The KJV Never Teaches Abuse of the Body to Its Readers
1. 1 Cor. 9:27 Beating the body?
KJV: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection…
NIV: …I beat my body and make it my slave…
The KJV stresses a Christian’s need to control his bodily desires so he doesn’t fall into dishonor, for it’s important to maintain a good reputation if we’re to influence others for Christ. The NIV changes the interpretation, expressing the notion that control of bodily desires is done by physical beating of the body, which can be seen as favoring a notion popular in non‑biblical religion. The Greek verb here is at times rendered beat or buffet, but in this context it refers to treating the body roughly only in the sense of keeping it under, or persistently denying its sensual desires.
2. Gal. 5:12 Cutting off the flesh literally?
KJV: I would they (circumcising Judaizers) were even cut off which trouble you (fellow believers).
NIV: I wish they would go the whole way and emasculate themselves!
Cutting off of circumcising Judaizers from fellowship with Christians to suppress false doctrine in the churches is presented in an erroneous fashion in the NIV. The Translators chose the usual sense of a Greek word, but interpreted the verse in an overly specific way that is not applicable in this context. They made the cutting off refer to emasculation, which usually refers to castration (mutilation in the NASV), evidently to reflect the devotion of judaizers to circumcision spoken of by Paul, and this castration (or mutilation) supposedly is wished for by Paul. The way the usual word sense applies in this context is that judaizers should be cut off (amputated), from fellowship with Christian believers. The context deals with the trouble that judaizers created among believers in Galatians churches, and cutting off fellowship with these troublemakers would resolve the problem. On the other hand castration of judaizers would do nothing to resolve the problem, and such a rendering invokes a modern-day mindset toward such matters. Since there has been no claim of any misprint in this matter, castration (or mutilation) appears to be an intentional rendering, indicating modern translators at times rely excessively on grammar, not adequately considering context to a ridiculous extreme.