"sons of God" poll
There is a new poll in the right margin of this blog. It is green and is introduced by these words:
As I normally understand English that is spoken or written, I would understand the words "sons of God" in some translations of Matt. 5:9 to refer to:Please note the words "As I normally understand English that is spoken or written." These words are key to how anyone should respond in this poll. Think of it this way: In your everyday, normal English, what does the word "sons" mean to you? Does it only refer to males, or can it include females, as well. For instance, if you have several children, let's say, two girls and one boy, can you address them all by calling them "sons"?
Our normal, everyday, ordinary understanding of English should be the same as how we understand the longer phrase "sons of God," other than that whatever "sons" means to you would reference God as parent, rather than someone else, such as yourself. Our understanding of the word "sons" should not, as far as I know, be affected by the fact that we are testing a phrase from translation of a verse from the Bible. English Bible versions are written in English, which, we would assume, is the same English language that we understand in our language encounters outside of the Bible.
So, if you answer that the word "sons of God" only means to you "male believers" you are answering that the English word "sons" only refers to male offspring of someone. If you answer that "sons of God" refers to both male and female believers, then you are stating that for you the English word "sons" includes both male and female children.
If for some of you the word "sons" changes meaning when we add the prepositional phrase "of God" to it, that is a very important linguistic phenomenon, and we want to know about it. If this is the case for you, please do state that in Comments to this post. If you can, please give us some background information, explaining how the word "sons" changes meaning for you. Perhaps you can tell who taught you that the word "sons" can change meaning. Any kind of background information like that would be most interesting as we study both the biblical languages and English to try to find out the most appropriate (including accurate) ways to translate biblical language words to English.
There are no right or wrong answers in this poll. Feel free to answer honestly as you understand the word "sons" and its meaning in the phrase "sons of God."
We can deal in another post whether or not the English word "sons" is an appropriate translation for the Greek word huioi of Matt. 5:9. That is not the issue in this poll. In this poll we are only testing what "sons of God" means to you, as you understand the English language.
If you believe that there is anything flawed about how the poll is worded, please note that in the Comments to this post also. I always want to improve my polls.