Do Modern Translations Deny Jesus' Deity?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Keith M, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. Keith M

    Keith M
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    In his article "King James and Other Versions," George Gunn (M.Div., Professor of Biblical Languages, Shasta Bible College) compares several Bible translations in regard to their treatment of Jesus' deity. He uses 8 NT verses (John 1:1, 18; Acts 20:28; Romans 9:5; 2 Thessalonians 1:12; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 1:8 and 2 Peter 1:1) to rate Bible translations as to how they stand on Jesus' deity.

    The translation with the lowest rating is the NWT, teaching Jesus' deity in 0 of the 8 verses (surprised?). The translations with the highest rating (7) are the NASB and the NIV.

    Here's how Gunn rates a few translations: KJV 4; RV 6; RSV 4; NEB 4; Moffat 1; Goodspeed 3; TEV 5; NIV 7; MLB 6; NWT 0; and NASB 7.

    For more information see the web page at http://www.shasta.edu/articles/gunn/kingjames.asp.

    While many KJVOs falsely claim modern translations deny Jesus' deity, the truth is that some modern translations are stronger on His deity than the KJV.
     
  2. CoJoJax

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    Interesting stuff.

    I have just recently started using my NIV more than my KJV.

    I wonder how HCSB stacks up. I had bought that version recently (it was on sale) but am returning it today .. I just didn't like a lot of the wording. But that's just me. :tonofbricks:
     
  3. Logos1560

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    2 Peter 1:1

    All the early English Bibles and many modern translations clearly identify Jesus Christ as "our God and Savior" at 2 Peter 1:1. Tyndale, Coverdale, and Rogers translated this verse as "righteousness that cometh of our God and Saviour Jesus Christ." The Great, Whittingham's, Geneva, Bishops', Haak’s 1657 English translation of the Dutch Bible, Wesley's, 1842 Baptist or Bernard's, NKJV, Majority Text Interlinear, and many other translations render it "righteousness of our God and Saviour [or Savior] Jesus Christ." James White maintained that this is the proper translation of the Greek according to the Granville Sharp's rule (King James Only Controversy, p. 268). Concerning this verse in his multi-volume commentary, David Sorenson wrote: “Though it is not quite as evident in English, in the Received Text, the phrase literally reads, ‘the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ’” (p. 228). The 1611 edition of the KJV has a comma after God at 2 Peter 1:1 [God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ]. The first KJV edition printed in America in 1782 and a KJV edition printed at Oxford in 1795 still have a comma after God at 2 Peter 1:1. How does this comma in some early KJV editions affect the understanding and interpretation of this verse? Concerning this verse in his 1633 commentary on 2 Peter, Thomas Adams observed: “Some read these words by disjoining them; of God, and of our Saviour,“ which would seem to refer to the rendering in the 1611. At 2 Peter 1:1, the 2005 Cambridge edition of the KJV has this note taken from the standard 1762 Cambridge edition: “Gr. of our God and Saviour.” KJV editions printed at Oxford in 1810, 1821, 1835, 1857, 1865, 1868, and 1885, and at Cambridge in 1769, 1844, 1872, and 1887 also have this same note. James Scholefield maintained that this verse has “the same construction as in verse 11” where it was rendered in the KJV as “of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (Hints, p. 157).
     
  4. Keith M

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    I'm not sure how old the article is. It may be the article has been around for some time, or else that Gunn has a preference for some of the older "modern translations."

    I believe one could apply the verses listed to any English Bible translation to see how it "stacks up" regarding Jesus' deity.
     
  5. Logos1560

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    Titus 2:13

    The NKJV, the MKJV, and several other translations read "our great God and Savior Jesus Christ" at Titus 2:13. A. T. Robertson noted that our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ "is the necessary meaning of the one article with theou and soteros just as in 2 Peter 1:1 (Word Pictures, IV, p. 604). Concerning Titus 2:13, Granville Sharp stated: "This testimony, therefore, of the sacred text, in favour of our Lord's divine nature, ought not to be withheld from the mere English reader" (Remarks, p. 51). William Hendriksen wrote: "No valid reason has ever been found which would show that the (Granville Sharp) rule does not apply in the present case [Titus 2:13]" (Timothy and Titus, p. 375). Joseph Benson observed that Theodore Beza maintained “that one person only is spoken of, namely, Jesus Christ” (New Testament, II, p. 472). The 1611 edition of the KJV had a comma after God at Titus 2:13 [the great God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ]. The first KJV edition printed in America in 1782 and a KJV edition printed at Oxford in 1795 still have a comma after God at Titus 2:13. Scrivener observed: “In regard to weightier matters, the comma put by 1611 after “God” in Titus 2:13 is fitly removed by 1769 modern, that ‘the great God and our Saviour’ may be seen to be joint predicates of the same Divine person” (Authorized Edition, p. 87). I. M. Halderman wrote: “Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit the Apostle Paul speaks of Him as ’our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ’ (correct reading) (Titus 2:13)” (Bible Expositions, I, p. 456). Augustus Strong regarded Titus 2:13 to be “a direct, definite, and even studied declaration of Christ’s divinity” (Systematic Theology, p. 307). J. L. Dagg advocated that the rendering at Titus 2:13 be amended to “our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ” (Manual of Theology, pp. 183-184). In his English translation of the 1637 Dutch Annotations at this verse, Theodore Haak noted: “That is, of Jesus Christ, our great God and Saviour; for both these titles are here ascribed to Jesus Christ”

     
  6. Thermodynamics

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    The linked page in the OP makes for some very good reading!
     
  7. robycop3

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    Yes, it DOES, indeed! It debunks yet more of the KJVOs' notions.
     
  8. EdSutton

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    I have just read every word in the article, to which you have linked, by Prof. George Gunn. I had never so much as heard the name, prior to today, of Prof. Gunn or Shasta Bible College. Even after checking out a bit of the College site, with all the Faculty and Staff, I find only two names there, that I can recall that I even recognize, namely Dr. Stephen G. Brown (of whom I don't even remember why I know that name), and Dr. Duane T. Gish, of ICR fame, a part-time very Senior Professor, now 87 years young, and likely the best known, still-living individual among 'Creationists' around. And I can also assure you that I would not know him, if he walked up to me, on the street.

    I said that to say this: I have "no ax to grind" in any manner regarding this article. I would offer that this is one of, if not the best, on this subject that I have ever read of comparable length, simply because IMO, it is not written as any thinly disguised agenda or propaganda, from any perspective. I find this to be, overall, an extremely accurate concise historical presentation of the history of some major Bible versions and the MSS that lay behind the Bibles we have today.

    I would urge any and all to read this article, which sort of urging is something I rarely do.
    Again, this happens to be perhaps the best brief treatment I have run across in more than 40 years, and says more, with these few words, that is of any real value, than do some books of several hundred pages, from any perspective.

    I suggest I might have a small amount of credibility to analyze this, from a 'Bible' perspective, considering I happen to be a graduate (B.A. in Biblical Education) of what (after they got rid of the 'drag' I was putting on them, maybe?? :laugh:) shortly became the largest 'strictly' four-year, Bible College in the world. The famed Moody Bible Institute, although quite a bit larger overall, was divided into a three divisions, namely a three year Institute, a College Division, and a Graduate School, at that time.

    Sadly, my own alma mater is now defunct. :tear:

    As to the article, itself -

    :thumbsup: [​IMG]

    Did I mention that overall, I would give it a "two thumbs up" rating??

    [Edited to add] FTR, I also checked out the Doctrinal Statement and Faculty Profiles of Shasta Bible College. IMO, from my admittedly brief checking, the Doctrinal Statement is sound, conservative/fundamental, and could certainly be considered as somewhat tending toward 'Baptistic' even, and I find the profiles of faculty, if anything, to be a bit above average for a Bible College, overall.

    Ed
     
    #8 EdSutton, Feb 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2009
  9. Mexdeaf

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    I don't normally take time to read all the links that are submitted to this forum but this one definitely is worth the time and (IMHO) should be 'pinned' to the top of the forum as required reading for anyone who wants to debate intelligently herein.

    But that might be too much truth for some to swallow.:smilewinkgrin:
     
  10. Jim1999

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    If someone wants to deny the deity of Christ, they don't need an incorrect copy of scripture to do it. Those people don't need an excuse.

    I still use my kjv from 1945 and consult other versions for comparison only. It has worked for me over the years.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  11. Baptist4life

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    That whole link was simply one man's opinion. I'm not saying that Christ's Deity is denied in MV's. I'm just wondering why this particular article is being hailed so much........is it simply because you agree with it? After all, I saw NOTHING new in it. Again, simply his opinion, as I have mine.
     
  12. EdSutton

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    No, I believe I "hailed" the article because of the accurate history involved, regarding vartious versions, MSS, etc., which reason I stated. I can speak for any other, of whom may or may not like the article.

    I did not address the OP comment, nor address the alleged Deity issue of any version, and in fact, have not commented on the opinions of any of such, ever, that I recall on the Baptist Board, with the exception of commenting on the Joseph Smith translation and the NWT.

    I'll keep that record intact, at least for now. :thumbsup:

    Ed
     
  13. EdSutton

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    Exactly! One does not need any excuse. The Jehovah Witnesses group did not arise AFTER the NWT or BECAUSE OF the Emphatic Diaglott and ASV.

    While I do not normally use an edition that old (considering my own parents had just started even going together in 1945, would not be married until the end of 1946, and I would not be born until Aug. 1948), I occasionally have used an actual printing even much older than 1945. Seemed to work OK for me, too. :thumbsup:

    Although that large, 40# pulpit Bible, chained to the desk, does seem a little tough to carry loosely in one hand, however. :p

    Makes my Strong's Concordance seem very light, by comparison. :laugh: :laugh:

    Ed
     
    #13 EdSutton, Feb 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2009
  14. Thermodynamics

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    Hi B4L, I am not sure that I "hailed" the article, so I am not sure if you were addressing me, but I assume not.

    I found the article interesting because it did something I have not seen done before, it looked at specific verses side by side in various versions. I do think that by a careful choice of verses one could arrive at the conclusion one was after, but it is the first time I have seen that done. I want to look at all of those verses myself at some point to see if I agree with the contention of the author. I do think it would be useful to do the same type of thing with a larger sample of verses and see where things come out.

    Asside from that you are right in that it didn't cantain any new information. However, it did give the position of the MV side of the debate in a clear, rational and un-emotional manner that I appreciate. On that basis I can say that I found it interesting and pleasant to read even where I do not share the author's opinion.
     
  15. Askjo

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    Gunn did not rate on translations, but he used Carson's rating on them.. Go to the link: http://www.holybible.com/resources/Trinitarian/article_69.htm

    Gunn used Carson's, but go to the link: http://www.holybible.com/resources/KJV_defenders/KJV-TomStrouse.htm
     
  16. Rippon

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    Perhaps you haven't read:

    The King James Version Debate:A Plea For Realism by D.A.Carson

    The King James Only Controversy by James White (the update is expected to be released next month)

    From The Mind Of God To The Mind Of Man or its more impressive sequel :God's Word in Our Hands

    All of the above were written in a clear,rational and unemotional style.

    You have to remember to distinguish between legitimate authors even if their names sound similar.

    D.A.Carson is to be much preferred to D.A.Waite.

    Mark Strauss is by far more knowledgeable and better balanced than is Thomas Strouse.
     
  17. Rippon

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    Hey Language Cop! You're slipping!
     
  18. franklinmonroe

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    Yep, that is exactly what Gunn states in his article: "... The following is an excerpt from D.A. Carson's book, The King James Version Debate" (and footnoted).
     
  19. EdSutton

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    "Thursday night is the night that I make my weekly night off, before 11 P.M. E.S.T., so that I can watch 'C.S.I. on CBS!'

    On the weeks when I get two nights off, I add Tuesday, as well, so that I can also watch the 'J.A.G.' spin-off that is titled 'N.C.I.S.'

    On the nights I'm off, Ed is on his own!

    (That is not really a good idea, oftentimes, and I see you have noticed that, as well!)

    'K.W.I.M.,' Vern??"

    Signed, Language Cop
     
    #19 EdSutton, Feb 19, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2009
  20. Rippon

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    No one else gets an exception -- so you won't either Ed.Whether your alter ego is on or off-duty is of no concern -- no reprieves shall be granted!

    That is all.
     

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