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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Rereading Isaiah 9:1: The Use of Gender Inclusive Language

In a recent post Dr. Claude Mariottini states:
One verse where some translations have chosen to use inclusive language is Isaiah 9:1. However, the use of inclusive language in Isaiah 9:1 has completely changed the original meaning of the text and fails to represent the intent of the message of the writer.
You'll want to read the rest of this interesting post.

6 Comments:

At Tue Mar 27, 03:32:00 PM, Blogger Peter Kirk said...

This is an interesting post by Dr Mariottini, but there is no way that this is an example of inclusive language, at least in NIV. It is simply that NIV (perhaps partially following LXX) has a different, but consistent, interpretation of 8:20-9:1 from Dr Mariottini's. See my comment there.

 
At Tue Mar 27, 03:46:00 PM, Blogger Damian said...

Peter,

your comments are on the mark. It's strange that Dr Mariottini spends so much time on the historical background but seems to pay little attention to either the Hebrew or the LXX.

Damian

 
At Tue Mar 27, 04:42:00 PM, Blogger reGeNeRaTe said...

I think the problem I'm having is that the good doctor is creating a false dichotomy between the land and the people. Unless my redemptive memory fails me, I believe God was and is always more concern with the PEOPLE than with land. The land is in distress because the people are distressed (via natural consequences of their sins, etc). In fact, Isa. 9:2 makes it clear that it is the PEOPLE who will see a great light. The land ain't seeing the light; the people are.

There are plenty of other examples he could have chosen but this one puzzles me. Oh well...

 
At Tue Mar 27, 05:35:00 PM, Blogger Suzanne McCarthy said...

I recently read this post of Dr. Mariottini, where he wrote,

Are Christians who obey the Old Testament injunction to “spare the rod and spoil the child” guilty of anything? The answer is “no!”

The answer is “no” because Christians will never obey the Old Testament injunction to “spare the rod and spoil the child” since such an injunction is not in the Old Testament.


I cannot agree with the way he has here as well set up a false dichotomy. It is a very short step to

"Whoever spares the rod hates his son," Proverbs 13:24

I have to say that I entirely missed Dr. Mariottini's point. Maybe I have misunderstood something. That does happen.

 
At Wed Mar 28, 06:23:00 AM, Blogger John Radcliffe said...

Wayne,

I'm surprised that someone who is usually so even-handed and slow to attribute motivation should have linked to a post that is at best misleading (in suggesting that the use of "those" rather than "her" *is* based on "gender-inclusiveness"), and goes on to suggest that the choice of rendering was in fact driven by a desire for "political correctness" (see his final sentence). You could at least have ended your heading with a question mark.

If the author had taken the trouble to look at a few other passages before "passing judgement" (I just quickly scanned the first three chapters of Isaiah) he would have seen "her" used to refer to the city / Zion (e.g. 1:21, 27; 3:26) in both translations, so I doubt the translators would have had a problem using "her" to refer to the land on the basis of "political correctness". Indeed, I find the suggestion nothing short of ridiculous.

 
At Wed Mar 28, 10:52:00 AM, Blogger Wayne Leman said...

I'm surprised that someone who is usually so even-handed and slow to attribute motivation should have linked to a post that is at best misleading (in suggesting that the use of "those" rather than "her" *is* based on "gender-inclusiveness"), and goes on to suggest that the choice of rendering was in fact driven by a desire for "political correctness" (see his final sentence). You could at least have ended your heading with a question mark.

John, I didn't realize all this when I linked to his blog. I did read his blog post, but I did not pick up on all the things that others here have. Some things fall through the cracks between my cranial synapses. That's why we need each other, to catch things like this. I definitely want to remain even-handed and do not wish to attribute motivations to people.

Thanks for being part of the team searching for the truth.

 

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