Keith Hunt - Translating the Bible - Page Two   Restitution of All Things

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Translating the Bible

Interesting nuts and bolts

                           TRANSLATING THE BIBLE

1. The word "Apocrypha" originates from the Greek word that means
"hidden." There are a number of books that were not included in
the Protestant Bible because their origins were not believed
authentic. The apocrypha includes the Old Testament books that
are included in the Roman Catholic version of the Bible.

2. The Greek word "apocrypha refers to a small group of ancient
writings. some of these books may have been written in Hebrew but
were only known to exists in their Greek versions - one of the
reasons the rabbis rejected them as part of the Hebrew
Scriptures. They were included in the Septuagint, the Greek
translation of the Hebrew Bible that was used by the early
Christian Church.

3. The Apocrypha was accepted as part of the Bible by Augustine
in the 4th century. Since much of Roman Catholic theology is
based on the writings of Augustine, Catholic accept the Apocrypha
as part of the Word of God. However, neither the Jews nor
Christians in Palestine ever accepted it as Scripture.
Protestants reject it.

4. The Apocrypha books are never quoted by Jesus or any of the
writers of the New Testament.

5. Some of the Apocrypha books do give some interesting history,
such as FIRST and SECOND Maccabees, that traces Jewish history
between 175 and 134 B.C. 

6. The Vulgate was written by Jerome (340-420) in A.D. 382. It
was a translation in Latin from the original Old Testament
(Hebrew) and New testament (Greek). 

7. John Wycliffe (ca. 1328-1384) was a reformer who wanted to
make the Christian Scriptures accessible to the common person. 

8. The Wycliffe Bible was translated from the Vulgate Bible into
English by John Wycliffe in 1384. The Catholic church denounced
Wycliffe as a heretic for writing the Bible into English.

9. The invention of movable type was by Johanne Gutenberg. He
used letters made of lead. By 1456 he and his fellow printers had
created nearly two hundred copies of Jerome's Vulgate Bible.
Prior to that all Bibles were hand printed on papyrus sheets from
animal skins. Within 20 years of Gutenberg's first printed Bible,
the printers of Mainz had created more Bibles than had been
produced by hand in the previous 14 hundred years.

10. The first copy of the Guntenberg Bible took three years of
constant printing to complete. It was finished in 1455. 1,284
total pages.

11. William Tyndale (ca. 1494-1536) believed the Bible should be
read by everyone, so he set out to translate the Bible into

12. Tyndale was forced to leave England, and his New Testament
was burned as an "untrue translation." Arrested and imprisoned as
a heretic, Tyndale was executed in Anterp by strangling. His body
was then burnt at the stake in October 1536. Tyndale is now
looked upon as the father of the English Bible.

13. The King James Bible, which was originally named the
"Authorized Version," was first suggested by the Puritans in
1604. King James appointed 54 scholars, divided into 8 teams, and
demanded they examine all earlier English versions to aid in
translation. Produced in 1611, the translation is marked by
beautiful language, an accurate translation, in the main, and
modestly when faced with embarrassing language and situations.

14. There are complete Bibles in more than 40 European languages
and 125 Asian and Pacific Island languages. There are also Bibles
translations in more than one hundred African languages, with
another 5 hundred African-language versions of some portion of
the Bible. At least 15 complete Native American Bibles have been

15. There have been some odd but funny errors over the centuries
in some translations.

Psalm 91:15, "Thou shalt not need to be afrayd for eny BUGGES by

Genesis 3:7, "...sowed figge-tree leaves together and made
themselves BREECHES."

Matthew 5:9, "Blessed as the PLACEMAKERS..."

Exodus 20:14, "Thou SHALL COMMIT adultery."

Psalm 119:161, "PRINTERS (should be Princes) have persecuted me
without cause."

Jude 16, "These are MURDERERS (should be "murmurers")....."

Ezekiel 47:10, "And it shall come to pass that the FISHES (should
be "fishers") shall stand on it."

1 Timothy 5:21, "I DISCHARGE thee ..." Should have been, "I
charge thee ..."

Zachariah 11:17, "...IDLE shepherd ..." Should have been "idol

Matthew 13:43, "Who hath EARS TO EARS ..."  Should have been "who
hath ears to HEAR ..."

Luke 14:26, "If any man comes to me, and hates not his father ...
and his own WIFE also ..." Should have been, "...and his own LIFE
ALSO ..."

Genesis 24:61, "Rebekah arose, and her CAMELS ..." Should have
been "...and her DAMSELS ..." 

16. There have been some famous saying or words taken from or
about the Bible, from its various passages.

The word "beautiful" was first used in the English language b y
William Tyndale in his 1526 translation of the New Testament.
Some thought it an outrage that a new fashionable word would be
used in the translation of the Bible.

Others phrases that have become popular are:

The salt of the earth

Seek and ye shall find

A wolf in sheep's clothing

The faith to move mountains

The blind leading the blind

Do not throw pearls before swine

Eat, drink, and be merry

The straight and narrow

A good Samaritan

Sweating blood

Fire and brimstone

An eye for an eye

A land flowing with milk and honey

The apple of my eye

Pride goes before a fall

Woe is me

A drop in the bucket

Holier than thou

Like a lamb to the slaughter

Can a leopard change its spots?

Feet of clay

The handwriting is on the wall

We reap what we sow

A thorn in the side

Nothing new under the sun

The fat of the land

All things to all men

17. Some interesting facts about the translated Bible are:

18. A stack of scrolls was the form of the Bible until the fourth
century A.D. Then it was compiled into one volume.

19. It wasn't until the 16th century that the Bible was divided
into chapters and verses.

20. The are two books of the Bible that never mention the name of
God. Esther and Song of Solomon.

21. The shortest book of the New Testament is 3 John, with only
294 words, in 14 verses. John's second book has one less verses
but 4 more letters.

22. The shortest book of the Old Testament is Obadiah.

23. The longest book in the Bible is Psalms, with 150 psalms.

24. The longest verse in the Bible (KJV) is Esther 8:9, with
ninety words.

25. The shortest verse is John 11:35, "Jesus wept."

26. The book of Isaiah is the most-often-quoted Old Testament
book, with 419 references made to it in the New Testament. The
book of Psalms is a close second with 414 references in the New

27. David is given the most press, behind Jesus. David is
mentioned 1,118 times in the Bible. Sarah, the wife of Abraham
gets the most references as a woman - 56 times.

28. The oldest living person found in the Bible is Mathuselah
(Genesis 5:27) - 969 years. 

29. The longest reigning king is Manasseh - 55 years - 2 Kings

30. The man with the most wives was king Solomon - 700 fist-class
wives and 300 second class wives (1 Kings 11:3).

31. The longest name of a person in the Bible is Maher-shalal-
hash-baz. It means "quick to the plunder, and swift to the spoil"
(Isaiah 8:3).


"Most people are bothered by those passages in Scripture which
they CANNOT understand; but for me ... the passages which trouble
me the most are those that I DO understand." Mark Twain

"If you believe those four words, 'in the beginning God,' you
have no problem believing all of the Bible." Raymond Barber

"Either the Bible will keep you away from sin, or sin will keep
you away from the Bible." Author Unknown

"The Bible is no mere book, but a living creature, with a power
that conquers all that oppose it." Napoleon Bonaparte

"You may as well quit reading and hearing the Word of God, and
give in to the devil, if you do not desire to live according to
it." Martin Luther 

May 2007

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