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Archive for February, 2006

New “Bible for Life” Radio Spots (February 2006)

We’ve released ten new spots in the “Bible for Life” radio campaign. Each one-minute spot has someone reading a passage from the ESV and meditating on it.

This month features Clay Crosse, Lael Arrington, Justin Taylor, and others.

Listen to all the spots at www.esv.org/radio/bfl.

February 27, 2006 | Posted in: ESV,General | Author: Crossway Staff @ 10:25 am | Comments Off »

The Origin of the ESV

Ben Witherington recounts a secondhand tale of how the ESV came into being. We wanted briefly to share our version of events.

The real origin of the ESV Bible goes back to the early 1990s, long before the gender-language controversy, when Crossway’s president, Dr. Lane T. Dennis, talked to a number of Christian scholars and pastors about the need for a new literal translation. He found a hunger for a Bible that conveyed the majesty and dignity of God’s Word, a Bible both accurate and beautiful.

The ESV developed from this perceived need, not as a reaction to other Bible publishers’ doings or to meet the Colorado Springs Guidelines.

Crossway explored some specific possibilities in the early 1990s, but without success. Then, some five or six years later, Crossway initiated the idea for what became the ESV.

From the beginning, Crossway wanted to revise an existing translation of the Bible; the logical place to start was the Tyndale/King James legacy, with centuries of history behind it. There was debate over whether to use the ASV of 1901 or the more recent RSV (itself a revision of the ASV) as the starting point for the text. The RSV won out in the end, largely because:

  1. The RSV is a good translation (some have called it the finest translation of the 20th century), so the translators would not have to revise large swaths of it.
  2. The RSV has wide scholarly acceptance.
  3. Many prominent Christian leaders were trained on the RSV.

Other Points

Over 100 people helped translate the ESV. This group includes Wesleyans and Calvinists, dispensationalists and covenant theologians, Pentecostals and cessationists, egalitarians and complementarians, paedobaptists and credobaptists. Even the fourteen-member Translation Oversight Committee did not make for a completely homogeneous group on the question of gender or other major translation points; spirited debate often revolved around such questions.

A page on this site deals with how the ESV treats gender issues. In a nutshell, it uses inclusive language where the context warrants it and retains a masculine sense “where a male meaning component is part of the original Greek or Hebrew.”

One word that can mean either “men” or “people” (depending on context) is the Greek word anthropoi, which is the example Dr. Witherington gives. Below is a table showing all the dative plural instances of this word and how both the ESV and the RSV translate it. The ESV translates it without a masculine component in 17 of the 43 instances. The RSV translates it that way only once.

Passage ESV RSV
Matt 6:5 And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by men. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.
Matt 6:14-16 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. And when you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by men. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.
Matt 6:18 that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. that your fasting may not be seen by men but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
Matt 9:8 When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men. When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.
Matt 12:31 Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.
Matt 19:26 But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Matt 23:5 They do all their deeds to be seen by others. For they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long They do all their deeds to be seen by men; for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long
Matt 23:28 So you also outwardly appear righteous to others, but within you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness. So you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Mark 10:27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” Jesus looked at them and said, “With men it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God.”
Luke 1:25 Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people. Thus the Lord has done to me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among men.
Luke 2:14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased! “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom he is pleased!”
Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man. And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and man.
Luke 12:36 and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the marriage feast, so that they may open to him at once when he comes and knocks.
Luke 16:15 And he said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts. For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God. But he said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts; for what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
Luke 18:27 But he said, “What is impossible with men is possible with God.” But he said, “What is impossible with men is possible with God.”
John 4:28 So the woman left her water jar and went away into town and said to the people, So the woman left her water jar, and went away into the city, and said to the people,
John 17:6 I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. “I have manifested thy name to the men whom thou gavest me out of the world; thine they were, and thou gavest them to me, and they have kept thy word.
Acts 4:12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
Acts 4:16 saying, “What shall we do with these men [Peter and John]? For that a notable sign has been performed through them is evident to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. saying, “What shall we do with these men? For that a notable sign has been performed through them is manifest to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it.
Acts 5:4 While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God. While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? How is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.
Acts 5:29 But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.” But Peter and the apostles answered, We must obey God rather than men.
Acts 5:35 And he said to them, “Men of Israel, take care what you are about to do with these men [the apostles].” And he said to them, “Men of Israel, take care what you do with these men.
Acts 14:11 And when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in Lycaonian, “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men [Paul and Barnabas]!” And when the crowds saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in Lycaonian, “The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!”
Acts 15:26 men [Paul and Barnabas] who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ. men who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Acts 17:30 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all men everywhere to repent.
Rom 14:18 Whoever thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men. he who thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men.
1 Cor 3:21 So let no one boast in men. For all things are yours. So let no one boast of men. For all things are yours.
1 Cor 4:9 For I think that God has exhibited us apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death, because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men. For I think that God has exhibited us apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and to men.
1 Cor 14:2-3 For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit. On the other hand, the one who prophesies speaks to people for their upbuilding and encouragement and consolation. For one who speaks in a tongue speaks not to men but to God; for no one understands him, but he utters mysteries in the Spirit. On the other hand, he who prophesies speaks to men for their upbuilding and encouragement and consolation.
Gal 1:10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ. Am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still pleasing men, I should not be a servant of Christ.
Eph 4:8 Therefore it says, “When he ascended on high he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to men.” Therefore it is said, “When he ascended on high he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to men.”
Eph 6:7 rendering service with a good will as to the Lord and not to man rendering service with a good will as to the Lord and not to men
Phil 4:5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand. Let all men know your forbearance. The Lord is at hand.
Col 3:23 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men. Whatever your task, work heartily, as serving the Lord and not men.
1 Thes 2:4 but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts. but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please men, but to please God who tests our hearts.
1 Thes 2:15 who killed both the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and drove us out, and displease God and oppose all mankind. who killed both the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and drove us out, and displease God and oppose all men.
2 Tim 2:2 and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. and what you have heard from me before many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
Titus 2:11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people For the grace of God has appeared for the salvation of all men
Titus 3:8 The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. The saying is sure. I desire you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to apply themselves to good deeds; these are excellent and profitable to men.
Heb 9:27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment And just as it is appointed for men to die once, and after that comes judgment
February 21, 2006 | Posted in: ESV,Translation | Author: Crossway Staff @ 4:21 pm | (19) Comments »

One Week Left for MP3 Download Introductory Prices

Introductory prices for the MP3 downloads of Max McLean’s recording of the ESV expire February 28, 2006. That means that you’ll pay $49.95 instead of $39.95 for the complete Bible starting March 1, 2006. (We have to say that $49.95 for the complete Bible—over seventy hours—is still quite reasonable.)

Podcast subscription prices will remain the same.

| Posted in: Editions,ESV | Author: Crossway Staff @ 2:44 pm | Comments Off »

Oxford University Press Releases ESV with Scofield Study Notes

Oxford University Press has published the Scofield Study Bible III containing the ESV text and Scofield notes. Here’s their description:

The Scofield® Study Bible III offers an unparalleled package of reference tools designed to enrich the study of God’s unchanging Word. It has been augmented (not revised) with a wealth of factual information that is clearly displayed in charts and sidebar articles. These add depth and richness to study time, making the ideas underlying the Scofield’s annotations clearer to modern readers.

This edition features the English Standard Version, an “essentially literal” translation of the Bible that emphasizes word-for-word accuracy and precision along with literary beauty and readability.

Enhanced book introductions, accurate in-text maps, authoritative full color maps, and page bottom notes broaden the context of the reader’s understanding. Everything about this volume has been designed to encourage serious Bible study. First-time students and seasoned believers alike will find it to be a trustworthy guide to the panorama of God’s plan of salvation.

See all seven editions at Oxford’s site, where you can buy them now. These Bibles will make their way to retailers over the next few weeks.

February 17, 2006 | Posted in: Editions,ESV | Author: Crossway Staff @ 12:40 pm | (3) Comments »

New Endorsement from Thurman R. Hayes, Jr.

We just added a new endorsement of the ESV to the Endorsements page:

“I absolutely love the ESV Bible. And since I began preaching from the ESV every week, our people love it too. As I see it, the ESV has it all—accuracy, literary flow, beauty, dignity. It’s wonderful for reading, preaching, studying, and memorizing. More and more I’m finding that people who love to dig into the Scripture love the ESV.”
Dr. Thurman R. Hayes, Jr.
Senior Pastor, Bethel Baptist Church, Yorktown, Virginia
February 16, 2006 | Posted in: ESV,General | Author: Crossway Staff @ 8:38 am | Comments Off »