Bible Translation Errors: 33 Words That Changed the Old Testament
CHICAGO, Feb. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — “The meanings of many Old Testament words have shifted radically over time,” says biblical researcher Roger D. Isaacs, author of Talking With God: The Radioactive Ark Of the Testimony. Communication Through It. Protection From It.
These word changes result from the fact that translators didn’t fully understand what the ancient Hebrew words originally meant and how they connected to the early Israelite’s experiences. Instead, translators have applied their own definitions and interpretations.
In the original Hebrew, for example, the word for “glory” actually means “thick, dense.” Many scholars agree that the word translated “holy” indicates “separation.” Even the familiar word “sin” carries the idea of “contamination,” a “sin offering,” then, being a “decontamination offering.” The word for “atonement” refers to the act of “covering.” Thus, the most important Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, translated “Day of Atonement,” should be translated “Day of Covering.”
Do these mistranslations skew biblical concepts? More significantly, do they misinform contemporary religious practices? Yes, says Isaacs. His book examines 33 words whose misinterpretations have profound impact on our understanding of what happened during biblical times.
“For centuries Judeo/Christian religions have been operating around misinterpreted concepts found in the world’s most influential book,” Isaacs says. “Attention must be given to the true meanings of words used every day … incorrectly.”
About the Author
From the early 1950s until 1965, Roger D. Isaacs worked with his father, the noted hematologist and biblical scholar Dr. Raphael Isaacs on the theory, which is now encompassed in Talking With God. This collaboration culminated in a monograph on the subject entitled “Puzzling Biblical Laws” (Bloch, 1965). After Dr. Isaacs’ death in 1965, Roger Isaacs launched into independent research on the subject, which has become the foundation of this book.
Mr. Isaacs attended the University of Chicago and The University of Wisconsin (Madison). His education was interrupted by World War II. During the war, he served with the 87th Infantry division in France and Germany where he received the Purple Heart. After the war, Isaacs continued his education at Bard College and graduated with a degree in Language and Literature.
From 1948 to 1992, Isaacs was an executive with The Public Relations Board, an international public relations agency, where he served as Chairman and president until he sold the company to the communications conglomerate Omnicom. Isaacs has two children and four grandchildren and lives in Glencoe, Illinois with his wife, Joyce.
In addition to his father, Mr. Isaacs comes from a long line of biblical scholars. His great grandfather was the religious leader Schachne Isaacs, who established the leading orthodox synagogue in Cincinnati known as “Reb Schachne’s Schule” in the 1800s.
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SOURCE Roger Isaacs