- Pastor Boehringer said...
Dear delegates and readers,
It is my hope that the Synod-in-convention delays the final decision about a translation until the 2013 convention, if the Lord tarries.
And in these next two years, we have an opportunity. I hope that every congregation takes the time to study the principles of Biblical interpretation, to learn about the history of Bible translations, and to actually read and compare sizable chunks of the Bibles that are available.
The Translation Evaluation Committee has given us a starting point. I've contacted the Committee and asked them questions and they've been helpful in their responses. The sense I got from the Committee was one that said, "Here's what we think. Now what do you think?" I've read many of their documents and read some of their suggested reading material. They are useful starting places.
For a decision this important, we need to take our time. We have a good starting point for the conversation. But now we need every congregation to study the options, so that in two years we can get back together as a Synod and make a wise choice. This choice will have a long-lasting impact, so let's take our time.
So I thank the Translation Evaluation Committee and look forward to their continued help in the next two years.
Rev. Paul A. Rydecki said...
I think that's exactly the right approach, and the right way to view the work of the translation committee. I strongly disagree with them that the NNIV is acceptable for our synod's use, but I don't think any of them are incompetent, unqualified or untrustworthy.
It's my hope that, rather than having to constantly rely on the copyright whims of another church body or of a for-profit company out there somewhere, we might finally organize our synod (and also the ELS, hopefully also with help from the LCMS) to publish our own Bible translation, especially with the 500th anniversary of the Reformation coming up.
Have we had enough time to fully evaluate translations? What are our real options? If the NNIV "can be used," despite its shortcomings, couldn't the ESV, NKJV, or even the old KJV, also be used – despite their shortcomings? After all, every one of these translations are in official use among Confessional Lutherans in America today. What about the the recent Lutheran translation, God's Word to the Nations? It meets all of the criteria that seem to be popular among "evangelical" Lutherans these days – very simple sentence structure, and the elimination of nearly all ecclesiastical terms (like covenant, grace, justification, etc.). It contains no big words, complex sentences or difficult ideas with which to confuse those who read it (like there are in the original texts). Which English version of the Bible shall WELS Lutherans herald as the English language standard of the Holy Scriptures? Which translation shall we hold high and confidently claim to the English speaking world, "This is what the Bible says!"? The NNIV? The NKJV, ESV, KJV, GWN? Some other translation?
Do you agree, dear reader, with what seems to be a rush to adopt the NNIV? Or, have you settled and insist on an alternate translation? Do you think we need more time, as a Synod, to study and contemplate the issues and translations? Or, should we implicitly trust the advice of a few men regarding a new standard English version of the Bible? What do you think?