Difference between revisions of "Talk:Bible Retranslation Project"

From Conservapedia
Jump to: navigation, search
("Cast Lots": More Dice)
("Cast Lots": reply)
Line 298: Line 298:
::Interesting interpretation. However for me at least (and perhaps for others) simply saying "gambling" raises the question of how did they gamble, in what way did they gamble? For me at least the "dice" translation allows a person to infer that they were gambling via dice (it is well known Romans had dice). More interesting is that other versions of The Bible have translated Matthew 27:35 as "After they had crucified HIM, they determined who would get his clothes by throwing dice for them" ISV and GOD'S WORD. --[[User:IScott|IScott]] 21:11, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
::Interesting interpretation. However for me at least (and perhaps for others) simply saying "gambling" raises the question of how did they gamble, in what way did they gamble? For me at least the "dice" translation allows a person to infer that they were gambling via dice (it is well known Romans had dice). More interesting is that other versions of The Bible have translated Matthew 27:35 as "After they had crucified HIM, they determined who would get his clothes by throwing dice for them" ISV and GOD'S WORD. --[[User:IScott|IScott]] 21:11, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
:::"casting lots" is the phrase used by NIV and Holman, the two most respected recent translations.  "Lots" is different from "dice", and given the distinction why not resolve it by using "gambled"?--[[User:Aschlafly|Andy Schlafly]] 22:14, 18 July 2009 (EDT)

Revision as of 02:14, July 19, 2009


I admit that I am not as great a linguist, translator and biblical scholar as Andy is, so pardon my question, but when did "word" not mean "a short expression of a single concept, which can include a vulgarity or a falsehood"? From what I see, the issue at hand seems to be rather how you actually translate "Logos" (a.k.a. "the Word", as opposed to "a word"). If you just want to directly translate it to "Truth", that would sound plausible to me, but redefining "word" to really mean "Truth" is somewhat pushing it in my eyes.

But like I said in the beginning, this isn't exactly my special field of study, so I'm open for any source Andy or somebody else can show me to understand things better. --AlanS 15:04, 25 December 2008 (EST)

AlanS, the more you rely on silly sarcasm, the less likely you will be insightful. In response to your comment, the primary meaning of "word" in English at the time of its incorporation in translating John 1:1 was a "command" or series of speech sounds, not false or vulgar. Today its primary meaning in English is quite different from about 400 years ago, as in "he had a word with so-and-so" or "password".--aschlafly 17:07, 25 December 2008 (EST)
Aschlafly, the less you rely on belittling and dismissing other people and posts ("the more you rely on silly sarcasm, the less likely you will be insightful", "I'm not interested in wasting my time with someone suffering from evolution syndrome"), the more respect people will give you. I assume/hope you don't treat your students like this, so why your fellow editors? I came to this talk page to learn, not to get the wagging finger treatment from you. And I assumed that you, somebody who is going to retranslate the Word Of God, have some experience as a linguist, translator and biblical scholar - no sarcasm intended. Because otherwise, I'd seriously ask what you were thinking when you started this. No offense, but this is a task more talented people than you and I have to study years for, so the thought of somebody with no experience or training in this field translating the Bible makes me frown to say the least.
More on-topic, I find your explanation interesting, but I would welcome a source for your claim because I couldn't find any. I'm not here to doubt the you, but I want to verify it. Also, what is your explanation for the newer translations not having updated that word? --AlanS 08:27, 26 December 2008 (EST)
AlanS, don't rant on these pages. Contribute, or please leave.--aschlafly 08:39, 26 December 2008 (EST)

"Word" sounds better in my opinion. Also, which editions are you using as a source for your translating, the original Hebrew and Greek, or one of the many English versions? And how far do you plan on taking this? I personally find it superfluous, but since linguistically I am a prescriptionist, that may just be me.ENorman 22:49, 25 December 2008 (EST)

I don't think "Word" means the same to people anymore as it did a generation ago. As to your second sentence, all early manuscripts were in Greek, and the term used was "logos" as stated.
I think the table is merely scratching the surface. The English language is devolving quickly, and retranslation of many key terms is worth considering. This exercise itself is illuminating. I'm confident we've all learned something new just from reading the first three examples.--aschlafly 22:53, 25 December 2008 (EST)
But evolution isn't real, right? :)
Joking aside, I'll help you with my basic knowledge of linguistics if you honestly want it. Just want to avoid this degenerating into an exercise in Newspeak or playing with deeper meanings. ENorman 22:58, 25 December 2008 (EST)
Wow, that's bizarre: where did your comment on evolution come from? No, I'm not interested in wasting my time with someone suffering from evolution syndrome. If you have an open mind, then I do welcome your efforts; if not, then maybe Wikipedia is a better place for you.--aschlafly 23:05, 25 December 2008 (EST)


ASchlafly: The word "Logos" does not translate to truth. It is generally translated to "word, thought, principle, or speech." Good luck on rewriting the Bible! MReynolds 22:20, 25 December 2008 (EST)

Alternative Procedure

This project is quite ambitious, and generally, I'd say it is out of the reach of the high-school pupils you're addressing. Wouldn't it be more effective to write a commentary to the gold standard of Biblical translations, i.e., KJB, to explain its verses to the contemporary audience? The language of the KJB is so vigorous that any alteration just weakens it. Of course, I'm coming from a German perspective: It took a genius like Martin Luther to come up with a usable German translation for the Bible. He introduced numerous metaphors and proverbs into the German language which still live on. Granted, there are more modern translation - esp. the Einheitsübersetzung of the EKD (Protestant churches in Germany) and the German Conference of Catholic Bishops. But though it's more exact historically, it lacks the power of Luther's language. Another thought: The Bible in its old translations has inspired or at least influenced countless works of literature. This influence is more easily spotted using the traditional translations. BRichtigen 08:59, 26 December 2008 (EST)

BRichtigen, with all due respect, the greatest works throughout history have been produced by teenagers like my students. Moreover, many of my students likely have a better command of history and linguistics than you do. Try your hand at American_History_Midterm_Exam_-_Boys and see how you stack up.
Your put-down aside, your approach does not address the problem of how culture changes the meaning of modern terms used by all translations of the Bible. An accurate translation using terms "x, y, and z" becomes inaccurate when culture modifies the meaning of "x, y, and z" to listeners.--aschlafly 09:27, 26 December 2008 (EST)
"the greatest works throughout history have been produced by teenagers like my students" A closer examination of the greatest work of history (perhaps we could agree on a list of the TOP 100) will show that the statement is just wrong. In fact, the few cases of teenagers who excelled in their fields are so well known as they were rare. (There is only one Mozart...)
I'm sure that your students have a better command of American history than I do. And they should speak better English than I do. I don't know about their German, Latin, Dutch or French...
An accurate translation using terms "x, y, and z" becomes inaccurate when culture modifies the meaning of "x, y, and z" to listeners. A reasonable thing would be to explain the meaning of x, y, and z to the listeners as used in the translations.
The Greek originals were in use for a couple of centuries while Ancient Greek was still a living language. Somehow, no one so the necessity to rewrite the originals...
BRichtigen 09:41, 26 December 2008 (EST)
BRichtigen, you're welcome to start a list of the greatest works in history, but I'm confident most will be accomplished by people who were teenagers. Your point about x, y, z, is not clear; the retranslation is precisely designed to explain x, y, z in a more accurate way as culture changes language. Ancient Greek, which I have studied (have you?) was not as vulnerable to cultural changes to language as today's society is.--aschlafly 10:30, 26 December 2008 (EST)
I looked into the claim most of the greatest works in history were accomplished by people who were teenagers, and the more I research, the more absurd it becomes.
Take for instance mathematics, one of the fields were prodigies are said to be found quite often. Granted, there are accomplishments by young men (Abel, Galois), and Gauss constructed the regular heptadekagon age 18. But these examples are few, and most times, the works of the teenage mathematician will be overshadowed by the works of the matured one - if he is allowed to life long enough.
Another area: Music. Mozart is the child prodigy par excellence, and others tried to imitate his success (Beethoven's father lied about the age of his son...). But there are only few works of teenagers worth listening to...
Which accomplishments in history are you thinking about?
And my Greek is negligible, I'm afraid... --BRichtigen 11:07, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Addendum: Your class voted on the most influential person in American history. None of the top four made his most important attributions to American history as a teenager... BRichtigen 11:39, 26 December 2008 (EST)
This paper examines the age at which Nobel-winning economists published their important works, and also the ages at which they began their Nobel-related research. Table 1 lists the age at which they began their Nobel work; the youngest was 21, and the average was 29.3. They also briefly examine other fields: the mean "beginning age" for Nobel-winning physicists was 33.6, for chemists it was 31.6, and for physiology/medicine it was 33.2. Note that these are the ages when they began the work, not when the Nobel prize was awarded, as it often takes a number of years for the true importance of significant work to be recognised. BrianW 11:57, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Well, fine, but few or none of those examples would rank as the greatest "works" in history. And as to BRichtigen's comment above, the issue of the "most influential person" is obviously very different from the issue of the "greatest works."--aschlafly 12:22, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Could you give a few examples of the greatest works in history, preferably done by teenagers? Thanks, BRichtigen 15:58, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Unique and useful project

Whatever the claims of your distractors and critics be, I believe it is a great project and quite suitable to the intended audience of the encyclopedia. You are quite right in spotting that the meaning of words change as the language evolves or change. This is especially true for English which has become the universal language and the de facto official language of the internet.I wonder whether any one has done this before. It may also be beneficial to recruit some one with special expertise in this field. --MRain 12:06, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Thanks for your encouragement. I'm not aware of anyone else doing this (or anyone who has "special expertise" in the devolution of modern English). We welcome contributions to the project ... starting with yourself! I'll be adding new items as I discover them.--aschlafly 12:19, 26 December 2008 (EST)
I think that this is an interesting project, and a good opportunity to try and get across some of the wordplay in the original language that the KJV and most other translations just lack; things like Gen 15:2 or Num 21:9 to give a couple of simple examples - also there's very often the case when words are conflated - like the "kill" example - it's good you want to distinguish the more murderous הרג from נכה- there are a number of separate roots that get translated inconsistently as "kill" and "slay", but you'll perhaps want also to distinguish הרג from רצח and נכה from שחט? Also the names are often clumsily translated as footnotes, if at all, rather than elegantly worked in - sometimes the transliteration of a name is inferior to its translation (IMHO, naturally). Added to that, the KJV (which is very bad in this respect) is incredibly inaccurate when it comes to plants and animals, and it'd be nice to see a scholarly yet poetic translation that is sensibly consistent. I look forward to seeing the results of this! DeniseM 16:23, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Thanks for your insights, Denise, and I look forward to your contributions to this project!--aschlafly 16:26, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Sadly I'm rather busy these days (and my Greek is not much good compared to my Hebrew, and my Aramaic is near non-existent), but I'll try and make some helpful suggestions. Do you mind if I add my twopennyworth to the project page, as far as examples of things I'd like to see included or avoided? I'm not necessarily always able to talk with reference to the KJV, and my interests (as you'll have gathered) are linguistic, aesthetic, and exactitude-focused rather than centred around political considerations. DeniseM 16:33, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Divine Right

Sorry if I offended with the Divine Right translation. My intent was to say that only Christ has the ultimate authority to rule, not to suggest that claims of Divine Right by kings and despots had and validity. QWest 14:19, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Bearing arms

The text reads: "In Biblical times, as today, the bearing of arms to defend ones family and society was the hallmark of civilisation."

First, I corrected the British spelling in compliance with the MoS. Second, this description of the culture of arms is against the evidence, at least as far as the Greeks. In "History of the Peloponnesian War," Thucydides spoke of wearing arms as a custom of the barbarians, and waxes poetic about the lack of necessity of bearing arms in Greece:

And even at the present day many of Hellas still follow the old fashion, the Ozolian Locrians for instance, the Aetolians, the Acarnanians, and that region of the continent; and the custom of carrying arms is still kept up among these continentals, from the old piratical habits. The whole of Hellas used once to carry arms, their habitations being unprotected and their communication with each other unsafe; indeed, to wear arms was as much a part of everyday life with them as with the barbarians. And the fact that the people in these parts of Hellas are still living in the old way points to a time when the same mode of life was once equally common to all. The Athenians were the first to lay aside their weapons, and to adopt an easier and more luxurious mode of life.

Should I correct it?-AlexanderM 15:56, 26 December 2008 (EST)

The Greeks believed in false Gods. Surely the correctness of Judaeo-Christian beliefs is obvious? Also, your reference to 'improper' spellings is unnecessary. Bugler 16:00, 26 December 2008 (EST)
You know I agree with you on that first point Bugler, but I don't think their being pagans affects their beliefs towards weapons. And I'm sorry, I didn't mean "improper" in the pejorative: it's just that the Manual of Style says not to use British spellings.-AlexanderM 16:01, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Alex, I'm not that hung up about the spellings so if you wish to copy-edit go ahead. As for the other thing, how about 'hallmark of Judaeo-Christian civilization'? Bugler 16:07, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Good idea! I'll change it, thanks Bugler. Good to see you again.-AlexanderM 17:47, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Kill vs Murder

One of the differences cites Ex. 20:13 and the clarification is to use "murder" instead of "kill". I agree with this clarification. I use the KJV with explanatory notes from the LDS church and the reference for Ex. 20:13 for the word "kill" says in an alternate translation from the Hebrew it means "murder". --DeanStalk 15:59, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Wow, I never knew that. By the way, Dean, does the standard LDS Bible use the KJV plus explanatory footnotes?--aschlafly 16:27, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Yes, it's a KJV with explanatory footnotes. The title page says it's the "Authorized King James Version with explanatory notes and cross references to the standard works of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints". There are also footnotes and appendix referring to the "JST" which is the Joseph Smith Translation. These are excerpts from the Prophet Joseph Smith's translation of the Bible. --DeanStalk 16:43, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Hebrew has two distinct words for killing (הרג) and murder (רצח). The Commandment is unambiguously referring to murder.—JCSalomon 11:16, 23 February 2009 (EST)

Is this suggesting that Christianity isn't a pacifistic religion, and that killing was ok with Jesus? Because although the commandment says "thou shall not murder", there are numerous instances in the New Testament of pacifism being not only approved of, but required to be a Christian. Acts 14:19-22, 1 Corinthians 4:9-13, Acts 7:59-60, Matthew 5:9,21-25 and 38-41 are just a few of the biblical examples that I could find promoting pacifism.--Bixnood 22:54, 5 June 2009 (EDT)


The entry is blatantly false. You have to look it up. You cant take someone's word for it. Just because it sounds interesting does not make it true. see here. --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 17:00, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Your link does not explain the meaning of the Greek term, but only its view of the Biblical meaning.--aschlafly 17:05, 26 December 2008 (EST)
What about this and this and this? --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 17:12, 26 December 2008 (EST)
The problem here is that the statement is being assumed true, even though there is no reason to believe that it is, aside from the claim of one user who has agreed to the removal of the item. --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 17:21, 26 December 2008 (EST)
The underlying insight is promising, given the very different nature of the "rich" then compared to now. Improvement rather than censorship is the better approach here. My research reveals that the Greek term really means "fully supplied,"[1] as in being pampered or lazy.--aschlafly 17:33, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Your source is a blog. I gave 4 separate sources that are greek lexicons. Which do you think is more reliable? --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 17:40, 26 December 2008 (EST)
a footnote to the CP commandments says "Sources should be authoritative works, not merely published opinions by others."--Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 18:09, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Also, Aschlafly, while I share your concern with CPAdmin1's edits, I have to point out that he's right, it's not censorship to remove information because you think it's incorrect. Censorship requires (1) state or state-like action, and (2) removal of information (3) for subjective, viewpoint-discriminatory reasons. Even if he's wrong, it's assuming bad faith to call his deletions censorship.-AlexanderM 17:49, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Someone please provide a linguistic source that backs up the claim, or I will remove it. --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 18:50, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Having checked in my Liddell & Scott, I think it's safe to remove it pending a scholarly source that supports the variant reading. This is a wiki, we can always put it back if more research turns up such a reference. DeniseM 18:59, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Not so fast, folks. There is a key insight here that I've just learned from, as have others. The term "rich" DOES change in meaning over time, and the Greek term could not possibly mean what is meant today by "rich". Instead, the Greek term means "fully supplied." Perhaps "idle rich" would be a better translation or, in modern terms, the "complacent" or "lazy miser."--aschlafly 19:03, 26 December 2008 (EST)
The experts say that it means rich. Do you know better than the experts? --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 19:11, 26 December 2008 (EST)
I still don't quite see how your reading squares with the Joseph of Arimathea citation. DeniseM 19:18, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Tim, that is such a liberal argument: "the experts say that it means ...." The "experts" also say that global warming is a crisis and that more government spending is needed. God gave us all the ability to think for ourselves. Let's use it. Denise, I don't know what you're referencing specifically. If you mean a reference that Joseph of Arimathea was "rich" and yet a follower of Jesus, that would not disprove the translation of "idle rich" or "complacent" or "lazy miser." Indeed, Joseph had the time to intervene as needed.
What? It is a liberal argument to say that people who have spent their life studying a language know that language better than someone who does can not even speak it. That argument sounds good to me. Are you saying that you have a better understanding of biblical greek than the people who have written those lexicons? --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 21:54, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Everyone today is "rich" by the standards of Jesus' time, so presumably the term is more nuanced than that common term.--aschlafly 19:26, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Since when is consulting people who have dedicated themselves to studying a subject and trusting them over the layman liberal? That is equivalent to me, having no ability in building anything whatsoever, designing and constructing my house myself as opposed to hiring people who make their living doing that because getting their help is liberal. Your definition of liberal is a bit silly Andy, and seems to fall along the lines of "whoever does not wholly agree with what you, Andy Schalfly, believe. If trusting experts makes somebody a liberal, then I'd rather be a liberal than blindly rush into something as major as translating God's Word passed down to mankind without somebody who knows what they are talking about.ENorman 22:15, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Folks, blindly follow your chosen "experts" somewhere else. This is a wiki devoted to the pursuit of knowledge. Understand? That means opening your mind and actually using it. Parroting what you perceive to be an "expert" view might help you win the favor of some liberals, but our project is at a higher level than that.--aschlafly 22:35, 26 December 2008 (EST)
So we should not listen to any experts because to do so would be liberal. In that case, how are we supposed to learn anything. Are we supposed to make up our own facts because we can't trust anyone else's? Should we automatically contradict any expert because to agree with them would be "liberal"? Should I disagree with you because it would be "liberal" to trust your knowledge? If you do not rely on the knowledge of others, it is impossible to progress very far in the area of knowledge. A faulty appeal to authority is a fallacy. That does not mean that every appeal to authority is a fallacy. It is only a fallacy when the subject at hand is not the same subject that the person is an authority on. Obviously an authority can be wrong, but that is the exception rather than the rule. Should I not believe that 2+2=4 because some expert said that it is? If you discredit all authority, then how can you gain knowledge? --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 22:53, 26 December 2008 (EST)
All of your "experts" are simply sites citing the exact same source, Thayer's Greek-English lexicon. To suggest that questioning that single definition is rejecting all authority is absurd. Healthy skepticism is necessary to any intellectual project such as this. Relying on a single authority as definitive is absurd. The biblical concept of "rich" is far different than the present. Denying that is patently ridiculous, and ignores millenia of economic and social change. That is why this project is necessary. Like Luther's 500 years ago, it is an attempt to ground our knowledge in the original meaning of God's word. - Rod Weathers 23:01, 26 December 2008 (EST)

(moved discussion here below to "Rich" Issue for easier editing and comment.--aschlafly 16:13, 28 December 2008 (EST))

Tim, the essence of this project is to open your mind and think for yourself, and not rely on an argument that "the experts say such-and-such." Yes, some and perhaps all of the unnamed experts are liberals. The process of inducing people to rely on "the perceived view of experts is a misleading one. In courts of law it is generally not allowed without also hearing from an expert with the opposite view.
Most "experts" say there is global warming. Most experts say that government should raise taxes. Most experts say that government should increase spending. In fact, you can go down the entire list of liberal viewpoints and find that most "experts" support them. Give up your ability to think for yourself, just a little, and you will probably never get it back.--aschlafly 23:00, 26 December 2008 (EST)
But those are experts in other fields. These are experts IN THE LANGUAGE. This is less being open-minded, and has now been degraded to Ostrich theory. What does the meaning of ONE WORD have to do with what Dr. John Q. Scientist has to say about global warming? You are basically saying "disregard all science, all research, all facts, make junk up as you go along."ENorman 23:07, 26 December 2008 (EST)

The interpretation of "miserliness to the point of laziness and being unproductive" for plousios has implications at Ephesians 2:4 "But God, who is rich (plousios) in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us"[2] . Applying miserly and lazy to God is near blasphemy. The original interpretation of simply 'wealthy' is likely the intended and best interpretation. A benevolent God would never be miserly with His mercy, and He certainly isn't lazy or unproductive. --JohnnyS 21:38, 26 December 2008 (EST)

"plousios" means "abundantly supplied," not "rich". "Rich in mercy" is an awkward translation at best. The context must be considered to find the right English word for "abundantly supplied."
Your comment on "unicorn" was silly.--aschlafly 22:04, 26 December 2008 (EST)
I'm happy with "abundantly supplied" as a translation in this case, though it seems a little prolix. Perhaps we could work on a more mellifluous alternative - possibly "over-replete" or something of that ilk, maybe even something with a nuance of luxury rather than mere adequacy. As a side question, does the "abundantly supplied" gloss apply to `ashir as well as to plousios, and if so, why? DeniseM 10:13, 27 December 2008 (EST)
I think you are right that "abundantly supplied" is prolix. I think the nuance that needs to be added is the laziness when some humans are abundantly supplied with food and entertainment. I'm not familiar with `ashir but look forward to learning more. Thanks.--aschlafly 10:40, 27 December 2008 (EST)
In general, I can recommend Weingreen's excellent work A Practical Grammar for Classical Hebrew for the novice to Biblical Hebrew grammar. It's not a guide to vocabulary, obviously, and it's not in itself sufficient to give the experience and fluency necessary to attempt a translation project of this magnitude, but it's a good place to start. DeniseM 10:52, 27 December 2008 (EST)
For vocabulary, Brown/Driver/Briggs is the standard reference work, as far as I know. DeniseM 11:01, 27 December 2008 (EST)
I think what is needed are more nuanced definitions. The Bible uses the term rich as a blanket reference to those of monetary as well as spiritual wealth, and I think having cotextual definitions for each occurrence would be a generally good idea - such as avaricious (ie desire for riches beyond one's needs) for the cited example and others, and e.g. rich-spirited (or similar) for other occurrences. Plus further definitions as appropriate --J00ni 11:49, 27 December 2008 (EST)


What is the planned translation of the tetragrammaton? In English translations it's often been rendered as 'Lord', sometimes with all-caps, based on the Jewish custom of the pronunciation "Adonai", used to avoid saying the name; others use YHWH/YHVH/JHWH based on the unvowelled consonants; others go with "Jehovah" based on a Latin form, fairly discredited now, I understand. Still others try and capture the "to be" root of it, opting for "the one who is" or "the eternal". Thoughts? I personally prefer one of the latter forms, though I think there is room for innovation here! DeniseM 17:46, 26 December 2008 (EST)


I think the translation of grace is overly simplistic. To me grace is not merely generosity, but generosity towards those in whom it is undeserved. And is a gift specifically ftom the Lord to mankind, and allows for forgivness of the unrepentant sinner and ultimately is the reason God loves each and every one of His creation irrespective of whether they honour His word.

I appreciate what you are trying to achieve, and it is an honourable cause, it's just that IMO grace has always been a concept requiring more understanding than the word itself conveys, and is a central concept to Christianity itself, and by changing it to 'generosity' may hinder people from seeking its true, deeper meaning.

Grace is one of my favourite concepts to learn about and (attempt to) explain to others as I feel not only the concept, but the word itself, has a beauty to it that shouldn't be tampered with --J00ni 19:49, 26 December 2008 (EST)

Thanks, J00ni, this is a lovely explanation! DeniseM 10:26, 27 December 2008 (EST)
J00ni, your point is well taken, but the fact remains that there are millions who are misled by the term "grace" in many instances of its use. They may like the sound, but they think it is something other than what was intended.--aschlafly 22:10, 27 December 2008 (EST)


The retranslation of "peace" is based on the Greek word. Why is there a citation to the Old Testament on this point? The Old Testament was written in Hebrew, not Greek.--aschlafly 22:10, 27 December 2008 (EST)

cf LXX: καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς εἰ εἰς εἰρήνην οὗτοι ἐκπορεύονται συλλάβετε αὐτοὺς ζῶντας καὶ εἰ εἰς πόλεμον ζῶντας συλλάβετε αὐτούς - your Greek is likely better than mine, but I don't see the issue with this translation. DeniseM 06:35, 28 December 2008 (EST)
I don't dispute at all εἰρήνη has a meaning of tranquility, but it also has a meaning of absence-of-war - much as peace does in English. See also these sources - e.g. “ἢ μέγα φρονει̂ς,” ἔφη, “ἐπὶ ται̂ς ἐψηφισμέναις μὲν πεντήκοντα ναυσίν, οὐδέποτε δὲ πληρωθησομέναις; οὕτω γὰρ ἠρέθικας Φίλιππον καὶ τοιαυ̂τα εἴρηκας, ἐξ ὡ̂ν οὐκ εἰρήνη γένοιτ' ἂν ἐκ πολέμου, ἀλλ' ἐξ εἰρήνης πόλεμος ἀκήρυκτος.” (Aeschines) DeniseM 06:46, 28 December 2008 (EST)
Wow, you link to a superb online source! It's amazing what is available now on the internet!
The point is that "peace" in English is increasingly taken to mean an absence of war, thanks (or "no thanks") to the influence of the media and politics on culture. Very few people take "peace" to mean "tranquility" any more. But Jesus was not telling the Apostles to oppose Roman wars when He said, "peace be with you." He was speaking about an inner tranquility and lack of fear or anxiety. That's a meaning that needs to be restored against the ravages of the devolution of language, particularly with the rise in anxiety disorders.--aschlafly 07:16, 28 December 2008 (EST)
I don't doubt your assertion that at the moment, the primary meaning of the English "peace" is as you say. However, I do question the recency of this semantic position, and also whether this was not the case with eirene. I'd assume that someone listening to Jesus would have understood the Aramaic term he used to have a hefty flavour of non-war about it (in general, if not necessarily in context). In the same way, a reader of the English would understand that "peace" has multiple shades of meaning, and will select as appropriate. DeniseM 07:29, 28 December 2008 (EST)
But virtually no one today understands "peace" to mean "anxiety free," and Jesus never spoke about foreign policy in His time. It's a complete mismatch, I think, due to the cultural changes in the meaning of "peace" to most people.--aschlafly 08:02, 28 December 2008 (EST)
An absence of interpersonal strife is not just foreign policy. Also, I think that virtually everyone today uses the adjective "peaceful" to mean "without anxieties or distractions"; it's easy to underestimate people in general. DeniseM 08:08, 28 December 2008 (EST)

Relinquish or Release

The term "relinquish" has negative connotations: it means giving up something that may not have been properly yours. I don't see how that is an improvement over "release", which has positive connotations of resulting in a greater good.--aschlafly 07:21, 28 December 2008 (EST)

yes, good point, but "release" sounds too much like what one does to a captive. I think possibly something more like "hand over" or "give away" is in line with paradidomi - am I reading it too literally? DeniseM 07:29, 28 December 2008 (EST)
"Release" does have that political/legal connotation, but I don't see that as causing a problem in the context. "Hand over" has a negative connotation, and requires a recipient who does not exist in this context; "give away" implies an inappropriate abandonment of something typically having little value, and that doesn't fit.--aschlafly 08:00, 28 December 2008 (EST)

Question about implementation

This is an interesting and worthwhile project - I'm learning a lot from reading about the various interpretations of the terms in question. What I'm wondering, though, is how to best implement the outcome for others to use. My first thought would be to choose a "baseline" version of the Bible as a starting point, like the King James Version, then apply the revised translations that are approved and publish this as a "New Conservative Bible" (since calling it the "Conservapedia Bible" would be immodest, I'd think). This could be done as a searchable electronic copy under a dedicated namespace on the CP site. The text itself would be protected, of course, but the talk pages would allow for background, commentary and suggestions for other improved translations. Does this proposal make sense? --DinsdaleP 15:08, 28 December 2008 (EST)

I think that this project could be a good project if it was done better. Currently, I think this project is overreaching. I think in order to do proper Bible translating you need to understand Greek/Hebrew and ANE culture at a bare minimum. I also reasonably believe that in order to do a conservative translating of the Bible you need to understand the Bible exegesis method of Historico-grammatical exegesis which is given here: http://www.godward.org/archives/BS%20Notes/Basic%20rules%20for%20NT%20exegesis.htm So far, I don't see see aforementioned being done in any great depth. That is why I don't think the "New Conservative Bible" will catch on. I think Protestant Christian conservatives will stick with their KJV, NKJV, and NASB Bibles for some time to come. conservative 15:44, 28 December 2008 (EST)
Conservative, is it 'overreaching' to have a vision? I don't think so. And can man achieve great aims without vision? No. Throughout history, those who have achieved mighty things have been accused of 'overreaching themselves' at the outset. We should have confidence and Hope, and lend support. Bugler 15:53, 28 December 2008 (EST)
The efficiency of the learning from this project is far greater than in any other medium, much higher than reading a book, attending a seminar, watching television, discussing with people, etc. In merely a few spare minutes or hours, the participants in this project have learned more than they could have after spending 10x or 100x many hours in any other medium. For that reason alone, I feel this project has been more than worthwhile. As Bugler says, let's see where it goes from here. What's there to lose? Nothing, but there is everything to gain in greater faith.--aschlafly 16:05, 28 December 2008 (EST)
Exactly. Learning about just one of these misconceptions/mistranslations allows you to better understand tens, hundreds, or even thousands of biblical passages and principles which use the words under examination. "Logos" is a good example, since it's the basis of all creation in John 1:1. "Ἐν ἀρχῇ ἦν ὁ Λόγος, καὶ ὁ Λόγος ἦν πρὸς τὸν Θεόν, καὶ Θεὸς ἦν ὁ Λόγος." Better understanding that one word educates a reader enormously about God, his word, and his creation. - Rod Weathers 16:20, 28 December 2008 (EST)
I agree completely. Just one of the insights in the table in this entry can be worth hundreds of hours of personal effort in value. A stronger understanding of these concepts is priceless. Yet it is freely available here for merely the click of the mouse. Can you imagine the value when this table is two or three times as long?--aschlafly 16:35, 28 December 2008 (EST)
Bugler, you are setting up a false dilemma. If you were more aware of exegesis you would know that. One of the principles of sound exegesis is to set the limits of the passage as can be seen by the link I offered before. With that in mind, I certainly did not say I was against having a vision. At the same time, often without adequate preparation the visions people have often fail. I doubt the Normandy invasion would have been successful if the generals merely had a vision apart from adequate preparation. The Normandy invasion was successful though because the generals had a vision which also had sufficient preparation. Now if you think you can retranslate the Bible without being knowledgeable in Greek/Hebrew, Ancient Near East culture, and exegetical principles then go right ahead, but I reasonably think your quest is rather quoxitic as can be seen by your rather poor exegesis of my previous post. conservative 17:17, 28 December 2008 (EST)
I'd suggest that first we establish what sort of a translation we want; then we start with a smallish book with fairly simple language, and move to another book when that's completed and polished. I'd suggest Esther as a nice place to start - it's got a good consistent narrative, the Hebrew is not overcomplicated or overpoetic, and we don't want to get any "teething problems" in something like one of the Gospels. An interlinear approach might be best; and I'd really suggest we do our best to work in vacuo without too much reference to established translations. Do people prefer working with the Masoretic vowels, notes, and breaks, or just from the plain text, allowing for wider interpretation as to the vocalization? How do we arrrange dealing with disputes and variation in text? One talk-page per chapter? I'd like to be able to suggest that we take an LXX approach and work individually and have the translations miraculously agree, but the evidence above suggests this might not be the best plan ;) DeniseM 09:00, 29 December 2008 (EST)
This is not to say that there won't be opportunities to discuss the translation issues - right from the start there's some interesting questions. As a test run, how do people here render ויהי בימי אחשורוש הוא אחשורוש המלך מהדו ועד כוש שבע ועשרים ומאה מדינה? The word ויהי is not easy to make smooth in English, there are at least two or three standard renditions for אחשורוש, and the country (or province, or state) names are always something of a point of contention. DeniseM 09:25, 29 December 2008 (EST)
(and, with all respect, I think we should leave Daniel and Ezra/Nehemia until we know we have someone who's properly competent in Aramaic). DeniseM 09:42, 29 December 2008 (EST)
Denise raises an interesting question. While the table-format in the article is educational, is the purpose of this project to begin an all-new translation of the Bible "from scratch", i.e. from the original ancient texts, or is it to start with a pre-compiled baseline like the King James Version and look to bring clarity to selected phrases by reinterpreting them? Conservapedia's own article on the Bible points out differences in the layout and naming of the Old Testament books between the Jewish and Christian collections, so is the scope of this project to look at that as well? I'm totally out of my league here, but asking so that the people who are contributing have a consistent plan to follow. Thanks. --DinsdaleP 10:52, 29 December 2008 (EST)
Personally, I have no objection to either - but if we're going to have a retranslation as Aschlafly originally proposed I think it's intellectually sterile to re-translate a translation, taking all but one or two assumptions of the translators for granted. If we wanted to do that, I think that he would have suggested a commentary or gloss. DeniseM 10:55, 29 December 2008 (EST)

"Rich" Issue

(Undent) Well I have 2 more (different) in hard copy. The Complete Word Study New Testament Spiros Zodhiates, which says it means "rich" And the Linguistic Key to the Greek New Testament Rienecker and Rogers. which says it means "rich" --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 23:14, 26 December 2008 (EST)

That doesn't change the obvious fact that "wealth" in Jesus' time is worlds away from "wealth" in the present, and thus its implications and connotations when used in God's word. What confuses me is your motive in attempting to censor this obvious information. - Rod Weathers 23:17, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Yes, the specific things that we have are completely different, but that doesn't mean that "wealth" was any different. It just means that a person has "an abundance" of material possessions. It doesn't matter whether those possessions are sheep and goats, or if they are gold and silver, or cars and televisions, or lots of digits that represent money in a bank. The point is that the person has many more possessions than they need. The concept is not bounded by time. Solomon had great wealth. Possibly greater than anyone since. --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 23:23, 26 December 2008 (EST)
Anyone care to respond?--Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 11:41, 27 December 2008 (EST)
Anyone? --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 23:31, 27 December 2008 (EST)
Sorry, Tim, I didn't notice your edits in the middle here. The Greek word does not mean "many more possessions than they need" as you suggest. Rather, it means "fully supplied" or "abundantly supplied." The term refers equally well to the person who has just what he needs and no more. In short, it applies to virtually everyone in developed nations, fully fed and entertained. That's why the term "rich" no longer works because very few of the "abundantly supplied" view themselves as "rich" today, yet Jesus is addressing them. The key to the Greek term and the translation is to capture the vice of an unwillingness to try harder due to the complacently of being fully fed and entertained.--aschlafly 08:11, 28 December 2008 (EST)
The word also means rich, the 2 definitions are very close in meaning. Abundantly supplied means more than enough. I agree that many or most of the "abundantly supplied" would not consider themselves rich, but I don't think that they'd consider themselves abundantly supplied either. You say that the greek term is about unwillingness to "try harder," and complacency. That is not true. The word means rich, and abundantly supplied. --Tim (CPAdmin1)talk 09:57, 28 December 2008 (EST)
There are many people who are "abundantly supplied" who do not consider themselves "rich". So I disagree that the "2 definitions are very close in meaning" in today's culture. Today nearly all Americans and Europeans are "abundantly supplied" in food, entertainment and other comforts. But very few of them consider themselves "rich". And that's what matters in translating the Bible in a meaningful way. If they have the same misconception about being "abundantly supplied," then that's a good reason to reject that translation also.
When this passage is compared with the Parable of the Talents, see Essay:Rich Man and Parable of Talents, the real meaning of the term translated as "rich" sharpens into focus: it is the person who has what he needs, but buries it in the ground and does not produce more. "Idle miser" fits both insights well.--aschlafly 16:13, 28 December 2008 (EST)
If someone says A, meaning to imply B (what Aschlafly calls the "real meaning" - because A is an exaggeration, an ironic contradiction, hyperbole, metaphor, metonymy, or parable), I think that it's better to translate it as A rather than B - then someone reading the translation will have as close a thought-process as possible to someone reading the original and be able to appreciate the devices used. We're not trying to produce a commentary (beyond that which is inevitable). I think that Aschlafly may have in mind more of a commentary - a guide to interpretation and background - rather than a translation; and there's nothing wrong with that. DeniseM 05:50, 29 December 2008 (EST)
I'm unsure what you mean by your comment, Denise. "A" is "fully supplied" rather than "rich", which is a relative term today. The issue is expressing "fully supplied" in a way that avoids awkward and misleading connotations of that phrase, which to most people today would falsely make them think of a retail store.--aschlafly 08:24, 29 December 2008 (EST)
Ah, yes, sorry - I should have been more explicit. A is whatever term meaning "having enough" or "having a lot" or "rich" or "not poor" (the choice of which is a linguistic issue). B is the implication of laziness, stinginess, or whatever personal qualities, which while they may be conjectured from context and from theological exgesis, are not inherent in the word itself. B is a very interesting thing to have in a commentary, especially if one has useful proof-texts for it from elsewhere that support the point being made. DeniseM 08:41, 29 December 2008 (EST)
Denise, you make an excellent point, and thanks for your insight. I continue to learn from your comments and contributions.
I guess I need to determine if the Greek term was ever used anywhere to describe an "idle miser" before recommending that as a translation. Maybe I could search for the general usage of the word somehow and see if "idle miser" (or an equivalent) shows up.--aschlafly 09:04, 29 December 2008 (EST)
If you're happy to have ancient greek in with your koine (which is probably OK), the Perseus project is a good place to look. Also searching the Septuagint is a good source of ideas. I get annoyed when people unthinkingly conflate translation and intepretation - the two are linked and every translator is ipso facto his own exegete, but it must be done consciously - there are many levels of what means means, and they must be artistically layered to create a well-reading product. DeniseM 09:10, 29 December 2008 (EST)


I've seen in a few places that this is the general name used for the various forms of Xerxes that ruled Persia. This source cites the one in the Book of Esther as Xerxes I [3], but I think I've seen him cited as Artaxerses II. He's probably one of the Xerxes or Artaxerxes in the 4th or 5th century, BC (300's-400's). Mikek 11:00, 29 December 2008 (EST)

Oh, interesting - thanks! I'm surprised that Artaxerxes and Xerxes should have similar versions in Hebrew, though - I wish there were more extrabiblical Hebrew historical/political texts. DeniseM 12:20, 29 December 2008 (EST)

Great article

Just read it all the way through. It's superb. Thank you Mr. Schlafly! --RickD 19:20, 1 January 2009 (EST)

And to Denise and whoever helped put it together. --RickD 19:20, 1 January 2009 (EST)

Want to help

Hi I'm a long time reader and first time poster. I'm very much interested in your bible revisionism project and would like to know how I could contribute?--JesseC 18:53, 5 January 2009 (EST)

You're not off to a promising start. This is not a Bible (note capital "B") "revisionism" project at all. Try Wikipedia, perhaps, if you want to revise the Bible.--Andy Schlafly 19:10, 5 January 2009 (EST)
Revising it into modern English. Poor choice of words. Still how can I help good sir?--JesseC 19:14, 5 January 2009 (EST)
Just add to a substantive entry, such as this one! You might also find Disputed Biblical Translations to be of great interest.--Andy Schlafly 19:38, 5 January 2009 (EST)

Powerful new terms

What an excellent idea! Language changes and develops, and as you point out, crystallising ideas have given rise to many expressions which the Bible expresses, but (in current translations) in an ambiguous, circumlocutory manner. I shall be racking my brains for some more. MikeSalter 09:24, 8 January 2009 (EST)

Thanks. This is tremendous potential.--Andy Schlafly 09:33, 8 January 2009 (EST)
Two I'm struggling with a proper term for, which you might think worthwhile, are socialism and gun control. The term socialism might seem anachronistic in a Biblical context, but the meaning - anti-freedom, anti-enterprise, enslaving of human values - will surely be relevant as an example of everything Christ was fighting against. On the other hand, if the term Socialism sums it up best, why not use ity? As for socialistic gun control, might 'weapon control' cut it? I'd value your opinion. MikeSalter 09:41, 8 January 2009 (EST)
Good ideas, but I think we need first to find (or imagine) a biblical passage where a specific issue came up, and thus a proper term could be used. Offhand, I can't think of one yet for "weapon control," but "socialism" is more germane to the Bible and should be added to the table.--Andy Schlafly 09:53, 8 January 2009 (EST)
Andy, it looks like "censor" is from 1526, according to Merriam-Webster online. See here. Not detrimental to the point, just a minor correction! Jeffrey W. LauttamusDiscussion 11:39, 8 January 2009 (EST)
In additon, the word censor (or censur) appears in Latin as well, although I can't find an origin date for this, although the Romans did use the word Censor as a title for Roman officials with a particular duty (such as the census)--Ieuan 11:46, 8 January 2009 (EST)

Translation suggestions

I didn't want to change the main page without asking here first. I think it would make more sense to replace "Meek" with "Humble" instead of "God Fearing". The former is much closer to the intent of what Meek meant in this context, and ties better with other phrases such as "the last shall be first". I'd also suggest using using "Leadership" to replace "Government", since it fits the context, and because his actions in New Testament showed the characteristics af a leader inspiring others than a ruler expecting compliance by authority. --DinsdaleP 11:18, 10 January 2009 (EST)

"Cast Lots"

The page suggests "gambled" as a correction for "cast lots". Might I suggest "rolled dice" instead? That's pretty much the modern equivalent of casting lots, to my knowledge, and more specific than "gambled". Plus, "gambled" has modern connotations of a trip to Vegas or some such, with all the wildness that entails, and also leaves the reader wondering "what did they do? play blackjack?" ArthurA 14:47, 6 February 2009 (EST)

When I was young I was told that when it said 'cast lots' it actually meant they played dice as well. It's still gambling, of course, but it's more specific. ETrundel 15:24, 6 February 2009 (EST)
The modern translation should say "gambling", a word that did not exist for the King James Version translators.
"Cast lots" is meaningless to people today. I can't even tell what is meant by it. No, it wasn't modern dice they were tossing either. What did happen was the soldiers gambled for personal gain, just like visitors to a casino today. The word gambling should be used so people see what it was, and how the evil practice is widespread today also.--Andy Schlafly 22:43, 6 February 2009 (EST)
Actually Andy the Romans did have "modern" dice, and throwing dice was common. But throwing dice is gambling!--IScott 20:23, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
Well, fine, then do you agree the passage should be translated as "gambling"?--Andy Schlafly 20:27, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
Personally I prefer the "cast dice", because it is closer to the "casts lots" and is far more specific than just stating "gambling". I feel that any half-intelligent person would infer that casting dice refers to gambling, but perhaps I think the general public is smarter than they are HaHa!--IScott 20:34, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
"Cast dice" doesn't carry the impact of "gambling" for me. "Cast dice" strikes me as odd, puzzling me as to whether they had modern dice. Would they have rolled the dice on an uneven, earthy surface? Seems difficult to imagine, and thus not as effective. "Gambled" gets the point across without raising questions of how.--Andy Schlafly 20:48, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
Interesting interpretation. However for me at least (and perhaps for others) simply saying "gambling" raises the question of how did they gamble, in what way did they gamble? For me at least the "dice" translation allows a person to infer that they were gambling via dice (it is well known Romans had dice). More interesting is that other versions of The Bible have translated Matthew 27:35 as "After they had crucified HIM, they determined who would get his clothes by throwing dice for them" ISV and GOD'S WORD. --IScott 21:11, 18 July 2009 (EDT)
"casting lots" is the phrase used by NIV and Holman, the two most respected recent translations. "Lots" is different from "dice", and given the distinction why not resolve it by using "gambled"?--Andy Schlafly 22:14, 18 July 2009 (EDT)