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Sunday, November 4, 2012

SENT by J. Webb Mealy

(Luke 11:2 in Koine Greek)
When's Mary Fairchild incorporated J. Webb Mealy's Spoken English New Testament (SENT) into her daily readings, she found its terminology to be "very clear and natural-sounding."

When the opportunity to interview "trained theologian and scholar of biblical studies" Mealy arose, Fairchild therefore asked him a number of questions about this "Spoken English" translation of the first-century Koine Greek New Testament.  Mealy, who took every New Testament Greek course (and then some) as a college student, told Fairchild that he is "passionate about making the Scriptures clear, fresh, and meaningful…"

Here are some of Mealy's other quotes from this interview:

Like the reformer Martin Luther, I believe that those who read the Scriptures have a right to understand them without needing an expert to explain everything to them.

My translation attempts to stay closely faithful to what each [New Testament] author said in Greek…

There is no one-size-fits-all working method for achieving this.  And it's much harder than you might expect.

The fact is that Greek not only uses a different word order from English, but it also casts ideas into words differently in many ways.

The meeting of these daunting challenges resulted in a thoroughly-documented Spoken English New
Testament (SENT) that has been field tested with numerous "real readers in focus groups."  Webb predicts that SENT will especially appeal to people "who have never gotten past the weird, wooden, archaic, jargon-filled language of the standard translations they've been exposed to."


Copyright November 4, 2012 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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