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BYUtv tells story of the King James Bible in 'Fires of Faith'

Published: Saturday, Oct. 15 2011 3:18 p.m. MDT

Part 3, “The King James Bible,” describes the events that led to the printing of the King James Bible in 1611, using more than 80 percent of Tyndale’s work. The Bible came to America on the Mayflower in 1620 and has continued to influence religion, language, culture, art and literature throughout the world today. The final hour of the series highlights the Bible’s effect on people today and includes interviews with random people on the street.

“This has been one of the more humbling, ambitious projects I have ever been associated with because of the complexity and the different levels of telling the story,” Groberg said. “It’s a story that is so universal and global, and yet a story, beginning with me, very few people knew much about. Talk about a master’s degree education in the last two years of production, I am excited for the viewer to gain a great education.”

Marquis said there were moments on the set when a reverent, solemn spirit prevailed. “Those were special, sacred moments. There aren’t words to describe the feeling that was on the set,” he said. “It was obvious that this was an important story that needed to be told. This is a sacred topic.”

Marquis said BYUtv was determined to take a nondenominational approach in telling the story. “(Those interviewed) all have a shared purpose and shared reverence for holy writ of scripture,” Marquis said. “All have shared values for King James Bible.” Among those interviewed is President Boyd K. Packer, president of the Quorum of the Twelve for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Tyndale’s translation work provided the world with expressions like, “Let there be light,” “Broken heart,” “Judge not lest you be judged,” and “Seek and you shall find.”

David Rosen, a rabbi of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, said in the film that there is nothing that compares to the classical English literary resource as the King James Bible. “The closest thing, of course, are the works of Shakespeare and we do relish and treasure Shakespeare,” he said. “But it doesn’t speak to our deepest commitments, as obviously, the Bible does.”

Brad S. Gregory, a professor of early modern history at the University of Notre Dame, admires the bravery of men like Tyndale who were willing to risk their lives for Christian truth. He also said the Bible is unmatched in its phrases and rhythms.

“The phrases and rhythms of the King James Bible have worked their way into wider Anglophone sensibilities and consciousness in ways that no other translation of the Bible has achieved, nor will likely ever achieve.”

Alec Ryrie, a professor of history of Christianity at Durham University in England, said the King James Bible has an amazing tenacity.

“It has hung on in the affection of particular churches and of whole peoples in a way that a 400-year-old text really shouldn’t,” he said. “I think the King James translators, themselves, would have been amazed that this 400-year-old translation is still being used.”

Groberg hopes viewers will come away with a new reverence for the King James Bible.

“I’m hoping they will experience what I experienced. I hope they will gain a reverence, awe and respect for a book that often sits on our shelves,” Groberg said. “I think when they understand what went into making a Bible in English available … they will have a greater respect and a greater desire to read it.”

"Fires of Faith" will premiere on BYUtv, a U.S. and worldwide cable/satellite television channel reaching 60 million households.

Part 1

Sunday, Oct. 16, at 8 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. MT & 11 p.m. ET / 9 p.m. MT Wednesday, Oct. 19, at 9 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. MT & midnight ET / 10 p.m. MT

Part 2

Sunday, Oct. 23, at 8 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. MT & 11 p.m. ET / 9 p.m. MT Wednesday, Oct. 26, at 9 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. MT & 12 p.m. ET / 10 p.m. MT

Part 3

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