The Politics of Bible Translations

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Deacon, Oct 2, 2014.

  1. Deacon

    Deacon
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    [From the blog “Jesus Creed” by Scott McKnight]

    The Bible you carry is a political act. By “Bible” I mean the Translation of the Bible you carry is a political act. Because the Bible you carry is a political act the rhetoric about other translations is more politics than it is reality. The reality is that the major Bible translations in use today are all good, and beyond good, translations. There is no longer a “best” translation but instead a basket full of exceptional translations.
    The world in which we live, however, has turned the Bible you carry into politics. So here goes for my politics of translation at the general, stereotypical level, and it goes without having to say it that there are exceptions for each,

    The NIV 2011 is the Bible of conservative evangelicals.
    The NLT is the Bible of conservative evangelicals.
    The TNIV is the Bible of egalitarian evangelicals.
    The ESV is the Bible of complementarian conservative evangelicals.
    The NASB is the Bible of conservative evangelical serious Bible students.
    The NRSV is the Bible of Protestant mainliners.
    The RSV is the Bible of aged Protestant mainliners.
    The CEB is the Bible of Protestant mainliners.
    The KJV is the Bible of African Americans (in my experience at TEDS, NPU and Northern) and, of course, others.
    The Message is the Bible of those who are tired of the politics (and like something fresh).


    Read more: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/jesuscreed/2014/10/01/the-politics-of-bible-translations/#ixzz3EzCPYtd4
     
  2. Earth Wind and Fire

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    Why is there any politics?
     
  3. PreachTony

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    And this means what? Seems to me yet another means of dividing Christians.
     
  4. Deacon

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    The categories are more observations than divisions.

    Do you find his characterizations accurate?

    I might add the HCSB is the 'Southern Baptist' bible.

    Rob
     
  5. Van

    Van
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    I find his blog article, at least the portion snipped by Deacon, to be hogwash.

    1) Are the majority of English translations good or beyond good? Not if you only want to read the most literal, word for word translation philosophy versions. Those that want to say our judgment reflects bias and bookseller mythology are saying buy the pig in the poke.

    2) Are the translations "exceptional?" Well that would depend on the intended meaning of exceptional. They all miss the mark, have faults, and can be improved. Witness the "updates of the NIV, ESV, and even the 1995 revision of the NASB. Does anyone think they will be be updated in the future to make them better?
     
  6. Rippon

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    People are not in the market for interlinears --but actual Bible translations. There is no such thing as a "word-for-word" translation. Those that would call any translation --even the most literal -- "word-for-word" are either being deceived or dishonest. Some, such as the NASB are more form-oriented, that's all. The more literal a translation is the more unintelligible. Hence, the more literal or form-oriented -- the least faithful to the original.
    Yes, of course they will be updated. It's just common sense.
     
  7. Van

    Van
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    Good Golly Miss Molly,

    The ESV, NASB, NKJV all claim to follow the word for word translation philosophy.

    Did anyone say an interlinear was not a word for word translation?

    Is a literal translation "unintelligible?" Nope

    If the modern translations will be updated in the future to correct places where they miss the mark, then they are flawed and need improvement now.
     
  8. Rippon

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    What they may claim in their prefaces and marketing materials is not necessarily what lies behind their actual translation methods. But of those three the NASB and NKJV are more form-oriented than the ESV.
    I am saying that an interlinear is not a translation.
    The more literal a translation is, the less intelligibility it becomes.
    All Bible translations are flawed and need improvement. It's just common sense. But your insistence of "now" is impractical. It takes time, effort, and coordination of resources. Maybe you haven't thought about that.
     
    #8 Rippon, Oct 2, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 2, 2014
  9. JonC

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    So, less literal means more faithful? The Message is less literal/form oriented and more easily understood than the NIV. Are you implying it is therefore a more accurate translation?
     
  10. Van

    Van
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    Does a translation that is more literal than another mean it is less intelligible? Nope If you are trying to learn what God said, a mistaken liberal translation gives you little in the way of intelligible information.
     
  11. Rippon

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    Translations that are more literal, such as the ESV, NKJV and NASB while trying to keep the form, supposedly, are not necessarily being more faithful to the original than a less literal-oriened one like the HCSB, NET etc.
    Perhaps you haven't read much of The Message. It's a head-scratcher much of the time. Believe me, you'd be reaching for your NIV to understand what in the world is even being discussed in many passages.

    The Message is an extreme on the other side of the ledger. It can't be said to be faithfulto the original in many places. Balance is key. That's why I prefer the versions that are on middle ground between formally equivalent and functionally equivalent.
     
  12. Van

    Van
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    The ESV, NASB, NKJV all claim to follow the word for word translation philosophy.

    Did anyone say an interlinear was not a word for word translation?

    Is a literal translation "unintelligible?" Nope

    If the modern translations will be updated in the future to correct places where they miss the mark, then they are flawed and need improvement now.
     
  13. Rippon

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    Perhaps you missed it. I addressed all of your concerns in post 8.
     
  14. Van

    Van
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    Perhaps I did not pay attention to your post. Or perhaps I showed where your views missed the mark. See post 12.
     
  15. Rippon

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    You're good for a laugh.
     
  16. Van

    Van
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    The ESV, NASB, NKJV all claim to follow the word for word translation philosophy.

    Did anyone say an interlinear was not a word for word translation?

    Is a literal translation "unintelligible?" Nope

    If the modern translations will be updated in the future to correct places where they miss the mark, then they are flawed and need improvement now.
     
  17. Rippon

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    Van is taking us on the magical mystery tour for the third time.
     
  18. Van

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    I disagree with the OP blog article, as indicated in post #16.
     
  19. Revmitchell

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    Let's see this is full of fallacies to include a red herring fallacy and question begging.
     

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