We’ve released eighteen 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.
Listen to all the spots at www.bibleforlife.org.
Crossway has implemented several changes to the audio at the ESV Online Edition.
The former default audio type, RealAudio, was painful for everyone involved. Crossway’s tested their Flash solution for five months and have found it to work (and scale) well. You click the “Listen” link, and it plays the audio without an external player.
All the other audio types (MP3, WMA, Real) will remain available indefinitely. Both the Marquis Laughlin and Max McLean recordings are available in Flash and MP3. We expect to make any future recordings available in these two formats.
Only the Marquis Laughlin recording is available in WMA and Real formats.
Go to the Options page to set your audio preferences.
Our goal is to provide continuity between the Old and New Testaments. Max McLean’s recording is the only one currently available for the entire ESV.
You can change your preferences to use the Marquis Laughlin recording for the New Testament and the Max McLean recording for the Old Testament.
Previously, only New Testament verses were podcasts. Now, every verse has both text and audio available. All RSS feeds.
Related to the above changes, Crossway has added a new, optional parameter to the web service and changed an existing parameter.
The audio-format parameter now takes four possible values instead of two: flash, mp3, real, or wma.
On July 10, 2006, the default value of audio-format will change from real to flash. You should set this parameter explicitly if you prefer a particular format.
(Why not make mp3 the default? The links to the MP3s expire after about 24 hours, making them unsuitable for caching. In addition, you can hear gaps between verses. But MP3 might be your best bet if you cache your web service queries for one day or less.)
There is a new audio-version parameter that takes one of three values: mm (Max McLean), ml (Marquis Laughlin, New Testament only), and ml-mm (Max McLean for the Old Testament, Marquis Laughlin for the New Testament). This parameter only affects the output if the audio-format is either flash or mp3.
The default value of audio-version is ml-mm and is subject to change. If you prefer a particular recording, you should explicitly set this parameter.
Finally, and unrelated to the audio changes, a <unit> element in the response of getQueryInfo numerically identifies verses to assist automated processing.
See the API page for more details.
Michael P. Foley wrote in Friday’s Wall Street Journal about the language used in liturgies:
Contrary to widespread belief, there has never been a tradition of the vernacular in Christian liturgy, if by “vernacular” you mean the language we speak on the street. Many of the earliest Masses were offered in a language the congregation could understand, but not in the language that could be heard in the marketplace. Before a native language was used in divine worship, it was first “sacralized”—its syntax and diction were gingerly modified, archaisms were deliberately re-introduced and even new rhythmic meters and cadences were invented. All of this was done in order to produce a distinctive mode of communication, one that was separate from garden-variety vernacular speech and capable of relaying the unique mysteries of the Gospel.
Thus, if English is to convey sacred mysteries, there should be a “sacred English.” The very word we use for everyday speech, “profane,” comes from profane, “outside the temple.”
Translating a liturgy does not precisely correspond to translating the Bible, since you often read the Bible outside of public worship settings. Nevertheless, this historical context helps explain how tradition has shaped the translation of the Bible into English.
Bobby at Bobby’s Blog has been studying the Psalms under C. John Collins, a member of the ESV Translation Oversight Committee. Bobby shares one thing he learned about the Psalms:
Anyway, part of the hermeneutic Dr. Collins drills into our heads for understanding how to read and interpret the Psalms is so ridiculously amazing, I’m surprised that more people don’t know this!
He posits that since the Psalms were/are the hymnbook of the people of God, put together for corporate worship as the congregation sang them together, we must approach it that way.
WHAT? The Psalms weren’t mean to be my personal devotional book for me and me only?
WHAT? You mean that when we get together for worship, it’s appropriate to recite or sing these gems together as the people of God to own for ourselves???
pffft….takes all the fun individualism out of it