For part one, see here.
Unity with the Brethren
For Latter-day Saints, the route to truth is through revelation, available to the individual through the Holy Spirit but at all times to be guided by those authorised to reveal doctrine to the church (= the Brethren and their institutions, e.g. Correlation). No matter how good the modern translations, they are the products of scholarship, and Mormon distrust of scholarship runs deep (“to be learned is good if…”). Compare the “uneducated” revelatory genius of Joseph Smith with the ivy league unbelief of a Charles Anthon. Mormon scripture does not speak highly of attempts to translate the Bible by those not mandated by God. Modern Bible translators too, inasmuch as they participate in “higher criticism,” will find their work referenced with “apostasy” in Bruce R. McConkie’s influential Mormon Doctrine.
Translators of the “mainline” RSV — the new biblical upstart at the time Clark wrote his defence of the KJV — were, in Mormon eyes, scholars first and believers (if at all) second. Compare them with the claimed piety of the KJV translators, who prayed to God to guide their work and who received no financial remuneration for their efforts. While obviously not Mormon, the Jacobean translators are the paragon of the conservative scholar, unsullied by unbelief. It is no surprise that they meet with the approval of J. Reuben Clark, himself a “prophet, seer, and revelator” and member of the LDS First Presidency. Clark was forceful, erudite, and authorised, and there has simply been no similar proponent of another translation. To propose the church adopt another Bible is to counter President Clark, and by extension, the Brethren. To this, one might also add a distrust at the time of a peculiarly Mormon version of the Bible (the JST), given that it was owned by a rival Mormon group.
The language of the KJV has had an important influence on Mormon prayer language and ideas of deference and reverence. Clark asked, “could any language be too great, too elegant, too beautiful, too majestic, too divine-like to record the doings and sayings of Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ?” Mormons encounter the divine in a markedly formal way, an enduring influence of the KJV. This atmosphere of deference also influences Mormon encounters with church leaders.
Finally, the KJV’s linguistic opacity means that Mormon scripture reading is more a devotional rather than an educational activity. Mormons are enjoined to read Isaiah but not necessarily to understand it, a problem that could be improved by reading a newer translation. However, to use a modern version of the Bible, especially one with a commentary, is to be influenced by unauthorised voices. Seeking to understand the KJV, Mormons are likely to turn to their own authorised commentaries. Thus the KJV keeps LDS Bible education in-house, offering not only unity with Joseph Smith but also unity with the modern Brethren.
Next, unity with Mormon Christology.