The Message…

Was reading today some of the really interesting thoughts people have on Eugene Peterson’s Message version of the bible. On one end of the spectrum we have people who see it as nothing but the work of Satan (via New Age/Spiritualism) and at the other people who think it’s the most accurate rendering of scripture since the original copies.

Incredible how worked up people can get, isn’t it. For some, nothing but the Authorised Version of 1611 (King James Version) is good enough. Any divergence, any differing versions of scripture are therefore not literal translations (with the protestant reformation the importance of the accuracy of scripture came to the fore) and therefore cannot be taken as God’s word.

I just wonder how important these discussions are – is the Message well off the mark? How important is it that Peterson describes Jesus as ‘Master’ rather than ‘Lord’ in an age where ‘Lord’ is only used to describe a member of the nobility (just one of the many examples the AV crowd use to decry this particular version)? Is it also one of those things that people outside the church look at and decide that they aren’t interested in Christ because these are the things we spend our times arguing about? Would we rather people not read the scriptures at all rather than reading the Message?

By the way, I have no problem with doctrine 1 – just asking the question!

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2 thoughts on “The Message…

  1. Oh berlimey, maybe it’s ‘cos I’m not as involved in it all as you but are people really arguing about this?

    I work in languages, specifically translation. The general idea is to communicate as clearly and concisely as possible. But the particular field I work in is legal stuff, so it’s actually the accuracy of the original text that’s of importance.

    But here’s the thing (as I see it): The Bible isn’t a ‘legal’ document. It’s more an idea of sense-for-sense than word-for-word. I could bore you with the details but I won’t…

  2. Two things I don’t like/can’t get used to:

    1) I think the language will date really quickly.

    2) for memorising (or quoting off the top of my head) NIV comes easier.

    I’ve used the messege now and again when it has had an interesting added dimension to a text, but I don’t reckon I’d ever use it on its own.

    Things such as the ‘Master’ and ‘Lord’ debate may not be critical in everyday life, but the second you begin a conversation about the deity of Jesus with, say, a JW or a Mormon, translation of the correct word becomes important.

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