Wednesday, October 17, 2012

More Wright


Yeah, lots of Wright on this blog recently, but I have found much to consider in these videos that I have posted here. Also, I just starting reading his most recent book How God Became King.
(HT: Jesus Creed)

8 comments:

Amfortas said...

As ever there is so much we can learn from Tom Wright even though he departs from the Catholic faith on so many points. Is there any word about his projected six volume work on 'Christian Origins and the Question of God'? It's now ten years since the third volume (The Resurrection) and volume four is supposed to focus on St. Paul.

Jason Engel said...

I really enjoy listening to NT Wright speak. His books read in much the same way that he talks. The first half of his latest book was very good, but then the second half lost me (whether from complexity, repetitiveness, or boredom can be debated). He is easily one of the most knowledgeable New Testament scholars out there today.

losabio said...

Anyone out there grab NT Wright's Kingdom New Testament (KNT) translation? I listened to "Simply Jesus" in audiobook format, and I thought the passages from the KNT were terrific. It seems like it might be a nice change of pace type translation to have in print form for devotional type reading.

Anonymous said...

Can't wait for his fourth volume on St. Paul

Biblical Catholic said...

Yes, I have a copy of Wright's NT translation, I do NOT recommend it....his translation is unbelievably biased...for example, the infamous 'until' in Matthew...he translates it 'Joseph knew her not until after she had given birth'...transforming a non-committal statement into a flat out denial of the perpetual virginity of Mary...I couldn't believe that when I read it...that such a respected scholar would distort the text so brazenly...

CJA Mayo said...

The KNT is a lousy translation, but it certainly is very loose, breezy, and easy to read. If one will pay attention, nearly any translation of any Scripture - the Bible as much as any - done by a single man is almost always extremely idiosyncratic and biased. Even the best of these, Knox, Moffatt (An American Translation: the first to re-arrange verses like the NAB) (and the CPDV, Lightfoot, and to a large degree Wansbrough's NJB) have the translator's bias showing through. The worst of these, like Peterson (the Message) are so incredibly biased as to amount to a preacher re-telling the gospel in accordance with his particular theology and soteriology.

Now, the KNT departs from the Catholic faith wherever it is possible to depart from it within the text, but, beyond that, is not nearly as bad as the MSG end of the spectrum of "Scriptural re-imaginings".

Those translations done by a single Church or denomination have a similar problem, even the ancient Catholic translations ("do penance" is bias in action); the NIV has this in spades.

Those translations that are taken from a broad spectrum of scholars are almost always watered-down and bland, so that no one, Jew, Catholic, or Protestant, or Orthodox, or Feminist, or Secularist, is offended by any reading; thus one gets the NABRE's translations in Isaiah, and the NRSV's translation of Matthew.

Even at that, I would likely recommend nearly any committee-translated version over almost any individually-translated version.

All translations come with a trade-off; but, like Biblical Catholic, I can not recommend the KNT for anything other than a quick, critical read: it is beyond useless for actual study of the text or devotional reading.

And I believe NT Wright is the premier NT scholar of our generation (at least in the first three books of Christian Origins); it just goes to show that not every excellent scholar is cut out to make a translation of the Scriptures and inject, with little to no oversight or correction, their own biases and idiosyncrasies in to it.

Diakonos said...

Biblical Catholic: that was the first "Catholic" verse I turned to to check out the translation and like you I was so disappointed. Am a big NT Wright fan and would've loved to pick it up. Still might do so for the sake of the overall work...we'll see.

losabio said...

Thanks for the feedback on the KNT you guys. I had actually seen that passage from Mt and had sort of resigned myself to accepting those passages, which veer from the Catholic tradition, as just being idiosyncrasies of the translation.

I gained some insight into Lk 4:16-30 (Jesus reads from Isaiah in the synagogue) by hearing the KNT version in the "Simply Jesus" audiobook. I was hoping that reading through the KNT might provide additional opportunities for such illuminations.

@CJA Mayo - could you please provide brief descriptions of critical vs. devotional reading? I may have been misusing terms this whole time. When I mentioned devotional reading in my post, I meant just reading the text of the Scriptural translation itself and reflecting on it. No tracking down cross references, or reading notes in a study Bible, or using Logos to do word studies or parallel passage lookups or anything. Is that process, the reading of and reflection upon the Scriptural translation, actually more "critical" than "devotional"?