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Guide Understanding English Bible Translation: The Case for an Essentially Literal Approach

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Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Nov 10, Richard rated it it was amazing. This is a very interesting book which contrasts two methods of translating the Bible into English. One is the "Essentially literal translation philosophy" which Ryken supports. This works on the principle that translation should be transparent to the text--the translator should attempt to reproduce "the form or language of the original text, not just its meaning. Opposed to this is the approach termed "Dynamic Equivalence This is a very interesting book which contrasts two methods of translating the Bible into English.

Opposed to this is the approach termed "Dynamic Equivalence" which holds that "whenever something in the native-language text is foreign or unclear to a contemporary reader, the original text should be translated in terms of a dynamic equivalent. Therefore, the translation should be "transparent to the reader". An example of an essentially literal translation is this from the English Standard Version" "Let your garments be always white.

Let not oil be lacking on your head". Ryken is clearly writing this as a committed Christian as well as a scholar but I feel that any one who wishes to study the Bible would find this book both interesting and disturbing regardless of their actual belief system. After all the Bible is a collection of books and many--perhaps all--of these have great historical value apart from their religious significance. It would seem to me that one does not wish an English translation which dilutes or even changes the actual material therein.

Not in a rush, nor unilaterally

Of course, if the reader regards the Bible as a rule of faith then there is an additional reason to take Ryken very seriously indeed. Jan 27, Matthew rated it it was amazing Shelves: non-fiction. Do you know how you ended up with the Bible you use? Do you know the principles that guided the translators that determined how the original words written by the biblical authors would be presented?


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Are you comfortable with the removal of metaphors, ambiguity, and some poetic imagery from the Do you know how you ended up with the Bible you use? They are important. Ryken makes the attempt throughout the book to make the case that an essentially-literal translation the ESV, for example is the best translation because of its adherence to providing readers with the actual corresponding English text to what the original said.

While doing this, Ryken points out what he considers major flaws in dynamic equivalent translations paraphrases like The Message, and The New Living Translation. He demonstrates how these types of translations hinder modern audiences from seeing the fullness of the original texts and remove confidence that what readers have is an accurate representation of the original. I fall gladly into the essentially-literal camp.

I utilize an ESV for most of my biblical reading and studying. I also occasionally use an NLT for devotional reading or as a commentary. Whatever your current preference, however, this book would be useful. I think Ryken makes a strong case for essentially literal translations. Mar 22, B rated it liked it. It's always great to read a non-fiction book by someone who believes in high literary standards, it makes the whole reading process much more enjoyable. This was overall very helpful in thinking through English translation, he is clear that he doesn't speak to translations in languages that don't have one Wycliffe etc , but I thought some of his points might be helpful correctives to an overly dynamic mindset.

In the end, translation questions aside, this book has been very helpful in making me It's always great to read a non-fiction book by someone who believes in high literary standards, it makes the whole reading process much more enjoyable. In the end, translation questions aside, this book has been very helpful in making me think about thinking about the words the Bible uses, and unpacking them and digesting them mulling on the pictures the Bible paints for us and drawing out multiple implications from them.

Three take-aways that stood out: - the statement "what was the author trying to say" implies that he couldn't express himself, shows lack of respect for author, even if implicitly - concrete language is more powerful, vivid, real and the Bible is full of it, don't paraphrase it away into abstractness - biblical writers had the lexical ability to say things the way modern translators do, but didn't Jul 23, Greg Wilson rated it really liked it. Among the giveaways are several ipads, an ipod, a kindle and a trip to Hawaii!

To various degrees marketing influences us all. How healthy an impact it has had on modern society is not for this discussion. However, marketing does enter into our consideration of the history of Bible translation.

Translating Truth (Foreword by J.I. Packer): The Case for Essentially Literal Bible Translation

Marketing puts the emphasis on the consumer. It makes the audience supreme. It was this attention to the audience that led to the great divide between translation theories. For over years the KJV reigned unrivaled. The NIV quickly became a best seller. A sensitive feeling for style does not always accompany scholarship. Accordingly the Committee on Bible Translation submitted the developing version to a number of stylistic consultants.

(PDF) Translation, Rhetoric, and the "Literal" Word of God | Bryan Bibb - quirenboyfor.tk

Two of them read every book of both Old and New Testaments twice—once before and once after the last major revision—and made invaluable suggestions. Samples of the translation were tested for clarity and ease of reading by various kinds of people—young and old, highly educated and less well educated, ministers and laymen.

Are all translations created equal? Obviously, translators take different approaches to the text. Are all these approaches of equal value? If you choose to read just one, I suggest reading Understanding English Bible Translation, a more enjoyable, though not as in-depth, read. I believe he accomplishes what he set out to do. In Bible translation work, there are two extremes. One way Ryken sums up these two extremes is whether the goal of translation work is allegiance to the audience or the author.

Eugene Nida is the developer of the dynamic equivalence theory of Bible translation. Here the audience reigns supreme. In a more literal approach, the translators instead strive to find an English equivalent for the actual words of the author or should we say Author? This contrast between formal and dynamic equivalence is clearly demonstrated throughout the book.

Ryken builds a very strong argument for the formal approach, demonstrating that many dynamic equivalent translations are essentially paraphrases. Ryken often backs up his statements by referring directly to the prefaces of the dynamic equivalence translations, thus avoiding putting words in their mouths. He also repeatedly provides examples of dynamic equivalence verse translations and how they differ from the original words of the authors. Whether that is so when the original is intelligible and the change is only for warmth and chattiness is, however, more doubtful.

Example: the Hebrew of Ecclesiastes translates as, Let your garments be always white. Let not oil be lacking on your head ESV. The New Living Translation reads, Wear fine clothes, with a dash of cologne! Is this change justified by the gain it brings in understanding?

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Third, foreshortening is imposed —cultural foreshortening, that is. Colloquial paraphrase, however dynamically equivalent, cannot but preempt recognition of the cultural gap between the Bible worlds there are several: Egyptian, Palestinian before and after the Exile, Persian, Greco Roman are the main ones and our own world of today.


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This is very obvious in relation to the dash of cologne in the example we have just considered. Distancing that is, discerning the. This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue? Upload Sign In Join. Save For Later. Create a List.

Translating Truth Foreword by J. Summary Which translation do I choose? Read on the Scribd mobile app Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere. Packer - C. John Collins. All emphases in Scripture quotations have been added by the authors.

What Is The Most Accurate Bible Translation?

Includes bibliographical references and index. Soli Deo Gloria! Dennis, Ph. Start your free 30 days. Page 1 of 1.