Is this faithful translation?
Faithful are the wounds of a friendI suggest that the word "faithful" is not faithful translation because it is not faithful to the grammar of English. In English an animate, volitional being, such as a person or a horse, can be "faithful," but a wound cannot be. (UPDATE: The word "faithful" in this context means 'trusted'. We can trust friends when they tell us something that hurts us. A translation that is faithful is one that is accurate, true to the original, trustworthy. We can trust it.) Some English versions do translate this clause into grammatical English, including these:
Well meant are the wounds a friend inflicts (NRSV)Translation requires that we be faithful both to source languages as well as target languages. Too many English Bible translations do not sufficiently follow the rules of English which have developed over many centuries by speakers and writers of English. As such, these translations are not faithful translations, at least not to the language they are being translated into. Good quality vibrant literary English can also be grammatical English used in English Bible versions.
The blows a friend gives are well meant (REB)
Oh, that there be more Bible translation committees where the scholarship for quality English is as high as that for quality understanding of the biblical languages! Oh, that more Bible translation committees might receive training in Bible translation principles before beginning to translate the Bible into English. We require this of people translating into the so-called minority languages of the world. Surely speakers of the majority languages of the world are just as worthy of having their Bible translators trained in how to translate.
And that's what this blog is about, helping people understand how we can have better Bibles.