This is a stand-alone church history and culture page.
The KJV movement is a Fundamentalist movement that started in the 80s or earlier.
It's an anti-intellectual movement that favors the English KJV translation for various odd reasons including it being “authorized” by King James, not copyrighted – though recent evidence proves otherwise – and provably inaccurate numerology based on this translation.
KJV-only people make the following additional claim:
There is an uninterrupted line of English, German, and other translations that are perfect or “superior to the original languages” due to being “re-inspired” by the Holy Spirit. The modern KJV translation is the latest Bible in this holy line.
The anti-intellectual part continues when one tries to explain to a fanatic that the KJV is incorrect with regard to the Greek and Hebrew in some cases.
They'll spew supporting information about history, some true and some false, mostly from Gail Riplinger.
Peter S. Ruckman had repeated or originated some of Gail's mistaken assertions. One of the many inaccuracies is that certain translations use certain incorrect words, whereas in reality, on inspection, they do not.
One example is saying that behemoth is translated as “hippo” in the NIV, whereas in reality “hippo” is only in footnotes and only in some editions of a different translation than the NIV.
Fact checking Gail is difficult because her cited sources are often incorrect. Her pen name is G. A. Riplinger. My mother is or was a fan (less vocal now). She says Gail uses the initials to stand for “God and Riplinger”.
Authors and speakers who initiated and led the KJV-only movement include numerologist (with incorrect base figures upon my inspection with a computer) Gail Riplinger and Peter S. Ruckman.
Peter S. Ruckman (November 19, 1921 - April 21, 2016) is an avowed racist, conspiracy theorist, UFO enthusiast, and circuit riding preacher and live chalk artist of UFO hotbed Pennsacola FL. He is one of the elderly or deceased racist evangelical prototypes that some today would consider as a gross caricature of Christianity.
Of note, Peter S. Ruckman has had public disputes with strict Pennsacola Christian College, which was not strict enough for him. He says that he refused to sell his property to them when they wanted to expand.
Some of my friends and Ray's friends went to the college despite warnings by Ray and I of its strictness. My mother had many of Ruckman's audio cassettes and VHS “chalk talk” sermons (including live chalk drawing of Bible scenes) and often took us to see him for days on end when he was in the area, such as at Cheltenham Baptist Church.
The exclusivity and dwindling numbers of the KJV-only movement have relegated it mostly to the internet. Modern speakers and groups (such as on YouTube or other streaming sites) include Bill Schnoebelen (though his testimony of occult experiences is interesting and well-documented), Berean Beacon, and one or more members of Now You See TV. The one group I know much about in Southeastern PA that is still KJV-only is Philadelphia Bible Teaching Fellowship. It doesn't seem to have a position that is as staunch as the others, but one or more of its groups believes that the italics validate the KJV, a problem common with other KJV-only churches. Using a better translation can alleviate the supposed loss or addition of meaning which is generally not significant or is implied in the original languages. The organization provides a structure similar to a Bible Study under an umbrella organization as I understand it, with one person (“teacher”) as the focus of the meeting, rather than being an “Organic Church”. There may be other holdouts similar to or including how First Baptist Church of Easton is or was.