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Difflugia
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:40 am  Translation vs. Interpretation Reply with quote

When choosing a translation, what kinds of interpretations by the translators are legitimate and what aren't?

Aside from acknowledged paraphrases, most Bible translations present themselves as being some combination of accurate and readable. What kinds of decisions sacrifice accuracy beyond what is reasonable? When is it reasonable for a translator to interpret potentially confusing ambiguity?
MPG Recipient Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 21: Fri Nov 08, 2019 4:18 pm
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Difflugia wrote:
Assuming different vowels can sometimes change the meaning of the text. An example of this that affected the New Testament is Genesis 47:31.


It is also evident in Gen 2:25 And the man and his wife were both NAKED, and they were not ashamed. and 3:1 Now the serpent was more CRAFTY than any beast of the field that the LORD God had made. Without the vowel pointing of the Masoretes, naked and crafty are the same word. Adam and Eve could be crafty and the serpent naked! The word used is `rm, arm even though a perfectly unambiguous word for naked was available, Gen 9:22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father’s nakedness and told his two brothers outside...6172 of Strong's Concordance: ervah: nakedness

It could imply that Adam and Eve were already sinful in the garden before they ate but were NOT ashamed because they were not yet convicted for that sin, which is the reason for giving a law, Romans 3:20... For the Law merely brings awareness of sin. and 1 Timothy 1:8-10 Now we know that the law is good, if one uses it lawfully, understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient...implying that they were disobedient but not ashamed.

We know that being naked is oft used as a metaphor for sinfulness in the bible but is rejected here because the doctrine of our creation on earth forces the eisegesis of their being created pure and innocent rather than following what is plainly written which would mean they had already sinned by thier free will before their life on earth.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 22: Fri Nov 08, 2019 4:23 pm
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Eloi wrote:

One word can have LITERALLY two or more meanings, like "bank" in English.

I have other things to do now. Have a good day.


One word can have LITERALLY two or more meanings, like "bank" in English.
Do you think that anyone with more than a third grade education doesn't understand that concept?
Do you think that anyone who wrote the following doesn't understand that concept?
"You're insisting on substituting a figurative translation for the literal translation even though there is nothing in the immediate context that calls for it."

I have other things to do now. Have a good day.
If and when you come back, hopefully you'll either bring something of substance OR admit that you have nothing more than conviction in your "'biases and preconceived ideas".

You have a good day too.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 23: Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:27 pm
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Christians should take this very seriously. In that their religion is built on a supposed virgin birth which was, according to Mathew foretold by the prophet Isaiah.

Christian bibles read:
Behold a virgin will bare a son....

Original Hebrew:
Behold a young woman IS WITH child

THIS WOMAN WAS ALREADY PREGNANT WITH THAT CHILD . ITS NOT ABOUT A CHILD NAMED JESUS BORN 700 YEARS LATER.

Christians talk about truth. They want they say. They may say they want accurate translations. They dont. Not really. With this passage and others like it they want the lie. Because if they must walk in the light of truth Christianity fails and falls

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 24: Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:16 pm
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Avoice wrote:

Christians should take this very seriously. In that their religion is built on a supposed virgin birth which was, according to Mathew foretold by the prophet Isaiah.

Christian bibles read:
Behold a virgin will bare a son....

Original Hebrew:
Behold a young woman IS WITH child

THIS WOMAN WAS ALREADY PREGNANT WITH THAT CHILD . ITS NOT ABOUT A CHILD NAMED JESUS BORN 700 YEARS LATER.

Christians talk about truth. They want they say. They may say they want accurate translations. They dont. Not really. With this passage and others like it they want the lie. Because if they must walk in the light of truth Christianity fails and falls


You are speaking of course of the word almah. Which means young woman. There was no scriptural precedent saying the messiah had to be born of a virgin.

This means "Matthew" was probably a Greek or Roman or gentile, who had poor knowledge of Hebrew. Matthew, the book, was most likely written from Mark and the Sayings of Yeshua Christ plus the mysterious Q text. Most scholars(if that means a thing) believe that the beatitudes(sermon on the mount) never happened altogether but was assembled in one speach by whoever wrote this book.

All that said, I agree modern Christianity fails as Jesus, in English, Joshua, was a torah observant Jew. He called all back to pure Torah without the traditions of man which negated God's law. He even said so, "I come only to the lost sheep of Israel"(the 10 of the former northern kingdom). ONLY.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 25: Sat Nov 09, 2019 2:43 am
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brianbbs67 wrote:

This means "Matthew" was probably a Greek or Roman or gentile, who had poor knowledge of Hebrew.



Could you provide supporting evidence for this claim?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 26: Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:09 am
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Re: Translation vs. Interpretation

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[Replying to post 1 by Difflugia]

I find this topic quite interesting. It's so interesting, that earlier this year I started writing my own translation of the Bible.

Of course, the ideal way to read the Bible is in the original languages. Anything else is just an approximation. It's often compared to watching TV in color or black and white. The true colors of the Bible will only come out when reading in the original.

Now, as pointed out already, even if you can read in the original languages, there are still problems. I think it's comparable to seeing something on the TV and live. You see the real thing only when you can be there in person. So, in a sense, even being able to read the critical text is an approximation.

Though some might think this is a problem, I don't view it as a big deal. What it does mean is that whatever Bible we read, we still need to exercise our brain juices. We need to dive deeper and wrestle to understand the intended meaning. This is not to say the Bible is so obscure that we can't understand it. But, it is like all great literature where we can both read at a simplistic level or also at a profound deep level.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 27: Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:13 pm
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brianbbs67 wrote:
This means "Matthew" was probably a Greek or Roman or gentile, who had poor knowledge of Hebrew.

Matthew's weird. He seems to have known the Septuagint to the point of basing some of his theology on it, but also used a number of Aramaic turns of phrase and ways of writing that came through in his Greek. At the same time, Matthew also made changes to Mark, often improving on Mark's Greek. I think Matthew was a Greek-speaking, diaspora Jew that used at least one non-Mark source that was a Greek translation of an Aramaic original (though I didn't come up with that on my own and don't remember who it is that I ageee with Very Happy).

otseng wrote:
I find this topic quite interesting. It's so interesting, that earlier this year I started writing my own translation of the Bible.

Good luck! I tried doing that some years ago when I travelled for work a lot and spent quite a bit of pre-internet time in hotels. I had a Hebrew textbook, a Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia and a reprint of the nineteenth-century Analytical Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon. I'd crack the BHS to the middle of a minor prophet or something else that I hadn't read recently or often. After translating a chapter or two, I'd check against my NIV to see how close I got.

otseng wrote:
Of course, the ideal way to read the Bible is in the original languages. Anything else is just an approximation. It's often compared to watching TV in color or black and white. The true colors of the Bible will only come out when reading in the original.

You know, I used to think that, but I've come to the realization that translators know the languages much better than I do. I read German well enough to not need a dictionary for most non-academic stuff, but I still get more out of a competent English translation than from the original. I still find reading the Bible in Greek and Hebrew to be fulfilling in a way that I would call devotional if I was still a Christian and I get a rather smug self-satisfaction when I think I notice something a translator misinterpreted, but in the end, I still read the ESV even when I'm looking for interesting things that I'd previously missed.

On the other hand, I do still occasionally notice something in my original language, "devotional" reading that I'd previously missed. It was only recently that I noticed that at Jesus' baptism when the Spirit descends to Jesus, Mark uses a different preposition (εἰς) than Matthew and Luke (ἐπ’). It turns out that the meanings of the two words overlap, but aren't identical. Both can be translated as "on" or "upon," but εἰς can also mean "toward" or "into." Did Matthew's different preposition clarify Mark's meaning or change it? Google found that there has been a great deal of discussion about exactly that. Since most English translations use "upon" for both, though, I would never have known about it if I couldn't notice the difference in the Greek.

otseng wrote:
Now, as pointed out already, even if you can read in the original languages, there are still problems. I think it's comparable to seeing something on the TV and live. You see the real thing only when you can be there in person. So, in a sense, even being able to read the critical text is an approximation.

Though some might think this is a problem, I don't view it as a big deal. What it does mean is that whatever Bible we read, we still need to exercise our brain juices. We need to dive deeper and wrestle to understand the intended meaning. This is not to say the Bible is so obscure that we can't understand it. But, it is like all great literature where we can both read at a simplistic level or also at a profound deep level.

I agree.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 28: Sun Nov 10, 2019 6:47 am
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Difflugia wrote:

You know, I used to think that, but I've come to the realization that translators know the languages much better than I do.

No doubt about it. It would be an understatement to say the translators know the languages better than me. I'm not discounting reading translations either. 95% of the time, I'm reading the Bible in English.

But, the problem is even if the translators know the exact meaning of the Hebrew and Greek, they are limited by translation techniques and the English language. Sometimes, there are no comparable English words that they can translate to. Or if there is an English word, it is only an approximation of what it truly means. Or sometimes it requires a phrase or sentence to translate a word, but they are not allowed to do that in their translation, esp in formal equivalence translations. The goal of my translation is to attempt to overcome both of these constraints of translation technique and English language limitations.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 29: Sun Nov 10, 2019 7:45 am
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WeSee wrote:

Eloi wrote:

One word can have LITERALLY two or more meanings, like "bank" in English.

I have other things to do now. Have a good day.


One word can have LITERALLY two or more meanings, like "bank" in English.
Do you think that anyone with more than a third grade education doesn't understand that concept?
Do you think that anyone who wrote the following doesn't understand that concept?
"You're insisting on substituting a figurative translation for the literal translation even though there is nothing in the immediate context that calls for it."

I have other things to do now. Have a good day.
If and when you come back, hopefully you'll either bring something of substance OR admit that you have nothing more than conviction in your "'biases and preconceived ideas".

You have a good day too.




Moderator Comment

It's sometimes hard to find the right words, WeSee, when we want to stress a point but your tone borders on incivility. Best keep to discussing the post.

Please review the Rules.


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Moderator comments do not count as a strike against any posters. They only serve as an acknowledgment that a post report has been received, but has not been judged to warrant a moderator warning against a particular poster. Any challenges or replies to moderator postings should be made via Private Message to avoid derailing topics.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 30: Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:10 am
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Re: Translation vs. Interpretation

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[Replying to post 26 by otseng]

It should be noted as well, (if it hasn't already) that even the originals, the autographs are based on oral tradition. So original intent may be even more obscure. So it seems that instead of simply studying the original languages, (or in addition to) one should consider cultural, religious and historical context, as the HJ scholars do. In that regard, it is extremely doubtful, for example, that the historical Jesus ever claimed to be "God" or "God the Son", second person of the Trinity. Jews back then, (like nowadays), had no provision for an incarnate YHVH in their religion. And no nuance of interpretation or translation can really change that.

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