In the competitive marketplace of bibles, our variety of translations have given us a wide range of choices. Compared to other countries around the world today, governments and rulers control the printing, distribution, and sales of bibles. But in our free world of the free market, our freedoms and liberties have enabled us to further advance the English translations of our bibles, which have produced bountiful benefits. Just look at all the bible translations we have today. From an Old World perspective, some people may look at the wide array of bible translations out there on the market and say: “The Church has no unity, they can’t agree on anything,” “Why can’t everyone agree on just one bible?” However, I would say that this appearance of disarray is great thing because this means that there is no monopoly on the bible. Why would we even want one translation? Others might also say: “Why spend the energy on translating so many versions? Why don’t they spend their energy doing something else?” Our numerous translations have given us some tangible advantages: 1) more accurate, clear, and easier-to-understand translations; 2) textual, linguistic and stylistic improvements; 3) increasingly greater knowledge of the original languages; 4) greater choices of bible translations. When a translation team produces a bible that is of higher quality, it will draw public attention from the people. This is why we bloggers offer either negative or constructive/positive critique. Criticism given and received in a positive and constructive manner can lead to vast improvements in future editions. The newest translations like the TNIV, ESV, NLT, or HCSB have seen their share of criticism but they will likely become improved in their future editions. But bible translations like the Living Bible and the New English Bible have been almost been forgotten and never mentioned again. The Message Bible may also become a forgotten-about version in the near-distant future. It’s a poor translation or paraphrase, and a prime example of how not to translate the bible.
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Reflections on how Theology, Faith & the Scriptures intersect Life & Society in our time. View all posts by libertyculture