Sometimes we get stuck seeing things our way. Would you like to see some things through another set of eyes? Maybe it will make you think and stretch or maybe just chuckle or shed a tear. Here is my world through my eyes...

Friday, January 27, 2012

Bible translations may lead to changed doctrines

It has always been interesting to me over the years that the Bible has so many versions.  It seems that many people have felt the need to make changes in the Bible.  The compiling of the Bible itself seems to have been such a hit and miss type thing in its day.  While what we have has definitely been inspirational to many in our world, I can't help but wonder about what was missed, set aside or lost. 

In our day and age you can go into a Christian bookstore and find multiple variations on the Bible for all kinds of things.  Translations have proliferated and become interesting.  How much do we lose each time we try to translate the Bible into a more understandable modern day language? 

The Bible it seems was has been translated from and to various languages until the meanings are changed. or shaded differently.  Of course meanings change and are shaded differently over time anyway, which makes me wonder if the combination of time and retranslating might be double trouble. It seems when a translation occurs that the translator can't help but be swayed by his own beliefs about things-- seeming to find validation of his beliefs in the translation leading to what appear to be changes in the text to others.  The more translated the book becomes the more it seems that things become unclear.  It seems to boil down to who can you trust to translate or change scripture?

I ran across an article about the Jefferson Bible which I had not previously heard of.  Thomas Jefferson decided to take the Bible of his time and pare it down to the essentials.  His book was actually entitled The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth.  In making his book he apparently took direct cut outs from his Bible and left out anything miraculous about the Savior including things that he felt were put in the Bible in error or were translated incorrectly--once again having a man sifting through the word of God. 
Jefferson's Bible in which he removed parts that strained reason.

I found this a little objectionable, not that a person would do that--certainly everyone can use or abuse their personal Bible as they please, but when I found our government had printed this Bible at considerable cost and gave copies to it of elected national politicians  (until the 1950s) I couldn't help but wonder what is the purpose of that?  Why would our government choose to support one Bible over another to the point of giving it to Congressman when they are elected for what purpose?  Is it an effort by our government to support the idea that Christ is a great Idea man and eliminate or minimize his claim that he was the Savior and the Son of God?  Well who knows?  Maybe since government is run by politicians they just wanted others to have a Bible that was adjusted by a politician thinking it would have special relevance for them.

Of course the philosophies of Christ even without the whole truth of who he is, are worthwhile in a world that needs people to treat each other better, kinder and more lovingly.  I can't really argue with that and certainly agree that politicians are not only in need of such reminders but also are in a position to really be an example of Christ's philosophies that could influence large groups of our countrymen.

I must say however that I would much prefer a pure D prophet seer and revelator, chosen of God, to make changes or adjustments to the scriptures...rather than a politician, even a revered President.

This graphic is included to give an idea of the proliferation of Bible translations.  It also illustrates the variety of ways that the translations are done (i.e. word for word, etc.)

1 comment:

  1. Wow I never knew about that Jefferson version of the Bible!! That is crazy!! Also the chart you showed about the different translations was pretty intriguing. It is so strange to me to think that people were okay with changing the words of prophets like it was no big deal - whatever their motive was. I'm really glad that's not the only thing we have to rely on for truth today!!


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