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Featured Corrupted text?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions & Translations' started by Van, Nov 18, 2020.

  1. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    Here are some of the modern translations of Luke 1:37:

    NASB - “For nothing will be impossible with God.”
    NIV - For no word from God will ever fail.”
    ESV - For nothing will be impossible with God.”

    Or

    Nothing with every declaration of God will be impossible.

    The question is how did the text get altered to say nothing will be impossible with God, rather than nothing God declares will be impossible?

    Here are the modern translations that present the actual idea:
    NIV, NLT, BSB, ASV, D-RB, ERV, WNT, and WEB. All the rest present an alternate idea.

    If you take the meaning of "rhema" as "thing", then every declaration becomes "every thing."
     
    #1 Van, Nov 18, 2020
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2020
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  2. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

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    The Greek text is not corrupted. But the choice of how it is translated is at issue. And there are other texts with similar issues on choices of translation.
     
  3. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    The Greek word transliterated as "Rhema" refers to something declared, stated, verbalized, etc. If it is used to refer to something put forth by God, declaration works well, if something put forth by people, remark works well. In a few cases, "rhema" is used to refer to a matter under discussion or dispute, thus we find "charge," matter, and "fact." Therefore, it appears that every place "rhema" appears in the NT could be concordantly translated as "declaration(s), remark(s), and matter(s). This would eliminate the shoddy translation of "rhema" as thing(s).
     
  4. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    Did the translators have legit reasons for their wording choices?
     
  5. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    The Greek word transliterated as "Rhema" refers to something declared, stated, verbalized, etc. If it is used to refer to something put forth by God, declaration works well, if something put forth by people, remark works well. In a few cases, "rhema" is used to refer to a matter under discussion or dispute, thus we find "charge," matter, and "fact." Therefore, it appears that every place "rhema" appears in the NT could be concordantly translated as "declaration(s), remark(s), and matter(s). This would eliminate the shoddy translation of "rhema" as thing(s).
     
  6. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    Luke 2:15
    When the angels had gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds began saying to one another, "Let us go straight to Bethlehem then, and see this declaration that has happened which the Lord has made known to us."

    Luke 2:19
    But Mary treasured all these declarations, pondering them in her heart.

    Luke 2:51
    And He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and He continued in subjection to them; and His mother treasured all these declarations in her heart.

    Acts of the Apostles 5:32
    “And we are witnesses of these declarations and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey Him.”

    Acts of the Apostles10:37
    you yourselves know the declaration which took place throughout all Judea, starting from Galilee, after the baptism which John proclaimed.

    Acts of the Apostles 13:42
    As Paul and Barnabas were going out, the people kept begging that these matters might be spoken to them the next Sabbath.

    The above verses are places where "rhema" is translated as "thing(s) in some versions, but where a better, more accurate translation choice is available.
     
  7. kathleenmariekg

    kathleenmariekg Active Member

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    I have studied a few modern languages other than my native English, and the ancient languages of Greek, Hebrew, and Latin. Literal translation is not always the best translation, because each language works differently. I approach BIble word studies differently since I have had the opportunity to learn a modern language well enough to argue with someone in it. LOL.

    I had one friend that told me to never speak to him in his language again. I was saying things literally, but offensively and .... promiscuously, or so I am told. My teacher at college told us to use every opportunity to speak in the language. I told her that I had been asked not to. When I told her what I said, she said, "Maybe YOU shouldn't use every opportunity," and the whole class laughed.

    I do not intend to ever take the time to learn Greek and Hebrew well enough to be able to critique a translation. I can have an opinion about the underlying manuscripts used, but when it comes to translating: I am a baby at the mercy of my elders to care for me. Or not to care for me. Sometimes elders choose to neglect and even abuse their babies.

    I don't believe my calling is to learn the ancient languages to the level required to truly comprehend the Bible with context. I think I am meant to do something else.
     
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  8. McCree79

    McCree79 Well-Known Member
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    "Ρῆμα has two fundamental meanings: word and thing. It thus corresponds to Heb. dābār," (EDNT)

    "...after the Hebrew an event that can be spoken about, thing, object, matter, event" (BDAG).





    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
     
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  9. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    Rhema can be accurately translated as declaration, remark or matter. Both logos and rhema are used to translate "dabar" into Greek. Rhema does sometimes refer to the "thing" said or at issue, but "matter" conveys that usage.
     
  10. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    Bible study does not require becoming fluent in Greek, Aramaic or Hebrew. OTOH, to discern the intended message of scripture does require study, including the various ways scholars understand the text. We are not called to walk always in another person's furrow, simply accepting one person's or one group's view. We are to study to show ourselves approved, rightly dividing the word of truth. Word study can provide valuable insight into the intended meaning of scripture.

    Our modern English translations are wonderful, but to claim they cannot be improved so that God's intended message is better conveyed is without merit. See post #6 for illustration.
     
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  11. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    What are your qualifications then to be able to judge their textual/rendering decisions in translating?
     
  12. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    See Post #6.
    Did I use a rendering not used by translators?
    Will Y1 answer my question?
     
  13. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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  14. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    Did I use a rendering not used by translators?
    Is not a primary meaning of Rhema an utterance, a declaration?
    Is not Rhema translated as remark or matter?
     
  15. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    Welcome to the BB. I'm glad you are here. I hope you'll contribute to this particular forum. Good linguists are hard to find. :)

    As for literalness, well, there is literal and then there is literal. Everyone defines "literal" differently. I'm not sure what you mean about speaking in someone else's language literally. Were you using distasteful idioms, or "taboo" words, or something? (Been there, done that in Japanese. :confused:)

    I translate the NT literally, but I don't think I mean the same thing as you by that term.
     
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  16. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
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    That is one of the hardest thing to get when translation would think, striking the balance between being so literal that one misses what was being stated and meant!
     
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  17. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    On and on posters post about the inability to accurate translate literally, claiming the need for "liberal" translation. But when asked to cite a verse that needs to be rewritten, crickets.
     
  18. Van

    Van Well-Known Member
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    Returning to the OP, and Luke 1:37, did all those translations that said nothing is impossible with God, rather than nothing God declares is impossible with God, have a basis? What does Matthew 19:26 say, all or all things are possible with God. Is this a case of helping the verses to say the same thing? Actually the corruption hides the important point that we can rely of God's promises, because our all powerful God can make them happen. Anyhow, that is how it seems to me.
     
  19. kathleenmariekg

    kathleenmariekg Active Member

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    I just very literally said that I was hot. To mean that I am uncomfortable because the weather is hot, would require saying things in a way that makes no sense when translated literally back into English. One option is to use the verb "have" instead of the verb "be"

    In one language I have studied there are not separate words for "he" and "she". In another language, at the opposite end of the spectrum, even some verbs are different for males and females. Neither of these languages can be translated literally into English, or vice versa; it is impossible.

    The language without "he" and "she" also does not conjugate verbs. But lest you think that language is easier to learn, you need to learn the country's parables, because people use references to those parables as substitutes for basic nouns.

    In another language, I only have worked to improve badly translated books and articles into better English. The translators had a very tough time knowing when to use "the" or not. You cannot just literally translate "the" just because it was in the original. Or skip it, if it was skipped in the original.

    The word "the" is even used differently in different English speaking countries. In the UK and British territories, the phrase used is "In hospital", but in the USA, the same meaning is expressed as "In the hospital."

    Spend some time conversing with Australians and see how some English words have very different meanings in the USA.
     
  20. John of Japan

    John of Japan Well-Known Member
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    Okay, so what you are saying as I take it is that if you translated what you said literally into English, it would make no sense. I sense :))) that you are talking about idioms in that language rather than normal lexical units. Of course, English has "hot" as an idiom, and in certain contexts you would never call yourself hot, right?

    If by "literally" you mean the figures of speech of the language (especially the idioms), I agree. Very seldom do idioms translate literally from one language to another. However, the Hebrew idiom "kick against the goads" translated literally into Greek (Jesus to Paul), and makes sense in English also.

    Chinese also does not conjugate verbs, nor even have verb tenses. But I'm mystified (and intrigued) by your reference to parables. Do you mean short fictional stories to make a point as Jesus often told?

    Neither Japanese nor Chinese have an article. Many languages lack one. Koine (NT) Greek only has the definite article, and does some things with it which cannot be translated into English. For example. proper nouns in Greek have an article: "The Jesus."

    Been to Australia. Certainly different. I once helped translate an Australian's book into Japanese.
     
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