The value of many translations

My friend Dale and I help each other get ready to teach. We compare notes, thoughts and illustrations. Its great to get someone else’s insights on a passage. Dale reminded me of one of the best ways to prepare to teach. Read other translations.

We are both taking our ABFs through Galatians. In Dale’s preparation he found a helpful translation of Galatians 2:12. In The Message its phrased, [Peter] “cautiously pulled back and put as much distance as he could.” The Greek word is close to how this translation renders it. It is a gradual retreat. I hadn’t seen that when I studied.

Here’s why you want to read several translation before you put together your lesson. The more translations you read the better you begin to understand the fullness of the Greek text. You don’t have to read Greek to understand the Bible. The wonderful thing about all the translations is that solid scholars do the tough work of translating. We benefit by hearing it more clearly explained. So as you prepare a lesson read the text through a number of times, then switch to a different translation. You’ll find you understand more deeply and maybe have a fresh look.

Here’s my favorite translations that I use to study the Bible: NIV, NLT, ESV, Message. What’s your helpful translations.

2 Responses to “The value of many translations”
  1. Aileen Hammond says:

    Hi Dane,
    I just wanted to say thanks for your comments here. It is helpful in keeping things alive and fresh for the Galations study (good ideas.)

    Our group is doing well, and we are reaching out to the community in mission. Very exciting!

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