Among blogs there have been far more posts negative about the TNIV than for it. Typically anti-TNIV posts repeat claims made by others, often originating with Wayne Grudem, who never points out that what he considers "errors" in the TNIV are considered as exegetical options within the community of biblical scholars. What Grudem calls "errors" can only be considered real errors if one begins with his theological, ideological, and linguistic presuppositions, especially the linguistic theory of male representation which he and Vern Poythress connect to the doctrine of a masculine hierarchy and promote in their book, The Gender-Neutral Bible Controversy: Muting the Masculinity of God's Words
Well, let's get back to Gordon Tisher's post. Gordon addresses these anti-TNIV claims:
- Tampering with Scripture, including, ironically, Revelation 22:18-19.
- Culture is influencing translation.
- The Slippery Slope: translating “πατηρ” as “parent” might lead to referring to God as “parent” instead of “father”, and to referring to Jesus as female.
- They’ve taken a lot of masculinity out of the Bible — it’s not as much a man’s Bible any more.
I wouldn't agree with everything that Gordon says, especially his ad hominem characterizations of those who do not like the TNIV, but he makes some important, as well as entertaining, arguments. If nothing else, Gordon's post should call us not to simply accept the claims against the TNIV, even if they are made by public figures who have a significant following. We must test all things (including arguments in debates about Bible translations) and hold on to that which is good (1 Thess. 5:21).
Categories: TNIV, slippery slope, masculinity