Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Analyzing Six Bible Translations: Part 19-Textual Variants in the New Testament

Matthew 6:13
ESV And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
NIV84 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. '
NIV And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
HCSB And do not bring us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.]
NASB And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.'
NET And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.

Matthew 18:10-11
ESV See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that in heaven their angels always see the face of my Father who is in heaven.
NIV84 See that you do not look down on one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.
NIV See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.
HCSB [For the Son of Man has come to save the lost.]
NASB For the Son of Man has come to save that which was lost.
NET See that you do not disdain one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.

John 1:18
ESV No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known.
NIV84 No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him known.
NIV No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.
HCSB No one has ever seen God. The One and Only Son-- the One who is at the Father's side-- He has revealed Him.
NASB No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.
NET No one has ever seen God. The only one, himself God, who is in closest fellowship with the Father, has made God known.

checks:
The variant in Matt. 6:13 that some include at the end of the verse is most likely not original (cf. ESV, NIV, NET), but a scribal insertion. Including it in a footnote is fine (cf. NIV), but it should not be in the text (not even in brackets; cf. HCSB).

Matthew 18:11 is an assimilation of Luke 19:10. It is very likely not original. The HCSB and NASB mark it as probably not original, but they include it in the text. It should be in the footnotes at most.

While textual issues can be tricky, two early papyri read “God” at John 1:18. Therefore, the ESV, NIV, NASB, and NET follow the superior reading. The HCSB follows the “Son” reading, which is puzzling. The NIV has both “Son” and “God,” which is even more puzzling (cf. NLT)! It’s possible that the NIV took monogen─ôs and assumed a reference to Jesus as “Son” as part of the word.

Summary: The NASB seems to typically go with the right reading, but they consistently put inferior readings in the text (by use of italics); however, it does get John 1:18 correct: zero. The HCSB was poor on every choice: minus 1. The NIV’s puzzling inclusion of “Son” in John 1:18 is unfortunate: zero. The rest get 1 point each.

Part 2 running totals:

ESV
NIV84
NIV
HCSB
NASB
NET
Josh 15:18
1
1
1
1
-1
1
2 Sam 20:20
1
1
1
1
1
-1
Isa 6:5
1
1
1
1
1
-1
Isa 7:14
1
1
-1
1
1
-1
Ezek 21:7
1
1
1
1
1
-1
Mal 2:16
1
-1
1
1
-1
0
Telling Time
0
1
1
1
0
1
Negative Particles
0
1
1
1
1
1
Textual Variants
1
1
0
-1
0
1
TOTALS
7
7
6
7
3
0


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