53. Language development.
Language is always developing. Words loose their unique meaning or could even take up a complete new meaning to those using them. Our forefathers used the word “brimstone” for a substance we now call “sulfur”. Should we stick to a word just because it had been used 400 years ago, or should we exchange it for the word we now use for the same substance?
In the following extract I gave the words used by the NIV in red. Evaluate for yourself whether W. Lewis is honest and godly in his evaluation of the NIV translators as being “butchers”?
W. Lewis: “So what’s wrong with the NIV? In a word… EVERYTHING! Do you have any idea how many things were eviscerated (disemboweled) from the Bible by the NIV authors? Hundreds of words, phrases, and even entire Bible verses were removed from the Word of God by the NIV butchers. Whereas the King James Bible mentions the “Godhead” (=Divine nature) three times, the NIV has completely removed the word. You won’t find the word “propitiation” (=sacrifice of atonement) in the NIV either. In fact, all of the following words have been removed from the Bible by the NIV butchers:
(“Removed”? Rather substituted! For easier comparison, I put the word of the KJV in the left, with the substitute of the NIV in the right column. Herman)
|Jehovah (Jireh)||Gen.22:14: The LORD Will Provide|
|Jehovah (Nissi)||Ex17:15: The LORD is my Banner|
|Jehovah (Shalom)||Judg.6:24: The LORD is Peace|
|omnipotent||Rev. 19:6: Almighty|
|Comforter||3 verses in OT, =Comforter
4x in John; 14:16, =Counselor
|Holy Ghost||Holy Spirit|
|Messiah||2x in Daniel =Anointed One
2x in John =Messiah (the Christ),
|quickened||2x Ps119 = preserves my life|
|Infallible, et cetera.||Acts1:3 =convincing|
One can truly ask whether it is necessary to replace old words by their modern equivalents. The same goes for transliterating the attributes of God, or should one rather translate them, making it comprehensible to all.
The Name of God, combined with an attribute, and proclaimed in some quasi Hebrew form surely does not become a handle with which to manipulate the Almighty God!
As for the name Jehovah, we know that it is in fact not the Name of God at all. It is a clever interpolation of letters precisely to prevent someone “to take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain”! In ancient Hebrew only consonants were used. The covenant name of God is YHVH, pronounced Yaveh. Usually the reader would say “ha Sheem” (the Name) whenever he was confronted with the tetra grammaton. To be absolutely sure, the vowels of ADONAI, “my Master” were later written into the YHVH as YaHoVaH, pronounced as “Jehovah”. If an inattentive reader would now “read” the name of God, he would be safe, because he didn’t take the name of the Lord in vain. He said a word precisely created to prevent taking up the Name of God in vain!
For further clarity, we look at the replacement of “Holy Ghost” with “Holy Spirit”.
Let us look at “ghost” as it is described in The Sage dictionary. To most people a ghost is some negative haunting entity that should be avoided at all costs. The combination of Holy plus Ghost could have been in order some time ago, but is it in order for this day and age?
On the other hand “Spirit” fulfills all the requirements needed to describe the Third Person of the Holy Trinity. According to the same dictionary, “spirit” is described as:
This corresponds much better with our experience of “spirit” as in the Holy Spirit.
It also makes sense in combinations when describing someone filled with the Holy Spirit as a “Spirit filled person” as would also be a “Spirit filled meeting”.
Are the translators of the NIV “butchers”, or are they Spirit filled servants of God who strive to enable everyone to understand the Word of God?
Jesus did not speak with his fellow men in Hebrew, but in Aramaic, the common language that everybody used and understood. God wants us to understand what He wants to let us know. Should we not be more concerned with the word being understood, than it being an excellent source of archaic language or even a monument for linguistic or literary expertise?