Why Copyright a Bible?

There are so many versions of the Bible out now days. Seems like every preacher needs their personal version, and then the public cries for easier and easier reading translations. The thing is, if they are all telling the same story, then why must they all be copyrighted? After all a book isn’t coyrighted anew when a new translation comes out. Could it be that the numerous translations of the Bible don’t tell the same story?

In order to get a copyright on a derivative work, you must show that it is significantly different from the original work. Considering that the basic Bible in the English speaking countries–thereby “original work–” is Old Faithful, the stand-by of the Bibles–the King James Bible, (for those in the United Kingdom, The Authorized Version) then you can see that all the new versions must be different from the King James: making us miss the mark.

The significant difference can be as simple as rearranging or changing the punctuation around. After all, these following sentences mean two different things.

I went with two idiots, Tom and Bill.
I went with two idiots, Tom, and Bill.

Or we could take our example from the Bible itself.

Luke 23:43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.

Or as some would prefer it to be written:
Luke 23:43 And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee Today, shalt thou be with me in paradise.

Did you see the difference in both? Just look for where the commas were moved or added. As you can see, that one comma changes the meaning drastically, in both examples.

Perhaps this is why Jesus said that not one jot or tittle would be done away with ‘til all be fulfilled.