Why a new translation?

Do we really need another New Testament translation?  Decidedly, yes: and we always will.  Not only is our language constantly changing, but “the Word of God is living and active” among his people,  who are constantly being given new insights into his ways.  If God’s people are to take him seriously, and learn to live in faithfulness, we all need to be sharing every bit of understanding that we are granted, for none of us is big enough or wise enough to grasp all the riches of his truth.  For this reason, there will never be a “final” or “definitive” translation.  The “best” translation will always be the one that is constantly in process, among a group of people whose one consuming passion is to learn together to please the Lord.  I hope that this is one contribution to that effort.

8 Responses to Why a new translation?

  1. Hello!

    I am working on a book called “The Encyclopedia of English Bible Versions.” Could I discuss with someone via e-mail some questions I have about this translation? All simple questions – details to fill out my entry about the “Pioneers’ New Testament.”

  2. Nazaroo says:

    Greetings to you.

    You have done a lot of work here. Your son posted on another blog about you wishing feedback and comments from others on your translation and notes.

    I am happy to give you a few comments on your handling of John 7:53-8:11.

    First, as to your two footnotes (on 7:53 and on 8:1-11). Your notes conform to those in most modern versions, and so are on par with those. However, you have a chance here to give the reader something really informative, rather than just the status quo, which in this case really isn’t very helpful to most Christian readers in any case.

    I would suggest you take a serious look at this issue (the authenticity of the passage), and then decide your own position, from which I think you will then be able to do justice to the original Greek, and also to the English reader in both the text and notes.

    We have the world’s largest database on John 7:53-8:11 here:

    There you will find powerful new evidence for its authenticity and most important for translators and interpreters its intended and full meaning.

    As a translator you will appreciate our article collecting the most brilliant insights of over 400 years of commentators and exegesis experts.

    As a person concerned with the text, you may wish to be properly informed on important textual evidence previously unknown or ignored by critics.

    (edited by moderator to include only one link to commenter’s website)

  3. dwmtractor says:

    If you will refer to the Introduction to my Translation Notes, you will see my reason for confining my work to translation rather than the textual details. One can only do so many jobs well, and this is what I have chosen.

    I consider the passage in question to be very true to the character and attitudes of the Lord Jesus, and therefore worthy of inclusion whether it is in earliest manuscripts or not. I am not interested in technical, textual arguments.

    From the title of your web site, I discern that your interest is primarily in a single issue, and issue-related manipulation of either text or translation is not an approach with which I identify — irrespective of whether I agree or disagree.

    Sincerely, in the service of the King —
    Ruth Martin
    (posted on behalf of translator – mod)

  4. Ngonyama says:

    Hmm, I like what you did to ελθετω and such in the “our father” as well as the idea that we forgive first, then He forgives later. Remember discussing both points way back in school: all those imperatives (aorist and all..) give the prayer almost more of a demand sheet like quality, but that hardly ever comes through in translation. Thus much of the impatience and eagerness is lost. Of course one wonders what the original Aramaic would have been like, but Greek is all we have I suppose.

  5. ruthpmartin says:

    Yes, but remember, we are not making demands of God. The subject of the third person imperative is expressed, not implied. So the demand is made of the result mentioned. If you can think of a way to express that in English, it would be most helpful to everyone’s understanding. You are exactly right about the impatience and urgency, though. Guess there are a few things it is ok to be impatient about!

  6. rannie says:

    Where can I buy a copy of your “Pioneers’ New Testament”? How much?

  7. ruthpmartin says:

    It is not, and never will be, for sale. Anyone can download it for free from the web site, and you may make a print copy if you wish for your own personal use. It is my firm belief that NO true gift of the Lord should ever be used for anyone’s financial profit. If somebody is selling it, it is not from Him.

  8. Dan Martin says:

    Just as a clarifying follow-up, Rannie, many folks have taken the PDF document (downloadable here) to a Staples or FedexKinko’s or some print service like that, and gotten a copy printed and bound. The file includes written permission to make such copies as long as they are not sold for profit.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: