Translators of the King James Version wrote: " We do not deny, nay we affirm and avow, that the very meanest translation of the Bible in English, set forth by men of our profession,...containeth the word of God, nay, is the word of God: as the King’s speech which he uttered in Parliament, being translated into French, Dutch, Italian, and Latin, is still the King’s speech, though it not be interpreted by every translator with the like grace nor peradventure so fitly for phrase, nor so expressly for sense, everywhere. " [Beegle, 142; cf. Rhodes and Lupas, 16,47,78]
Letter from New Tribes Mission
New Tribes Mission has missionary translators from different countries. Therefore, those involved in Bible translation use versions of the Bible in their mother tongues, including English, German, Swedish, Spanish and others. It is also desirable for our translators to use versions of the Bible in the trade languages of the country in which they serve. NTM missionaries who are fluent in Greek and/or Hebrew would find those Greek and Hebrew texts of great use in translation work. It is true that most of our missionaries are not fluent in either Greek or Hebrew. However, it is not required that Bible translators be fluent in these original tongues of the written Word in order to make good, reliable translations in the tribal languages. This is because of all the tremendous translation helps in the form of lexicons, commentaries etc. that have been written especially for translators with limited or no fluency in the original languages.
Sincerely in Him,
I had perceaved by experyence how that it was impossible to stablysh the laye people in any truth, excepte the scripture were playnly layde before their eyes in their mother tongue.
Bible translation History Links
Bible translation, which was difficult in the beginning, was done often without fluency in Hebrew or Greek. With each succeeding translation, the work became easier, as we had the work of others to compare with. The first translations are always the most difficult and are usually not from the original languages. Once a country develops nationals to do a translation from the original languages, those translations usually always become the standard. Because language is ever changing, new translations are needed to communicate to the faithful as well as the Bible illiterate in any given country. Polish and Bohemian were 99% similar only 600 years ago. Both of those languages changed and the similarities are now only about 60%. Either way, the translation God uses is the one available, even with the flaws. The first translation of the Polish Bible from the original languages or the earliest manuscripts was done by Polish Protestants in the sixteenth century before the KJV was produced. The previous WUJEK translation was done from the Latin Vulgate. Today in Poland there are several new translations from the original languages from Catholics and Protestants. There are no disagreements in these translations, only afterward in interpretation. It has always been good to question and test every translation in a constructive way. Those who were truly constructive, translated the Bible again under the scrutiny of all other scholars available. It is virtually impossible to get away with an erroneous published translation in the primary languages of the world. The Gospel of Mark itself has grammatical errors in all the Greek manuscripts which we have. Some evangelical scholars believe that at least some of the original writings ( including the entire Gospel of Matthew ) of the New Testament were done first in Aramaic and later translated into Greek. You can now also read a New Testament translated into English from the Aramaic using a 20th Century version of the Aramaic. No ancient manuscripts written in the Aramaic have ever been found. No one living today has seen the original texts, only copies made by human hands. The message of salvation through the Blood of the Lamb, " For thou was slain and has redeemed us to God by thy blood " Rev. 5: 9 has always gotten through. There are over 24,000 manuscripts of the New Testament alone from the 2nd to the 15th century which testify of the great care taken in copies made by hand. That which God wanted us to know was made very clear in the Bible.