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Thread: Translation Discussion

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    Originally posted by jhamrick
    Really? Why would you say that? ALL of the biblical scholars that I know (most are baptist) say that the KJV is one of the weakest translations from the original language. They say that NASV or RASV are by far the best. MOst would prefer the NIV to KJV.
    check out this link:

    http://www.bible.org/docs/soapbox/kjv.htm

    i would personally steer people away from the KJV since we don't speak that way any longer and you'd need to carry around an English dictionary as well. if we want to understand the word of God, i'd recommend getting a translation that is rendered in the way we speak today not the way English was spoken in England several hundred years ago. that's my two cents.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
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    *sigh* I don't want to get involved in another textus receptus debate. I don't have a problem with individuals reading the NIV as their primary translation. As for the KJV; it's not my primary translation. I just don't have a problem with people making it their primary translation.

    I use the NKJV primarily. It's a modern translation based on the textus receptus. If you don't like the NKJV, then I suggest the MKJV or NASB. But the problem I have with the NIV is it uses WAY TOO much dynamic equivalence which I believe is used to distort the intended meaning of the author.

    My best advice is to use ALL translations; but if you can only have one, go with one based on the textus receptus. KJV, MKJV, NKJV are the best in my opinion, although due to the KJV being a bit archaic, I recommend the latter 2 first.

    Brandan
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    Well, I'm not Grebel but I'm going to respond anyhow
    The NIV is more of a commentary than a literal translation. I'm a Greek major and I believe the KJV is probably still the most accurate major translation out there today. The 21st KJV is the only definite improvement upon the KJV that I know of but it basically just replaces the very archaic words. Some passages are certainly translated better by the NASB, ASV, ESV, RSV, NKJV, and even the NIV but speaking of it as a whole.

    As we move further away from formal equivalence translations such as the KJV and NASB we face a greater danger of the translation being theologically biased. Alot of it has to do with the translation of particles and words that seem not to mean much at a glance. What should be kept in mind is that the NIV has a dispensational bias and the authors often altered passages in rather odd ways to guard the doctrine inerrancy of Scripture. I hold to inerrancy myself, but the translations in the NIV can get silly at times.

    Here's just one example of the dispensational bias:

    1 Thessalonians 4:15-17 According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.

    Notice the part in verse 17 that says "after that". The Greek literally means "then" as most translatations have it. The NIV is trying to leave room for a period of time in between the rapture and the judgment. They also remove the term church as it is used to describe Israel in Acts 7:38 trying to establish the great distinction between the church and Israel found in dispensationalism.

    The college I'm at right now is affiliated with the CRC. The CRC originally formed the committee that started work on the NIV so I find it amusing sometimes when I hear the Greek and theology professors at my college ripping on the NIV. A revision is being worked on and most are still pretty unhappy with what they have seen.

    In my mind the worst passage in the Bible is in Phillipians 2 where it says that Christ made himself nothing. Literally it says that he emptied himself. The KJV paraphrases as well and says that he made himself of no reputation but at least the KJV paraphrase sort of captures the idea of what it means more(and no I don't believe it means that Jesus emptied Himself of some of His divine attributes). Strangely the ESV which overall is a pretty decent translation also adopts this idea of him making himself nothing. The Philipians 2 passage is absolutely vital to the study of Christology and it boggles to think why someone would make a passage more difficult to it already is when people who know the Greek already argue about it.

    All that having been said, no the NIV was not translated by demons as Jack Chick might think and I think the majority of the major translations do convey the basic truths of Christianity at least now that the original Living Translation is out of the picture.

    Sola Gratia,
    WildBoar

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    I think one of the myths is that people did actually speak the way the KJV was written. People never spoke that way. The English was modified to more closely follow the sentence structure of the Greek and Hebrew.

    I'm not a Textus Receptus defender. I do hold to Byzantine priority position though. I think it is unfortunate that many in this position get lumped together. There are important distinctions and some of the scholarship in this field is much better than others. I think Maurice Robinson is the most educated man who holds this position. His defense of the Byzantine priority position can be found at: http://rosetta.reltech.org/TC/vol06/Robinson2001.html

    The Textus Receptus is much closer to the Byzantine text and in the same family which is one of the reasons I use the KJV. There are two translations out right now which are based upon Robinson's text, the Analytical Literal Translation and the World English Bible, but I don't care too much either translation.

    There's an excellent book called "By His Grace and For His Glory" that traces the true development of the Baptist church. It traces it to the English Separatist movement. Those who desire to trace continual seccession must trace themselves through people who denied the Trinity and the Deity of Christ. I for one would rather associate myself with someone who disagreed with me on baptism than one who denied the deity of Christ.

    Sola Gratia,
    WildBoar

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    Originally posted by wildboar
    What should be kept in mind is that the NIV has a dispensational bias and the authors often altered passages in rather odd ways to guard the doctrine inerrancy of Scripture.
    actually i don't think this is entirely accurate. this discussion came up on the bible translation list and from what i remember the NIV committee is a mixed group of scholars, pastors, translators, etc. from all different backgrounds. dispensationalism was not the dominant group from what i understand. i highly recommend the B-Trans list. go here and check it out.

    They also remove the term church as it is used to describe Israel in Acts 7:38 trying to establish the great distinction between the church and Israel found in dispensationalism.
    i believe this is an entirely different issue altogether. translating the term EKKLHSIA is the issue here and what we have in our English translations for this in many places is Church which is a translation of a different Greek word not even found in the Bible (KURIOKOS). i don't really know the history of how this happened but the issue is how to translate the word EKKLHSIA which it is my opinion that it could be translated variously depending on context but church is not a translation at all. a better rendering would be something like congregation, assembly, gathering, etc. here is a sampling of the early english translations.

    Tyndale (1525) - Acts 7:38 This is he that was in ye congregacion in the wyldernes with the angell which spake to him in ye moute Syna and with oure fathers. This man receaved the worde of lyfe to geve vnto vs

    Miles Coverdale (1535) - Acts 7:38 This is he, that was in the congregacion in the wyldernesse with the angell, which talked with him, vpo mount Sina, and with oure fathers. This man receaued the worde of life to geue vnto vs,

    Bishops Bible (1568) - Acts 7:38 This is he that was in the Churche in ye wyldernesse with the angel, which spake to hym in the mount Sinai, and with our fathers: This man receaued the worde of lyfe to geue vnto vs.

    Geneva Bible (1587) - This is he that was in the Congregation, in the wildernes with the Angell, which spake to him in mount Sina, and with our fathers, who receiued the liuely oracles to giue vnto vs.

    Mace NT (1729) - 'twas he that was in the assembly with our fathers in the wilderness, and with the angel that spoke to him on mount Sina: and delivered the oracles to him by word of mouth for our use.

    now the question is that just because EKKLHSIA is used in this context and other contexts does not mean that the reference of the term is the same or that the translation has to be the same. it is context that determines translation not just the lexical gloss or meaning of the Greek term. it is not a matter of finding the Greek or Hebrew term and equating the referents for them all. if we did this, exegesis would be quite chaotic.

    for example, are we to understand Heb 2:12 as a reference to the New Covenant assembly (EKKLHSIA) of Jew and Gentile together? we must not confuse sense or symbol with the referent. might i recommend a very helpful little article. it's called "language" and is available here. a couple of other books i also recommend in this vein are "exegetical fallacies" by da carson, "biblical words and their meaning" by moises silva, and "linguistics for students of new testament greek" by david black.
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    Yes, I am on the B-Greek list as well and certainly there was diverse group that was responsible for the translation of the NIV but for whatever reason NIV developed a dispensational bias, perhaps it was who was chosen to translate specific books, I'm not quite sure why. I don't think it can be denied that the bias of a translator is more likely to be reflected in a dynamic equivalence translation although in any translation some bias will always come through.

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    Originally posted by wildboar
    ...but for whatever reason NIV developed a dispensational bias...
    or the translation choices were what the committee agreed upon because they thought that such were the best ways to render it and there really is no conspiracy theory at all.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    Question to Wild Boar:

    Why are there such differring opinions among Greek scholars about what the Greek text actually means? Please take that as an innocent question, because I don't know the first word of Greek.
    One of my closest friends is working on his Master's degree in religion, his undergrad was in greek, and he couldn't disagree with some of your statements more.
    It just seems to me that we have a pretty good grasp on the meaning of French or Spanish, but there are totally different camps when it comes to translating Greek
    I was just wondering if you could provide a little incite into this, being a scholar yourself.
    Hmmm. WHo would've figured?

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    jhamrick:

    My guess is that the reason is because the Bible is God's Word. If the Bible were written in Spanish we would probably have greater disagreement about how Spanish should be translated. Also every translator has to balance readability with accuracy. Greek grammar is a good deal different from English grammar. In Greek word order is not as big of an issue as it is in English. Endings are added unto words to show how they function in a sentence.

    If we were to take a poll I would guess that most conservative scholars who knew the language well would probably say that the NASB is the most accurate while most liberal scholars would probably vote for the NRSV.

    The thinking behind the concept of dynamic equivalence is that Greek/Hebrew and English are so different that it is better to try to convey the meaning of a verse rather than a word for word translation. The problem is that there is always great debate about what a given verse means and people are often prone to adopt translations that agree with their theology whether or not they are accurate. Alot of people like the NIV because it's easy to read and because it does a good job altering verses so that one can comfortably hold to a position of inerrancy. If attaining a translation that simply reflected my own theological position was my goal I would most likely choose the ESV. But I prefer a more neutral translation. If more than one possibility exists for the interpretation of a text is available ideally I would like to have the text reflect the possibility of more than one meaning. This of course is not always possible but I prefer a translation that at least tries to do this to one that decides it is going to interpret the text for me. I prefer "the just shall live by faith" to "the just shall live by faith alone" as it is found in Luther's Bible.

    The other issue of course has to do with what Greek text to use but I think is too in-depth to get into here.

    Sola Gratia,
    WildBoar

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    Originally posted by wildboar
    Alot of people like the NIV because it's easy to read and because it does a good job altering verses so that one can comfortably hold to a position of inerrancy. If attaining a translation that simply reflected my own theological position was my goal I would most likely choose the ESV.
    whoa! the first part of your comment i would agree with, but your second part that people like the NIV because it does a good job altering [?] verses so that one can comfortably old to a position of inerrancy is just silly. i will almost guarantee that the majority of people don't read it for this reason or even think of a translation choice in these terms (at least consciously). i agree with what kermie has said that we should use as many translations is practicable since that will help give the reader the range of how a passage could be rendered/understood and bring out reasons for discrepancies. da carson in his book "KJV Debate: A Plea for Realism" recommends this as well. at no other time in history have we been blessed with so many copies and translations of God's word. why not take advantage of it rather than spurning it as if it were a bad thing?

    the NIV is a good translation regardless of what has been said here. ask anyone who is an informed contributor to the Bible Translation list. in fact, most translations are very good. there are only a few that i would say clearly have an agenda that i think gets in the way. one for sure is the New World Translation, but other more evangelical translations that i have found too "off" for me to recommend is the Contemporary English Version and The Message (which isn't really a translation). also one needs to ask what they are using the translation for. if it's just for reading then i'd recommend a whole different set than if you say you wanted to study.

    anyway, enough rambling...
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    i'd say to acquaint yourself with the issues involved and read quantitative studies of comparisons of translations go to wayne leman's translation page here.

    for these comparisons go to:

    http://www.geocities.com/bible_translation/comments.htm
    http://www.geocities.com/bible_translation/studies.htm
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    here are wayne's recommendations from here:

    Recommendations
    • If you want a clear, understandable, accurate Bible, useful for unchurched as well as churched audiences, adults as well as children, use the CEV. The NCV will also fit these audiences well.
    • For those wishing to read from a version written in a higher social register (similar to higher reading level), with a more literary quality, the NJB, REB, and NAB are good choices.
    • If you need a version which is appreciated by many conservatives, but want it to be as clear as possible, use the NLT. Otherwise, stick with the NIV. Its English is better than that of more form-oriented translations such as the NASB and NKJV.
    • If it is important that you follow along with your church public readings or what your minister preaches from, use that version. If it does not meet your need for understanding, supplement it with a clearer version.
    • If you need a translation based on the Received Text (RT), go with the NKJV. The English in each of the RT and MT versions is awkward, typical of all "literal" translations, but the NKJV seems to have the best English for this group.
    • If your study or church Bible is from the literal or moderately literal group, supplement it with a more idiomatic version for comprehension.
    • If your favorite Bible is idiomatic, supplement it with a more literal version when explicitly studying the Bible's language forms, such as Hebrew poetry.
    • If you are already content with the Bible you currently use, continue with it. But periodically ask yourself how well you understand it. If you find yourself frequently wondering what English phrases in it mean, consider reading an idiomatic version part of the time.
    • I enjoy studying several versions to see how a passage is translated. I like using The Contemporary Parallel New Testament, edited by by John R. Kohlenberger, III. It contains the complete text of each of the following: King James Version · New American Standard Bible Updated Edition · New Century Version · Contemporary English Version · New International Version · New Living Translation · New King James Version · The Message
    • Finally, the best translation is simply one that is well used and translated into life.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
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    A room without books is a body without soul.
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    Originally posted by wildboar
    Notice the part in verse 17 that says "after that". The Greek literally means "then" as most translatations have it. The NIV is trying to leave room for a period of time in between the rapture and the judgment.
    i don't know what your objection is. then means the exact same thing as after that in my idiolect. so i can't see any reason to quibble about this difference. in fact, strongs has this for the word's semantic range: thereupon, thereafter, then, afterwards. how do you see any distinction whatsoever?

    it seems to me to simply be an adverb which indicates a subsequent event. how do you understand it? how would you translate it in John 11:7? this seems like a bit of grasping at straws to me and is not an unambigious and unequivocal example of doctrinal bias injected into translation. also the fact that you say "literally means" to me seems to communicate a misunderstanding of how language works.

    and just so i'm not misunderstood or the reason for my objection is missed, i'm not dispensational nor do i believe in any rapture. so my objection to your objection is not theologically motivated in the least.

    In my mind the worst passage in the Bible is in Phillipians 2 where it says that Christ made himself nothing. Literally it says that he emptied himself. The KJV paraphrases as well and says that he made himself of no reputation but at least the KJV paraphrase sort of captures the idea of what it means more(and no I don't believe it means that Jesus emptied Himself of some of His divine attributes). Strangely the ESV which overall is a pretty decent translation also adopts this idea of him making himself nothing. The Philipians 2 passage is absolutely vital to the study of Christology and it boggles to think why someone would make a passage more difficult to it already is when people who know the Greek already argue about it.
    once again, i don't see this as doctrinal bias but as just another way to render the difficult term KENOW as applied to a human referent. looks like NIV just rendered it idiomatically into English as made himself nothing to indicate that He voluntarily stripped himself of his divine rights to call legions of angels to His side and instead became a human and sufferred. to me it seems to say the same thing as to become despised, afflicted, etc. (cf. Is 53).

    it is a term that refers to emptying something or making something hollow and is used figuratively with a semantic range something like "make void", "render vain", "deprive of force", "useless", "false". to me it does not seem to be an easy word to translate. they are all trying to render a term that is usually applied to emptying inanimate objects which is here figuratively applied to a human.

    here's the term on perseus. here's some other translations:

    NLT - He made himself nothing;
    ESV - but made himself nothing
    CEV - Instead he gave up everything
    GNT - Instead of this, of his own free will he gave up all he had
    Message - Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity
    KJV - But made himself of no reputation
    NRSV - but emptied himself
    GW - Instead, he emptied himself
    Tyndale - Neverthelesse he made him silfe of no reputacion
    Geneva - But he made himself of no reputation
    HCSB - Instead He emptied Himself
    ISV - Instead, poured out in emptiness
    Phillips - but stripped himself of all privilege
    Cotton Patch - In this regard, you all think as Christ Jesus did. Though he was in a God form, he didn’t think that being on an equality with God was something to be hoarded. So he humbled himself and took on a slave form, just like any other human being. And on purpose he turned up as a man and brought himself so low that he submitted to death ...

    so the question is how to best render it into English. do you render it with the most common gloss or do you try to capture the idiomatic flavor of it? how would the Greeks have understood this? i don't see anything wrong with the NIV rendering here. it communicates the reality of what he did. and i really feel that you introduce unneeded confusion by saying what the word literally means. and there is really no need to think of a dispensational conspiracy theory to explain the difference. as far as i'm concerned you haven't demonstrated your theory that the NIV has dispensational bias written all over it. perhaps you could present your objections and theories to the bible-translation list and see what they think? i have a hunch that they won't be convinced either.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
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    Traduttore traditore

    Originally posted by wildboar
    Also every translator has to balance readability with accuracy...The thinking behind the concept of dynamic equivalence is that Greek/Hebrew and English are so different that it is better to try to convey the meaning of a verse rather than a word for word translation. The problem is that there is always great debate about what a given verse means and people are often prone to adopt translations that agree with their theology whether or not they are accurate.
    Traduttore traditore is Italian for "a translator is a traitor" and this is true whether you subscribe to a Formal Equivalence (FE) or Dynamic Equivalence (DE) method. please read the following article for a very insightful perspective on bible translation. this is the first chapter by moises silva from the book "The Challenge of Bible Translation". read it here:

    http://www.zondervan.com/media/pdfs/...57_samptxt.pdf

    you can order it from zondervan here:

    http://www.zondervan.com/Books/Detai...SBN=0310246857
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
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    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    Re: Traduttore traditore

    Originally posted by disciple
    this is the first chapter by moises silva from the book "The Challenge of Bible Translation".
    here is a quote from this chapter:

    But I am more interested here in the second part of the answer. College and seminary courses in the biblical languages consist primarily of guiding the student in translating word-for-word. If the resulting rendering violates English syntax or makes no sense at all, changes may be introduced, but as a rule these translations are stilted (sometimes barely intelligible to a layperson) and rarely express the thought of the original in the most natural way that the rich resources of the English language make available. Most of us have thus been led to believe that if we manage to represent the Greek and Hebrew words in as close a one-to-one correspondence as possible, we have succeeded in the task of translation. But who would consider successful a Spanish-to-English translation that had such renderings as “I have cold in the feet” (instead of “My feet are cold”) or “He has ten years” (instead of “He is ten years old”)—even though these sentences conform to English syntax and their meaning can be figured out?...

    Admittedly, this is an extreme example, but the principle it illustrates needs to be appreciated. All successful translations of literature (for example, contemporary German novels) sound natural, as though they had originally been written in English (while also preserving a feel for the original cultural setting). Therefore, they are more easily read and understood than if they reflected the foreign syntax and word usage. (Incidentally, since the message communicates more clearly, one can argue that they are more accurate than literal renderings would be.) In contrast, one can hardly call accurate or faithful the KJV’s word-for-word translation of Micah 1:11—“Pass ye away, thou inhabitant of Saphir, having thy shame naked: the inhabitant of Zaanan came not forth in the mourning of Beth-ezel; he shall receive of you his standing.”...

    And here precisely is part of our problem. Because most New Testament books (as well as Old Testament Hebrew narrative) are characterized by a fairly straightforward syntax, many of whose features can be paralleled in English syntax, we are lulled into thinking that literal renderings of the Greek text “work.” But just because a certain Greek syntactical pattern can be reproduced in English, that hardly means it should, as though such reproduction were the best or most faithful representation of the original.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    here is another quote:

    Such objections, however, would not be valid grievances against the ESV. And by the same token, one should be cautious about using arguments of this sort to criticize functional-equivalence versions. There may indeed be instances where the NIV, for example, adds an excessive amount of information to the text. But defects in the application of a method are no argument against the method itself. So far as philosophy of translation is concerned, the NIV merely seeks to apply, in a more thorough and systematic way than “traditional” versions, the principles that all versions are using when they transform the syntactical structure of Greek participial clauses. Those principles are clarity and naturalness of expression.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    one last quote:

    It should be obvious by now that “faithfulness” in translation is neither a simple concept to define nor an easy goal to achieve. Are we thus obligated to conclude that translators are traitors? I would prefer to say, traduttore transmutore (or even better, transpositore). The translator is someone who, like it or not, transforms a text by transferring it from one linguistic-cultural context to another. In such a process, it is inevitable that some things will be left behind and that others will be picked up along the way. The King James translators, for all their skill, failed to preserve countless features—both formal and semantic—that were present in the original Hebrew and Greek texts. By the same token, their mere use of seventeenth-century English ensured that, at virtually every turn, they would add features absent from the original. Yet this simple reality does not for a moment take anything away from their magnificent achievement. They responsibly interpreted the text, then transposed it to a different historical setting and thereby transmuted it into a form it did not have before. But that hardly means they betrayed the text. On the contrary, such a transformation made it possible for millions to hear and understand its message...

    The multiplicity of modern Bible versions, while thought by many to be a great disadvantage for the church today, is instead reason for exultation. To be sure, the differences among these versions can create confusion; new problems have surfaced that still have not been solved. It remains true, however, that contemporary Bible readers, precisely because they are not bound to one or two versions, enjoy certain remarkable advantages over previous generations. For them, Scripture, read through different lenses, shines all the brighter.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

  18. #18
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    Dear Disciple:

    Excellent quotations from Moisés Silva. I read the suggested excerpt entirely and was not suprised by some of Mr. Silva's assertions made about translation and the work of translations.

    As one who translated (not the Bible) for a living, I can witness of the veracity and importance of Mr. Silva's propositions.

    Pertaining to this thread, however, I have debated tirelessly with KJV only people whose irrationality--the irrationalities of the ones whom I debated, not reproduced in this thread by anyone--would render anyone who does not venerates the KJV as they do, a heretic. I found myself well fitted by them in this category even before I quitted in defeat. As a result I have developed within myself a greater sense of responsibility do perform the role or the "preacher" mentioned by Mr. Silva as the "preacher to tell him or her what the options are (of course, a book or a preacher can clarify those options regardless of which version is being read)."

    That is not an easy task. It takes calling, unction and a tremendous sensitivity to what God primarily inspired to author to convey. This task is "achievable", however, not only by the reading of different translations, since this could be a great aid but only to give us the what the text is saying, but also by a degree of what has been neglected in the pulpit today, which is a passion for the author of the text above and beyond the cravings for intellectual knowledge of the richness of linguistics.

    It is not uncommon in most evangelical churches today to see ministers very well prepared intellectually and scholarly who will give you a near perfect translation of any text of the Bible. It is not so common to see preachers being capable of executing most of what the very text they are disclosing to their congregates is saying. As a result, we have a flock of parrots, ready to recite texts in the Greek and Hebrew any time, anywhere and under any circumstances, quick in responding to any theological question with a glib of theological verbiage that is in its shell, enviable, but in its application, despiteful. If I may repeat what an evangelist that I know says about the area where I live, with its 120 churches or more: "I have not seen the devil running for cover yet."

    What I mean is that with all this knowledge, with all these tremendous resources we have available today, I still find churches that turn away and would prefer not to have in their pews those whose problems are too much of a hot potato for them to face. Problems such as sexual perversions, spousal abuse, substance abuse, demon possession, violence, etc.
    I question: "what is all this knowledge for?" What are you going to do to these suffering ones? Will you send them to a shrink, who happens to be a Christian? If all this knowledge does not provide answers for these people and you still send them to another professional who does not possess this knowledge, then why the knowledge in the first place? If anyone thinks that these unfortunate ones are not outhere, sitting in church pews every Sunday, waiting for an answer for their lives, he is certainly not paying much attention.

    Mr. Silva asserts that "the less one knows, the quicker he is in forming an opinion". I agree. But I believe that if all this knowledge is unuseful to do the work that the Congress, or Assembly--not the churchian church--was called to do, I question if all the time I spent in acquiring this knowledge is only good for exibition in Internet Forums, or if it really has any valid application as I do the Work of the Ministry on behalf of a sin benighted world. Then, perhaps it is better to be less knowlegeable and quicker in forming an opinion, but at least, be effective in doing what a minister is expected by God, not men, to do.

    Solomon says: ...neither make over wise; why should you destroy yourself.

    No, I do not abhor nor despise knowledge. Knowledge, however, has to have a purpose. If I do know all the implications and connotations of what God is saying because I am such an avid student of linguistics, then it should be expected of me a degree of servitude and ministry proportional to the knowledge I have. To whom is much given, much is required. I do not see that in the ministry today. As such, lengthy discussions and debates about generalities and relevants issues on interpretations, unaccompanied by a history of practical ministry, to me is the "destruction" that Solomon did forecast would accompany "an over wise man".

    As a certain manufacture of a popular beverage, from which I recmment abstinence, announces: "This one is for you", as I review this post before I press "submit" I have to humbly say and pray: "This one is for ME!

    I just thought I should share this with you.
    Grace Ambassador
    A pitiful servant of God; a pitbull guardian of the message of Grace

    My pledge to other members:
    A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. Prov 15:1
    A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver - Prov. 25:11

  19. #19
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    Originally posted by wildboar
    The Greek literally means "then" as most translatations have it...Literally it says that he emptied himself.
    just to give you an idea of where i'm coming from with this i'm going to quote something from the word meaning section from chapman's new testament greek insert:

    Preachers and teachers frequently give the impression that Greek exegesis is a mystical craft, designed to open whole worlds of meaning to the initiated. "In the Greek, this word literally means..." they intone, and they leave their hearers gasping, "I would never have found that in the passage!" They "learn" that Greek words possess stronger magic than their English equivalents. Nevertheless, such an approach is almost invariably wrong-headed and erroneous.

    Part of the task of exegesis is the defining of words. The Greek NT, by one count, contains 5425 vocabulary words, most of which appear less than ten times. You will not perform full-blown word studies on every one of them, but those you perform must be accurate and honest.

    An Inductive Method of Word Study

    Your goal in word study will be to determine:

    Step 1. how the word was used generally at that time
    Step 2. how biblical writers typically used the word
    Step 3. how this author typically used the word
    Step 4. how the word is used in this specific context

    Most of Steps 1-3 may be accomplished with a few good tools: a solid, up-to-date lexicon (Bauer-Arndt-Gingrich is the most reliable); a Greek concordance; and if you want to go deeper, Moulton & Milligan's The Vocabulary of the Greek Testament surveys the use and meaning of many NT words in Greek papyri of the Hellenistic period...

    A note of warning! If you do a massive word study on, say AKOLOUQEW in Matt 8:19 and after all that work decide that in fact it means nothing more than "to follow," a meaning you could have gotten right out of the NIV, you may become disenchanted with the value of all your Greek learning. After all, how can you say, "In the Greek, this word literally means 'to follow,'" when anyone with a Bible can readily spot that? In fact, you may have stumbled on the true value of Greek exegesis: that while it occasionally yields insight into individual words, its goal is to help you to follow the flow of sentences and paragraphs.
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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    Assembly vs. Church

    Originally posted by BillTwisse
    So that is an introductory comment. The common use of the word 'church' has been, is now, and will always be an institution of religion. The most orthodox of theologians will attempt to correct this usage. They will never succeed. The NT ekklesia refers to the people of God, period. Never an external institution with organized hierarchy and financial clout. This meaning of ekklesia will never be the primary focus of the term 'church' ('the Lord's house' of the Constantinian era), never!

    Hopefully, we can engage in a fruitful discussion of the infinite difference between ekklesia and church.
    perhaps we should start yet another thread. i will move this one to the ecclesiology section.

    the discussion on EKKLHSIA has been moved to the ecclesiology section and is titled "Assembly vs. Church".
    When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes.
    --Erasmus

    A room without books is a body without soul.
    --Cicero

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