Wednesday, July 12, 2006

uses of the tongue

There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword,
But the tongue of the wise brings healing.
- Proverbs 12:18 NASB


Anonymous said...

Hey Jason,

Welcome back from your mission trip. I hope you did not bring back any chiggers or other insects.

What NASB Bible are you quoting or are you using an online Bible?

What is your take on the NASB?

Stay in the shade or the in A/C!
John Flores
Frisco, Texas

Jason Woolever said...

hey thanks John.
I'm using the NASB-95update. I have a few of them. I just got a new one. I really like it. I used to use it a lot. I'm kind of getting back to it. The upside of the NASB is the excellent commitment to literal translation. The challenge, of course, is that its not quite as smooth some of the others. On Bible translation comparison charts, I see that its often listed as being at an 11th grade reading level.

I'm using it again for now. Every once in a while I get suspicious about the NRSV because I don't believe that most of the translators were orthodox Christians. Most of them probably don't believe that the Bible is the Word of God.

Bruce Metzger was the chair of the translation team for the NRSV. He also is the general editor of the New Oxford Annotated Study Bible. If you look at the New Oxford Annotated Bible, and read some of the book introductions, you can see that he doesn't believe that most of the books of the Bible were written by the authors noted in the text.

I'm feeling that I want to use a more reliable translation. So I'm using the NASB for now

Nick Draper said...

I agree with your concern that the translators of the Bible don't believe in Jesus - we certainly don't want to be led astray by scholarship that's trying to sabotage the faith. But there is the question of what actually happpened in the first and second centuries CE, and I would offer that that question should be resolved by people who are historians first, because even those who believe the Bible can translate it poorly or deliberately mistranslate it to vindicate themselves (see NLT).

I like the NASB for its commitment to be as literal as possible, but I would argue that a translation should be chosen for its representation of the original text, not because the translators were Christians themselves.

The professors I had in college (which by no means are the sole authority on the Bible, but I do have a lot of respect for them) prefer the NRSV, even with its elements that may not be great. They suggested to me that the NASB, even with its high commitment to accuracy, translated the text poorly based on ignorance of the deeper meaning of the text.

I use a multitude of translations, including translations that haven't received high marks in the scholarly community because I like to see the full range of scholarly opinion. Having said that, when translating the Bible, I believe that a commitment to accurately representing the history is paramount (even when the evidence suggests that maybe Peter didn't write the letters attributed to him).

I definitely encourage your study of what goes into the Scriptures as well as the Scriptures themselves.

Happy reading!

Jason Woolever said...

hey Nick! good to hear from you!

From what I remember, most of my seminary profs used the NRSV, but they commended the accuracy of the NASB. However, inclusive language was an important at our seminary, and the NRSV definitely has done the best job of that in my opinion.

Anonymous said...


Thanks for the comments. I recently got a copy of the MacArthur Study Bible in the (NASB) translation. While I don't agree with all of John MacArthur's theology it is quite a scholarly work.

I use multiple bible translations myself. Sometimes I use Google search on some of the more difficult passages and see a wide variety of different commentary. Some I may not agree with but I look to the Holy Spirit for discernment in my study.

I am praying on wheter or not to start my own blog and what aspect I should take. How has the Goggle Blogger service been to you? How long have you been a blogger Jason?

May the Lord continue to bless you, your family and your church family!

John Flores
Frisco, Texas

Jason Woolever said...

hey john,
i've spent some time perusing the macarthur study bible. its really pretty awesome. i'm sure you'll benefit from that one!

i have found the blogger service very accomodating. free, easy. i really like it. why not start one? the worst that could happen is that no one would read it. you only have to update it as often as you like.

i've been blogging since january.