Friday, March 18, 2011

News of the new NIV

Here.  Apparently, the new revision of the NIV (the one they promised not to do back in 1997 with "gender neutral language", yes) renders "I will make you fishers of men" in Matthew 4:19 as "I will send you out to fish for people."

Let's leave behind for a minute the debate over gender neutral language, and just ask; should someone whose sense of style is that stilted be allowed anywhere near Bible translation, or should they be locked up in a room with a fresh copy of Strunk & White, a volume of Shakespeare and a 1611 KJV for a few months as penance?

No, I don't seriously propose the incarceration of Douglas Moo and others involved, but I do plead that those who would be craftsmen working with God's Word understand the vital importance of style.

(translating pronouns and nouns accurately doesn't hurt, either, of course)

5 comments:

MainiacJoe said...

Yeah, style matters a lot. When I talk with KJV-only people, my standard line is, "I prefer to read the Bible in my own language." I don't talk gender-neutral day-to-day any more than I do in Shakepearean English. If I'm going to do serious study I'm going to the Greek text anyway (wish I still knew how for Hebrew) so I want something natural-sounding for English, please.

Bike Bubba said...

What's your preferred translation?

Count me envious of your language study, of course.

MainiacJoe said...

My preferred translations: NLT for OT, Gospels and Acts, classic NIV for epistles. I don't like NLT for the epistles because there is too much interpretation leavening the translation when it matters too much. In the narratives NLT feels more like a story and lets me get out of Bible student mode and actually engage with the text.

Hands-down least favorite translation? The Message. All those hyphenated made-up words--bleccch. Close second: Amplified. A list of all the words a original language word could be translated as is worse than just the translator picking one, because inevitably the layman reader just picks one based on who knows what, convenience I expect mostly.

Gino said...

my preference is the douey rheims, although its considered out of date for catholic liturgy.

but i just love the language of it. it is also a more precise translation than what the Church uses today.
the issue for the change: they wanted a more contemporary english, and DR is in a manner that people dont speak like anymore. The english language has been watered down from 100 yrs ago, which is why the precision is lacking.

compare to reading (idealogy aside) national review magazine,with its higher english, and then switching to newsweek

Palm boy said...

:hoists a copy of ESV and the NET: