Work on the 'The Holy Bible in Modern English' began in 1853 by a London businessman named Ferrar Fenton (1832–1920). The complete Bible was first published in 1903, though some individual bible 'books' were published as separate volumes during the preceding 11 years.
Fenton is well known for a rearranging of the books of the Bible into what the author believed was the correct chronological order. In the Old Testament, this order follows that of the Hebrew Bible. The name of God was translated throughout the Old Testament as "The Ever-Living".
Fenton is an exciting translation that shows respect and gives clarity in many areas where other translations fall short. This Bible is described as being "translated into English direct from the original Hebrew, Chaldee, and Greek languages."
Henrik Borgström assisted Fenton with his translation of the Book of Job, which first appeared in 1898. The book of Job was "rendered into the same metre as the original Hebrew, word by word and line by line". His translation of the New Testament is based on the Greek text of Westcott and Hort. The ordering novelty in the New Testament is that it places the Gospel of John and the First Epistle of John at the beginning before the Gospel of Matthew, thus placing the Acts of the Apostles immediately after the Gospel of Luke.
Notable as well, is Ferrar Fenton's restoration of the Psalms into the musical verse form as close to the original as he could get. The Psalms were, quite literally, songs, complete with instructions for the "choirmaster" as well as descriptions of the proper musical instruments to be used. Today Psalm 48, Psalm 137, and Psalm 23 are still sung in churches, albeit to tunes not the original.
This bible is named the "Revised Fenton" because it puts things back into chronological order. In many cases, whether in error or not, Ferrar moved some parts of the scriptures down to the footnote section. These re-ordered verses have been returned to their chronological order as they are currently found in the King James Version. There was no alteration of the wording or intended meaning of what was originally intended by Mr. Fenton."
Welcome to the new blog section. Join us in this exciting effort to display the works of Ferrar Fenton! The Holy Bible in Modern English is now fully digitized and can be seen for it's creative and artistic beauty as well as for the spiritual edification that we all need through the daily study of the scriptures.
This project actually began in 2012 when the conversion of scanned images, using OCR software, revived a very beautiful but tangled digital version of Ferrar Fenton's work. The major part of the editing, including verse alignment, OCR errors and chapter breaks took over one year. Still, as we go there are minor fixes to punctuation and a few odd necessary edits.
In its very raw form, 'The Holy Bible in Modern English' went online with a free but very undependable web hosting service in 2014, where it has been ever since.
With thanks to the generosity of others, just recently, the site has been moved to its current home. This hosting service is by far superior to the previous but costs are high so we are maintaining an ad service to help offset the costs.
|RF KI2 21:1|| (B.C. 698.) Reign of Manasseh, and his Apostasy and Wickedness.
Manasseh was twelve years old at his coronation, and reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem, and his mother's name was Hephzibah.
|RF KI2 21:2||But he did wrong in the eyes of the EVER-LIVING, like the abominable heathen whom the EVER-LIVING drove out before the children of Israel.|
|RF KI2 21:3||He also restored and built the Columns that Hezekiah his father had destroyed, and raised altars to Bal, and made Shrines, like Ahab king of Israel did; and bowed to all the host of the skies, and served them,|
|RF KI2 21:4||and built them altars in the House of the EVER-LIVING, although the EVER-LIVING had said, "In Jerusalem I will place My Name."|
|RF KI2 21:5||He also built altars to all the Host of the Skies in the two courts of the House of the EVER-LIVING,|
|RF KI2 21:6||and passed his son through the fire, to the clouds, and to the serpent, and practiced necromancy, and used soothsayers, continually increasing to do evil in the sight of the EVER-LIVING to insult Him.|
|RF KI2 21:7||He even fixed the Image of Fortune that he had made in the House, which the EVER-LIVING said to David and to Solomon his son: "In this House, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen from all the tribes of Israel, I will fix|
|RF KI2 21:8||My Name for ever! And I will not again cause the feet of Israel to wander from the land that I gave to their forefathers, —if only they continue to practice all that I commanded them, and all the laws that Moses, My Servant, ordered for them."|
|RF KI2 21:9||But they would not listen. Manasseh thus apostatized to practice sin with the heathen whom the EVER-LIVING swept from before the children of Israel.|
|RF KI2 21:10|| (B.C. 690.) The Preachers sent to reprove him.
The EVER-LIVING consequently sent a message by the hands of His servants the Preachers, to say:
|RF KI2 21:11||"Since Manasseh, king of Judah, has practiced these hideous sins, —worse than all that the Amorites who preceded him, and Judah has also sinned with his idols, —|
|RF KI2 21:12||therefore thus says the EVER-LIVING GOD of Israel, ' I will bring such evil upon Jerusalem and Judah that both the ears of all who hear it shall tingle.|
|RF KI2 21:13||And I will extend over Jerusalem the rule of Shomeron, and the plummet of the House of Ahab, and overturn Jerusalem as a bowl is overturned and flung on its face!|
|RF KI2 21:14||I will also abandon the remnant of My Inheritance, and give them to the hand of their enemies, and they shall become a contempt and scorn to all their enemies,|
|RF KI2 21:15||because they have done wrong in My sight, and have been an irritation to Me, from the day I brought their fathers from among the Mitzeraim to this day.|
|RF KI2 21:16||And Manasseh has also shed very much innocent blood, until he has filled Jerusalem from face to face, to destroy it with the sins he has caused Judah to sin by doing evil in the sight of the EVER-LIVING."|
|RF KI2 21:17||As to the other affairs of Manasseh, and all that he did and the sins that he sinned, they are related in the history of events during the period of the kings of Judah.|
|RF KI2 21:18||At last Manasseh slept with his fathers, and was buried in the garden of his palace, in the Palk of Aza, and Amon, his son, succeeded him.|
|RF KI2 21:19|| (B.C. 643.) Reign of Amon-ben-Manasseh—Hi Sins.
Amon was twenty-two years of age at his coronation, and he reigned two years in Jerusalem, and his mother's name was Meshulamath, daughter of Kharotz of Jatbah.
|RF KI2 21:20||He, however, did wrong in the sight of the EVER-LIVING, as Manasseh his father had done,|
|RF KI2 21:21||and followed all the ways his father went, and served the idols that his father served, and bowed to them.|
|RF KI2 21:22||He also forsook the EVER-LIVING GOD of his ancestors, and did not walk in the paths of the EVER-LIVING.|
|RF KI2 21:23||So the Officers of Amon conspired against him and killed the king in his palace.|
|RF KI2 21:24||The country people, however, assailed all the conspirators, against king Amon, and elected his son Joshiah king in his place.|
|RF KI2 21:25||The rest of the things that Amon did are recorded in the history of events in the times of the kings of Judah.|
|RF KI2 21:26|| And they buried him in his own tomb in the Park of Aza, and his son Joshiah reigned after him.
1 Note upon Ch. 21. With Ch. 20 the work of Isaiah (see 2 Chron., Ch. 32, v. 32, in the Hebrew) would seem to end, and the remaining chapters to be the product of a later hand of a date after the Babylonian Captivity. Probably they were by Nehemiah, written as a supplement to Isaiah's history. The style and tone is different, and the wide views of the lessons and philosophy of history contained in the work from Joshua to the 21st of Kings are wanting, and the difference in the dramatic power of the narrative in the four concluding chapters is also noticeable. I would, therefore, head them " Supplementary Chapters to Isaiah's History of Israel." I would also suggest that Isaiah wrote the History of the Hebrews as a profatory introduction to his warnings to his Nation, and the promises foretold, if it repented; for had he not done so by showing its crimes, those warnings and promises would have been incomprehensible to the mass of his readers in his own day, and far more so to us. Consequently it is a mistake to read the books from Joshua to the end of the 20th Chapter of the 2nd Kings, as merely a political History of Israel and Judah, by several different writers, as all former students have done, for they are clearly composed for a single purpose, and meant to be the Philosophy of the History of the Hebrew Race, and to point out the sources of their national prosperity, and the causes of their decay, paralysis, and ruin at the time of the Teacher and Prophet—for he was both—and not only to them, but to the whole human race, by a special Divine inspiration.
In his history he tries to make this object clear, by constantly referring his readers to the National Records or former historians he cites, for any information they might desire about merely political events. This point of view, I think, is well worth the attention of students and critics, as well as theologians. In the old Hebrew arrangement of the Books of the Bible the Books containing the sections dealing with the different periods of the national evolution, decline, and fall of the Hebrew people, from the death of Moses—that is, the Books from Joshua to and Kings —stand immediately before Isaiah, which seems to support my view, and the statement of Chron., Ch. 32, v. 32, already cited, confirms it.—F.F.