Friday, April 3, 2009

The Bible vs Scripture

If you believe that any of the current English translations are inspired scripture, then you are......

Ah ha!  You will have to read a bit more in order to find out the answer.

Romans 3 tells us that all scripture was given to the Jews.  "unto them were committed the oracles of G-d."  The scriptures were given in Hebrew and Greek.  Only those manuscripts are inspired.  Everything else is a translation.  

Translation is the transference of meaning from text to text with the translator having time and access to resources to produce a faithful, true, and accurate document or verbal artifact.

Do you know where the King James Bible came from?

What is the Bishop's Bible?

It came from the Great Bible

See where we are headed with this?  And the Great Bible was written c 1538.  The Great Bible was based on

this bible combined Coverdale's work and Tyndale's work.  These 3 individuals worked from numerous sources in at least 5 different languages:

William Tyndale worked directly from the Hebrew and Greek, consulting the Vulgate & Erasmus's Latin, referencingLuther's Bible.  Yet Matthew had to conceal the use of Tyndale from King Hnery VIII.

Myles Coverdale translated from German & Latin sources.

John Rogers translated the Prayer of Manasses from the French Bible in 1535.

Tyndale & Rogers were both burned at the stake.

Coverdale was employed by Cromwell to work on the Great Bible of 1539.   (I think that if he valued his life, he was extremely careful in what he wrote!)

OK, so that's where the English version got the early 1500s.  So can you start to fathom the various interpretations of scripture before that?  1500 years worth of it?  

There were no numbered chapters and verses until the Middle ages!

Early manuscripts of the letters from Paul and other writings show no punctuation whatsoever.  This was all added by editors, according to their own understanding of the text.

So what if a period doesn't really belong where there is a period?  What if it's not the end of the statement being made?  How much would that challenge our thoughts on scripture alone?

The earliest surviving complete manuscript of the entire Bible is the Codex Amiatinus, a Latin Vulgate edition produced in the 8th century.  The earliest printed edition of the Greek New Testament is 116.

So, in 1947 and 1956, the Dead Sea scrolls were discovered and they date back to before 100 C.E.  It is said that the books of Exodus and Samuel found in Cave Four have dramatic differences in both language and content.

And no matter who "translates" them into English - some of their interpretation is bound to be incorporated into the text.  

In no way am I promoting the idea that you disbelieve scripture.  What I'm trying to point out is that translations of scripture are simply that  - someone else's idea of what it says.

If you really want to know what the Bible says, then you need to study, study, study!!!

Mount prepared what he called a consistent translation of the New Testament.  He used the same  English word each time he translated a Greek word.  He said that he tried to keep his opinion out of the translation, going strictly on what the Greek word meant.  I have been reading and studying the Consistent Translation and find it to be extremely interesting.  If you would like one, you can order it from:

Mount Trust
% Ray Kissel
1305 Leawood Road
Mansfield OH 44907

The cost is $60.00.  Update:  You can now download this for free, just click here.
"This is the New Testament only. A loose-leaf study text 8 1/2" x 11" in 16-page signatures punched for standard 3-ring note book. Each Greek word translated as consitently as possible by its best equivalent English word, 511 pages. King James Version is next to the consistent translation."

And while you are at it, you might want to purchase "A Teaching Dictionary". $80.00.   Update:  you can now get all of Mount's pdf files and mp3 files by sending a 64GB flash drive to J. Lowe, 603 Woodlawn Av, Canon City CO 81212.
"This dictionary has 3 sections. The 1st section is printed in green and lists every English word used in the Consistent New Testament and alongside the Greek word from which it is translated. The 2nd section is printed in blue and lists every Greek word in the Greek New Testament, and alongside the English word used in the Consistent New Testament for it. The 3rd section, printed in black, has about 300 words. Every use of these words in the Consistent Translation is shown and usually compared to the King James. This proves the absolute consistency of God's word if translated honestly. A Greek word does not have all kinds of different English meanings: nor do several Greek words have the same English meaning.

English words connected with a hyphen or hyphens indicate that they are from one Greek word."