Editor’s Note: This is the second of a two-part series on Bible translations. Part one was printed in the May 2 issue of the Baptist and Reflector.
By Johnnie Godwin
Contributing Columnist, B&R
The original Bible and translations from it. I find a lot of confusion over the proliferation or multiplication of biblical translations today. Let me start at the beginning. The original biblical writings were Hebrew and a bit of Aramaic for the Old Testament. The New Testament was written in Greek except for a few Aramaic fragments (such as Jesus’ deep emotion in saying, “Eloi, Eloi. lama, Sabachthani” [in Aramaic, His native language]: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34, KJV). But Greek is the language of the New Testament.
The Bible has 39 Old Testament books and 27 New Testament books — 66 all total. There are 929 chapters in the Old Testament and 260 in the New Testament — for a total of 1,189 chapters in the whole Bible. Modern scholars with computer help have said there are 807,361 words or forms in the Bible. Another lists 608,890 word forms in the Bible. Percentages of original languages are roughly these: 76 percent of the words are Hebrew; 1 percent Aramaic; and 23 percent Greek — numbers vary because of methods used. [Read more…]