01 Translation 02
This second section of 01 Translations 2 was created because my list under 01 Translations 1 was becoming too long. Is Bible translation important? Yes indeed. I am so glad that in Bible college I took courses in Greek. This enables me to have discernment regarding translation issues.
Also, I have several excellent resources which assist me with the Greek and Hebrew language. I have listed them in an article on this website.
Remember that the etymology of a Greek or Hebrew word (for that matter and English word) does not necessarily give you an accurate mean in the present or at bibical times. Also, the same Greek or Hebrew word’s meaning is determined by the context of how it is being used. It is always wise to read many verses before and after the verse you are trying to interpret. Many times it is also wise to use a wide wide context. What is book about, who is it addressed to, where it is sent, and for what purpose.
Couldn’t find the guide to interpretation which John Wycliffe. A copy is in my sister’s BMA memory book so I will get it out at some time.
However, knowing the original languages does not of itself give you a better knowledge of Holy Scripture. You must be a diligent student of God’s Word.
As of the present, I have been seriously studying God’s Word for 50 years. I want to pass on some of what I have learned through the years. I am now in the process of teaching my Granddaughter Greek. I decided that I need to give my grandchildren tools with which they can interpret the Holy Scripture themselves. Once I have taught them Greek, I will begin teaching them the book of Romans. Why Romans? Because I believe as William Tyndale that Romans is the light and way into all Scripture. What did Tyndale mean by this? He meant that a clear knowledge of Romans gives a person the key for interpretation of all other Scripture.
In my life I have taken two formal courses on the book of Romans: One in Bible College and one in seminary. I have also memorized the first eight chapters of Romans. The first eight chapters of Romans is the clear doctrinal section of Romans. These eight chapters are like a systematic theology of Christianity. Also, after my conversion to Jesus Christ I read every commentary of Romans which I could find. The pastor, Rev. Joseph Holland, who became my mentor allowed me to take home and read any of the books that were in his library. I took every book he had on Romans and read it.
Since this has been such a blessing and anchor in my life I would encourage you to master the book of Romans. Personally, I would like to memorize the remainder of Romans chapters 9-16. One of my professors in Bible College told me that I should memorize the Bible in the Greek language. I truly believed that would be a good idea, but I did not have the fortitude to do that. But I did memorize parts of two different passages in Greek. John 16:6 and 1 Corinthians 15:3,4. Why these two verses? Because both have an important message about salvation.
You should learn Greek. It is not that difficult. First learn the alphabet and its pronunciation. Learn the lower case Greek alphabet because that is the most used. Then learn and memorize the Greek diphthongs. Once you have done this you can pronounce any Greek word even though you may not know what the word is. German is similar in that after you have learned the pronunciation of the alphabet and the diphthongs you can pronounce any word even if you do not know the meaning. I was able to listen to a friend recite Bible verses in (BMA – Bible Memory Association) German just because I had learn the alphabet and the dipthongs. I could tell if he is not reciting correctly.
Also, do not try to memorize the accent markings on the Greek Words because John Wenham stated in his excellent text book on Greek that the accent marks have practically no meaning or purpose for now.
The Elements of New Testament Greek – John Wenham
As I said, even if you know the Greek language you may not be a perfect interpreter of Holy Scripture. You must one all occasion call upon the Holy Spirit the author of the Holy Scriptures to enlighten you.
Personally, I believe that 99% of the will of God is contained in the Holy Scripture. The Holy Spirit never leads contrary to the clear Word of God. Also, I do not believe any additional revelation is being given today. All revelation from God has completed with the completion of the Scripture Canon. Jude 1:3 says, we are to earnestly contend for the faith, once for all delivered unto the saints. Only Jewish people had the prophetic office. You will not find any Gentile that has the prophetic gift or office of prophet.
However, there will be two Jewish prophets/witnesses appear during the Time of Jacob’s Trouble (Rev. 11, Zech 4) which will have the prophetic gifts.
All the books of the Bible after the institution of the Mosaic Covenant were written by Jewish persons. The only exception to this may be the book of Luke and Acts which were written by Luke. For a long time I believe that Luke was probably a Hellenic Jew. But one passage in Colossians 4:11 seems to indicate that he was a Gentile. He is not listed with the circumcision .
Col 4:7 All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you, who is a beloved brother, and a faithful minister and fellowservant in the Lord:
Col 4:8 Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts;
Col 4:9 With Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They shall make known unto you all things which are done here.
Col 4:10 Aristarchus my fellowprisoner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister’s son to Barnabas, (touching whom ye received commandments: if he come unto you, receive him;)
Col 4:11 And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellow workers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me.
At present I am not sure whether the context clearly excludes Luke from being Jewish. This does not make any difference. According to biblical scholars one of the keys to a book being canonical and inspired was that the book had to be written either by an Apostle or an associate of an Apostle. Luke was the constant associate of the Apostle Paul. This is also why I reject the Apocraphal books of the intestamental period. The Jewish people did not consider then canonical or inspired. The book of First Macabees has some good history, but Second Macabees is very inaccurate and anachronistic and many others are very fanciful and fairy tale like.
Paul writes in Romans 3:2 “Much in every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.” The Jewish people were the custodians of the Word of God. The two big things that the Jewish people contributed to the world were 1) the written Word of God, and 2) the Living Word of God (John 1:1, 14). All of the New Testament was written by Messianic Jews with the possible exception of Luke. Luke may have simply been the mouthpiece of Paul. But I have no evidence for that.
John Mauck wrote a very interesting book on Acts of the Apostles in which he alleges that Acts may have been a legal brief for the defense of the Apostle Paul for his trial before Caesar. Mauck’s argument is that Luke was demonstrating the Christianity was simply a true branch of Judaism. Judaism was legal in the Roman Empire and so Christianity should be also. John Mauck is a Christian lawyer and presents a excellent argument for his thesis and theory.
You should read his book if for nothing else to basically understand his theory which I consider very likely.
Rev. Thomas L. Clark – Phil. 3:14