ESV & Logos

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Posts 439
Mark Stevens | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 4:13 AM

If anyone is interested here is a fairly harsh but interesting article on the ESV by Mark Strauss (of the TNIV committee). He and Mounce have had quite a discussion about the ESV and the TNIV over the past few years.

I find some of his examples to be picky (and he kind of admits this) and other things he points out are quite concerning HOWEVER, it would be interesting to see the same kind of the critique of exegetical concerns relating to the TNIV.

I still contend the NRSV is the premier literal/word for word translation. As uncomfortable as it may make some folks because it is the product of liberal scholarship I would argue that has led to a better overall translation...just my thoughts.

http://betterbibles.com/2008/11/21/why-the-english-standard-version-esv-should-not-become-the-standard-english-version-by-mark-strauss/

Posts 198
Bryan Brodess | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 4:45 AM

Hey mark. That helps,, Alot of "oops" there.

 

Then again.. even the NRSV has "oops"

NKJV : 1 John 3:6
Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him.

NRSV 1 john 3: 6
No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him.

 

Since we all continue to sin, even after we are saved, I guess none of us Know Christ.. or have ever seen him.

 

Thus my point. All versions have errors.. which is why I truely believe we have so many different beliefs,,

 

it would be easy for someone to read the above passages in the NKJ or NRS and believe that once a person is saved he could never sin again.. The esv says

No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him.

which is a better translation. But still could be confused and misinterpreted by many to mean if you are saved you could in no way possible sin again,, because of you do, you can't know God, thus can't be saved,, which is not what John was trying to say..

Posts 709
Russ Quinn | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 7:37 AM

MarkStevens:

it would be interesting to see the same kind of the critique of exegetical concerns relating to the TNIV.

Mark,

Here is a link to the transcript of a live debate between Mark Strauss and Wayne Grudem on the particulars of the TNIV.

http://www.salemthesoldier.us/TNIV_concordia_debate.html

And here is a link to an article by Grudem highlighting some of his concerns.

http://www.cbmw.org/Journal/Vol-7-No-2/A-Brief-Summary-of-Concerns-About-the-TNIV

One of the most complete critical reviews of gender neutral translations in general is the book The Gender Neutral Bible Controversy by Wayne Grudem and Vern Poythress. A pdf is available as a free download here:

http://www.cbmw.org/Online-Books/The-Gender-Neutral-Bible-Controversy/The-Gender-Neutral-Bible-Controversy

It is important to remember that there are good, godly, careful scholars who love God, His Word, and people on both sides of this debate.

It is also important to remember that every translation has strengths and weaknesses but the strengths of all of them outweigh the weaknesses of any of them because they all clearly teach that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures (1 Cor 15:3-4).

Posts 2872
Mike Childs | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 8:34 AM

I agree with you.  It is unfair to regard the NIV and NLT as the same style translation.

"In all cases, the Church is to be judged by the Scripture, not the Scripture by the Church," John Wesley

Posts 31318
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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 12:22 PM

Bryan Brodess:
All versions have errors.. which is why I truely believe we have so many different beliefs

I think it is more fair to say "all versions make some choices that I don't agree with". And I would "blame" the multiplicity of beliefs on individuals accepting the teachings of ... (parent, Sunday School teacher, pastor, friend, spouse ...) without recognition that they have uncritically accepted the teaching authority of person.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 709
Russ Quinn | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 12:26 PM

MJ. Smith:

Russ Quinn:
The NRSV was theologically controversial for reasons beyond gender inclusiveness. Most famously it replaced "virgin" with "young woman" in Isaiah 7:14.

I keep getting lost in some of these discussions - I did not know the relationship between the ESV and the RSV - a tidbit worth knowing. But the NRSV re: Isaiah confuses me. As a Catholic I was taught that the Hebrew read "young woman" and the LXX read "virgin" ... anyone out there who can really read Hebrew and Greek well enough to explain this to me? Thanks.

Michael Heiser just posted a blog entry that explains some of the issues related to this question.

http://michaelsheiser.com/TheNakedBible/2009/12/the-almah-of-isaiah-714/

Posts 709
Russ Quinn | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 12:32 PM

Rosie Perera:

one of my professors, J.I. Packer

Rosie,

What a privilege to have the opportunity to study with Dr. Packer!

I would have to rank his Knowing God as one of the most important books for my theological formation written by a living author.

I treasure my physical copy that he autographed when I was a student at Beeson Divinity School a number of years ago. 

Posts 31318
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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 1:00 PM

Russ Quinn:

Michael Heiser just posted a blog entry that explains some of the issues related to this question.

http://michaelsheiser.com/TheNakedBible/2009/12/the-almah-of-isaiah-714/

Thankyou. This is a good article. I've run into this blog before and thought highly of it, but I don't look at it regularly.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 2816
Forum MVP
Ted Hans | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 1:01 PM

Russ Quinn:

Here is a link to the transcript of a live debate between Mark Strauss and Wayne Grudem on the particulars of the TNIV.

http://www.salemthesoldier.us/TNIV_concordia_debate.html

And here is a link to an article by Grudem highlighting some of his concerns.

http://www.cbmw.org/Journal/Vol-7-No-2/A-Brief-Summary-of-Concerns-About-the-TNIV

One of the most complete critical reviews of gender neutral translations in general is the book The Gender Neutral Bible Controversy by Wayne Grudem and Vern Poythress. A pdf is available as a free download here:

http://www.cbmw.org/Online-Books/The-Gender-Neutral-Bible-Controversy/The-Gender-Neutral-Bible-Controversy

It is important to remember that there are good, godly, careful scholars who love God, His Word, and people on both sides of this debate.

It is also important to remember that every translation has strengths and weaknesses but the strengths of all of them outweigh the weaknesses of any of them because they all clearly teach that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures (1 Cor 15:3-4).

Thanks for your contribution to the discussion and the links. I am with Grudem on this one.

Every blessings.

Ted

 

Dell, studio XPS 7100, Ram 8GB, 64 - bit Operating System, AMD Phenom(mt) IIX6 1055T Processor 2.80 GHZ

Posts 656
Jeremy | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 1:05 PM

I would add that complemetarians like Douglas Moo (the head of the TNIV translation committee) and D.A. Carson stand by the translation of the TNIV. The lines between those who are complementarian and favor the ESV and egalitarian and favor the TNIV are not hard lines.

Posts 709
Russ Quinn | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 1:19 PM

Damian McGrath:

But, Russ, my question was directly related to skewed results when searching for the word "brother" - not to an issue related to accuracy of translation or gender inclusiveness.

Surely, all a search on an English bible for the word "brother" produces is how many times the translation features the word "brother". It does not tell us any more. And, I don't know why anyone would want to know how many times a translation uses the word "brother" or "bread" or "house" or whatever.

Damian,

I just noticed I failed to respond to you on this. I'm sorry I got lost in the heat of the earlier exchange.

The value of searching a more literal translation in L4 is not in finding out the number of occurrences as much as in finding the verses where the underlying Greek words occur. A search for "brother" in the ESV will return all the occurrences of adelphos and a search for "believer" will return all the occurrences of some form of pisteuo. A search for "brother" in the NRSV will lack some occurrences of adelphos and a search for "believer" will include some occurrences of adelphos in addition to occurrences of pisteuo.

All I really mean to be emphasizing is that these differences make the ESV a different tool than the NRSV even though both are considered "literal" translations. Whether or not one prefers either translation over the other is a subjective decision, but that the search results will be different is an objective observation.

The merits of this type of search I leave to another discussion although I agree that there are advantages and disadvantages that could be noted.

Posts 19139
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 2:21 PM

Russ Quinn:

Rosie Perera:

one of my professors, J.I. Packer

What a privilege to have the opportunity to study with Dr. Packer!

I would have to rank his Knowing God as one of the most important books for my theological formation written by a living author.

Ditto for me. Dr. Packer is a real gem! In all the debates where Christians take sides, he is a mediating and reconciling voice. Even when he disagrees strongly with a fellow believer on a particular theological issue, he is such a humble man and a gentle spirit that he does what few others of his stature could do and lends his support to the person in love. He is one of the few great Christian leaders of the 20th (and 21st) century who have been able to penetrate walls of division and bring healing between warring parties. He is still teaching at Regent College at 83! What a guy. I don't agree with him on all his theological viewpoints, but I certainly respect him and his integrity in how he holds them and communicates them to others.

Posts 421
Scott S | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 2:56 PM

Rosie Perera:
Ditto for me. Dr. Packer is a real gem! In all the debates where Christians take sides, he is a mediating and reconciling voice. Even when he disagrees strongly with a fellow believer on a particular theological issue, he is such a humble man and a gentle spirit that he does what few others of his stature could do and lends his support to the person in love. He is one of the few great Christian leaders of the 20th (and 21st) century who have been able to penetrate walls of division and bring healing between warring parties.

Packer fans may find interesting that his reputation is recognized in the secular world.  See Time Magazine blurb http://www.time.com/time/covers/1101050207/photoessay/21.html

Regards,

Scott

From Wisconsin, a Packer fan

Posts 491
R. Mansfield | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 8:44 PM

Ted Hans:

I am with Grudem on this one.

Hmmm...I'll stick with Strauss. 

And we'll have to all get along, regardless Smile

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Posts 709
Russ Quinn | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 9:32 PM

R. Mansfield:

Hmmm...I'll stick with Strauss. 

And we'll have to all get along, regardless Smile

Really? You think his criticisms of the ESV in the aforementioned article are helpful?

Posts 491
R. Mansfield | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 9:54 PM

Well, really, I have no desire to get involved in a battle of translations. The TNIV is really a dead issue at this point. We'll have to wait for the NIV 2011 to advance any of this debate further. And although I would actually hope for no debate at all, I fear none of this is over yet.

Although I have a number of significant problems with the ESV (and I've mentioned some in the past on my blog) at the same time, I've tried to be generous because I know that it is a primary vehicle for God's voice for many people, including many people whom I greatly respect. 

I had access to Mark's article before he presented it at ETS last year, and I was in the audience when he presented it as well. I was also in the audience when Mounce offered his rejoinder last month. Although Mounce offered brotherly criticism of both Grudem and Strauss, I feel that he ultimately gave Grudem a free pass considering Grudem wrote an entire book against the TNIV that has some of the most ridiculous criticisms I've ever read against a translation of the Bible, including criticisms that create a double standard when compared with the ESV. 

So, were Strauss' criticisms helpful? I think he brought a number of issues to light that needed attention. But if it caused offense, I can't see how it even begins to compare to Grudem's entire book against the TNIV. 

For what it's worth, I've been teaching from the HCSB again over the last few months. It, like the TNIV, is a good median translation. Those are the kinds of translations I like to use publicly. I wish the HCSB was a bit more gender accurate in some places, but I've found I can reasonably correct it on the fly. 

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Posts 439
Mark Stevens | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Dec 15 2009 10:44 PM

MarkStevens:
still cant remove it in the exegetical guide

Okay, back to my original post. When I have NA27 prioritised above NRSV or ESV for that matter it uses NA27 as the Greek text in the EG however, it automatically has the ESV as the english translation even when it is prioritised lower.

What I did discover is that the NRSV rev int. in the EG is not the same as the old rev int. It follows the NA27, therefore the problem is pretty much solved...

 

For the rest of you who are now embroiled in a translation war, I am truly sorry. Cool

Posts 709
Russ Quinn | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 16 2009 10:13 AM

R. Mansfield:

Well, really, I have no desire to get involved in a battle of translations. 

No desire for battle or translation war here.

Actually my surprise at your endorsement of Strauss is that I have found your comments in the past in this debate to be more measured and helpful than his.

I'm sure he is a great guy. I don't know him and I haven't followed the back and forth as close as you. My experience in the debate has really been limited to the specific issue of the translation of Psalm 8 in Hebrews 2. And that was a number of years ago. But what I have noticed is that the intensity of the debate has caused normally careful scholars on both sides like Bloomberg, Carson, and Grudem to be occasionally sloppy in their critiques and defense of their various positions.

Of course, as my own comments have demonstrated in this thread, we are all susceptible to overstatement at times in these matters. As a result I would have a difficult time choosing sides regarding either a particular translation or a particular scholar who has contributed to the discussion.

 

Posts 491
R. Mansfield | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 16 2009 10:41 AM

Mark is a great guy. I was able to spend about 30 minutes or so privately talking with him at SBL last month, and we've corresponded via email a number of times in the past two or three years. Perspective colors everything, but I still feel he's been FAR more measured in the debate than some of the opposing rhetoric I've seen; but others may disagree, of course. 

You mentioned Psalm 8/Hebrews 2. Way back in 2006 when I first reviewed the TNIV on my blog, I was critical of a similar passage: Psalm 34:20/John 19:36. While I understand what the translators were trying to do, I'm conservative enough to feel that the texts traditionally associated with messianic prophecies should be left alone. I took a lot of flack about that from other TNIV supporters over this, but I still stand by that conviction. But that conviction wasn't enough to make me reject the TNIV. The positive in the translation far outweighed the negative to me. 

And as I mentioned in an early comment above in regard to the HCSB, I reserve the right to "correct" on the fly when necessary. If I've spent enough time in the original languages in regard to a passage, I feel I've earned the right to do this.

Although I have no inside track on the NIV 2011 (even Mark told me that he couldn't yet say at this point what the final product would look like), I did predict that many of these kinds of texts with Messianic references will end up looking more like the NIV than the TNIV (see the end of point #2 on my prediction post). 

I would hope that the ESV-TNIV war will now die down and even go away, but I'm not holding my breath. Nevertheless, Bill Mounce is an interesting addition to the NIV Committee on Bible Translation. Having been the NT chair for the ESV committee, he has the opportunity to be a bridge (hopefully) between the two "camps."

Mounce was one of the original signers of the "Statement of Concern" against the TNIV, but many may not realize that he later had his name removed from it. At ETS, he commented that he had given copies of the TNIV to children at his church during Vacation Bible School. While I think the TNIV can (could have been?) used by far more than children, this use was certainly a far cry from his original "concern" about the translation. 

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Posts 439
Mark Stevens | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Dec 16 2009 1:40 PM

Russ Quinn:

No desire for battle or translation war here.

Actually my surprise at your endorsement of Strauss is that I have found your comments in the past in this debate to be more measured and helpful than his.

For a couple of guys who have no desire to get into a battle of translations you have certainly filled up the thread! Wink

 

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