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Understanding the place of Bible translations, the translation process and grasping a full meaning of a text
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One Bible, Many Versions by Dave Brunn was published by IVP in April 2013 and is our 40398th best seller. The ISBN for One Bible, Many Versions is 9781844746262.
With about eighty new versions of the Bible in English published in the twentieth century alone, we may be wondering, are some of those versions more accurate than others? Dave Brunn, who embraces the Bible's "verbal, plenary, wholly infallible and inerrant inspiration", and who spent twenty years with a translation team in Papua-New Guinea, looks in considerable detail at the work of Bible translation. The book is strewn with tables and charts, some of them several pages long. I can see why he should want to include these, but confess I found them distracting. He focuses primarily on literalness in translation (i.e. generally "word for word", rather than "thought for thought" versions), drawing most of his examples from "literal" versions, such as the ASB, KJV, NKJV, ESV. (I felt the book would have greater immediacy for English readers if the NIV and NRSV accounted for more than just the occasional footnote). Dave is "shocked" to find that literal versions often depart from their own rules by not always translating the original text literally, e.g. when translating idiomatic sayings. "Literalness does not necessarily result in increased accuracy", he concludes. This is a controversial area and Dave asserts that he does not wish to "add fuel" to the debate among Christians, emphasising the importance of unity rather than division, and stressing the "interdependence" between versions, each one of which has "the potential of strengthening and enhancing the other". He has never found a version he agrees with 100% nor one that he disagrees with 100%. Despite the reservations I mention above, I saw much in this book to reward the serious Bible student, and I welcome Dave's commitment to unity.
'This interesting and important book, written by someone who has devoted many years of his life to Bible translation, is particularly fascinating because it avoids jumping from disputed theory to hard examples. Rather, it jumps from thousands of examples to genuine wisdom on translation issues--along with at least some of the bearing of these examples on theory. This book will diffuse some of the polarizations that characterize many of the disputes. It will also encourage us to recognize we are not as far apart as some of us have supposed, and remind us of how difficult good Bible translation is and how grateful we should be for the wonderful and even complementary choices we have in English Bibles.'- D. A. Carson, research professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
'It is a joy to recommend this book to every serious student of the Scriptures. I have read through the whole book carefully; the author has done a tremendous amount of research, looking at passage after passage in many English versions. He has shown clearly, in his text and in his many, many charts, that the versions that are traditionally classified as
|Author / Artist||Dave Brunn|
|Publisher||IVP (April 2013)|
|Number of Pages||160|
|Page last updated||16th April 2018|