Scripture meaning lost through translation?

ByTheSpirit

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love". Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.

Just curious, thanks!
 
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chevyontheriver

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love". Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.

Just curious, thanks!
There are Christians living on the Nineveh Plains of Iraq that speak Aramaic. They've been there about 1970 years radically unchanged. Ask 'em.
 
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RDKirk

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love". Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.

Just curious, thanks!

Are you giving room for the Holy Spirit in your question?
 
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ByTheSpirit

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There are Christians living on the Nineveh Plains of Iraq that speak Aramaic. They've been there about 1970 years radically unchanged. Ask 'em.
Sure thing, can you get one of them on Christian Forums for me? Or perhaps you have a phone number I can reach out to one. :)
 
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eleos1954

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love". Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.

Just curious, thanks!


TheAramaicScriptures.com

???
 
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ByTheSpirit

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That's helpful, but I guess I'm more curious about the nuances of the language. Example, many Greek scholars will say, "This passage really means this because the tense of the word and stynax..." they can bring a word greater depth of meaning by knowing the language. That's more what I'm curious about.
 
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lsume

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love". Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.

Just curious, thanks!
The truth is that Christ must open one’s eyes and ears for them them to see and hear The Word. If you have had that experience for a given Scripture, that same experience must happen for all.
 
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ByTheSpirit

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The truth is that Christ must open one’s eyes and ears for them them to see and hear The Word. If you have had that experience for a given Scripture, that same experience must happen for all.
My question isn't trying to cast doubt on the scriptures, perhaps I could have worded it differently. I'm just curious at how specific words would bring more depth of meaning. As the example I provided, philia love or agape love. They are different, different contexts, yet in English it's usually just translated love. That type of deal.
 
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eleos1954

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That's helpful, but I guess I'm more curious about the nuances of the language. Example, many Greek scholars will say, "This passage really means this because the tense of the word and stynax..." they can bring a word greater depth of meaning by knowing the language. That's more what I'm curious about.

well ... Jesus no doubt could speak various languages and He spoke whatever language dependent on who His audience was. However was mostly Hebrew & Greek.

I will say by using the Hebrew & Greek lexicons many times passages become more clear ... the depth of those languages exceeds that of the english language.

Here is one resource ....

Bible Hub: Search, Read, Study the Bible in Many Languages
 
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com7fy8

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Are you giving room for the Holy Spirit in your question?
What do you mean?
I think this can mean, Are we simply being in prayer so we receive how the Holy Spirit has us understanding a scripture? After all . . . the original of God's word is in the Holy Spirit, I would say deeper than what any words can tell us!

Notice how Paul can start a letter with something like "Grace and peace be to you" > I see that this is so God's grace and peace in us can give us His real meaning of what His words say. We discover how God in us affects us and guides us, as His meaning of what we read.

We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.
My opinion is that certain scholars have agreed to assume this.

For all I know, Jesus could have dictated a gospel to someone in Aramaic, and told the person to get it translated into Hebrew and Greek. And then only later Greek copies survived. Originals, in any case, could have been so valued that they got used extensively and got worn out.

Now that I think of it, I find it very interesting how we have Hebrew Scriptures from before Jesus, but not Hebrew New Testament originals or copies. But original writings could have been Hebrew or Aramaic, then translated while they wore out. And ones might have translated copies of the Greek into Hebrew . . . for all I know . . . but then wore out the Hebrew copies.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.
As I offer . . . messages start with a ministration of God's grace and peace. This can affect us with how God means His message. And God is infallible and He does not lose His meaning, and His grace and peace do not get diluted or lost with time.

"Therefore submit to God." (in James 4:7)

This is His word. And His word produces all He means by His word >

"'So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
. It shall not return to Me void,
. But it shall accomplish what I please,
. And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.'"

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (Isaiah 55:11)

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love".
You can tell from what is being said about "love", in each scripture.

For example, I would say 2 Corinthians 12:15 is an excellent example of unconditional love.

And clearly Matthew 5:46 is not talking about God's all-loving and unconditional love.

Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.
Well, I suppose you can look up an Aramaic-English dictionary on the Net. And ask what words there are for "love" in Aramaic. I think I'll try this now . . . hope to see you in a while :)

Ok, I checked it. It seems that there is only one word in Aramaic for love, and it has various possible meanings. Like in English, you can find out what someone means.
 
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sandman

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One of the reasons I use the online BLB is to be able to easily check the Greek/Hebrew word being used. It will not only give the word, but will also give a list of scripture where it is used. It does the parsing and also offers various definitions along with root words, word search, and many other things. It is a good helps tool.

I have an Aramaic Bible translated from the Peshitta, but it is not going to offer you the insight you are looking for, regarding those words. You still have to do research into the word itself.
 
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lsume

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My question isn't trying to cast doubt on the scriptures, perhaps I could have worded it differently. I'm just curious at how specific words would bring more depth of meaning. As the example I provided, philia love or agape love. They are different, different contexts, yet in English it's usually just translated love. That type of deal.
When Christ came to me, I found that the KJV was most close to the Spiritual experience. When Christ revealed God The Father to me, His Word became invaluable.
 
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ByTheSpirit

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One of the reasons I use the online BLB is to be able to easily check the Greek/Hebrew word being used. It will not only give the word, but will also give a list of scripture where it is used. It does the parsing and also offers various definitions along with root words, word search, and many other things. It is a good helps tool.

I have an Aramaic Bible translated from the Peshitta, but it is not going to offer you the insight you are looking for, regarding those words. You still have to do research into the word itself.
In your studies, do you notice any major differences say between what the Aramaic may say/mean and what the Greek does? Or a better way to ask is, does the Aramaic offer different insight to what a word may mean?
 
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sandman

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In your studies, do you notice any major differences say between what the Aramaic may say/mean and what the Greek does? Or a better way to ask is, does the Aramaic offer different insight to what a word may mean?

The only major thing that does alter perception on a specific event of the crucifixion ….
I think I better pull my research on this and post it… I has to do with what Jesus spoke, and I don’t want to get this wrong. It is a study I did years ago, which was confirmed by the Peshitta.

I have a meeting for few hours…I will post after that.
 
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ByTheSpirit

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The only major thing that does alter perception on a specific event of the crucifixion ….
I think I better pull my research on this and post it… I has to do with what Jesus spoke, and I don’t want to get this wrong. It is a study I did years ago, which was confirmed by the Peshitta.

I have a meeting for few hours…I will post after that.
Awesome, thank you for sharing!
 
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Sheila Davis

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.

How different would it have been to have heard his words in Aramaic and understand his messages in it's original context and form, than it is for us having them translated from one language, to another, to another still? I'm sure it doesn't change a bunch, probably just loses depth of meaning.

Example, in Greek there's multiple words for love like philia or agape. Philia is like a brotherly love or affection whereas agape is unconditional, sacrificial, and perfect love. Yet in English scripture it's usually just translated as "love". Perhaps someone here knows Aramaic (?) and can explain what a passage would mean in that as opposed to English.

Just curious, thanks!

Hard questions to answer as an absolute.
We can only rely on modern day translations of the early Greek language, Hebrew or Arabic. Hopefully someone can answer your question.
From my understanding the New testament was originally written in Greek.
In what language was the Bible first written?

The Original Language of New Testament - Israel Study Center

If the New Testament was translated from Hebrew there are no known original writings. and considering the Greeks I believe they would have preserved those writings. Maybe they did and just haven't been discovered. https://aleteia.org/2020/12/04/where-to-find-the-four-oldest-new-testament-manuscripts/
Even the Dead Sea scrolls are not the originals - they were rewritten by scribes from my studies after Babylonian captivity and after Roman captivity.

Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls? | History| Smithsonian Magazine

9 Things You Should Know About the Dead Sea Scrolls

The Bible itself was translated and retranslated at least 41 times, as was stated in the older King James Versions printed before the 1960s, in the index - which they also stated King James himself did not officially authorize the Bible. That has changed. Below is a link I found which also States King James did not officially authorize the Bible but it was printed in all Bibles printed before the 1960s.

Three Myths about the King James Bible

I'm quite sure throughout the millenniums there is a lot lost in the meaning of the original writers. Honestly it has all been guesswork and accepted as to the meaning of ancient words, of languages that have not been in use for thousands of years. I am also quite sure that there have been some deliberate changes.
I read of one priest who was cast out from the church because he tried to rewrite the Bible the way he thought it should be.
In the book of Revelation the warning wasn't put there just to be said, it warns against those who deliberately changed the words of God.
 
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Clare73

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Having a hard time getting this question in a way that is satisfactory. We know the gospels are written in Greek, maybe Matthew had a Hebrew version, but still not in Jesus' original tongue of Aramaic.
It matters not. . .the Holy Spirit is the author of Scripture in its original language.

We have no evidence the NT was written in anything other than the Greek, which was the language of the realm at the time Israel was under Roman rule.
They spoke Greek, not Hebrew, which was the reason for the LXX (Septuagint) over 200 years before the birth of Christ.

And the Greek scholars of today have a good knowledge of NT Greek.
 
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sandman

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Awesome, thank you for sharing!

This is not the one I was looking for ...it looks like this is from another post I did...(so many files and thumb drives)
I have a file that has more information like why translators left n the Aramaic words and some other things but you can get the jest of the meaning from this....
And I will be checking the Peshitta for other things that may be of interest.

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Matthew 27:46

And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? [that is to say], My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
the words that is to say are not in the Aramaic text

Some people say Jesus was quoting Psalms 22:1

Psa 22:1
[[To the chief Musician upon Aijeleth Shahar, A Psalm of David.]] My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?



But…Consider the following scripture:


John 10:30

I and my Father are one.
The word one hen neuter, means “one in purpose”
How could they be one in purpose….. and have God forsake Him on the cross.

How about:

II Corinthians 5:19a
To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself…
How could God be in Christ and forsake him?

John 16:32

Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me

Matthew 26:53

Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels

God would provided Jesus more than 72,000 angles…. At any point Jesus could have walked away with a massive amount of spiritual body guards.


So how do we reconcile these scriptures with Matthew 27:46… it would appear to be a contradiction of terms.


It has been said that God hated sin so much that he had to turn away during the final moments of His only begotten sons life…..I don't think so.

One of the principles of biblical research is when you have several clear verses, and one that seemingly contradicts those clear... then it is either in our understanding, or in translation…..In this case it is translation.

The words Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani are Aramaic, that is the language Jesus spoke
There is no such Aramaic word as lama however there is a word lmna which is a declaration as in “for this reason” or “for this purpose”
The word sabachthani comes from the root word shbk which means “to spare, or to keep, to leave, or reserve”.

(The word remaining in the following verses have all been translated from shbk II Kings 10:11, Deuteronomy 3:3, Joshua 10:33)


Literally this should read Eli, Eli, lmna sabachthani that is to say, “My God, My God, for this reason, or for this purpose was I reserved, or spared”.


For this purpose Christ came into this world, the purpose of redemption…

Now that would be an interesting study if we left it there…but let’s put some icing on the cake
**From the Peshitta {Aramaic text} this reads Eli, Eli, lemana shabakthani “My God, My God, for this I was spared, or this was my destiny”.

**Another interesting fact: I was told that ….most all eastern Bibles have “for this purpose I was spared” while the Occidental translations read “why hast thou forsaken me.
 
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By_the_Book

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The Word of God has become very deluded and distorted over time primarily for the purpose of making money. What a lot of people do not realize is that each time a new version of the Bible comes out in order for that company to obtain a copyright the book must be changed by 20% of any other published book or Bible. When you think about how many translations are out there that is a lot of change from the original text.
 
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