Re: Word Studies and the NIV

On Tue, 10 May 1994, Philip L. Graber wrote:

> Why would anyone want to do word studies from ANY translation?  If you
> don't have access to the source text, an assortment of translations is
> useful for gaining a number of readings of that text.  But what good are
> word studies in English? 
Exactly my question. What information is one looking for? I am similarly
confused about the value of "word for word" translation, and rating
certain translations high because they are good at "word for word" (or
some such phrase) translations. Is the implication behind such statements
and valuations that individual words have a standard, proper translation,
and not always being molded and massaged and formed by their context. I
try to hold to the translation standard that the sentence is the minimal
unit of translation, or at least the clause. I had even thought that this
principle or standard was rather widely held. What is the opinion out there--
is that the standard principle of translation? 

Nothing I say above of course wants to downplay the importance of looking
very carefully at individual words, and choosing the English words of your
translation as carefully as possible. 

Richard F. Wevers
Calvin College