In part three, we considered the reliability of the eyewitnesses and how their circumstances speak to the trustworthiness of their testimony. But someone might ask, “Isn’t the English Bible you use a mere translation of a copy of a copy of a copy of a copy of the original Bible?”
The answer to that question is, “Yes, it is both a translation and a copy.” Although the Bible is no longer available in its original manuscripts, there is nevertheless justification for saying that the Bible we have is accurate. As we consider the question of accuracy, let’s break it down into two issues: translation and transmission.
First, translation. Some people get a bit overwhelmed at all the translations and versions of the Bible we have. There are about five really popular English translations, but there are a plethora of others, some of which you may have never heard. Can we trust them? Yes, we can, but only insofar as they represent the original languages and best manuscripts.
If you went to a foreign country and wanted to communicate with the nationals, you would need an interpreter, right? The same thing is true for you if you can’t read the Greek and Hebrew of the Bible. You need an interpreter. And not just any interpreter, but one who is fluent in both languages, one who has integrity, one who is trustworthy.
The same is true for translators: are they competent in the languages? Are they committed to the integrity and trustworthiness of the Scriptures? And another consideration when it comes to translations of the Bible: Are they working alone or are they working as a team and checking each others’ work? Consider these as you select a Bible version.
In the next post, we will consider the issue of transmission. Copies, copies, copies . . .