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  1. I think you stealthily made a very valid case that \”translations\” ought to be made by those who have the credentials of being experts in the languages that they are working from. They might also have enough English credentials to know just how to express something in that living language. I believe that Simmons lack of scholarship will eventually doom the acceptance of this translation once the newness and fad fade away. Yet, I must say on his behalf that I enjoy the freshness of his English even if he errs in his sources. Perhaps this ought to have been called a “paraphrase” from the beginning rather than be mislabeled as a real translation. Personally, I don\’t think that there have been enough attempts at producing quality paraphrases. When I attended bible college, 30 plus years ago, I learned the major \”theological\” and \”doctrinal\” Greek and Hebrew words. This radically changed my view of translations forever as I realized just how limited any translation was in conveying ideas from one language to another. I have always found the debate over Greek vs Aramaic primacy interesting reading but it has not changed my view about the Lordship of Jesus Christ and his primacy in the church. I hope, despite its deficiencies, that Brian Simmons \”paraphrase\” will point the way to the living Jesus for those who still see Jesus as just a vague historical personage who taught some esoteric gobbly-gook. My greatest sadness is that Bible publishers keep on publishing ancient sounding Bible translation after Bible translation that go virtually unread and un-comprehended by the masses. It seems to me that the profit motive of these publisher has keep many more in ignorance. Thomas Nelson Publishers barely publishes their fine New Century Version any longer choosing instead to publish the awful KJV and the horrible NKJV almost exclusively. My own girlfriend refuses to pick up any other Bible than the KJV. She cannot comprehend what it is saying nor does she read it often because she knows that she can’t understand it! I doubt she could tell you who the prophet Elijah was, or what Jesus said about John the Baptist being Elijah, or even that Mary Magdalene was the first person to see the resurrected Jesus. Alas, when will the Bible stop being hidden by ill-informed corporate boards whose bottom line is only money?

  2. Thanks, Joseph, for your comment, and I am glad that you care about bible translation, and have a heart to see God’s word translated into English in a way that people can understand. Personally, I really like the NKJV, despite its undoubted deficiencies, and use it as my primary English bible, followed by the NASB. For personal reading, I read in the original now, most of the time, despite being slowed up by having to look up some words. The Lord is with you as you seek His wonderful face and meditate on His glorious word. Blessings in the Lord Jesus Christ,


  3. This is such a helpful post and your interaction with Simmons was gracious and thorough. Although I am sad that Simmons has presented himself as an aramaic scholar or allowed himself to be presented as such, I am more concerned at the way the footnotes throughout undermine the regular readers’ confidence in other English texts (or baby scholars like me who try to use of the Greek NT with many helps!) without solid evidence or explanation.

  4. Thank you, Megan, for the kind words and encouragement. You raise an important point – if with ‘English texts’ you are referring to other English bible translations, and if I understand you correctly – that Brian Simmons might give his readers the impression that the Greek and Hebrew originals are very vague and imprecise – that they can mean just about anything, so to say, when this is not true at all, Greek especially being a very precise language I think.


  5. I appreciate your thoroughness and that you are addressing the text and the source and not casting aspersions on Brian Simmons. Appreciate you doing this.

  6. Thank you so much for your work on this. It hasn’t been long that The Passion Translation has recently been influencing some in my church, and I hadn’t given it much thought until a person asked me what I thought of it. I had noticed Simmon’s possible dodge in answer to a question in an interview about when/how he learned Hebrew and Greek, but these particulars are most helpful. I really appreciate your careful documentation.

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