June 01, 2004

I'll Stick With "Every Sperm is Sacred," Thanks

Sometimes I don't know what I was thinking with this whole conversion-to-Catholicism thing. Particularly, I'm disgusted by the Church's inability to produce a version of the Bible that even approaches the King James version; but then again, at least I didn't go Anglican and have to read butchery like this.

(Via Tim Blair. Oh, and don't miss this gem in the comments.)

UPDATE: Those of you who are as obsessive about these things as I am may wish to read the extended entry for an almost-but-not-quite-as-bad rendition of the 23rd Psalm (contrasted with the King James version), courtesy of the New American Bible. See why buying a Catholic Bible isn't high on my to-do list?

From the NAB:

The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I lack.

In green pastures you let me graze; to safe waters you lead me; you restore my strength. You guide me along the right path for the sake of your name.

Even when I walk through a dark valley, I fear no harm for you are at my side; your rod and staff give me courage.

You set a table before me as my enemies watch; You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

Only goodness and love will pursue me all the days of my life; I will dwell in the house of the Lord for years to come.

From the KJV:

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul; he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies; thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

Posted by Ilyka at June 1, 2004 10:51 PM in news

Uhhhh..... I'm not Catholic/Anglican/religious in general, but WTF?

It reads so... inelegantly!

Posted by: Lachlan at June 1, 2004 11:08 PM

Inelegant, yet absurd.

Posted by: rdbrewer at June 2, 2004 01:12 PM

Wait, how can 'dwell in the house of the Lord forever' become 'dwell in the house of the Lord for many years'? I thought Christianity promised eternity in heaven, not a couple of decades. Not exactly motivational, is it?

Posted by: Sam at June 2, 2004 02:18 PM

You don't have to buy the NAB to buy a "Catholic" Bible... there are other translations, more in line with the KJV... I have both, but I bought my Catholic Bible for the books that King James wanted left out... ;)

Posted by: pam at June 2, 2004 04:31 PM

For starters: "for many years" is probably a better translation. The Hebrew does not say "L'olam v'ed" (forever), but rather "le'orekh ymiym" ("for long days"; we know that "days" often means "years" in the ancient Hebrew texts). Each of these translations is in some cases more literal than the other. In some places both are poetic instead, with varying results.

Modern text analysis indicates that the "valley of the shadow of death" is a mislettering compounded by a mistranslation, and "dark valley" is probably better.

The KJ is more faithful to the pronouns (who's talking to whom).

I would say that the NAB translation is an attempt to be both true to the original (often with success) and beautiful (failing horribly besides the KJV). But where it differs, it is often accurate.

- The Precision Blogger.

Posted by: Precision Blogger at June 4, 2004 08:29 PM

That just goes to show you that verisimilitude is sometimes overrated.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at June 8, 2004 11:13 AM