Bill Mounce

For an Informed Love of God

You are here

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Back from the CBT

I am just back from three weeks locked away in Whistler, Canada, with the rest of the CBT (Committee on Bible Translation). Three weeks of discussing, agreeing, and sometimes disagreeing on the nuances of the meaning of words and the meaning of biblical passages. It doesn't get any better than that!

Well, perhaps a week in Switzerland would be better.

It was a really good time. Some of the committee members I had only known from a distance. Some I had known through my dad since his Bethel days. One I lived with in graduate school (Craig Blomberg). And others were brand new friends.

What was most educational was to see how dynamic translation works, first hand. From my years on the ESV I had gained an appreciation for formal equivalent translation, but to actually be part of a dynamic translation (okay, "functional equivalence") was a great teacher. I watched godly men and women struggle, sometimes agonize, over just the right wording so the NIV would faithfully convey the same meaning as intended by the biblical author. Whoever says dynamic translators have a lower view of Scripture needs to sit behind the veil and watch this group work.

What was amazing — and I didn't realize this at first — was that some of these translators defined "dynamic translation" for my generation, as the NIV is the quintessential and defining example of functional equivalence. I heard stories of the 1970's where these translators spent 10 weeks at a time creating the NIV. It was humbling to think that I get to sit and work with them.

Thank you for all your prayers for all the CBT. I am anxious to get blogging again in September. I have a whole new set of questions to ruminate on.