through some real soul searching for about four months, and I sat down and wrote one of the most difficult letters of my life, I think.
I wrote to my friend Dewey, and I said, “Dewey, I don’t want to add to your problems,” (he had lost his wife some three years before; I was there for the funeral; also a doctor had made a mistake in operating on a cataract and he had lost the sight of one eye and had to have an operation on the other one; he had a slight heart attack; had sugar diabetes; a man seventy- four years of age) “but I can no longer ignore these criticisms I am hearing and I can’t refute them. The only thing I can do-and dear Brother, I haven’t a thing against you and I can witness at the judgment of Christ and before men wherever I go that you were 100% sincere,” (he wasn’t schooled in language or anything; he was just a business man; he did it for money; he did it conscientiously; he wanted it absolutely right and he thought it was right; I guess nobody pointed out some of these things to him) “I must under God renounce every attachment to the New American Standard.”
Taken from THE STAND