causal "for" in English Bibles
A few days ago I noticed that I do not express a causal relationship with "for," when it is used as a conjunction. Instead, I use the word "because," and, less frequently, "since." For instance, I would say:
I did not go to work today because I'm sick.but I would not say:
I did not go to work today for I'm sick.I checked with my wife and she says that she does not use "for" as a causal conjunction either.
I *think* that a majority of English speakers today likely do not use causal "for" in either their speech or writing. But much more field testing and observation needs to be done to feel confident about this hypothesis.
If my suggestion is true, then most English Bibles are out of step with current English usage. For example, most English Bibles begin Isaiah 9:6 with "for": KJV, RSV, NRSV, ESV, NASB, REB, NIV, TNIV, HCSB, NLT.
Similarly, most English Bible versions begin Ephesians 2:8 with "for": KJV, RSV, NRSV, ESV, NASB, REB, NIV, TNIV, NET, HCSB, TEV.
I have not found any English version begin either verse with "because" or "since.
In Genesis 2:23 the versions are mixed with regard to the causal conjunction used for explaining why the woman was called woman. The NRSV and several other versions have "for":
for out of Man this one was taken (NRSV)Several other versions, including the KJV, use "because":
for from man was she taken (REB)
for she was taken out of man (NIV, TNIV, NET)
for she was taken from man (HCSB)
because she was taken out of Man (KJV, RSV, ESV, NASB)It seems to me that more study of current English language usage and the distribution of causal conjunctions in English Bibles needs to be made before any strongly supported suggestions for causal use of "for" can be made for English Bible translators. It does seem to me, however, that the decreasing use of causal "for" in English needs to be noted by English Bible translators as one of several widespread language changes occurring among English speakers today.
because she was taken out of man (TEV, NCV)
because she was taken from ‘man.’ (NLT)
because she was taken from man (GW)