Is the ESV Literal and the NIV Gender Neutral? – Mondays with Mounce 286

Bill Mounce on 2 months ago. Tagged under ,,,,,,.

This blog is purely on translation and not directly on Greek, but I have been thinking about this a lot lately so thought I would share it.

Most people say there are two translation camps, formal equivalent and functional equivalent (or dynamic equivalent). The longer I am in translation work, the more I see how simplistic this division is.

There actually are five methods on translation with three sub-categories for the handling of gender language. Translations are all on a continuum, overlapping one another, and hence it is misleading to picture them as different points on a line. I am guessing, but for example, about eighty percent of the ESV and the

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Mounce Archive 12 — Can Translations Co-Exist in the Same Universe?

Bill Mounce on 2 years ago. Tagged under ,,,.

Everyone needs a break once in a while, and Bill Mounce is taking one from his weekly column on biblical Greek until September. Meanwhile, we’ve hand-picked some classic, popular posts from the “Mondays with Mounce” archive for your summer reading and Greek-studying pleasure.

Today’s “classic” asks a question Mounce asked almost six years ago during a paper presentation at ETS: “Can the ESV and TNIV Co-Exist in the Same Universe?”

While his original post and paper focused on the ESV and the now-retired-TNIV, the major premise is as relevant today as it was six years ago. He shares seven principles to help pastors and teachers “play fair” when it comes to translations:

Ephesians 4:29 We must never question motive Never question competency Respect translation philosophies Keep separate things separate Separate fact from preference Don’t simplify the debate

Consider the excerpt below and read the original in the…

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Subtle Ways of Translating — Mondays with Mounce 243

Bill Mounce on 2 years ago. Tagged under ,,,,,.

I never cease to be amazed at the literary quality of the NIV. Yes, I know, I am on the committee, but I am thinking about verses that I find periodically that were written before I came on.

In class last week I came across a couple. Paul is talking about divisions in the church and warns the Corinthians about the seriousness of their divisiveness. The ESV reads, “Do you not know that you* (ἐστε) are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you (ἐν ὑμῖν)?” The footnote on “you” indicates it and the other pronouns are plural. 

That’s all fine and good if you assume people read footnotes, which, considering all the superscript references in our Bible, is not a good assumption. The NIV reads, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and…

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