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.

Friday, April 21, 2006

KCB - Mark 2:15

Mark 2:15

The only thing I would change in this verse is the addition of, "របស់​ទ្រង់" in the phrase, "ព្រះ​យេស៊ូ និង​ពួក​សិស្ស​ដែរ" (it is in the Greek like this, “ιησου 2424[JESUS, ព្រះ​យេស៊ូ] και 2532 τοις 3588[AND, និង] μαθηταις 3101 αυτου 846[HIS DISCIPLES, ពួក​សិស្ស​របស់​ទ្រង់])

But beyond that, I wanted to take this opportunity to speak about the definition given for the word, "មនុស្ស​បាប"

I realize, all the Khmer Bible versions translate the word, “αμαρτωλοι [sinners]” here as "មនុស្ស​បាប"

Some other places in the Old Khmer version it is rendered as "ពួក​មាន​បាប" (James 4:8)

In the Khmer Standard Version, as "អ្នក​មាន​បាប" (Galatians 2:15)

But I think in translating the word differently in each place, some of the meaning is lost – which is shown in what has been said in the definition given by the KCB «មនុស្ស​បាប» មិន​មែន​ជា​អស់​អ្នក​ដែល​បាន​ធ្វើ​បាប​សំខាន​ៗ​ទេ ប៉ុន្តែ ជា​ពពួកមនុស្ស​ដូច​ជា ពួក​អ្នក​ទារពន្ធ​ដែល​ពួក​មេដឹកនាំ​សាសនា​បាន​ស្អប់​ដោយ​ព្រោះ​ការ​មិន​គោរព​តាម​ច្បាប់​សាសនា​របស់​ពួក​គេ ជា​ពិសេស​វិន័យ​ដែល​ហាម​ឃាត់​មិន​អោយ បរិភោគ​អាហារ​ជា​មួយ​ពួក​សាសន៏​ដទៃ។

Which translated into English goes something like: “Sinners” does not mean everyone who has committed some big sin but rather it refers to people such as tax-collectors who the religious leaders hated because the tax-collectors did not follow their religious laws, especially the law that commanded them not to eat with gentiles.

The problem with this definition is that it limits the word to the extent that the reader might start thinking like a Pharisee. This definition is what Pharisees called a “sinner” but not what God defined sinners as. I believe the definition should be changed to say something like, “when the Pharisees and Scribes used the term, “sinners”, it did not mean everyone who had committed some big sin, but rather...”

That way it would not harm the readers understanding of God's perspective – that we all all sinners (a form of the same word in Greek is found in Romans 5:8 which says, “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”).

I also think that if one word is used for almost all of the instances of ἁμαρτωλός that it would be a major improvement in the Khmer Bible translations.


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