re: Re: Translating XRISTOS (fwd)

From: David Moore (
Date: Mon Sep 11 1995 - 12:09:23 EDT

On Mon, 11 Sep 1995, Eric Weiss wrote:

> THE JEWISH NEW TESTAMENT by David Stern uses Messiah instead of Christ, and
> also, if I recall correctly, uses other Jewish terms in place of "Christian"
> ones where possible.
> The argument could be extended beyond whether or not one should translate
> Christos as "Christ" or "Messiah" to whether or not one should translate all
> "Jewish" terms in the New Testament in as Jewish a way as possible:
> Should nomos be translated as "law" or as "Torah"?
> Should persons' names (including Jesus') be transliterated Hebrew forms,
> rather than anglicized Latin/Greek forms, so the readers will be properly
> reminded that they're reading JEWISH documents?
> Should wordplays which are only apparent in the Greek be transliterated,
> rather than translated (e.g., Jesus' calling Peter "Rock" and Nicodemus'
> confusion over Jesus saying one must be born "anwthen")?
> If you're going to say "Jesus the Messiah" rather than "Jesus Christ," why
> not say "Y'shua the Messiah" (or better yet, "Mashiach")?
> Should English names that use a soft "C" be rewritten with "K" to more
> properly reflect the pronunciation of the Greek (e.g., Acts 8:27
> "Kandake" rather than "Candace") and to remind one that these are
> documents from another time and place?

        I would think that some of the measures you mention in the first
part of your message would be helpful in translations for readers within
a strongly Jewish context.

        What I think the translator should aim for, in general, is to
make the meaning of the original as accessible and as readily understood
as possible. That was what I felt the use of "Messiah" in some passages
in the Gospels and Acts might achieve. My suggestion had the general
reader in mind, not specifically someone from a Jewish background.

David L. Moore Southeastern Spanish District
Miami, Florida of the Assemblies of God Department of Education

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