Sarx As Rendered In Various Translations

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Rippon, Sep 25, 2015.

  1. Rippon

    Rippon
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    In another thread a poster feels that the word "flesh" is the most natural meaning in English for sarx. (Albeit, leaving some leeway for select expressions such as "carnal.")

    In the New Testament the word "flesh" occurs 132 times in the KJV. The word "fleshly" occurs 3 times. First let's look at the frequency of the word "flesh" in various translations of the N.T.

    NASB : 118
    LEB : 108
    ESV : 107
    NABRE : 106
    Mounce : 105
    HCSB : 97
    NRSV : 95
    NET : 77
    NIV : 68
    ISV : 50

    The NRSV usage of the word is right around the mid-point mark. The lower the score, the better, it seems to me.

    You might be interested to know that the KJV translated it as
    "body" on at least two occasions that I have found --in 1 Cor. 15:44 and 2 Cor. 4:10.

    In Romans the KJV has sarx translated as "flesh" 22 times. The NIV has it rendered that way 20 times. Yet there is not much overlap. Let's look at some references where other versions do not use "flesh."

    Romans 9:3. The KJV has it as "kinsmen according to the flesh."

    The NIV : "those of my own race"
    NET : "my fellow countrymen"
    NLT and NCV : "my Jewish brothers and sisters."
    ISV and Weymouth : "my own people."

    Romans 9:5. The KJV words it as follows :"concerning the flesh."

    The NIV has "human ancestry." Other translations have similiar constructions -the NLT, NET, NCV, Mounce, LEB, CEB, JBP, ISV, HCSB, GWT, Weymouth.

    In Romans 11:14 the KJV reads "flesh" while other translations such as the NIV have it : "my own people." Check out the NLT, HCSB, ESV, NASB, NET, Weymouth, ISV, JBP, LEB, Mounce, NCV, NRSV.

    In Romans 14:21 the KJV has "flesh" while just about every non-TR version has the word "meat" instead.

    It's my contention that the English translation of sarx is found in a variety of words and phrases. The word "flesh" is far from being considered a "natural choice" in the matter. The word "flesh" is not sacrosanct. God did not chose that particular English word as the equivalent of sarx. It really depends on the context and situation being addressed. And really, this is 2015. Many words that were quite acceptable and good choices half a millennium ago are not so suitable now.

    More observations will be given in future posts. Feel free to chime in.
     
    #1 Rippon, Sep 25, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2015
  2. Martin Marprelate

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    I don't propose to get involved with this thread for reasons I have made clear elsewhere.
    I will just point out that in the Greek
    There is no word for 'own' and no word for 'race' (NIV).
    There is no word for 'Jewish' and no word for 'sisters' (NLT and NCV).
    There is no word for 'people' (ISV and Weymouth).
    And sungenes can mean 'fellow-countryman,' but the NET has omitted kata sarka, 'according to the flesh' completely.

    Doubtless there are those who like such 'translations' and it is clear that they are well-catered for. Read and enjoy, brothers! But I like to know what the word of God actually says. I am not an unqualified fan of the KJV, but I would infinitely prefer it to any of the 'translations' given above.
     
    #2 Martin Marprelate, Sep 25, 2015
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  3. McCree79

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    Did a post from Martin and multiple posts from Rippon just disappear from this thread? I know I read more posts than 2.

    Sent from my LGLS990 using Tapatalk
     
  4. Martin Marprelate

    Martin Marprelate
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    Yes! What's that all about?
     
  5. McCree79

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    I don't know???? I was getting ready to reply to Rippon. Then seen you posted. Backed out of my post to read yours, and half the thread disappeared.

    Sent from my LGLS990 using Tapatalk
     
  6. McCree79

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    What was the original thread that this one spun off from? I have been gone a week and half. I want to read the beginning of the debate.

    Sent from my LGLS990 using Tapatalk
     
  7. Van

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    Hi McCree79, I think the discussion of sarx (flesh or body) began at post #18 in the "Best Majority Text Version" thread in this forum.

    The issue was that another Greek word, soma is sometimes translated body and therefore flesh rather than body was seen as the best translation of sarx in 1 Timothy 3:16.

    So now, Mr. Rippon has started a whole new thread to claim concordance and transparency do not argue against translating the same Greek word meaning into the same English word or phrase.

    The alternate idea is sarx is used primarily in two different ways, to refer the physical material, i.e. flesh, or the product of physical activity, i.e blood line ancestry being "according to the flesh." Sarx is also used to refer to action independent or apart from God and therefore should be translated as "carnal." Thus if you look at context, either of these two translation choices would be indicated.
     
    #7 Van, Sep 27, 2015
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  8. Van

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    If you look at the OP (post #1) you will find a reference to 1 Cor. 15:44. Here Mr. Rippon says "it" has been translated as body. The implication is he is talking about "sarx" but of course the word is "soma." So the very problem (translating two different Greek words (sarx and soma) into the same English word (body) is illustrated by Mr. Rippon.
     
  9. Yeshua1

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    How did the Apostle paul use that term though?

    Referencing mainly to the physical body, or to the inner sin nature in the physical body?
     
  10. Van

    Van
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    Great question Yeshua1. What if Paul used the Greek word "sarx" both ways? The best you can do is look up each usage by Paul and decide whether flesh or carnal best conveys the idea of physical properties or sinful properties? Do you know how to do that?

    Lets look at Galatians 2:16 and the statement "no flesh will be justified by the works of the Law. I think the idea is simply to refer to human beings, thus no flesh works. But if you look at Galatians 5:17, Paul is referring to our fallen carnal nature, thus "the carnal" works best. When both ideas seem to be present, defaulting to "flesh" as in Galatians 2:16 appears to be the choice of most translators.
     
  11. Rippon

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    My error. I stand corrected on that.
     
  12. Rippon

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    Nope (as you are fond of saying) there are at least five different senses of sarx.
     

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