Monday, July 2, 2012

Translations Leading to Treasure


He who is slothful in his work is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.” Proverbs 18:9 (NKJV)

He also who is slack in his work is brother to him who destroys.” Proverbs 18:9 (NASB)

A lazy person is as bad as someone who destroys things.” Proverbs 18:9 (NLT)

Slack habits and sloppy work are as bad as vandalism.” Proverbs 18:9 (MSG)

He who is loose and slack in his work is brother to him who is a destroyer and he who does not use his endeavors to heal himself is brother to him who commits suicide.” Proverbs 18:9 (AMP)

As you can see, I have the same proverb listed out in five different bible translations. This is a good method to us if you do not have the resources to seek out the original context of a verse by looking back at it in its language of origin and then decipher the full meaning of the text. By looking at various translations you can compare and contrast them to one another and thus find out a more rounded picture of the text from the various eyes and minds of those who have looked at the original text and interpreted it in their own words. (By the way, a great resource to find alternative bible translations is www.biblegateway.com.)

As you can see above, the verse in Proverbs 18:9 describe the actions of a person and then it gives a more complete picture of the character of that person.

Here is the compare and contrast of these translations:

  • slothful = slack = lazy = slack & sloppy = loose, slack & negligent
  • destroyer = destroys = vandal = destroyer & suicidal

To take this exercise one step further you can also look up the meanings of these words in the dictionary and see how they expand your understanding of the words.

  • slothful = one who is disinclined to work
  • slack = one who is lacking in activity
  • lazy = one who is unwilling to work or use energy
  • sloppy = one who is careless and unsystematic
  • loose = one who is lacking moral restraint
  • negligent = one who fails to take proper care in doing something
  • destroy = one who puts an end to the existence of something by damaging or attacking it
  • vandal = one who willfully or maliciously defaces or destroys public or private property
  • suicidal = one who is dangerous to oneself or to one's interests; self-destructive

Can you see the greater truth here? God is so good to those who dig deep to find the treasure in His word and being negligent in taking are of our bodies, our minds, and our spirits will all lead to a self-determined death!

We would be wise to keep on plugging on in the direction God has set before us, no matter how difficult the road ahead looks and the struggles we can already see around the corner. Stopping short of where God is taking us is certain death to the soul and negligent behavior in God's eyes. If the road ahead looks to difficult too walk on your own you could not be more right, but God does not ask you to walk alone, but rather to trust in His steps which are right alongside yours so that you do not neglect the greater work He is doing in you to perfect you and make you more like Him.

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