Better Khmer Bibles Blog

A place to discuss Khmer Bible translation problems and suggest improvements. View this tutorial on how to install Khmer Unicode on your computer so that you can view the Khmer fonts on this blog.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

KCB - Mark 1:45

KCB translates Mark 1:45 as follows:

«ប៉ុន្តែ បុរស​នោះ​បាន​ចេញ​ទៅ រួច​ក៏​ចាប់ផ្តើម​ប្រកាស​ពី​កិច្ចការ​ជា​ច្រើន និង​បាន​ផ្សព្វ​ផ្សាយ​អំពី​រឿង​នេះ ដូច្នេះ​ហើយ​ព្រះ​អង្គ​ក៏​មិន​អាច​យាង​ចូល​ទៅ​ក្នុង​ក្រុង​ដោយ​ចំហ​បាន​ទៀត​ឡើយ ប៉ុន្តែ​ព្រះ​អង្គ​គង់​នៅ​ខាង​ក្រៅ​ក្រុង​ត្រង់​កន្លែង​ស្ងាត់​ៗ ហើយ​មនុស្ស​ម្នា​ពី​គ្រប់​ទិស​ទី​បាន​មក​រក​ព្រះ​អង្គ។»

I felt like this translation deviated from the original Greek farther than most of the passages in the KCB and also caused a couple of things to be unclear in the Khmer.

Here is a Greek Interlinear (with Khmer added) to help:

ο 3588 δε 1161[BUT HE,​ ប៉ុន្តែ​គាត់] εξελθων 1831(5631)[HAVING GONE OUT,​ បាន​ចេញ​ទៅ] ηρξατο 756(5662)[BEGAN,​ ចាប់ផ្តើម​] κηρυσσειν 2784(5721)[TO PROCLAIM "IT",​ ប្រកាស “វា”] πολλα 4183[MUCH,​ ច្រើន] και 2532[AND,​ ហើយ] διαφημιζειν 1310(5721)[TO SPREAD ABROAD, ផ្សព្វ​ផ្សាយ] τον 3588[THE] λογον 3056[MATTER, ​រឿង] ωστε 5620[SO THAT,​ ដូច្នេះ​ហើយ] μηκετι 3371[NO LONGER, មិន​បាន​ទៀត​ឡើយ ] αυτον 846[HE, ទ្រង់] δυνασθαι 1410(5738)[WAS ABLE, អាច] φανερως 5320[OPENLY, ដោយ​ចំហ] εις 1519[INTO "THE",​ទៅ​ក្នុង] πολιν 4172[CITY, ក្រុង] εισελθειν 1525(5629)[TO ENTER;,​ យាង​ចូល] αλλ 235[BUT, ប៉ុន្តែ] εξω 1854[OUTSIDE, ខាងក្រៅ] εν 1722[IN, នៅ​ក្នុង] ερημοις 2048[DESERTED, រហោ] τοποις 5117[PLACES, ឋាន] ην 2258(5713)[WAS, នៅ] και 2532[AND, ហើយ] ηρχοντο 2064(5711)[THEY CAME, គេ​បាន​មក] προς 4314[TO,​ ដល់] αυτον 846[HIM, ទ្រង់] πανταχοθεν 3836[FROM EVERY QUARTER, ពី​គ្រប់​ទិស​ទី​]

And here is a list of changes that I feel should be made:

1) "ប្រកាស​ពី​កិច្ចការ​ជា​ច្រើន" – I feel there is no reason to add "ពី​កិច្ចការ​" being that there is no equivelent in the Greek, and that it does not help the Khmer to come out more clear (in both cases, with "ពី​កិច្ចការ​" being included and without it, the question would still arise in the reader's mind, “What did he proclaim, what work did he proclaim?” which I believe is not a problem (nor does Khmer grammar demand it that I know of), they only need to read farther in the verse to find out, as a reader of the Greek would have to do. English translations normally add the word “it” here but I don't think it is needed in the Khmer, and therefore can better follow the Greek than English allows.

2) "និង​បាន" I don't think there is a need to use "បាន" here again being that it was already used in the beginning of the verse, "បាន​ចេញ​ទៅ" and by not using it again it better follows the Greek.

3) "អំពី​រឿង​នេះ" The author is now speaking outside the story; the event (story) had already taken place (not like the quote from Jesus which uses "នេះ" when He refers to the event) and so I believe this should be translated as, "អំពី​រឿង​នោះ"

4) "ដូច្នេះ​ហើយ" – I don't believe this translation is the best choice in the context for the word, “ωστε” - this is a minor issue, but I feel like the phrase, "រហូត​ទាល់តែ​" is a better reading (an English equivalent might be something like, “to such an extent that”

5) "ព្រះ​អង្គ​គង់​នៅ​" - The KCB chose to translate, “ην” to include "ព្រះ​អង្គ​" but again I don't see this as a necessary addition, being that in Khmer it is understood that it was Jesus who “was there”.

6) "គង់​នៅ​ខាង​ក្រៅ​ក្រុង" – The word ​"ក្រុង" is not in the Greek, nor do I feel it is needed in order to make the translation clear – I suggest the following translation with the addition of "បាន" to ensure readability: "បាន​គង់​នៅ​ខាង​ក្រៅ"

7) "ត្រង់​កន្លែង​ស្ងាត់​ៗ" - This is minor but I feel a better translation of, “ερημοις τοποις” would be, "រហោឋាន" though the meaning of the phrase in the KCB is very close with this alternate translation.

8) "មនុស្ស​ម្នា​" - the addition of "ម្នា​" I think should be removed being that in the Greek there is no specifier as to what “type” of people were coming to Christ (the word "ម្នា​" modifies the word “មនុស្ស" [people] and makes it out to be only common people, but most likely there were rich people as well).

9) "មនុស្ស​ម្នា​ពី​គ្រប់​ទិស​ទី" - I believe the phrase, "ពី​គ្រប់​ទិស​ទី" can and should be moved to the end of the verse in order to better follow the Greek word order.

10) "បាន​មក​រក​ព្រះ​អង្គ" – I believe this translation lends itself to be misunderstood. Did the people only search/look for Jesus or did they find Him? I suggest the following re-translation in order to remove any confusion (being that the Greek clearly states they “ηρχοντο” [came] to Jesus: "បាន​មក​ឯ​ព្រះ​អង្គ​"

A side note is the KCB's usage of the word "ព្រះ​អង្គ". I do not fully understand why it is used so frequently when a word like ទ្រង់ could be used (and to me, that word seems more “natural”). Anyone have some insight into the reasons behind this?

Putting all these suggestions together – I believe the translation should be something like this:

«ប៉ុន្តែ បុរស​នោះ​បាន​ចេញ​ទៅ រួច​ក៏​ចាប់ផ្តើម​ប្រកាស​ជា​ច្រើន​​​ និង​ផ្សព្វ​ផ្សាយ​អំពី​រឿង​នោះ​ រហូត​ទាល់តែ​ព្រះ​អង្គ​មិន​អាច​យាង​ចូល​ទៅ​ក្នុង​ក្រុង​ដោយ​ចំហ​បាន​ទៀត​ឡើយ ប៉ុន្តែ​បាន​គង់​នៅ​ខាង​ក្រៅ​ ត្រង់​ទី​រហោឋាន ហើយ​មនុស្ស​បាន​មក​ឯ​ព្រះ​អង្គ​ពី​គ្រប់​ទិស​ទី​។»

KCB - Mark 1:44

KCB – Mark 1:44

«ចូរ​ប្រយ័ត្ន កុំ​និយាយ​រឿង​នេះ​ប្រាប់​អ្នក​ណា​អោយ​សោះ ប៉ុន្តែ​ត្រូវ​ទៅ​បង្ហាញ​ខ្លួន​ដល់​សង្ឃ ហើយ​ថ្វាយ​តង្វាយ​សម្រាប់​ការ​ដែល​អ្នក​បាន​ជា​ស្អាត ដូច​លោក​ម៉ូសេ​បាន​បង្គាប់ ដើម្បី​ជា​បន្ទាល់​ដល់​មនុស្ស​ទាំង​ឡាយ»។

I believe this text is more difficult than others​ (as far as keeping the Khmer in order with the Greek, mainly because of grammar differences in both languages), but I do feel there are some things that can be changed in order to better follow the Greek as well as help make things clear in Khmer.

Here is a Greek Interlinear to help (Khmer added):

και 2532[AND,​ ហើយ​] λεγει 3004(5719)[SAYS, មាន​បន្ទូលថា] αυτω 846[TO HIM, ទៅ​គាត់] ορα 3708(5720)[BEWARE, ចូរ​ប្រយ័ត្ន] μηδενι 3367[TO NO ONE,​ ទៅ​នរណា​ម្នាក់​ឲ្យ​សោះ] μηδεν 3367[ANYTHING(LIT. NOTHING), អ្វីមួយ] ειπης 2036(5632)[THOU SPEAK; និយាយ] αλλ 235[BUT,​ ប៉ុន្តែ] υπαγε 5217(5720)[GO, ទៅ​] σεαυτον 4572[THYSELF, ខ្លួនឯង] δειξον 1166(5657)[SHEW, បង្ហាញ​] τω 3588[TO THE, ទៅ] ιερει 2409[PRIEST, សង្ឃ] και 2532[AND, ហើយ​] προσενεγκε 4374(5628)[OFFER, ថ្វាយ] περι 4012 του 3588[FOR, សម្រាប់] καθαρισμου 2512 σου 4675[THY CLEANSING, ការ​ដែល​អ្នក​បាន​ជា​ស្អាត] α 3739[WHAT, អ្វី] προσεταξεν 4367(5656)[ORDERED, បាន​បង្គាប់] μωσης 3475[MOSES, ​លោក​ម៉ូសេ] εις 1519[FOR​ THE RESULT OF, ដើម្បី​] μαρτυριον 3142[A TESTIMONY,​ បន្ទាល់] αυτοις 846[TO THEM,​ ដល់​គេ]

Here are some suggestions along with some problems that I see:

1) "ប៉ុន្តែ​ត្រូវ​ទៅ​" - I don't see any need for "ត្រូវ" to be in this phrase, being that it is already a statement of what the man needs to do – but this is minor.

2) "ថ្វាយ​តង្វាយ" – The Khmer here does not wholly follow the Greek (being that the word, “α” does not show up as being directly translated [literally it means, “what” [អ្វី]). But I feel that the KCB has done a good translation of the Greek into the Khmer, being that a more direct translation causes more confusion, and should stay as it is (one could translate it, "ថ្វាយ​អ្វី​ដែល​លោក​ម៉ូសេ​បាន​បង្គាប់" but I do not think either one is better than the other, probably about the same).

3) "ដល់​មនុស្ស​ទាំង​ឡាយ" – To me this seems a clumsy translation of the word, “αυτοις” – I would suggest this instead: "ដល់​គេ" or "ដល់​ពួក​​គេ"

Here is a suggested re-translation:

«ចូរ​ប្រយ័ត្ន កុំ​និយាយ​រឿង​នេះ​ប្រាប់​អ្នក​ណា​អោយ​សោះ ប៉ុន្តែ​ទៅ​បង្ហាញ​ខ្លួន​ដល់​សង្ឃ ហើយ​ថ្វាយ​តង្វាយ​សម្រាប់​ការ​ដែល​អ្នក​បាន​ជា​ស្អាត ដូច​លោក​ម៉ូសេ​បាន​បង្គាប់ ដើម្បី​ជា​បន្ទាល់​ដល់​គេ»។

Monday, March 27, 2006

KCB – Mark 1:30

KCB – Mark 1:30 “កាល​ម្តាយ​ក្មេក​លោក​ស៊ីម៉ូន​កំពុង​តែ​ដេក​គ្រុន​គេ​ក៏​ទូល​ព្រះ​អង្គ​ភ្លាម​ថា គាត់​ឈឺ”
I see just a few slight problems in this verse, the first being the phrase, “គាត់​ឈឺ”

In the Greek it is not elaborated that they told Jesus “she was sick” but rather, they told Jesus “about her”.

To help here is a Greek interlinear (Khmer added):
η 3588 δε 1161[AND THE,​ ហើយ] πενθερα 3994[MOTHER - IN – LAW, ម្តាយ​ក្មេក] σιμωνος 4613[OF SIMON, របស់​លោក​ស៊ីម៉ូន ​] κατεκειτο 2621(5711)[WAS LYING,​ កំពុង​តែ​ដេក] πυρεσσουσα 4445(5723)[IN A FEVER, គ្រុន​] και 2532[AND,​ហើយ] ευθεως 2112[IMMEDIATELY,​ ភ្លាម​] λεγουσιν 3004(5719)[THEY TELL,​ គេ​និយាយ] αυτω 846[HIM, ​ទ្រង់] περι 4012[ABOUT, អំពី] αυτης 846[HER,​ គាត់]

I believe the most straight forward translation would be as follows:

I might go even farther, in order to follow the Greek even more closely by translating the verse like this:

"ម្តាយ​ក្មេក​លោក​ស៊ីម៉ូន​កំពុង​តែ​ដេក​គ្រុន ហើយ​ភ្លាម​នោះ​គេ​ក៏​ទូល​ព្រះ​អង្គ​អំពី​គាត់"

or like this:

"កាល​នោះ​ម្តាយ​ក្មេក​លោក​ស៊ីម៉ូន​កំពុង​តែ​ដេក​គ្រុន ហើយ​ភ្លាម​នោះ​គេ​ក៏​ទូល​ព្រះ​អង្គ​អំពី​គាត់"

KCB – Mark 1:23-24a

The KCB translates Mark 1:23-24 as follows:

«២៣ហើយ​ភ្លាម​នោះ នៅ​ក្នុង​សាលា​ប្រជុំ មាន​បុរស​ម្នាក់​មាន​វិញ្ញាណ​អា​ក្រក់​ចូល ២៤ ស្រែក​ឡើង​ថា...»

In reading this I believe there might be confusion as to what exactly has happened. Did a man with an evil spirit just come into the synagogue or did an evil spirit just enter a man who was in the synagogue?​​ Did the evil spirit just enter him right then, or had he had the evil spirit in him for a long time?

Also, the separation of the verses here does not follow normal verse breakage in English versions (or the Greek versions that I have). Personally I feel that following an international standard is important if only for the sake of working with both Khmer and English (or another language) Bibles – so when someone speaks and is translated, the verse he requests to be read will have the same content as his own Bible. I suggest following the Greek by placing "ស្រែក​ឡើង" in verse 23 and "ថា" in verse 24 (being the translation of the Greek the word "λεγων").

Does anyone know why sometimes verses have been changed in some Khmer Bible versions (the KCB and the TKV)?

Also the Greek word “αυτων” (Strong's 846) was not translated but I believe it should be, making "សាលា​ប្រជុំ" to be "សាលា​ប្រជុំ​របស់​គេ"

In order to take away any confusion I suggest something like this (I think the confusion mainly comes about because of "ហើយ​ភ្លាម​នោះ" at the beginning of the verse, being that it might be connected with the word "ចូល" so the suggested translation does not use the word "ចូល" so that the sentence and meaning would be clear as well as follow the Greek word "εν"):

«២៣ហើយ​ភ្លាម​នោះ នៅ​ក្នុង​សាលា​ប្រជុំ​របស់​គេ មាន​បុរស​ម្នាក់​ដែល​មាន​វិញ្ញាណ​អា​ក្រក់​នៅ​ក្នុង​ខ្លួន​គាត់​ស្រែក​ឡើង២៤​ថា...»

Or if wanting to use the word "ចូល" possibly this way would take away any confusion:

«២៣ហើយ​ភ្លាម​នោះ នៅ​ក្នុង​សាលា​ប្រជុំ​របស់​គេ មាន​បុរស​ម្នាក់​ដែល​មាន​វិញ្ញាណ​អា​ក្រក់​ចូល​គាត់​ស្រែក​ឡើង២៤​ថា...»

Saturday, March 25, 2006

KOV - 2 Timothy 3:16a

In the KOV 2 Timothy 3:16a is translated: “គ្រប់​ទាំង​បទ​គម្ពីរ គឺជា​ព្រះ​ទ្រង់​បាន​បញ្ចេញ​ព្រះ​វិញ្ញាណ​បណ្តាល​ឲ្យ​តែង​ទេ...”

I believe the KOV is not wholly accurate in its translation of “θεοπνευστος” in this verse.

Here is a interlinear Greek/English text (with Khmer added) of the first part of verse 16:

πασα 3956[EVERY, ទាំង​ងស់] γραφη 1124[SCRIPTURE "IS", បត​គម្ពីរ​​ "គឺជា"] θεοπνευστος 2315[GOD-BREATHED,​ ផ្លុំ​ដោយ​ព្រះ]

The Greek word “θεοπνευστος” (only used once in the New Testament) is the main focus of this post – the word comes from “Θεός” [God, ព្រះ] and πνέω [to breathe, to breathe out, ដកដង្ហើម, ដង្ហើមចេញ]

The word “θεοπνευστος” brings with it the idea of, “breathing upon, or breathing into the soul,” is that which the word naturally conveys. Thus, God breathed into the nostrils of Adam the breath of life Gen_2:7, and thus the Saviour breathed on his disciples, and said, “receive ye the Holy Ghost;” Joh_20:22. The idea seems to have been, that the life was in the breath, and that an intelligent spirit was communicated with the breath.” [quoted from Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible]

Rather than saying (literal translation of the Khmer), “All Scripture, is God forced out the Spirit to cause to create”

I believe this might be a better translation (I favor the first translation being that it better follows the word order of the Greek:
“គ្រប់​ទាំង​បទ​គម្ពីរ ​បាន​ដង្ហើម​ចេញ​ដោយ​​ព្រះ...”​
“គ្រប់​ទាំង​បទ​គម្ពីរ ព្រះ​បាន​ដង្ហើម​ចេញ...”​

I removed the "គឺជា" that the KOV had placed in this verse being that there is no equivalent in the Greek in this verse​ (that's why “is” is in quotes in the interlinear, because the Greek doesn't have it) and it didn't sound like it was needed for the Khmer. Does anyone think it would be better left in? And if so, where?

Thursday, March 23, 2006

TKV - 2 Corinthians 12:7

The TKV translates 2 Corinthians 12:7 as: "ព្រះ​ជា​ម្ចាស់​បាន​ដាក់​បន្លា​មួយ​ក្នុង​រូប​កាយ​ខ្ញុំ ដើម្បី​កុំ​អោយ​ខ្ញុំ​អួត​ខ្លួន ព្រោះ​តែ​ការ​អស្ចារ្យ​ដ៏​ប្រសើរ​បំផុត ដែល​ព្រះអង្គ​បាន​សំដែង​អោយ​ខ្ញុំ​ឃើញ គឺ​ដូច​ជា​មាន​តំណាង​របស់​មារ​សាតាំង​មក​ធ្វើ​ទារុណ​កម្ម​ខ្ញុំ កុំ​អោយ​ខ្ញុំ​អួត​ខ្លួន​បាន​ឡើយ។"

1) ​"ការ​អស្ចារ្យ​ដ៏​ប្រសើរ​បំផុត ដែល​ព្រះអង្គ​បាន​សំដែង​អោយ​ខ្ញុំ​ឃើញ" – There are a couple of problems with this part of the translation. First – the Greek never says that God gave this revelation (though we know He did because of the previous verses) nor do any of the loose paraphrases in English include this extra “explanation” phrase (not even the Message, which translates: “Because of the extravagance of those revelations”). I think this extra phrase could be avoided just by referring the reader back to the explanation in the previous verses with the word "នោះ". Second, the translation of the word, “αποκαλυψεων” (revelations in most English Bibles – also meaning from Strong's Greek Dictionary: uncovering, laying bare, disclosure, manifestation, be revealed). I believe, "ការបើកសំដែង" is a much better word, and easily understood without needing any of the extras that have been put into this verse.

2) "គឺ​ដូច​ជា" - This is the major problem area in this verse being that it leads the reader to believe that the amazing thing that God has shown Paul (or the amazing revelation) is that one of Satan's representatives ( តំណាង ) has come to Paul to torture ( ធ្វើ​ទារុណ​កម្ម ) him. This is not what the text says. The reason the messenger of Satan came was because of the greatness of those revelations – it itself was not the revelation! The confusion comes from the placement of this phrase: "គឺ​ដូច​ជា​មាន​តំណាង​របស់​មារ​សាតាំង​មក​ធ្វើ​ទារុណ​កម្ម​ខ្ញុំ". I believe if the phrase is moved up to be right after the phrase about the thorn (​បន្លា​) then there will be no confusion.

3) ​"ដូច​ជា​មាន​" - I believe this allows the text to lead the reader to think it might have been something other than a messenger from Satan – the text says it was (though the outward expression of that messenger could have been many things) so I think this phrase should be removed for the sake of clarity. The Greek reads like this: αγγελος [A MESSENGER] σαταν [OF SATAN,] - there is no word that should be translated as “like​ having” or “as if having”.

Here is my re-translation:
"ដើម្បី​កុំ​អោយ​ខ្ញុំ​អួត​ខ្លួន ព្រោះ​តែ​ការ​បើក​សំដែង​ដ៏​​ប្រសើរ​បំផុតនោះ ព្រះ​ជា​ម្ចាស់​បាន​ដាក់​បន្លា​មួយ​ក្នុង​រូប​កាយ​ខ្ញុំ គឺ​ជាតំណាង​របស់​មារ​សាតាំង​មក​ធ្វើ​ទារុណ​កម្ម​ខ្ញុំ កុំ​អោយ​ខ្ញុំ​អួត​ខ្លួន​បាន​ឡើយ។"

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

TKV - Ephesians 2:8

The TKV translates: "ព្រះអង្គ​សង្គ្រោះ​បង​ប្អូន​មក​ពី​ព្រះ​អង្គ​មាន​ព្រះ​ហឫទ័យ​ប្រណី​សន្តោស​ដោយ​សារ​បង​ប្អូន​មាន​ជំនឿ។ ការ​សង្រ្គោះ​មិន​មែន​មក​ពី​បង​ប្អូន​ទេ​ គឺ​ជា​ព្រះ​អំណោយ​ទាន​របស់​ព្រះជាម្ចាស់"

I believe this translation has major problems, being in that there are possessive and descriptive words in the Khmer that are not in the original Greek.

I will do my best to work through the verse systematically as I see problems.

1) "ព្រះអង្គ​សង្គ្រោះ​បង​ប្អូន​" - this word might be confused to mean "your Savior" rather than "God saved you".

2) "មក​ពី​ព្រះ​អង្គ​មាន​ព្រះ​ហឫទ័យ​ប្រណី​សន្តោស" I understand this version is trying to keep things simple, I will only say I don't think this is a good translation of the word "χάρις" - but more on that in the future (or maybe someone else has thoughts on this?)

3) "ដោយ​សារ​បង​ប្អូន​មាន​ជំនឿ" I would say this is one of the major parts of the problem in this verse. In the Greek "πιστεως" [faith in most English Bibles] does not belong to a person or is not possessed by the person - it is just "faith" by itself, no one with it.

4) "ការ​សង្រ្គោះ​មិន​មែន​មក​ពី​បង​ប្អូន​ទេ​" Again, major problems because the text does not say "Salvation does not come from you" rather it says "και 2532[AND] τουτο 5124[THIS] ουκ 3756[NOT] εξ 1537[OF] υμων 5216[YOURSELVES]"

The word "τουτο" in Greek refers back to the whole previous clause "For by grace you have been saved through faith" not only to "σεσωσμενοι" [most translate as "saved"].

I believe by inserting "ការ​សង្រ្គោះ​" the translation has gone too far outside the original Greek text and limits its meaning.

So with all this being said I suggest the following re-translation (in keeping with the philosophy of the TKV translators, I will leave most of it as they have translated):

"ព្រះអង្គ​បាន​សង្គ្រោះ​​បង​ប្អូន​មក​ពី​ព្រះ​អង្គ​មាន​ព្រះ​ហឫទ័យ​ប្រណី​សន្តោស​ដោយ​សារ​ជំនឿ ហើយ​ការ​នេះ​ក៏​​មិន​មែន​មក​ពី​បង​ប្អូន​ទេ​ គឺ​ជា​ព្រះ​អំណោយ​ទាន​របស់​ព្រះជាម្ចាស់"

If you have additional thoughts - please feel free to comment.

Monday, March 20, 2006

KCB (Khmer Christian Bible)

About the KCB:

"The KCB is a new Bible translation which is seeking to have a more literal Bible translation which is very clear and understandable in the Khmer language to rural Cambodians who make up a majority of the people, as well as Christians, in Cambodia. The KCB translation team desires to have a translation process which is open and transparent so that believers can have the freedom to be actively involved in the translation, reviewing and editing process. The Bible is being translated from the original languages, yet considering previous translations in Khmer as well as referencing numerous English, Japanese, Chinese and Thai translations. Great effort is being made to ensure that the Khmer grammar and spelling are correct and reflect the meaning of the original languages. The translation is being sponsored by the Asia Bible Society (based in Japan). Along with the KSB Bible, an interlinear Khmer-Greek Bible is being formulated as well as a full Khmer concordance of the Bible and Bible dictionary which match the KCB translation."

KOV (Khmer Old Version)

About the KOV:

"In 1923 a systematic translation of the Bible into Khmer was begun by a Christian and Missionary Alliance missionary from the United States, the Rev Arthur L Hammond. The translation of the whole Bible took many years until, in 1954, the first Khmer Bible was published." (taken in part from

TKV (Today's Khmer Version)

About the TKV:

"The recently-released Khmer Common Language Bible (New Version) is very easy to understand and much appreciated by young people, though some very conservative Christian groups do not yet accept it. We are thankful to God that even though we face problems, the Bible Society is becoming more accepted by many congregations. We praise the Lord and pray that he will bless us in the coming year." (taken from

KOV - Luke 6:48

In the old Khmer Bible: "គឺ​ធៀប​​ដូច​ជា​មនុស្ស​ ម្នាក់​ដែល​សង់​ផ្ទះ​ គាត់​បាន​ជីក​យ៉ាង​ជ្រៅ ដាក់​ជើង​សសរ​នៅ​លើ​ថ្ម កាល​មាន​ទឹក​ជន់​ឡើង ហូរ​គំហុក​មក​ប៉ះ​នឹង​ផ្ទះនោះ នោះ​ធ្វើ​​ឲ្យ​រញ្ជួយ​មិន​បាន​ឡើយ ពីព្រោះ​បាន​សង់​នៅ​លើ​ថ្ម"

The word I want to focus on is"ជើង​សសរ"

The word choice here seems strange, being that in just about all the other places I checked, the Greek word, "θεμέλιος" is translated as, "ជើង​ជញ្ជាំង"

Most likely the translators were thinking about how a house is built in Cambodia and chose their words based on that - but houses were not on stilts in Jewish society when Jesus on the earth - they were more like a ផ្ទះ​ល្វែង
I think the word, "គ្រឹះ" ​​ would be a better choice in all of the cases (actually the new translation uses this word) - even on a house that is in stilts (pillars) most of the time they put rocks and things under the ជើង​​​សសរ in order to make sure it is sturdy - and they call that "គ្រឹះ"

And the word even is used in the same way the English word "foundation" is used: គ្រឹះ​យុត្ដិធម៌ the foundation of justice គ្រឹះ​សន្តិភាព the foundation of peace

Another reason for this is the usage of the word សសរ in other passages of scripture like 1 Timothy 3:15 (that might be another issue to talk about, the word, "support" or "εδραιωμα" which has been translated as, "ជើង​ថ្កល់"

Sunday, March 19, 2006

KOV - John 3:16

In the Khmer Old Version (and I believe the new translation also has this same problem, though it is translated slightly different than the following. If I recall it uses, "ច្រើន​ណាស់" instead of "ដល់​ម៉្លេះ"), "ដ្បិតព្រះទ្រង់ស្រឡាញ់មនុស្សលោក ដល់ម៉្លេះបានជាទ្រង់ប្រទានព្រះរាជបុត្រាទ្រង់តែ ១ ដើម្បីឲ្យអ្នកណាដែលជឿដល់ព្រះរាជបុត្រានោះ មិនត្រូវវិនាសឡើយ គឺឲ្យមានជីវិតអស់កាល្បជានិច្ចវិញ"

Actually I believe this translation came from a misunderstanding of the English word, "so". In many English versions John 3:16 reads something like, "For God so loved the world..." The Greek word here, "ουτως", was translated as "so" with a meaning that is now rarely used, but is a correct usage of "so" which means: in the way indicated; "hold the brush so"

Most people think of "so" as, "For God loved the word so much that He..."

But actually the word "so" or the Greek word, "ουτως" in this case does not mean "To a great extent; to such an evident degree" nor does it have the same meaning as the old Khmer Bible has it "ដល់ម្ល៉េះ" but actually means, "in this way, in like manner"

So the Holman Christian Standard Bible translates it (I believe correctly): "For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life."

We can see a similarity with other passages in the Bible such as Romans 5:8 - "but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

The same translation problem exists in 1 John 4:11 which also uses ម៉្លេះ

I suggest a translation something like this (This is a personal translation, please forgive my ខ្មែរ​ - if you have a better suggestion please post it): "ដ្បិតព្រះបានស្រឡាញ់មនុស្សលោកយ៉ាងនេះ ថាទ្រង់ប្រទានព្រះរាជបុត្រាតែ​​ ១ របស់ទ្រង់ ដើម្បីឲ្យអស់អ្នកណាដែលជឿក្នុងទ្រង់មិនវិនាសឡើយ​ ប៉ុន្តែមានជីវិតអស់កាល្បជានិច្ច"


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