Of Words about “THE WORD” - Cognitive and epistemological “disturbances” of naming in Bible translation -

  • Posted on: 22 April 2020
  • By: redakteur



- Cognitive and epistemological “disturbances” of naming in Bible translation -


1. Preliminary Considerations - From Oral to Written “Text”[1] 1

2. Search and Finding the “right” Words. 5

3. Practical Steps. 9

6. Summary - Eliminating Communicative Disorders. 27



“Telling the Bible”, will open up several trenches. A translational-linguistic, the theological-missiological, the socio-cultural and finally the epistemological-philosophical divide. This article focuses on the translational-linguistic and epistemological-cognitive divisions. When translating the biblical content from one linguistic-cultural framework into another, the translation team encounters linguistic hurdles. In order to overcome this gap, the mother-tongue Bible translator has to transfer an ancient, oral base text into the modern linguistic-cultural environments of the listeners and readers. Many cultures meet in Christian development aid that is the biblical context, the project management’s social background, the translation team’s environment and that of financially supportive churches or funders. Both, the explanatory (exegetical) and design-technical (hermeneutical), as well as translation and language-theoretical considerations have to be considered. There is a fundamental difference whether the Bible translations are so-called first or new translations or whether there are already Bible translations in the language group leading to revisions.

The science of Bible translation works interdisciplinary and closely with the disciplines of theology, missiology, anthropology/ ethnology, applied linguistics, philology, psychology, philosophy and the social sciences. From the coexistence of these disciplines, the theoretical foundations for “telling the Bible” are developing in a mother tongue. The different levels of the biblical text extend from the word, through the sentence to the verse, across the verses to the Bible section, to the biblical book and beyond to the overall biblical text discourse. The team of Bible translators must be aware of the inherent, often implied context within the larger text units in order to find the “right” words - if there are any at all. The premises of inspiration of a divine word, as well as of the “incarnation principle” of the translation of sacred texts form the framework - or Skopos - of the “storytelling of the Bible”. Based on the text from Luke 15: 11-32 "The Prodigal Son" (title after Luther’s translation/ Lutherübersetzung), various “text” traditions are highlighted. An oral text tradition corresponding to the Germanic-German context and proposed by me is compared with a communicative oral translation tradition also proposed by me. At the same time, the two “liturgy Bibles” of, which are significant in German-speaking countries, the Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung (Protestant tradition) and the Unifying translation (Einheitsübersetzung - Roman Catholic tradition) are basic for comparison in this study. In addition, newer communicative Bible translations (Bible in fair language - Bibel in gerechter Sprache, Volxbibel) are examined as translational comparative texts. The thesis of this article is that oral “text” traditions are always the starting point for written traditions. In other words, “telling the Bible” precedes a written Bible tradition.

1. Preliminary Considerations - From Oral to Written “Text”[1]

The biblical texts generate from oral traditions. Over generations, they developed into the recent textual versions of the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia4ed (Kittel 1990[2]) and the Novum Testamentum Graece28ed (Nestle-Aland 2012[3]). During this phase of tradition, the Jewish community experienced enormous linguistic-cultural upheavals, which were also reflected in the oral traditions.[4] Very little is known about the oral tradition of the Hebrew Bible[5], but there are suggestions for oral conceptions for the New Testament.[6] However, it is not yet clarified what laws were subject to the oral traditions in ancient times. This does not mean that oral trading as such cannot be examined, or is subject to certain laws that could be scientifically determined, but it means that two unpredictable factors meet. Verbal trading is dependent on both the “intuition of the narrator” and the “perception of the listener[7]” (oral-aural communication)[8]. “Telling” and “listening” determine the tradition, “understanding” and “thinking” form the cognitive-epistemological basis. In other words, the course of tradition is determined in these four processes. Herein, play language and cultural change, the evolving socio-political context and finally the cognitive-epistemological perception of narrators a role.

Linguistic and cultural change

Linguistic and cultural change is an unconscious change based on being human due to ongoing adaptation to social developments (e.g. Anglicism, advertising slogans, film influences). This change requires constant revision of the written Bible text. At the same time, the text itself changes, prior to the oral tradition, the linguistic stylistic devices, the choice of words, and also the content of the narrative. This becomes clear first of all from evangelistic material, sermons (homiletics) and finally from a gap between the vernacular and the languages of the biblical text.[9] Although language and cultural change can be assumed, a social group always tries to maintain a stable and balanced social center. Social conservatism allows foreign influences and internal change to be contained at least to a limited extent by social rules and norms (Spiro 1972: 100, 104, 106[10]).

Incidentally, what is said here also applies to linguistic orientation. Here, a “standardized” center is important in order to intercept dialects, idiolects and other language forms (e.g. youth or subculture language). This stabilizing factor significantly shapes the world view, thinking and thus the choice of words when “telling”.[11] Words and their contexts are used as “language images” that convey language and culture. Morality and ethics are transferred to the audience in these “language pictures”. At the same time, “insiders” and “outsiders” are delimited with the help of oral tradition. In this sense, oral trading works in a culture that defines and delimits. It is reserved for the native-speaking Bible translator to establish complete identification between his culture and the translated “text”.[12]

The socio-political context

The socio-political context influences the tradition of the narrative as well as the focus of the storytelling and listening. On the one hand, the political-economic context stabilizes a social community; on the other hand, it moves them to change. Just think of Luther's translation or other sacred Bible texts that denominationally bind a social group (here the church members) linguistically and culturally for decades and centuries. Another non-ecclesiastical example can be found in the influence of socialism in the former German Democratic Republic in which the “comrade” became the standard form of address in certain politically and militarily motivated circles.[13] Not to mention the centuries-old influence of slang, a Gaunersprache [Engl. underworld jargon] within the layer of a social group in our language (Čirkić 2006: 10, 13[14]).The stabilizing effect of the socio-political context is particularly evident in the persistence of family names for the Trinity of God (Father-Son-Holy Spirit) despite the decay of traditional family structures through artificial insemination, surrogate mothers or same-sex communities. Linguistically, it can be assumed that in the German-speaking world the neutral inclusive terms “parents”, “legal representatives”, “life partner”, “family”, “child”, “children”, “offspring” or similar will also apply to the “narrative of the Bible”.

The cognitive-epistemological perception

Influences, of the type mentioned ahead, form the framework of the cognitive-epistemological perception in the narrator and the listener. Perception takes place on several cognitive levels. Communication is processed on the mind as well as on the level of emotion. As described by others (see below), the brain processes cognitive processes on the neurolinguistics level. Described concisely, storage processes take place when memorizing and accessing information. Explicit as well as implicit information is stored in the short and long-term memory, called process storage.

A model structure can be found in the five-memory model for “memory”.[15] Long-term memory is carried out on several levels. The bottom layer, or the priming memory, forms the link between the unconscious, stored on the sensory and emotional level (e.g. fear in certain communication situations), as well as the procedural memory for highly automated activities (e.g. car driving or cycling). The perceptual (perceptual) memory perceives an object and language objects in order to integrate them into one’s own world knowledge. The semantic memory archives factual knowledge and creates the conditions for retrieving information as language images and facts. In the episodic memory scenes, events and experiences are saved and at any time available. This happens together with their context in which they were experienced, such as smells, emotions or background music. The short-term memory in turn switches on the biochemical level; it uses certain cells in the synapses as paths to free information quickly and to have them immediately available. Although the “memory recall” usually happens without any problems, various language-oriented experiments have shown that due to internal physical and external environmental influences, “disorders” are an integral part of the neurological-cognitive struggle for the “right” connections.[16]

Ideological-philosophical considerations

Ideological-philosophical questions of translation play an essential role in the struggle for the “right” words in translation. In the “literal” translation tradition, a word from the basic biblical text in the target language is translated in a “concordant” manner with only one and the same word or a short phrase in the target language. Grammatical constructions are also always transferred literally where possible. The Unrevidierte Elberfeld translation, as well as its revisions, the Munich New Testament and partly also the Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung go this way.[17] A distinction is made here between Bible translations that follow other translation theories. It should be noted in advance that mixed models are the rule in practice (Werner 2011: 315-331).

The dynamic equivalent model, also called the functional equivalent or framework model-oriented (e.g. Katan 1999[18]), the functional model (e.g. Berger & Nord 1999[19]) and the relevance theory[20] for Bible translation just be mentioned here. The dynamic equivalent model (Nida 1964; Taber & Nida 1969; de Waard & Nida 1986)[21] is the most widespread and has with the uniformed translation (Einheitsübersetzung), the Good News Bible (Gute Nachricht Bibel), Hope for All (Hoffnung für Alle) and the New Geneva Translation (Neue Genfer Übersetzung) a central role in “telling the Bible” in Germany.[22] Contrary to all criticism, it should be noted that the two basic principles of dynamic equivalence both the linguistic proximity to the source text (textual accuracy) and the contextualized form[23] of the meaning of the content implied in the original text are transformed into a target language.[24] Contrary to a fixed holding on to linguistic grammatical structures on the word and sentence level, enhance the “communicative” translation frame on the cognitive-epistemological level (s. Chapter 5). Newer translation models also take up this cognitive-epistemological orientation, which is why the dynamic equivalence got competition. Such “modern” translations of “literalists” and followers of a “sacred” translation of the Bible, who want to see the unifying middle of church life in Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung alone, are strongly rejected (keyword: liturgical Bible).[25]

Examples of modern translation traditions have emerged in the Roman Catholic ecclesiastical space, especially after the II. Vatican Council developed. The decision there to accept native-language Bibles instead of the Latin Vulgate has led to a new tradition of Bible translation in the French-speaking world. The Bible de Jérusalem (1973), the Traduction oecuménique de la Bible (TOB, 1972 NT) and the Segond (1975) Bibles were created at that time (Gignac 2009: 148).[26] This development inspired the European Protestant and Catholic churches to do justice to the different biblical authors[27] by questioning the hitherto unbroken homogeneity of the biblical text as a whole in the translation. For each biblical author and his script (s), a team of a Bible translation project should deal with each other independently (: 148; see also translation principles Bible in just language[28]).[29] This development shows another of the many areas of tension that arose in the course of the western translation tradition.

"Understood Strangeness" - Standard of the oral translation Tradition?

I would like to make one of the critics’ arguments here, since it particularly addresses the topic of this article. It is emphasized that an “understood strangeness” of the biblical text should be preserved. Although this is not explicitly expressed, the representatives of such hypothesis seem to associate it with a sacred and authoritative reality in the Bible text itself (e.g. Chouraqui 1994: 35, 40-41).[30] It is undisputed on this assumption that texts that are difficult to understand cognitively challenge the listener and the reader, as well as the fact that such texts are sometimes easier to memorize (e.g. the Arabic Koran[31]; the Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung 1912[32]). Hövelmann states, “This makes it clear that medieval memorial art does not refer to sayings but to ‘stories’” (1989: 24). Conclusions are made that are often not found in this way in the text. Such implicit conclusions support the audience by semantically (figuratively) accompany the text in order to recite it if necessary (Kess 1993: 141, 145[33]).

One has to be aware that the biblical texts were memorized for a while. Through this phase of “memorization”, whether it was short (months) or longer (years, decades), the function of the memorability of the traders who were themselves observers or listeners was activated. This is reflected in the reproduction of the “texts”. The “texts” are not reproduced as continuous biographical narrations, but as fragmentary reflections on memories.[34] This is evident in the Hebrew Bible from the prophetic books, except for the poetic books and the letters. The prophets contain compilations of prophetic statements, some of which are not chronologically related. The contextual relationship only arises in the context of salvation history, in some cases across several prophetic books. In contrast, the New Testament letters and Revelation consistently follow the author’s line of thought. In the New Testament, this fragmentary memory can be found in the Gospels and Acts. The authors of the letters in turn rely on the “memory” of the eyewitness accounts (Paul) or themselves (Peter, John, James; e.g. 1John 1: 3).[35] But there are leaps of thought and changes in them too, which indicate a “culture of remembrance”.

Back to the postulate of “understood strangeness”. It must be noted that their representatives expect the Hebrew and Greek language images not to be resolved, but rather to be clarified in their strangeness. This undermines the perceptibility of the text, which leads to an epistemological dig that consequently alienates the audience from the text.[36] “Foreignness understood” leads to incomprehensibility and a cognitive distance. For a long time, from the church’s point of view, the lack of knowledge of biblical content among the church member has been criticized, one reason for this was the outdated linguistic form - strangeness - of the liturgical Bible (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung). This is where communicative and “modern” translations come in. In addition, the findings of modern translation theories are incorporated into the revisions of the common church bible (e.g. Uniformed translation - Einheitsübersetzung, Good News Bible-Gute Nachricht Bibel, the Functional New Testament[37]).

The translational-linguistic Level

The discrepancy between foreignness and communicative translations becomes particularly clear on a translational and linguistic level. In a linguistic-cultural context in which the struggle for gender equality is gaining importance, gender-neutral terms are also more likely to be chosen in the Bible translation. The now common replacement of the term “brothers”, where “siblings” are meant, is a common example of this (Worth 1992: 133).[38] Linguistic-cultural boundaries are also provided here, as long as gender-neutral terms are not colloquially conditioned.

By “retelling” the Bible, also called Chronological Bible Storying (see below), the present audience is addressed directly, which is why the meaning of “siblings” comes purely in practice into play. Armstrong points out that oral tradition of the biblical narrative only exists in oral traditions that are not subject to Western objectivity thinking and the separation of perception, language and everyday life (2013: 324)[39]. In Western contexts, Chronological Bible Storying and other oral traditions of biblical content are partly reflected in sermons and children Bibles. This form of conveying biblical content provides impulses for “telling” and “translating” the Bible in German-speaking countries as well. In the retelling process, the written tradition is revised and renewed, thus representing the natural cycle of communicative renewal of written texts. After these preliminary considerations, the actual cognitive-epistemological process in translating biblical content from the linguistic-anthropological point of view comes to the fore.

2. Search and Finding the “right” Words

There are various scientific disciplines available when looking for the “right” words. In Christian development aid [40] we find the situation that language groups are not yet literate. Since, these language groups can only work with the oral and not with the written Bible text, however literacy is the underlying format of the process of Bible translation. The academic discipline that deals with language and its structure, linguistics, is divided into:

  • General Linguistics,
  • Applied Linguistics,
  • Comparative Linguistics and
  • Historical Linguistics.

Interested in the field of Bible translation especially linguistics Applied (Applied Linguistics).The classic contents of applied linguistics include phonetics, phonology and grammar. In phonetics, the sounds of a language are examined for their formations (e.g. larynx sounds, snapping sounds, vowels etc.) and possible transcripts (e.g. international phonetic alphabet - IPA).

In phonology and phonetics, the inventory of a language is reduced to an orthographic suggestion by analyzing and determining the phonetic structures. In grammar, the structure of language is described according to its forms (morphology), the structure of sentences and texts (syntax), the theory of meaning (semantics) and the already mentioned phonetics (phonology). In the wider field of linguistics, pragmatics, (text) discourse analysis (see below) and sociolinguistics can be found. Special individual disciplines such as neurolinguistics, cognitive linguistics and psycholinguistics should also be mentioned. Linguistics helps the team of translators to understand and compare the linguistic structures of the source text and the target language and to structurally substantiate the “translation” from one linguistic phonetic system to another. While phonetics, phonology, grammar and pragmatics are used in Christian development aid, only the latter two are used in alphabetized contexts.

Linguistic searches

In Christian development aid, previously unknown language systems are first examined together with the mother-tongue Bible translators and then written down. These processes make them available to the public.[41] Grammatical first descriptions often form the breakthrough of a language and culture group in order to be noticed publicly. All sounds used in words, sentences and “oral texts” are fixed in the lettering with written characters.

The International Phonetic Alphabet[42] or other global alphabets cover all sounds and modifications that can be generated with the human speech system (e.g. palatisation, laryngealization, creaking voice). These alphabets are used to transform the oral sound into written characters. In the context of phonology, the inventory of vowels and consonants can be determined quantitatively. Every language tends to focus on certain language training areas. Phonology takes advantage of this regularity by schematically recording the sounds used on a diagram. They are then fixed in writing.

After the inventory of sounds is known, orthography, a standardized alphabet suggestion that covers as many speakers as possible, must be worked on.[43] This is the hardest part because idiolects and dialects often prevent standardization. It is therefore advisable to start with an "experimental alphabet". The grammatical representation of a language describes the sentence and text structures of a language. At a higher level, semiotics (the general teaching of signs) and its discipline semantics (relationship of signs to written illustration) also play an important role. It deals with the symbolic meaning of words, phrases and parts of sentences.

Certain sentence constructions are fixed in their word order and cannot be resolved without changing their meaning. This includes certain particles (prepositions, prefixes, suffixes) that adhere to verbs or nouns, phrases and word combinations.[44] Here are some examples out of German: “Himmel und Hölle” [Engl. Heaven and Hell], “durch dick und dünn” [Engl. through foul and fair], or “von Kopf bis Fuß” [Engl. from head to foot]. Changing the order of these phrases changes or destroys their meaning. Semantics also deal with intellectual ideas. Language requires images that reflect the reality of speech in the head. These images are reflected in so-called prototypes.[45] In German, a “little bird” is intuitively linked to the image of the “sparrow”. The mental image of a “big bird” is represented by an “eagle”. In other languages, the image of the little bird is a “hummingbird” (e.g. United States) and the big bird in the “vulture” (e.g. Italy).[46] A fruit tree projects the image of the “apple tree” and a tree is depicted with the “oak”. Fairy tales, fables and anecdotes from the oral tradition are the most productive genre to illustrate these prototype ideas.

By displaying a language grammatically, it is possible for strangers to understand the language structure and to learn the language more easily. In addition to language learning, the transfer of language content to another language system is also learned. This mutual process (dyadic-dynamic principle with Werner 2012: 71-73) enables the mother-tongue team to learn another language from which a Bible translation is possible.[47]

When reference is made only on the “word” level, this means to only reach the complexity of semantic-lexical rendering. However, as we will see later, translation reaches deeper and extends beyond the lexical level into the realm of metalanguage.

One thesis of this article is to understand “biblical storytelling” as an oral writing tradition. The Skopos[48] of a Bible translation is aimed at the comprehensibility and adaptation of the biblical texts to the target culture. This dictum, although followed when interpreting (see above), is neglected especially in the translation of the Bible based on the criteria mentioned above, in particular that of the so-called “loyalty to the text”.[49] The biblical texts, which are redundant in the tradition of writing, are therefore to be adapted in translation to the forms of oral tradition of the target audience so that they can develop their own life there as a tradition of writing. This applies not only to Christian development aid by first or new Bible translations but also in existing Christian contexts by revisions (see below).

Intuition and Translation

There can be no “right” word in a translation! The translator is an interpreter (hermeneutist) between two or more worlds, but at least the source text and the translation.[50] It is up to him to decipher the first and to convey the determined meaning linguistically and culturally in the new context. Translators mediate between

languages, between cultures and between conventions of implementation. He is essentially an executor, one who presents the material at hand as a performance in order to fill it with understandable life (Steiner 1990: 19).[51]

As intuitive sciences, translation and interpretation, as part of communication science, cannot deliver “exact” results like natural sciences (e.g. physics, math). Language, thinking and culture are fluent areas of life that generate different results depending on the situation, zeitgeist and people (Kade 1968:35[52]; Steiner 2004:134).[53] The team also has to face this in the Bible translation. Their translation remains a suggestion, which represents the greatest possible approximation to the source text, but is dependent on a wide variety of environmental variants. With this in mind, it should be noted that the recipients decode and open up linguistic-cultural contexts in the communication process. It follows that the audience can draw conclusions about the translated template, which make communication successful due to the shared world knowledge and the linguistic-cultural contextualization (Sperber & Wilson 1987:700, 707).[54] Gaps in information can be addressed in the metalanguage and the cognition. The speaker must provide the necessary stimuli for this. In addition to the “level of words”, oral trading also encompasses higher-level communicative stimuli, which are included in the text discourse through implications by metalanguage. In addition to external communicative means (e.g. whisper, emphasis, gestures), this also includes the ability to derive implicit conclusions from information. The best-known example is the appeal of a passenger (e.g. the spouse) to the driver “The traffic light is green”, which allows different conclusions to be drawn depending on the context, like “didn’t you see”, “drive on”, “what are you waiting for?”.

Since oral trading can get by without written fixation, the reverse is not the case, oral trading is fundamental to human communication (Ong 2002: 6). This means that the procedures of oral tradition in “telling the Bible” are of greater importance than the written fixation. There is little room for “finding the word”, however, even more for literary fixation. The reasons for this are, on the one hand, the partly unconscious sacralization of the translation of biblical content based on the “holy” base-text, and, on the other hand, the philological school of translation, which is deeply engraved in the memory of translators due to Western education.[55] Let's take a closer look at that.

Liturgical and Sacred Texts

The translation of the term “sacred texts” becomes clear in the title of the Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung: the Bible or the entire Holy Scripture of the Old and New Testaments based on Martin Luther's German translation 1545 (published in 2012 as L45. Stuttgart: German Bible Society).[56]

This also applies to oral traditions, as the following titles show: “The life and work of the Messiah Jesus” (Arabic original; translated EW.) Or “The story of the prophets” (Turkish original; translated EW.). The reference to central religious content (holiness, messiah, prophets) indicates the sacred genre.

Even if the reference to the “holiness aspect” is increasingly missing these days, a translation of the Bible is regarded as a sacred work of divine inspiration. This is shown by the inauguration of a new translation of the Bible [57] in Christian development, also called dedication. In Western, also German-speaking countries, revisions or Bible translations based on new translation principles are examined critically and solemnly. [58]

How the process of inspiration transfers from the original work to the translation is discussed controversially. Rather conservative-exclusive ecclesiastical circles rely on a “verbal” inspiration. They assume that an inherent power of the base-text, is also transferred to the “correct” - mostly literal - Bible translation. [59] Liberal-inclusive ecclesiastical circles understand inspiration more as a divine force that accompanies the biblical text from the outside and is also used in this way in Bible translations by the effect of the Holy Spirit). However, the sacralization of the “text” usually allows interpretation and translation only on the lexical-morphological level. This leads to a conservative, concordant and literal tradition of translation.

Example: Temples, places of worship and pilgrimage

The example of the term “temple” shows the procedure. This is how the term is used in literal translation: הֵיכַל Heicāl is concordantially translated with “temple” (e.g. 1Sa 3:3)[60]. Such as the “Temple of God”[61] meaning the Jewish sanctuary in Jerusalem or “the Temple” (especially in the NT), built by Solomon. In contrast, בֵּ֣ית אֱלֹהִ֔ים beit elohim “the House of God”[62] was used more as an individual name for the place of residence of the Jewish deity, but both terms remain interchangeable. Such temples were common in the Greek and Roman environment. In the Germanic area, however, there were hardly any central places of worship. There was also no central facility like the temple” in Jerusalem.

We are faced with an inner Biblical and a contextual-translational problem. According to the oral tradition at that time, the listening or reading Jewish audience could see from the context whether a pagan temple or "the temple of their god" was meant. In the Hebrew-Aramaic text, this is still possible for the mother-tongue reader today. We have an ambivalence in German with the term “Landtag” or “Bundestag” which, depending on the context, may refer to the assembly or the building. Cognitive support is required when translating the base-text. Either a definite particle or the specification “temple of God” in demarcation to other buildings can indicate this.

Another problem arises when the concept of biblical content is unknown to the audience. As indicated above, there was no central sanctuary among the Teutons. This meant that the term “temple” was ambiguous in the context at the time, since it introduced a foreign content and at the same time referred to pagan sites. It was only in the course of the definition and getting used to the meaning in the Jewish context that German took over the content. The terms “sanctuary” or “holy place” would have been closer. Now, however, this word is in Hebrew-Aramaic expressed by מִקְּדָ֕שׁ mikdāš (e.g. Exodus 15:17). The terms “temple”, “house of God” and “sanctuary” have been used in German Bible translations. When narrating biblical content, the environmental variations of the terms reflect the context, which should lead to fluctuating usage.

There are quite a few contexts target audiences in which there is neither a central “sanctuary” nor a fixed building system like a “temple”. Nomadic people, or peasants who live scattered and live together in tribal formations, mostly only know natural places of worship or pilgrimage. Here striking trees, caves, springs or also rock and mountain formations play a role. A historical example of this is Zoroastrianism (also known as Parsism in Asia), which is widespread in the Iranian and Anatolian highlands. It alludes to the dualism of spiritual powers (Eliade 1961[63]). Special natural events, surroundings or even landscapes reflect the presence of good and bad forces.[64] Terms that are now to describe the central temple of the Jewish rite are difficult to find. Alternatively, “House of God”, “place of religious veneration”, “place of pilgrimage” or the name of a local place of pilgrimage is suggested in alternation with the terms given in the base text. In all cases, an explanation of the initially foreign language and cultural content is necessary, as was also the case by the Christianization of the Germanians and Teutons.

In the course of the Reformation, the vocabulary used in the Bible translation was immediately incorporated into church life via the catechumenate. Such gave the opportunity to explain key terms and to repeat them continuously. At the same time, however, the option was taken to try out alternative terms. Today's German Bible translations are difficult to detach from the Reformed Church vocabulary.[65] A phrase in the mother tongue must determine which phrase or term comes closest to the base-text. The naturalness - and not the principle of “understood foreignness” - of language should be in the foreground, following the example of oral tradition. Understanding the divine message, like the base-text, is broken down into anthropocentric cognitive comprehension. This anthropocentric process of transferring biblical content leads to an “effective / experience inspiration”. The effect of the divine word unfolds in the person that is addressed and effected by the text and not as a general verbal inspiration inherent of the base-text and all of its translations.[66] In order to keep the epistemological hurdles for capturing what has been said as low as possible, the linguistic-cultural context of the language into which translation is to be carried out must be made.

Interpreting - Prototype of oral Translation

In order to include the term “natural language” or “naturalness of language”, interpreting must be dealt with. It is a model of the transfer of human tradition into another language and culture. In addition to simultaneous translation, there is also the consecutive one. Simultaneous interpretation requires a constant change between the two language and cultural circles. In consecutive or conference interpreting this takes place in 10-minute units.[67] These 10-minute sections of speech are transcribed by using symbols to capture whole phrases in the language to be translated and then translated in one piece (Fabbro 1999:204).[68] The transfer follows the two postulates “continual faithfulness to the text” (“text” is to be understood here both spoken and written) and “intelligibility” as they are generally formulated in science for translation. The consecutive translator must fully understand what is being said in order to interpret professionally.[69] In the short time he cannot close gaps in his mind, but must inevitably include them in the translated corpus. Despite these differences compared to translating ancient texts, consecutive interpreting conveys the origin of the transfer of linguistic-cultural content to another language and culture group (Fabbro 1999:204). It should be emphasized that the spontaneity of interpreting compels it to be “natural”. When interpreting, intuition leaves various options for choosing words, both grammatical, morphological and semantic. Since what is said or written is dealt with immediately, there is no option for an explanation to the audience of listeners or readers if the wording is incomprehensible. Each part of the translation serves as the basis for the following parts of the conversation. The interpreter follows his intuition and knowledge of both linguistic life realities.[70] Translation also lives from this intuition, which is also reflected in the Bible translation.[71]

So far, it can be stated that “telling the Bible”, in addition to translation-theoretical-ideological basics, essentially consists of the intuitive transfer of the base-text from its language and culture area into another. The base-text text itself followed an oral tradition, which was be given forth in written form later. It must therefore be translated into the “principles” intended by the biblical author, as they followed the oral tradition. In contexts in which written tradition does not play a role, the focus is on the memorability of the texts, the naturalness of the transmission of the “text” (style and form), as a genre of “sacred text”. This can only be done in the translation team and under mutual and retroactive control. Here, the translators follow the principle of feedback as a characteristic of the verifiability of the quality of the translation (Nord 2001: 63, 68[72]; Schülein 2001: 20[73]). What does this mean for translators of biblical texts in their daily work?

3. Practical Steps

The recent 100-year history of the Bible translation movement[74] has produced its own interdisciplinary science on Bible translation (detailed in Werner 2012).[75] The Bible Translation Movement[76] builds on Jesuit (15th - 16th centuries), Pietistic, and Free Church initiatives (17th - 18th centuries). At the end of the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century, the Western Church increasingly concentrated on the plight of peoples who, due to geographical, political and linguistic-cultural causes, had no access to biblical content. The United Bible Societies (UBS)[77], Pioneer Bible Translators (PBT), Summer Institute of Linguistics International (SIL Int'l)[78] and many other organizations active in Christian development aid are specialized in the task of Bible translation. It follows that projects for Bible translation are now professionally designed and include a network of specialists.

A national church or group of believers typically initiates a Bible translation project. Such projects are motivated by a) their own language and culture change (need for revision), b) the target group-oriented approach with the biblical text, and c) the evangelistic concern of reaching people in their language and culture context. This first type a) of Bible translation projects as revisions are primarily initiated and planned by theologians interested in philological details. Other disciplines such as linguistics, social research or anthropology are subsidiary. Whereas b) and c) are fist or new/missionary Bible translation projects which are deeply interdisciplinary in their approach.

In countries where a language group has not yet been alphabetized, such projects are initiated by a team of linguists, anthropologists or social researchers. In these projects, theological-philological questions mostly deal with translational-linguistic factors. The initiators first study the language and then work on language learning materials, using oral traditions as well as written traditions of the biblical texts as learning materials. Native-language translators are trained in such projects in order to indigenize the oral traditions and the written text. The first rough drafts are presented to the different dialects in order to appeal to a large audience of listeners and readers. Theological-ideological questions also need to be clarified in contexts with national churches.[79] In traditional ecclesiastical countries of the West, denominational hurdles were no reason to refuse such Bible translations (e.g. Luther Bible, Vulgate). Only recently have denominational hurdles been reflected in the translation of the Bible. Denominational and ideologically coherent groups increasingly venture into their own target group-oriented Bible translations.

One step further. With regard to a rough draft, key terms are sought that describe central biblical terms and brief statements. In the written translation tradition, a concordant translation is pushed, while an oral translation tradition allows for variations here. Key terms include: Temple, Sin, God, God’s People, Father, Son, Tent of Encounter etc. If this content is not available in the language to be translated, descriptions are necessary:

  • “Temple” can be used as “House of God”, “Sanctuary” or “holy place / place” are described.
  • “God” as “highest being”, “heavenly being”, or “origin”.
  • “Sin” as “separation from God”, “turning away from God”, “godlessness”.

The resulting draft is checked with the help of translators from Bible translation (translation consultants) for its exegetical, linguistic and content-related proximity to the base-text. At the same time, its intelligibility is examined. Various native-language Bible translators are questioned with the help of back-translations into the language of the consultants, to understand their understanding of the text.[80] A first draft goes as a test version to selected representatives of the language group (theologians, authors, language specialists, leaders). Their suggestions will be incorporated into the second draft, which will be checked again with the team of native-speaking translators for review by translation consultants. The resulting third draft is a proposal for publication. Formats, presentation and questions of the publication are to be clarified in the following.

In the case of oral texts, the background of the “text” with background noise, music and auxiliary information is added after the third exam. A written fixation of the audio text is provided as accompanying material. It serves as a learning material for future readers, but should not replace a new and later scriptural Bible based on a future scriptural tradition.

Tools for the translation of biblical content include translation-specific comments[81], text editions of the text-critical apparatus[82], computer-specific tools[83], manuals[84]. The sheer number of tools offered shows the impossibility of becoming aware of all translational-linguistic problems. For this reason, every translation of the Bible remains a current, intuitively interpreted suggestion. As such it should be revised from time to time based on theological-ideological and exegetical findings, as well as the change in culture and language. A living church will face this task. “Telling the Bible” thus becomes a dynamic interaction within the framework of the incarnation principle of Bible translation. The framework for this process is the text-critical base-text, which is not to be copied literally, but which serves as a template to guarantee the everlasting “incarnation” of the word of God at all times in the linguistic-cultural idioms of mankind (John 1:1-10) .

Additional information helps the audience understand. In a translation, it is important to keep the balance between

a.) Additional information inserted in the "text" or

b.) Paratext (footnotes, marginal notes, lexica, glossaries, etc.).

Already the ancient text tradition developed seven hermeneutic basic rules (e.g. Hillel), which were gradually refined, expanded or shortened. These basic rules set the direction for translation principles, since understanding, translating and interpreting, thinking and language combine on an epistemological level. In the tension between the afore mentioned over-simplification or over-explication tendency, the Bible translation team is required to provide the audience with cognitive points of contact in the text and outside. At the same time, every translation will tend towards the latter. This is because the reality specified in the base-text can only be represented in the interpretation and with explanations in the new context. In the oral tradition, the tendency to over-explain is even stylistically required. The reason being the narrator who has to provide his audience with the presentation of the framework.

It remains to notice that oral tradition and written translation change “texts”. In some cases, this leads to simplifications in order not to overwhelm the audience, in other cases to embellishments to make the “text” interesting and informative. The translation team counteracts this design element and the associated changes by enabling the native-speaking audience to refer back to the original text. The references to original connotations also flow into the oral tradition repeatedly. The traders point out the differences between their stories and the original version (see section on text discourse).

Now that the creative studio of the Bible translators and their working framework have been examined, the specific meaning and function of the oral tradition comes to the fore.      

4. Oral tradition

As indicated above, the process of translating has to be distinguished in two ways. On the one hand, if there is context in which there is already a Bible translation or parts of the Bible, on the other hand if there is still no access to the native-language Bible or parts of the Bible (footnote 57). Some important procedures are fundamentally different, others are identical. In the German-speaking world, more than 53 full Bibles are now accessible, which is why a revision or an additional mother-tongue Bible translation is based on sufficient comparative and reference material. Such material does not exist in Christian development aid or non-Christian contexts. There are also other decisions or objectives that come into play in Christian development aid.

The following preliminary decision has to be made, namely whether the Bible or parts of the Bible should serve as a learning template in oral traditions. In particular, possible training materials with regard to literacy are important because they open up the perspective of a future writing culture. In such verbally traded contexts, an oral version of the Bible or parts of the Bible would first be needed to see how the “text” is understood. Another decision is related to whether a mother-tongue church leads or supports the project, or whether a non-ecclesiastical translation of the Bible should appear for “potential” Christians or interested people. Bible translation projects initiated by national churches are often run by the United Bible Societies (UBS), which provides theologians, translation consultants and administrators. The Summer Institute of Linguistics International (SIL Int'l) works more in the non-Christian area with national non-Christian organizations. For some years now, these borders have been blurring and national cooperation between organizations working on Bible translation has increased.

Oral translations have long been established in Asia and Africa, so there is potential for experience. Translational problems associated with such translations were identified and analyzed. Western theology can learn from the Asian orientation on oral traditions. It turns out that certain western postulates such as for example, the apostolic creed, an implement confession to Israel due to the Holocaust, and the long underestimated diaconate to the needy and poor do not occur in Asia or find other emphasis there. The current debate about the “integration of the Church into the history of salvation” in the world religions (Tworuschka 2000:19-24), “Transformative Theology” (Beyerhaus 2013), and the Western colonial influence of the Church (e.g. Salama 1993:23) is pointing on these tendencies. It is not a question of “political correctness”, as in the German-speaking area, according to its translation mandate, so far the Bible in fair language has taken this up (1st ed. 2006, 2nd ed. 2011). No, here it is about a form of theological orientation adapted to the context, which is consequently also reflected in the Bible translation. This is expressed by the South American “liberation theology”, the African “black theology” and a developing Asian “persecution and re-Christianization theology” (persecution and re-Christianizing theology) focusing on different contexts.[85]

In Chronological Bible Storying, biblical content is given by native-speaking Bible translators, in a meaningful manner in their linguistic-cultural context. Bilingualism in a language that has a Bible translation and knowledge of your own oral tradition are important prerequisites. Typically, it is not written down until the narrative has passed through a certain oral tradition. In some cases, the translated draft forms the basis, but has to be revised constantly with regard to the oral tradition. Armstrong looks back on more than 20 years of experience in Chronological Bible Storying (CBS)[86] and emphasizes that the oral tradition is “devoted to Christians who gather in churches that are geared to growth” (2013: 322).[87] Criticisms directed primarily against the superficiality and the one-sided evangelistic orientation of the CBS have not come true in the course of the development and application of biblical storytelling or retelling. On the contrary, in the end, CBS motivates native-speaking Christians to write both literal and communicative Bible translations. In this way, they underline the aroused interest in fixing their oral traditions and analyzing them scientifically. In this process, the cycle that begins with early Christianity towards the canon-like collections of writings of the 4th century is depicted. The historical circle of mother-tongue Bible translations, starting with oral traditions, is included in this process and heralds a new round of church history renewal.

5. Luke 15: 11-32 “Fatherly Love” and Oral Tradition

In this section the parable of the “Loving Father” or better known as “The Prodigal Son” (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung 1984) is exemplarily examined. The aim is to show the problems in communicative contextualization. The proposed translations here only include the first part of the parable from the Gospel of Luke (Luke 15:1-24). The section on the older son and his disappointment is essential, but cannot be discussed due to space constraints. A short summary of this follows at the end of these translation suggestions. Once again, it should be emphasized that a first translation into a mother tongue should be a communicative translation of the Bible, which at the same time enables a literal understanding of the base-text. The base-text itself opens up various text-critical options, which are also to be disclosed in the paratext (accompanying text). Only further target group-oriented Bible translations build on the then existing scriptural tradition and enable their own written traditions. Furthermore, this elaboration focuses on the oral tradition.

The parable from Luke 15: 11-32 is given different titles in Bible translations:[88]

  • “The story of the prodigal son” (Zürcher 1931),
  • “The parable of the prodigal son” (Schlachter 1951),
  • “The story of a father with two different sons” (Volxbibel 2013 Online[89]),
  • “The parable of the lost and his brother” (English RSV, Revised Standard Version 1971),
  • “Occasions to celebrate” (English CEB, Common English Bible 2011) and
  • in the Word Biblical Commentary as “The Father and His Two Sons: 'We Had to Make Merry'” (Nolland 1998: 777).[90]

In retrospect of the development of the canon of scriptures, the cycle of the translational process in the translation of the Bible is demonstrated. This cycle is based on the foundation of the oral tradition of the early church, which in turn leads to an oral tradition of the written testimony in homiletics and sermon. This can lead to the development of an orally oriented scriptural tradition in the church that incarnates the biblical texts in accordance with dynamic language and cultural change (e.g. Luther tradition, Elberfeld tradition), here understood as an overarching dimension in the sense of the body of Christ.

The story from Luke 15: 11-32, “The Prodigal Son”, offers impressive visual material to show the translation criteria outlined here. The historical-sociological context of this narrative lies in the Jewish environment around the turn of the times. The Mosaic Law was passed on, interpreted, monitored and practiced in the context of the temple cult by religious elite and Jewish scholars (Pharisees, Sadducees, priestly caste, rabbinate and others). The Lucanian narrative was assigned to Jesus (v. 11a) and was told as part of the teaching on repentance, and contemplation in the kingdom of God or the realm of God (Luke chapters 12-17). In addition to the narrative description of a family conflict (arrogance, care, parental responsibilities, envy), this narrative of the “lost or disobedient son” also contains an eponymous and implicit statement that could be called the “underlying principle” (see footnote 92).

The parables of Jesus all follow the pattern of “principles” (see below). For this reason, the Rabbi Jesus of Nazareth was asked about the meaning of the parables. He explained the implications of the parables to his narrowest circle of followers, who further passed on the content and its underlying principles. This oral tradition and interpretation of the parables was consolidated in the Gospels, according to their narrative content and interpretation and conferring to the way they are written (Mark 4:10, 34 and 13:13; Luke 24:27; John 16:25). A theological clarification of these “principles” should not just get stuck in the communicative rendering of the narrative texts, but the many linguistic-cultural peculiarities of the source texts flow into the translation in a contextualized form in order to develop an incarnatory life of their own. This does not correspond to the “Protestant Clause of Immutability” of the biblical text, which is derived from Martin Luther’s theses for translation. In this, internal biblical and theological reasons are given, according to which the translation should be translated as concordant and verbatim as possible according to the base-text.[91] Luther did not commit himself to one direction of translation. He has kept the balance between literal and analogous (communicative) translation methods. In his letter to interpreting from 1530, he made it clear that the philological translation (literal method), particularly applied to the Vulgate, dominated the Church in the late Middle Ages and that he parted from it. Inner biblical evidence of the divine origin of Scripture can be found in following theological reasoning:

  • Luke 4:21 – fulfillment of the scriptures,
  • 2Timotheus 3:16 - thesis of inspiration,
  • 2Petrus 1:20 - biblical magisterium of scripture and Church,
  • Revelation 22:18-19 - existence of ecclesiastically relevant biblical texts.

Theological arguments are based on the thesis of divine inspiration in the biblical texts, the incarnation as a principle of contextualization, and the authority of the apostolic office to administer the church scriptures. The “hermeneutics of principles” has not yet been introduced in the theological space. It clarifies the question of what Jesus of Nazareth, detached from the words used, wanted to convey to his audience in terms of content, ethics, morals and society! I use them to illustrate the dynamic processes in the areas of an empirical theological perspective on inspiration (result- and effect inspiration) and the incarnation as found in the incarnation principle of Bible translation (Werner 2012:290-295).

Which “principle”, indicated above[92], follows the argument of Luke 15:11-32? On the one hand, the text shows the principle of forgiveness and acceptance of the lost, even including the most extreme selfishness (main actor), deepest disappointment (the family) or in the face of rejection due to unspeakable misconduct (explicitly in one’s own brother). The willingness to repent and ultimately to return to the presence of God is transferred to the spiritual realm. This principle guides the translator mentally during the translation, since it corresponds to the intention implicated in the text.

The sociological parameters should therefore be taken

  • of the nuclear family as family cohesion,
  • by non-compliance with “normative” social behavior, and
  • the reintegration and re-establishment of a family association in the language and culture to be translated into account in the transfer.

This provides a semantic-ideological framework, which must now be filled lexically and grammatically in the mother tongue. The different nuances on the lexical-grammatical level of words and sentences depend on the mandate of the translation (expectation of the audience; technical possibilities of the translators), the intuition of the translators and the deep contextualization of the biblical “text” [93]. Let’s take a closer look at parts of the text from Luke 15:11–32. Translations of Luke 15:11-13[94]:

11 And he said, A man had two sons. 12 And the younger of them said to the father, Give me, father, the inheritance that is due to me. And he shared possessions among them. 13 And not long after, the younger son gathered everything together and went to a far country; and there he brought his inheritance through with pomps. (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung) [95]

11 And he said: "A man had two sons. 12 And the younger of them said to the father, "Give me, father, the part of the property that I am entitled to." And he shared the property with them. 13 A few days later, the younger son gathered everything together and moved to a distant country; there he wasted his fortune through a lavish life. (New Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung 2009) [96]

11 Jesus continued: A man had two sons. 12 The younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the inheritance that is due to me. Then the father divided the property. 13 After a few days, the younger son packed everything up and moved to a far country. There he led a rampant life and squandered his fortune. (Uniformed Translation/ Einheitsübersetzung 1980) [97]

A short excursion into the world of text discourse shows how ideological factors control epistemological processes during translation. From an epistemological point of view, the understanding of the source text is essentially related to the personal experience of the audience. The pericope about the “prodigal son” is embedded in the linguistic-cultural context of the Jewish culture corresponding to the turn of the times. Parables and stories become timeless because they convey moral and ethical content across cultures and languages. In doing so, they remain unchanged in terms of content, that is, the way they convey the principles shown, but are at the same time linguistically and culturally contextualized.

Text discourse - Exemplary application of oral handing down

The science of text discourse in applied linguistics deals with text contexts and their cognitive processes. Text connectors (points of departure) and text phrases bring the narrative thread forward (highlighting, flow of information, foreground information), by incorporate flashbacks, backgrounding or insert insertions.

In the oral tradition of some languages, text links indicate the progress of a series of stories. In Hebrew וְ waw and in Greek the conjunctions δέ de and και kai are typical for this task. [98] In German, depending on the grammatical environment, we use different connectors (e.g. und, dann or English and, then, afterwards), mostly the progress is already included in the context, which is why punctuation marks can replace the connectors. In the translation of the Bible, attention should be paid to native-language options, the spatial (in German, for example, “dort, da, hier” in Engl. “there, there, here"), temporal (in German, for example, “dann, vorher, danach” in Engl. “then, then, before, after”) or content (in German, for example “fahr fort, folgerichtig, sowieso” in Eng. “continue, consequently, however” show connections. In the introductory phrase in the above text, the audience is made aware of the continuation of a known contextual and local situation. The continuation of an already known process is indicated by the Greek δέ de “but, and”. The Greek conjunction can be expressed in German using various text connectors, depending on the orientation of the linguistic-cultural context. The Einheitsübersetzung chose “continue”, the Bibel in gerechter Sprache does not provide a text link, instead “he spoke”. The Elberfeld, Munich New Testament use “but”. The Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung and its revisions, Schlachter and Zürcher (English CEB, RSV, KJV) used “and”.

The ideological decision is because the grammatical and linguistic context must be exegetically checked by the Bible translators and, in some cases, suspected in order to find the linguistic-cultural equivalent. As an intuitive science (see above), the Bible translator remains connected to his intuition [99]. The next section shows how these assumptions are realized.

Back to the oral tradition - Towards the oral-oriented scriptural tradition

Since the Reformation and humanism, the written tradition has been in the foreground in Western theological space.[100] Contents are reduced to essential information, redundant filler words or decorations are eliminated. Since the narratives and parables of Jesus of Nazareth fascinated people (e.g. Luke 6:17), it can be assumed that he was a good and interesting narrator. An oral narrative continues to fill the context and is binding the audience. The present text form is a fixation of the speeches and deeds of Jesus of Nazareth derived from the memory of the audience (for redundancy of oral tradition see Ong 2002:39-42). In the contextualized oral rendering of the written text, the cognitive starting points of the target language are used. They raise the audience to the level of the narrator. Mutual “understanding” then takes place in the shared encyclopedic world knowledge of a language and culture group. This fulfills the essential characteristic of “successful communication”, namely the mutual understanding. If there are gaps in understanding, questions are asked or non-understanding is signaled, which prompts the speaker to clarify. This dialogical coexistence is missing in the written fixation, which is why the text should go through several different listening and reading groups several times, so that the written fixation is as understandable as possible. This process automatically leads to an overload with cognitive stimuli of the translated text compared to the original text (over-explication). However, this is exactly the balancing function between oral and written tradition.

Thinking a step further, one can ask why the written translation is so hesitant to add textual discourse and content-related links. In those languages, in which concordant or interlinearized Bible translations are available, the translation Skopos should be on “communicative” and “contextualized” versions of the biblical text.

In “sacred text”, the experience is reflected that first translations in a language group tend to be literal, since sacred texts are first perceived as philological and concordant base-texts to the tanslation. Only follow-up translations detach from philological thinking and seek contextualized intelligibility. The demonstrated by Schleiermacher (1813), and Venuti (1995) newly prepared bandwidth between domestication (engl. Domestication) and alienation (engl. Foreignisation) shows an example of the translational frame. The biblical text should either become part of the language and culture-specific traditional material (domestication) or it remains “foreign” in the context of a “familiar foreignness” (alienation). This is not different in the approach to oral tradition in Luke 15:11-32 presented here.[101]

In consequence, an oral writing tradition develops from this, as is evident from the example of a liturgy and church bible (see preliminary considerations - from oral to written “text”). The Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung has developed in German-speaking over nearly five centuries a Tradierungsgeschichte (Engl. History of traditioning). In the Anglophone realm, the King James Bible functioned like this for four centuries. The traditional stories of both Bibles have become indispensable in church and world history, but they are particularly important for their linguistic environment (German and English). Both became the benchmark for further Bible traditions. The recent return to oral tradition has generated new aspects of epistemological relationships from a linguistic and sociological perspective. In the German context, the text of the Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung represents the greatest comparative element in the context of target group-oriented Bible translations. [102] As part of the Volxbibel, some of those involved in the online project used the Luther text as a comparison for special passages (Dreyer 2010). The Bible in just language also compares to Luther’s translation and tries to avoid Jewish-critical content, socially disadvantageous and women neglecting, and thus to use inclusive language (Eisen 2010: 3-4, 13). Without mentioning other sources, Roland Werners Bible translation titled ‘das buch’ (Engl. the book; 2009), the Einheitsübersetzung (1980) or many other German-language Bible translations could be mentioned here.

The main character in the text in many languages, after being introduced once, is only named again after a change of actor, otherwise it is represented by the pronoun “he” or “she”. In German, it is often called in between to show its implicit meaning (e.g. Jesus/ Hebrew Jehoschua = Savior) and to make it easier for the listening and reading audience to say who does what and when.

The fact that Jesus appears as a narrator in this parable serves to understand the listener and should be mentioned. For ex. "Jesus told another parable: Some of the headings indicate whether it is “parables”, “stories” or “stories”. Bible translations present such information in the heading or accompanying text, also called paratext (see Luke 15: 11-32 "Fatherly love" and oral tradition). The location in this non-biblical area is certainly justified, but cognitively it would help the reader if he also came across such references in the text. This goes beyond the previous theological-philological tradition of Bible translation.

The audience is warned of the closeness to the series of parables, which were the central teaching tools of the rabbis at the time of Jesus of Nazareth. "Parables" have a religious-spiritual and a theological component, which is why the transfer to the spiritual realm is already implied. Alternatively, one could ask what function Jesus gave in his speeches. As a rabbi (abbreviated rab), he was able to address the assembled people with similar speeches, since this was one of the many forms of teaching. [103] "Rabbi Jesus of Nazareth told another parable." This introduction opens up the religious-spiritual framework to the listening audience, in which worldly realities were shown with biblical parables.

The following family tragedy is globally understood. In addition to inheritance law (family law), it also deals with the loss of a loved one (father, brother), as well as the happiness of knowing and making amends (son). Hope and joy (father), envy and fear (older brother) are global human experiences in family life, which are therefore easily transferable to the spiritual world of the kingdom of God. The values ​​and ethical principles conveyed in the text are not limited to the actors used alone (father-sons). This is to say that the general conditions of the Jewish environment around the turn of the times dictated the biblical textual form of the parable of “The Prodigal Son”. In corresponding contexts, this picture would also be conceivable with other actors in a society who nevertheless correspond to the status of the biblical actors, so that the "principle" of the eponymous speech would not be violated.

The rabbi Jesus of Nazareth used predominantly patriarchal images in his parables in accordance with his time and the linguistic-cultural context. It can therefore be assumed that other constellations are also conceivable in other contexts. Interestingly, the Catholic Church of the Middle Ages recognized the German equality for women in everyday life, but did not include it in the Bible translation or in homiletics or the sermon. It is only recently that this fundamental difference to the Jewish Mediterranean culture around the turn of the age has become more conscious again. The parable of the “lost child” in particular would also be transferable to siblings, the level of a mother and daughter relationship in the Germanic context, since inheritance law was applied in the same way (see footnote 105). The aspect of care would be emphasized in the image of the mother. In my opinion, the German church has deprived itself of a social good that it is now trying to regain its social stand.

A team of Bible translation has to face these fundamental considerations, because its linguistic-cultural decisions are based on it. At this point, it can be stated that the western dominant presence in the field of Bible translation does not openly address its own weaknesses. Both anti-Jewish, anti-disabled, and gender-inclusive formulations are not or only hesitantly replaced by appropriate formulations. The main reason is probably the reference back to philological works (comments, dictionaries, interpretations) from the 19th century.

The inheritance regulations of the Jewish law and its interpretations saw the eldest son as the main person responsible for the inheritance. The birthright is taken up in this parable even in verse 31 and assigned to the older child. [104] It is regulated, for example, in Deuteronomy 21:16 and is transferred in the New Testament to Jesus, who, as the firstborn, surrenders the rights of succession to Christians (heirs according to Romans 8:17). The firstborn had all the responsibilities, but also privileges of succession. This fact is also evident in the wording of the head of the family, who describes him as "dead" according to his demand for a reconstruction of payment (v. 24). Most commentaries assess the concerns of the younger son differently (v. 12).

Ultimately, it will not be possible to clarify in detail whether there is a moral-ethical or legal offense, which is why the translation manual for Bible translators of the United Bible Societies (see footnote 104) expresses itself to use the present as far as possible (Reiling & Swellengrebel 1993:545). The present tense is proposed to make the audience understand that the inheritance payment requirement has been met immediately. The tragedy of the younger sons demand on as fast as possible ("immediately, now") and extensive ("my part, which I am entitled to") fulfillment should be emphasized (: 545).

It should be noted for a German-language translation that in Germanic inheritance law, during the Middle Ages, all the next biological relatives were considered, in addition the higher-ranking leaders had a claim. [105] By exclusion of a privilege from non-family members, these principles were transferred into German inheritance law. The modern German inheritance law regulated in the Civil Code (Section V) applies to all genders. §10 of the civil partnership law equally entitles every registered civil partnership in the succession. These facts can result in a translation that considers different issues:

a.) The scope of the required inheritance expressed as “my entire inheritance” is limited to “my legally due legacy” and

b.) A gender-neutral translation of the Bible text is possible in oral tradition.

It is conceivable in the “accompanying text” (explanatory part) to refer to the Jewish inheritance law applicable in the base-text and to the actors father and his two sons. This example shows the tension between written and oral tradition.

Here is an attempt to translate it into an oral tradition that gives the reader a cognitive starting point in relation to the Jewish world. What is important is the accompanying text with footnotes that explain what was common in the historic Jewish context:

11The Rabbi Jesus of Nazareth told another parable *: “Someone had two sons. 12The younger said to his father: 'Father, give me my inheritance, which I am rightfully entitled to.' The father divides the property. ** 13Shortly afterwards, the younger son packed his things and traveled far away. There he lived in rage until he had nothing left. *** [106]

* This term is derived from the context of the disciple relationship. Literally in the original: He continued: ...

** The younger son is not primarily entitled to inheritance, which is why the head of the family legally divides the entire estate in order to pay the compulsory portion to his younger son.

*** He wasted everything through his excessive lifestyle.

In contrast, a translation adapted to the context of the inheritance regulations and the gender would be rather neutral:

11The Rabbi Jesus of Nazareth continued *: "Once upon a time there was a family with two sons. ** 12The younger one asked the parents: 'Dear ones give me all my inheritance now, even if this is unusual.' They then regulated the matter notarial. *** 13Shortly afterwards, the younger son packed up all his things. He went out into the wide world and lived in rush until he was mediocre.

* This term is derived from the context of the disciple relationship. Literally in the original: He went on to say:….

** The parable below tells the context at that time from the point of view of men about a “father and his two sons”.

*** Inheritance arrangements were made in front of a public “judge, elder” who regulated the local administration.

Summary of Luke 15: 11-13

So far it can be said that oral traditions of biblical content form the basis for new scriptural traditions. Church and liturgical Bibles, children’s Bibles, online Bibles, as well as other target group-oriented translations of the Bible originate from such oral traditions and developed or develop their own text traditions. First mother tongue translations (e.g. Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung, King James Version) provide impulses for new target group-oriented oral traditions and their subsequent written fixing. Language and cultural changes (e.g. Anglicism’s, electronic media), linguistic variations of subcultures, target group-oriented language and exegetical-ideological knowledge make revisions of existing Bibles as well as dynamic and creative-contextualized Bible translations necessary.

The proposed versions of the parable of “The Prodigal Son” are based on the Germanic origin of the German public and highlight the oral tradition of the biblical “text”. It should be emphasized that contextualized Bible translations only make sense when already a literal Bible translation is available, or the base-text can be used in exegesis and homiletics. This recourse in the paratext (foot- or endnotes, glossary, introduction), a supplied interlining or in the comments must also name text-critical variations.

“Literalists” have to put up with the question of why there can actually be several literal and faithful translations of the Bible (Unrevised Elberfelder Bible, Munich Testament, Interlinear translation, Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung), if within the framework of this theory a liable translation line would be given. This shows that language and understanding are not linear and require translational leaps.

Furthermore, the oral tradition offers the ideal framework to let the biblical text come alive and incarnate in a target group (oral-aural). This transformation of the two-dimensional written text into the three-dimensional imagination of the audience is made possible by cognitive processes. These help the audience to absorb the “text” epistemologically (cognitive-epistemological process). Implicit information is necessary so that the audience is able to interpret the content. Over-information that cannot be clearly realized is marked in the paratext to allow conclusions to be drawn about the base-text.

Luke 15: 14-16

The next pericope of this parable describes the plight from which the rabbi Jesus of Nazareth developed the drama. In this section, he also alludes to Jewish law and its purity regulations. The discrepancy between insiders and outsiders in relation to the chosen Jewish people comes into view, such a division should be overcome in the Messiah’s offer of universal salvation that is by decision of each individual.

The Jewish purity regulations regarding “pork” are known today in German as well as in many Muslim contexts and can be assumed. This is not the case in many cultures around the world, which is why translations for such peoples require paratext (accompanying text) and explications to point to the particularly deep and fateful case of the actor.

14 When he had consumed everything, there was a great famine over that land, and he began to suffer from want. 15 So he went and hung himself on a citizen of that country; he sent him to his field to look after the pigs. 16 And he would have loved to fill his belly with the pods that the pigs ate; but nobody gave it to him. (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung 1984) [107]

14 When he had got everything through, the country was in a great famine and he was very bad. 15 Then he went to a citizen of the country and pressed himself on him; this one sent him to the field to look after the pigs. 16 He would have liked to satisfy his hunger with the pods that the pigs ate; but nobody gave him any. (Einheitsübersetzung) [108]

No reference is made as to whether it was a real, well-known story or whether this story was fictitious. The written text suggests that the situation was known to the original audience, since no overall information is given. The country is not described in any more detail, nor is the way the money was squandered. The tragedy in the case of the main actor is striking. Own fault, as well as external influences (famine) imply divine cause. Here an anthropocentric focus, egocentric prodigality, is mixed with the spiritual divine reality that is the rule over nature.

The Volx Bible (see footnote 111 below) is so far the only German Bible that attempted to transform such an emergency into today's environment. This type of contextualization is worth mentioning, because it removes any cognitive obstacle for today’s German reader to understand the biblical narrative. The spiritual “principle” behind the parable thus comes to the fore and is not made more difficult by the linguistic-cultural gaps between the original text and the translated narrative. The Volxbibel thus follows the translation tradition of becoming native (- indigenization -; see footnote 93). For German circle of readers in the beginning of the 21st century, the main actor’s agony is difficult to understand, since his own experience is lacking as e.g. the war generation. [109] Christians from the two-thirds of the world experience these stories very differently, because they are existentially much closer to the socio-political context of the turn of the times due to social injustice, poverty and political tyranny. Information on the Islamic context can be found in Zwemer (1912: 34-35, 37), in the two-thirds world by Hertlein (2008: 95-96), and Escobar (2000: 31-33, 39).

Oral tradition must create cognitive starting points, as is possible through emphatic words. The choice of words such as “powerful” (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung) is not necessarily understandable. On the one hand, the feeling / sensation is not sufficiently addressed and, on the other hand, in Germany a famine is not understood as an independent danger but as a result of a catastrophic natural event or failing human action. [110] The adjectives “bad, devastating, terrible” are more emotional and correspond to today's reports on disasters. Regarding the phrase “suffering from lack” (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung), this German Einheitsübersetzung (standard translation - Roman Catholic) made a good choice with “he was very bad”. The solution to the “hunger” problem drives the actor into dependency on other people. His case is absolute. Reiling and Swellengrebel emphasize the waste (πάντα panta intention to “all” indicates V. 13 οὐσίαν ousian) and the seriousness of the famine (ἰσχυρὸς ischuros; 1993: 547). In v. 15 the state of dependency is translated by serfdom (slavery) in some translations (ibid.).

V. 16 refers to pig feed obtained from the carob tree. Herding pigs (vv. 15-16) is one of the least valuable works in farming cultures, which should be expressed through linguistic labeling. In Judaism and Islam, the pig is impure and the choice of the pig is at the top of this story. It becomes difficult, when domesticated pigs are not known in some cultures (e.g. many nomadic peoples). Then you would have to look for an animal species that is considered prohibited or inferior in animal husbandry there. V. 16 also has a text-critical variant, which Metzger emphasizes for Bible translators. χορτασθῆναι ἐκ chortast hangai ek “saturate from” is from nu ¥ BDb wh attests. However, he opts for the text of NA27 (Metzger 1971: 164).

A possible translation could be:

14 When he had squandered his entire fortune, there was also a terrible famine * and he was miserable **. 15 He went into the existential dependency of a resident there ***, who graciously sent him to his fields to at least look after the pigs. 16 His stomach growled, but not even *** the cheap pig feed from the carob tree was granted to him.

* The topic of "famine" has an existential meaning for the Israelites because famine in the Hebrew Bible was used by the Jewish God to guide the Israelites and their fortunes (e.g. Genesis 12:10; 26: 1; 41-47 ; Rut 1: 1).

** He had nothing left.

*** Serfdom should be considered here, since the work carried out is to be regarded as inferior. The image of the swineherd affects the Jewish context particularly, since pigs were declared impure by God in the Mosaic Law and thus kept the non-Jewish world in front of the Jewish reader (Lev 11: 7).

**** He would have liked to eat the fruits of the carob tree.

Summary Luke 15: 14–16

The translation proposed here refers to emotional language, as is common in the oral tradition. Everyday phrases have been used. The intended direction of argumentation in the base-text is included in the accompanying text. A contextualization, in the sense of the Volxbibel, compels the options made there (youth language of a certain context) due to its target group-oriented translation Skopos. The use of native language colloquial phrases (“go dirty, be miserable, stomach growl”) does not conform to the common practice in German Bible translations of using an upscale everyday language. The aim is rather to preserve the sacred meaning of the Holy Scriptures. In contrast to this, Christian development aid likes to use the emotional language of a poorly educated audience in order to address as large a readership as possible. The UBS handbook on Lukas therefore also gives recommendations and examples from mostly African language groups that reflect such emotional language (according to Reiling & Swellengrebel; Africa has been a focus of Christian development aid in the last century).

Luke 15: 17-19

The view now turns from the general framework back to the main actor. His inner feelings and motivations based on his conscience are revealed. These emotions are amplified by the emotional language that oral trading entails. “Telling the Bible” develops a special dynamic in such “texts”, since the emotional world (thinking) is decisive for a person's way of acting (behavior / doing).

17 Then he went inside himself and said, How many day laborers does my father have who have bread in abundance, and I am going to die here in hunger! 18 I will get up and go to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me one of your day laborers! (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung) [111]

17 Then he heard inside and said: How many day laborers of my father have more than enough to eat, and I am dying of hunger here. 18 I will go and go to my father and say to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be your son; make me one of your day laborers. (Einheitsübersetzung) [112]

In verse 17 the inner reflection is alluded to. The inner restlessness that drives him in his hopeless state can be expressed with phrases such as "undecided he was driven back and forth". The term μίσθιοι misthioi "day laborer, hired slave" alludes to the lower and non-status social class of a society. Since there are no such day workers in German society, a footnote is necessary. In v. 18 the father is not really addressed, which can lead to problems of understanding in some languages, in which verbal speech is accompanied by forms of respect (Reiling & Swellengrebel call Javanese; 1993:549).

In v. 19 the change of position from a direct family member to a financial employment relationship is displayed. In other words, the natural financial inheritance relationship becomes an unqualified employment relationship. The phrase “against the sky” must be explained or supplemented, since it was fully understandable in the Jewish context, but is misunderstood as a mystical statement without previous exegetical training (: 549). Since the phrase “against the sky” is a synonym for the realm of God and thus God himself, it seems helpful to resolve this phrase and to refer to it in the paratext. “God” is used in German, but more precise attributes are required in other cultures and languages (e.g. “against the one in heaven”: 549).

The first translation suggestion builds on the oral translation tradition started above. The above mentioned references to a context of gender equality based on the Germanic-German culture in contrast to the Jewish-Greek paternalism must be assumed. Wherever family and child are used, the base-text focuses on a father and his two sons. The parable is viewed from a family point of view in order to do justice to the Germanic-German tradition:

17 He desperately pondered back and forth *: My family has so many people to work for ** who are financially well off, and I'm dying of hunger. 18 Now, I get myself up and talk to them: Dear Ones, I behaved completely wrong *** and thus seriously offended God and you ****. 19 I am no longer worthy of being called your child. I'm just asking you for some job.

In a paternalistic context, the “father” represents the family, and the “son” represents the children. Another form of contextualization is to semantically dissolve this paternalistic picture into a family context. The process extends the spiritual transfer of this parable to a picture of God, which relates the origin of humanity to an all-encompassing power that is not restricted by gender. The pictorial words chosen by the rabbi Jesus of Nazareth himself, the “father” and “son”, were fully understandable and legally and socially indispensable in the social structure at that time. The Jewish context around the turn of the age hardly allowed any other language picture.

One has to ask provocatively how Jesus would incarnate in an Islamic, Hindu or Western-enlightened context. Much has been discussed about whether he would have appeared as a woman, a beggar, an Islamic scholar, or a caste member of Hinduism. In any case, an oral tradition should speak linguistically and culturally about social constructs as openly as possible. The framework of the Hebrew Bible points to its context as part of the masculine use of language in antiquity, hence the promised “son” (e.g. Isaac Genesis 17:19; Psalm 2: 7).

Another possible translation would be:

17 He suggested desperately in his thought back and forth *: My father has so many employees ** who are financially well off, and I'm so dirty off! 18 I get myself up now, go to my father and talk to him: Father, I've done nonsense *** and thereby God **** and seriously offended you! 19 I'm really not worthy of being called your son anymore, please hire me at least as a slave to you.

* He came to his senses.

** This means “day laborers, hired slaves”.

*** The term "sinned" used here means both the alienation from God and from others. The consequences of this alienation are contained in this term.

**** Actually "against the sky". Here the sphere of God and thus God himself is meant. The idea stems from the a Jewish-Jahwe worldview.

Summary Luke 15: 17-19

The pericope from Luke 15: 17-19 describes the conflict of conscience that results from the actor's self-inflicted misery. The actor's insight omits the external fateful circumstances (famine), since only one's own behavior can be resolved. The parable focuses on the admission of guilt towards a higher power and before others. This defines the framework for the term “sin”. The alienation from a higher power, the creator, and also from the fellow human beings is understandably discussed. The narrator’s context of the life-threatening emergency serves as a dramatic framework.

Again, emotional language is well suited to show the drama of one's conscience out of the context of despair. The actor becomes painfully aware of the fact that, due to own selfishness, he no longer belongs to the family. The phrase “against the sky” has to be resolved in the text because it has its Jewish context. For the German reader, the transfer to the author of destiny “God” is enough. Additional attributes may be required in other languages.

Luke 15: 20-24

The next pericope tells of overcoming one's selfishness and re-entering the family. The actor slowly takes a back seat and the essence of the parable becomes clear. The rabbi Jesus of Nazareth is now heading the story to the first climax. Reunification with your own family is very different from what the actor had imagined. The father, who represents the family, welcomes him warmly. Nevertheless, the actor does not forget to address his egoism. He is then reinstated as a full member of the family, although his dignity as a younger son does not include financial restitution (v. 31). As a result, everyone has something to celebrate up to this climax in the story. Celebration is also a central theme of the parable, because the forgiveness and acceptance of the lost, point to the spiritual principles in the kingdom of God or God’s world (v. 24). [113]

20 And he rose and came to his father. But when he was still a long way away, his father saw him and he moaned; he ran and fell around his neck and kissed him. 21 And the son said to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son. 22 But the father said to his servants, Bring quickly the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and shoes on his feet 23 and bring the fattened calf and slaughter it; let's eat and be happy! 24 For this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and found. And they started to be happy. (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung 1984)

20 Then he left and went to his father. The father saw him coming from afar and he felt sorry for him. He ran to the son, fell around his neck and kissed him. 21 Then the son said, Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you; I am no longer worthy to be your son. 22 But the father said to his servants, Get the best robe quickly and put it on him, put a ring on his hand, and put on shoes for him. 23 Bring the fattening calf and slaughter it; we want to eat and be happy. 24 For my son was dead and is alive again; it was lost and has been recovered. And they started to celebrate a happy festival. (Einheitsübersetzung)

In verse 21 a short reading is suggested from a text-critical point of view. The addition “take me at least as one of your lowest employees” isby ¥, Bwh Bb D 700 1141 al attested(Metzger 1971: 164). In the view of Metzger and the editors of the base-text (NA27), additions can be observed more often, which is why an addition can also be assumed in this case. The evidence of the short reading is also enormous, which is why it is proposed for Bible translators.

In this pericope, aids for Bible translators point to various questions that are also important for oral tradition. Emotional components are such an area. In v. 21 the actor addresses the head of the family from a position of total subordination. In some contexts, this distinction in the choice of forms of respect should also be emphasized linguistically in the translations.

In German, this can be done by an adjective, adverb or by a paraphrase. A description such as “completely overwhelmed”, “completely shocked” or “full of humility” signals the state of the actor. V. 22 is more difficult because the cultural background to the behavior of the head of the family is missing. The choice of words used in the base-text indicates that the actor must have looked pretty run down. The clothes take him out of this degrading and desolate state. In the comments, there are different arguments about what kind of connection the ring has. Overall, the commentators vacillate between honoring the returning man because of his insight or whether he should be given higher honors at the level of the family management. This range is covered in the Paratext.

In the context of v. 23, it makes more sense to focus on the joy of the head of the family (Nolland 1998: 784). Emotional language picks up the peculiarity of the situation even in emphatic expressions. The highlight of these pericopes is the perception of the emergency situation by the head of the family without reacting reproachfully.

The importance of the fattening calf in v. 23 as a “valuable” family good for special occasions can only be understood in peasant societies. Either an indication of the value of the food should be inserted here, or the paratext (e.g. footnote) deals with this tradition of rural cultures. In connection with the Hebrew Bible, the practice of the guest “victim” in the form of a valuable sacrifice from the own animal population becomes particularly clear (Genesis 18: 7). This allusion to the parable was well known to the public. In Christian development aid, a calf may not have the status of an honorable slaughter animal. For example, in many cultures living in high mountain regions, livestock farming with sheep, llamas or goats is contested. Likewise, in the western world, heavy meat consumption and its high ecological additional costs (pasture keeping, water consumption) are being denounced. For this reason, an even larger, understandable gap in this picture can be assumed in the future.

But, as already mentioned, the picture no longer affects modern industrial people, which is why it must be explained by means of additions or transferred to the current context (see Volxbibel). In the latter case, the base-text would have to be included in the accompanying text. Alternatively, the written tradition can be included in the new oral tradition with an explanation of ancient practice. V. 24 reflects a play on words in which the head of the family names the selfishness of the child for the first time and equates it with the complete violation of a valued family member.

The term “as dead” can also be translated as “dead for me”, “had died for us” (figuratively) or “has passed and is now reversed”. The mentioned reunion is particularly lively by means of emotional language, such as for example, “they were partying exuberantly” or “a huge reunion party started”.

A translation suggestion while maintaining the familiar Germanic-German context would be:

20 He set off on the journey home * moodily. Even from a distance they saw him coming and they felt very sorry for him. ** The father ran to him, hugged him warmly and tightly ***. 21 The returnee only said: “Dear parents, I have done absolute nonsense and have seriously offended God and you. No, I am no longer part of the family."# 22 But they ordered their employees: “Quickly, bring the most beautiful clothes, put them on him, give him the valuable family jewelry ****, and also shoes for his bare feet. * *** 23 slaughter the best young animal of our animal population *****; let us celebrate properly. 24 Our child had literally died for us and is now alive again; it had turned away from everything and was now brought back to us.” ******* And they began to celebrate reunited.

* Here, as in the following, the father is mentioned as the representative of the house.

** The appearance of the returnee must have been pathetic, as the following clothing procedure proves.

*** Literally: he felt sorry for him, ran towards him, fell around his neck and kissed him.

V21 # Many text witnesses lack the addition "Please give me some job". Other important text witnesses have this phrase. The shorter text is recommended because additions are more likely than omissions.

**** Here is a ring for the hand. Whether it is a family sign or a valuable prop as an expression of joy is negotiated differently.

***** The young "fattening calf" was intended for special occasions in the Jewish context. This tradition is based on Genesis 18: 7.

****** Literally: he was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is now found again.

An alternative translation of this pericope’s focus is on a view of the family structure as used in the base-text, but emphasizes the emotional language:

20 With a heavy heart he started the journey home *. But the father recognized him from afar, he was visibly moved, ran and hugged him warmly. 21 The returnee confessed: Oh father, I proudly turned against God and you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son. ** 22 The head of the family said to his employees: Brisk, bring the nicest clothes and put him on decently, put a valuable ring on his hand and give him shoes for the naked Feet. 23 Slaughter the most valuable fattened animal ***, serve it up; let's celebrate exuberantly! 24 My son was dead, but now he's alive again; he was gone, but now he's back ****. They celebrated exuberantly.

* Literally: to the father.

** See v. 18. Some textual witnesses document the long version “Please make me one of your lowest employees”. However, additions are typical means of the writer to explain more than was originally necessary, which is why the short reading was suggested here.

*** The young “fattened calf” was intended for special occasions in the Jewish context. Based on Genesis 18: 7, this tradition is referred to here.

**** Literally: he was dead and is alive again; he was lost and found.


Summary Luke 15: 20-24

In this pericope, the conflict of conscience out of the previous verses is put into action. The actor is forced to take the initiative. Contrary to all expectations, the rabbi Jesus of Nazareth turns the page and goes beyond the legal regulations to illustrate the principle of “forgiveness, acceptance and hope” in the kingdom of God. The family - apart from the older brother - is shocked (v. 20) about the neglect of the returnee, but they unconditionally take him back. This is without exception in the series of parables that testify to belonging to the Kingdom of God (Luke 14-15) and its principles (Luke 16-18).

In a figurative sense, the actor rebels against his creator and goes his own selfish way. This goes well until he realizes that he has plunged into misfortune and godlessness. Now follows the realization of re-acceptance and forgiveness within the divine sphere, which is only possible through an inner and outer repentance. Again, anthropocentric and divine action go hand in hand here to understand the principles of repentance and forgiveness.

A transfer to the family space helps the audience to understand the generality of the parable and to transfer it to everyday life. A problem with contextualization is in the fact that the traditional nuclear family is no longer considered representative. In the context of the modern patchwork family situation, it will have to be considered which understanding of ​​family should be chosen. Nevertheless, this contextualization enables an expansion of the image of God, which is different from the paternalistic understanding of the ancient world. Since "God" is "all in all" according to the apostle Paul (1 Corinthians 15:28), where it is contextually possible, he should not be reduced to personality in the terms "father, son and Holy Spirit", but it should be clear that these are just auxiliary constructs. These terms serve the believers to put the unspeakable and incomprehensible of the biblical representation of God in human images and thus language. Verbal tradition cannot dispense with redundant images in general, since it projects the divine sphere onto the level of human understanding, but it is also not intended to limit the view to the divine greatness behind and indicated.

An extensive discussion as to why the “father” and “son” terms cannot be rated absolutely goes too far here. A comparison of divine and human fatherhood lacks the human limits of being a father. Divorce, death, illness or human failure make it impossible to present an ideal in the worldly father, which could remind of the divine qualities. Divine attributes such as omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience and immortality break the human understanding of the "father". Even in the transference to the creator, the concept of the father is lacking on the female side as a contrast of family expression. A family is not reflected in the "father image", this deficiency is not filled by the term "son" or the addition of the "Holy Spirit". The apostolic credos fall short here and lead to a narrowing of the image of God. Because of these credos, however, the Trinitarian concept in the Father, Son, Holy Spirit concept has developed into theological dogma over the centuries in the Church. Of course, Jesus of Nazareth himself refers to the Trinitarian concept of the “son” god, “father” god and “holy spirit” god and where he does this explicitly and theologically, this must also be recognizable (e.g. Paratext ). In the figurative sense of the parables; However, narratives and parables can be contextualized.

In dogmatically important places in the New Testament in which Jesus of Nazareth, as the “son” god, relates to the “father” god, such as: B. in the Gospel of John, this must be explicitly marked. However, the divine relations used by Jesus of Nazareth between him as Son-God, Father-God and Holy Spirit-God are eternally valid, but in certain contexts they can also be expressed in other social relations. In other words, it is for certain contexts It is possible to express the Trinitarian-divine relation, which is important to Jesus and the New Testament letter writers, in other terms and images that show similar relations.

The dissolution of the parable in a reunion celebration and thus the celebration together about the repentance and resumption in the nearness to God is the central theme of the teaching of the Kingdom of Jesus. The cycle of turning away (distance), insight, repentance and resumption in the proximity of the Creator runs through the entire Bible in terms of salvation history (e.g. Book Richter).

Summary Luke 15: 25-32

In the next pericope, the family drama is exacerbated by the fact that the firstborn pushes for justice according to the Mosaic Law. The rabbi Jesus of Nazareth counters this with the consistent attitude of the head of the family. The emotional anger and hatred of the firstborn for his younger brother plays an important role in the language of this section. For the elderly, it is about the honor of the family as well as the disappointment about the cheek and selfishness of the younger brother. As already mentioned at the beginning, he is the deputy of the head of the family and is responsible for the entire family. This background determines the choice of language. [114]

25 But the older son was in the field. And when he came near the house he heard singing and dancing 26 and called one of the servants to him and asked what it was.27 But he said to him, Your brother has come, and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he has recovered him well. 28 Then he got angry and didn't want to go inside. Then his father went out and asked him. 29 And he answered and said to his father, Behold, I have served you for so many years and have never violated your command, and you have never given me the pleasure of being happy with my friends. 30 Now that this son of yours has come, who has given your belongings to whores, you have slaughtered the fattened calf for him. 31 And he said to him, My son, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32 But you should be happy and of good cheer; because this your brother was dead and has come back to life, he was lost and found again. (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung)

25 Meanwhile, his older son was in the field. When he went home and came near the house, he heard music and dance. 26 So he called one of the servants and asked what that meant. 27 The servant replied, Your brother has come, and your father slaughtered the fattened calf because he got it back safe and sound. 28 Then he got angry and didn't want to go inside. But his father came out and talked to him well. 29 But he said to the father, I have been serving you for so many years, and I have never acted against your will; But you never gave me a billy goat so that I could celebrate a party with my friends. 30 But no sooner has he come here than you, your son, who has brought your fortune through harlots, when you have slaughtered the fattened calf for him. 31 The father answered him, My child, you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32 But now we have to be happy and celebrate a party; for your brother was dead and is alive again; it was lost and has been recovered. (Einheitsübersetzung)

These two translations, the translation of Luther and the Einheitsübersetzung (standard translation - Roman Catholic; see also footnote 114) describe the content of the pericope. The tension that arises with regard to family honor is evident in both translations.

For an oral translation tradition, there is a lack of emotional images that are available in many different ways in the German language. The framework conditions for the use of emotional language images are given. Verses 25-26 describe the surprise of the firstborn and certainly the disappointment that no one had notified him, after all the reunion was already in full swing. The conflict depends on the one hand on the lifestyle of the younger brother and his waste of money (v. 30), but also and primarily on a perceived disadvantage by the head of the family (v. 29). The head of the family does not release the tension, but refers to belonging to the family. The only important thing for him is the question of who stays with the family, because that gives them unlimited access to family property. Anyone looking for this closeness and willing to accept the conditions of belonging is welcome and should also be accepted by all family and household members.

The internal structure of this section points to the human problem of leaving the wrong committed unpunished. It prepares the way for a transference to spiritual belonging to the kingdom of God. The implied “principle” describes repentance and return to the proximity of God, which is founded on one's own initiative, since man is in a state of separation.

From a linguistic-linguistic point of view, the following passages from Luke 15: 25-32 present difficulties that would have to be clarified in individual cases (Reiling & Swellengrebel 1993: 553-557). V. 25 describes the firstborn who is “in the field”. This phrase from the farming environment is not necessarily understandable, especially not where the livelihood has been industrialized. The phrase "he just came home from work" fits the phrase better. Based on the reunion from v. 24, the description of the omitted festival used here is taken up. It is advisable to refer to the exuberant mood in the reference and to translate it as "happy partying with music and dance" or "an exuberant and happy partying with music and dance".

V. 26 ends with an indirect question and an unexpected optative, ἐπυνθάνετο τί ἂν εἴη ταῦτα epunthaneto ti an tauta "he examined what that would be". This grammatical construction and the connotative imperfect of the verb underscore the surprise of the elder. To emphasize the negative mood is a phrase like "and he asked what's going on there again!" Or "he asked, what's going on?"

In verse 27, the employee referred to the father's selective action, “Your father prepared the fattened animal for slaughter”. From the employee's point of view, it makes sense to use the active form as a language picture. However, since it was not the father who had slaughtered, but had slaughtered (v. 23), this passive should appear in the oral tradition. It makes sense to use the wording from v. 23 in the translation and to refer to the grammatical change in the accompanying text:

27 The employee informed him: “Your brother has returned home and your father had the fattened animal for slaughter prepared *, glad he was well and to be healthy again.”

* Your father prepared the fattened animal for slaughter.

The older man's reluctance is now becoming clear, he is suspicious and skeptical and is careful. V. 28 points to the mood. The Volxbibel has found a very fitting wording: "It was totally pissed off and pissed off". At least from the direction the language choice can go there, such as: B. "he was very angry and didn't want to party".

The head of the family was surprised again. He walks up to the older one and asks him to come in. The Einheitsübersetzung (standard translation - Roman Catholic) has found a nice German wording for it. A translation for this would be: “The head of the family went out to him and persuaded him to come in”.

In vv. 29 and 30 the older man emphasizes the difference between the value of the slaughtered cattle prepared here and the care he received. This contrast can also be described with financial terms in industrial-capitalist societies. An example would be in verse 29 “an extra financial allowance * to celebrate with my friends” (v. 29) and in contrast in v. 30 "the valuable slaughter cattle for special occasions" **. [115]

In V. 31 the head of the family specifies the inheritance rights and the position of the elder. He is placed in direct succession to take away any uncertainty. The close connection between him and the family is emphasized in this verse. A family allusion is possible at this point, “my good boy, we have always been very close as a family and share everything with each other.”

V. 32 takes up the celebration of reunion again and the wording used in V. 24 to seal the re-incorporation as a family member and forgiveness for offensive behavior.

It should be noted that the transfer of the parable is based on the responsibility of homiletics and hermeneutics about this text. Nevertheless, one principle becomes clear in this last part of the parable. Forgiveness is not unconditional, but happens in the context of human contexts. The younger son is not automatically brought back into succession. This parable is about his person and his own initiative to return or return to the sphere of God. This process of reversal is desired from a divine perspective and is substantially encouraged. However, the process is not without difficulties, as evidenced by the internal family conflicts with the sibling. The brother's rejection goes hand in hand with the acceptance by the head of the family.

6. Summary - Eliminating Communicative Disorders

The meaning of biblical narrative lies in understanding the revealed scriptures. “Telling the Bible” means that the principles and contents of Scripture can be clearly understood in the context of the target audience. A comprehensible reference to the base-text is required, but can also be included in the accompanying text (paratext, footnotes, glossary, and comment). Written tradition fixes the previous oral tradition. In other words, oral tradition is an impulse for contextual and target group-oriented Bible translation. The Skopos of oral tradition is determined between the parties involved, including the translation project manager, the Bible translators, and finally the large group of financial and material-spiritual supporters (church, family members, test groups).

Oral tradition forms both the origin of human memory and its historical orientation. The Hebrew Bible, just like the New Testament, was first handed down orally and later, in a foreseeable process in human history, was fixed in writing. Categorized, cataloged and finally canonized, from this point on they were considered authoritative writings; The Hebrew Bible for pre-Christian Judaism (~ 1st century BC) and both for young Christianity (~ 4th century AD).

The consequences of this canonical question mean that ancient principles (e.g. women under ordination, condemnation of homosexuality) cannot be transferred one-to-one to today's linguistic-cultural context, as I wanted to show in the example of a contextualized “Germanic-cultural” translation of Lukas 15:11-25. Different canons also point to different scriptural traditions (e.g. Weißenborn 2011: 37-39). [116]

It is difficult to speak of a generally binding canon, since there have always been very different biblical collections of texts in terms of text and tradition. Not only the multitude of different canons, but also their diverse translations testify to the variations in oral traditions. This process continues in revisions, children's Bibles, and paraphrases.

In Christian development aid as well as in German-speaking countries, standardized procedures for the oral and written translation of biblical content have been established. First, a translation plan is drawn up. The following points are determined:

a) participating working groups and their areas of responsibility (e.g. translation team, test groups, consulting team),

b) the target group (e.g. non-literates, revision microculture), theories of translation,

c) the translation, linguistic and cultural aids (e.g. translation of the original Bible, means of exegesis) and finally

d) the framework data (e.g. schedule, funding, training options).

As a rule, the first step is to search for suggestions of keyterms and their translation. While previously a concordant understanding of the translation of these keyterms was assumed, contextual variations are now also admitted. Since the biblical books were written in different epochs and by very different authors, these variants correspond to the realities of the biblical records.

The next step is to provide and use technical tools. This includes setting up means of communication with each other, as well as Bible translation programs (e.g. Paratext from UBS), audio and for the audio-visual recording of oral traditions (e.g. Jesus Film, media programs, Chronological Bible Storying, etc.). First, recordings are made which lead to a later written fixation.

In three consulting processes (consultant checkings), the recordings and texts of consultants and the team of translators are checked for comprehensibility and consistency. After each testing step, an independent and new testing- committee revises the oral and written “text”. At the end there is an oral "text" ready for recording. In most cases, the written adaptation is enclosed with the oral material. It is the basis for a future writing tradition.

The cognitive processes in this process of “word finding” take place on an anthropological-linguistic, grammatical, semiotic and sociological level. On an anthropological-linguistic level, the languages and cultures of the base-text, the target audience and also those actively involved in the translation (e.g. project manager, consultant) are compared with each other in order to determine similarities and differences and to contextualize the content of the translation. If the differences are named, the linguistic-cultural peculiarities of the base-text come into consideration compared to those of the target group. Semantic word images play a special role here because they determine the choice of words in the translation. At the epistemological level, exegetical-hermeneutical questions about the base-text must also be clarified in order to understand its scope. "Understanding" here means to capture the textual template. The translation of the content into the target context now occurs in this intuitive “grasping”. This transfer process describes the actual translation.

The possible translation suggestions from Luke 15: 11-32 "The Prodigal Son" serve as visual objects for contextualized oral traditions in German. As part of this elaboration, only verses 11-25 were translated as examples. The German-Germanic context received special attention in relation to gender relations. Two recent Bible translations, the Bibel in gerechter Sprache (Bible in Just Language - 2011 and the Volxbibel - 2013, serve as comparative values. The first has consciously and the second unconsciously contextualized the Germanic-German language and cultural area. In German-speaking countries, the ecclesiastical liturgical bible (Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung - 1984, Einheitsübersetzung - standard translation 1980) continues to be the measure of the written translation tradition of biblical content. They form the basis for comparing Bible translations in German.

In summary, the contextualized and communicative oral translation of the Bible shows that an implied “principle” should be presented and conveyed, especially in the stories, narratives and parables of the rabbi Jesus of Nazareth. The external framework conditions of the parables and narratives are of secondary importance. From this, a return to a hermeneutics of principles” was developed in this article. This gives the Bible translation team the freedom to work linguistically, culturally and contextually while still following the theological framework of these principles.

In Christian development aid, it is absolutely necessary for such a procedure that the audience has the opportunity to draw conclusions about the context described in the base-text. This conclusive information is provided either in a previous, enclosed (e.g. interlinear text in the second column) or in the accompanying text (paratext). For language groups that already have access to the biblical content, the target group-oriented translation of the Bible is an expression of the vitality of church life. [117]

From the critical side, this diversity is accused of fragmentation of the ecclesiastical body (Bible as the unifying liturgy and sacred text) and flattening of the biblical content (linguistic dissolution of an “understood foreignness”). This is contradicted by the incarnation principle of Bible translation, as a dynamic and renewing process. Oral tradition in particular stimulates the linguistic-cultural renewal of biblical content, since vitality and diversity of expression are at the fore in “telling the Bible”.

In the new context, the attention of the public is aroused by linguistic means and methods that are discursive in the same way that the ancient biblical authors used lively in the context of Hebrew, Aramaic and Koiné-Greek. A sole return to their text-discursive methodology contradicts the incarnation principle, which linguistically and culturally transports the notion of “Christ for all mankind” into the present. A persistence in the ancient context would mean a backward oriented Christianity, which theologically does not adapt to the current context. The disciplines of homiletics, evangelism and hermeneutics are paving the way for this everlasting incarnation of biblical content into modern contexts.

Finally, a word about the meaning of “word finding” in the Bible translation. This article is headed “From Words to WORD”. It should have become clear that the plural stands for very different translation theories and translation traditions. The idealization of a single authoritative Bible text for the sacred and liturgical text - if it existed at all - is not to be advocated due to the oral tradition of biblical content in the context of modern developments. Native-language Bible translators are part of the audience and therefore work in familiar contexts. Your own historical traditions flow into the oral tradition of the biblical “text”. In doing so, they describe their own realities, which are only partially accessible to the outsider. At the same time, they “alienate” the “authoritative literal sacred Bible text” dominated by the Western Church, as it is handed down in the Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung or the King James Version. It is part of this alienation to transfer the incarnation of Christ into one's own idiom. A local theology forms both the ideological basis and it develops in the context of such translational activity. This ideological orientation runs like a thread through the history of Bible translation.

The Reformation principle “What drives Christ” is as formative for Luther's translation as the proposal of “just or political correct language” in the Bibel in Gerechter sprache (Bible in just language). Bible translation without an ideological background is unthinkable. Oral tradition is now trying to build on the ideological background of a public, the principles of Christian life founded by the teachings and in the life of the Messiah Jesus of Nazareth in new contexts. The variety of oral traditions in Bible translation also stimulates their written writing as a tradition of writing.





[1] Werner, Eberhard 2014. Von Worten zum „Wort“: Einblicke in die Arbeit der Bibelübersetzung, in Fuchs, Monika & Schliephake, Dirk (Hgg.): Bibel erzählen, 103-120. Neukirchen-Vlyn: Neukirchener Verlagsgesellschaft. [Kurzform des Artikels: Kognitive und epistemologische Wortfindungs-„Störungen“ in der Bibelübersetzung. Dallas: SIL International. Online: URL: http://www.sil.org/resources/publications/entry/56720 [accessed 2020-05-10]. [Engl.: From words to the “Word”: Cognitive and epistemological difficulties finding words.].

[2] Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia [1909] 1990. Ed. R. Kittel, with the collaboration of A. Alt, O. Eißfeldt, P. Kahle. 4th verb. Aufl. Stuttgart: German Bible Society.

[3] Aland, Kurt et al. () 2013. Novum Testamentum Greace. Nestle-Aland 28th ed. Stuttgart: German Bible Society.

[4] The exiles in Assyria (from 722 BC) and Babylon (from 605 BC) required linguistic adaptations to Assyrian and Aramaic, as well as cultural adaptations to the exile situation (e.g. Ps. 137:1, 8).

[5] In denial of the denunciation of the Old Testament denouncing the Jewish people, the term “Hebrew Bible” is used here (see Borg 2001: 57; Borg, Michael J. 2001. Reading the Bible Again for the First Time: Taking the Bible Seriously But Not Literally. San Francisco: Harper. The term "Hebrew Bible" refers to both the first part of the Evangelical-Catholic canons of modern times, as well as the text-critical text, as described in the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia and the various Septuagint versions. It is assumed that the use of this term does not solve all problems and that the traditional Christian history is sealed in the terms of both “wills”. However, there is a trace of the terms “old” and “new” outdatedness contained, which was not intended in the sermon of Jesus of Nazareth, since the gospels also have a history of salvation that should have been included in the “Old Testament”". The title should therefore be used to indicate a sharper separation between Jewish and Christian tradition.

[6] An interesting experiment, the Aramean traditions to uncover found in Lamsa. Lamsa, George M. 1963. The Gospels in the Aramaic View. St. Gallen: New Johannes Verlag. The comments sometimes contain references to the presumed oral tradition behind a text.

[7] In reference to a gender-mediating (English) language, as used in English-speaking countries in linguistics, the use of feminine finds its place here, although this is still uncommon in Germany.

[8] A native of the English term “oral” or “oral culture” is avoided here because of the sexist implications in German. Instead, it is replaced by “oral” and “oral tradition” according to Grimm's pattern.

[9] Charles Kraft examines in detail the subject of language and cultural change with a view to intercultural communication from a Christian perspective. His conclusion is that linguistic-cultural innovations or changes can be initiated from the outside (advocates of change), but can only be developed out of society itself (1979: 76.78, 360). Kraft, Charles H. 1979. Christianity in Culture: A Study in Dynamic Biblical Theologizing in Cross-Cultural Perspective. New York: Orbis.

[10] Spiro, Melford E. 1972. Cognition in Culture and Personality, in Spradley, James P. (ed.): Culture and Cognition: Rules, Maps, and Plans, 100-110. New York: Chandler.

[11] A lack of standardization is one of the main reasons why Christian development aid projects in Bible translation are difficult, which leads to the widespread use of mother tongue Bible translations. The accusation of “idiomatizing” biblical texts and favoring certain dialects and groups is widespread and cannot be dismissed.

[12] In this area, the accusation of “ecclesiastical western colonialism” is heard very often. Foreign Christian development workers are unable to adopt the oral tradition of an ethnic group. However, they can become part of it, give instructions and know-how on the principles of text transmission, give financial and technical help or also instruct in the base-text. Though, they are not allowed to determine the ethnic history of the tradition.

[13] A lexicon of terms can be found at: http://www.uni-protokoll.de/Lexikon/DDR-Ssprache.html [accessed 2020-05-10].

[14] Čirkić, Jasmina 2006. Rotwelsch in the contemporary German language. Inaugural dissertation. Mainz: Johannes Gutenberg University. Online: URL: http://ubm.opus.hbz-nrw.de/volltexte/2008/1589/pdf/diss.pdf [PDF file] [accessed 2020-05-10]. [unpublished.].

[15] Schüle, Christian & Schneider, Christof 2010. How memory works. The basics of knowledge. GeoKompakt 15, 61. Hamburg: Gruner & Jahr.

[16] This becomes particularly clear in the case of speech or by accident-caused language disorders (e.g. aphasia, Alzheimer's disease). Brocca's center controls speech impulses, but the gene F0XP2 seems to be responsible for speech function in humans (Harley 2002: 53-54). Harley, Trevor A. 2010. The Psychology of Language: From Data to Theory. 3rd ed. New York: Psychology Press.

[17] Interlinearizations are to be distinguished from this. Those are: The Old Testament: Interlinear translation Hebrew-German 2003. Steurer, Rita Maria. And The New Testament: Interlinear translation Greek-German 2003. Dietzfelbinger, Ernst. Holzgerlingen: Hänssler. Concordant New Testament (KNT) [1939] 1995. Knoch, Adolph Ernst. Birkenfeld: Konkordanter Verlag Pforzheim.). Literal translations are: Elberfeld Bible (ELO) [1905] 2006. Wuppertal: Brockhaus. Munich New Testament (MNT) [1988] 2007. Hainz, Josef. 8th edition Düsseldorf: Patmos. These lists are by no means exhaustive, which is not surprising given the 60 or so German Bible translations still available.

[18] Katan, David 1999. Translating Cultures: An Introduction for Translators, Interpreters and Mediators. Manchester: St. Jerome.

[19] Berger, Klaus & Nord, Christiane 1999. The New Testament and Early Christian Writings - Newly Translated and Commented (ISLAND). Frankfurt: Suhrkamp Insel.

[20] To this end there are still only portions of the Bible, but this model is now globally propagated in linguistics and Bible translation. Hill, Harriet, et. al. 2011. Bible Translation Basics: Communicating Scripture in a Relevant Way. Dallas: SIL International. Pattemore translated the revelation on a relevance theory basis and commented on its content. Pattemore, Stephen 2004. The People of God in the Apocalypse: Discourse, Structure, and Exegesis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[21] Nida, Eugene A. 1964. Toward a Science of Translating - with Special Reference to Principles and Procedures Involved in Bible Translating. Leiden: EJ Brill. (TASOT). Nida, Eugene A. & Taber, Charles R. 1969. Theory and practice of translation with special emphasis on Bible translation. New York: World Federation of Bible Societies. (German translation by Kassühlke, Rudolf & Loewen, Jacob A.). (TAPOT). Waard, Jan de & Nida, Eugene A. 1986. From One Language to Another: Functional Equivalence in Bible Translation. Nashville: Nelson. (FOLIA).

[22] Detailed information on the models by Werner (2011: 97-231). Werner, Eberhard 2011. Bible translation in theory and practice: A representation of their interdisciplinarity based on the training practice. Hamburg: Kovač. [English translation: Werner, Eberhard 2013. The Mandate for Bible Translation - Models of Communication and Translation in Theory and Practice in regard to the Science of Bible Translation. Dallas: SIL International. Online: URL: http://www.sil.org/resources/publications/entry/51438 [PDF-File] [accessed 2020-05-10]].

[23] The translation versus transmission debate in the German-speaking world is not helpful in my opinion, since in the actual ambiguous sense of the word, a “transmission” of content should be literally philological, in contrast, a “translation” follows the rules of human contextualized communication. In practice, however, the term “transmission” is used for paraphrasing. I use the term “transference” in a translationally mechanical sense, thinking of the cognitive act of transforming a “source text” into a “target text” (see footnote 29).

[24] Literally: Dynamic equivalence “means thoroughly understanding not only the meaning of the source text but also the manner in which the intended receptors of a text are likely to understand it in the receptor language” (Ward & Nida 1986: vii-viii , 9). Arbitrary freedom and unlimited freedom in the transfer of translation are often assumed to be dynamic equivalency, although the basic idea behind this theory is that there is a clearly defined translational framework.

[25] Detailed statement and criticism against the debate about “modern” Bible translations by Werner (2011:341-357, Appendix). The critics’ rejection is based on theological, sociological, ecclesiastical and translation concerns. Critically speaking: Felber, Stefan 2003. The seductive promise of intelligibility. Critical requests to modern Bible translations. (Community evenings on May 19 and 26 and June 2, 2003). Online: URL: http://www.bibeluebersetzungen.ch/fisch/felb3abend.pdf [PDF file] [as of 2007-01-02]. Felber, Stefan, Rothen, Bernhard & Wick, Peter 2003. “Violent criticism of modern Bible translations”. ethos 8, 56-57. Berneck: Schwengeler. Ebertshäuser also defends the Luther text, and sees deliberate washes and dilutions in “modern” translations (complete in 2006 in particular: 38-39). Although his criticism is not at the scientific level of the former, it goes in the same direction. Ebertshäuser, Rudolf 2006. Modern Bible translations under the microscope: from the >Good News<to the >Volxbibel<. And online on the Internet: URL: http://www.das-wort-der-wahrheit.de/B3-moderne-bibeluebers-4-A4.doc [accessed 2020-05-10].

[26] Gignac, Alain 2009. A Translation That Induces a Reading Experience: Narrativity, Intratextuality, Rhetorical Performance, and Galatians 1-2, in Porter, Stanley E. & Boda, Mark J. (eds.): Translating the New Testament: Text, Translation, Theology, 146-166. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans.

[27] Whether it is a matter of individual well-known authors (grammatical-exegetical school) or a later group who collected the scriptures in a pseudepigraphic manner in the sense of a well-known apostle or writer (historical-critical school) remains irrelevant for this elaboration, since in in both cases, the authority goes back to a biblically named author who invokes divine assistance.

[28] Bibel in gerechter Sprache (Bible in Just Language (BigS) [2006] 2011. Bail, Ulrike et al. 2nd rev. Aufl. Gütersloh: Gütersloh publishing house. And online: URL: http://www.bibel-in-erechter-sprache.de/ [as of 2020-05-31].

[29] The newer practice of distributing the biblical books to different revisers is not meant, although this is also a step in this direction (e.g. Neue genfer Übersetzung - New Geneva Translation, Basis Bibel - Basic Bible, revision of the Einheitsübersetzung 2016). Rather, what is meant here is to make the idiosyncrasies of the biblical authors and thus the diversity of the biblical writings linguistically recognizable. This diversity was lost with the tradition of presenting the basic Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek text to the public through a central project manager of Bible translation in the style of a concordant translation (e.g. Wulfila *311-†383, Hieronymus *347-†420, Cyril-Constantin[us]-e and Method[ius] *815-~†869 or †885, Martin Luther, etc.). The narrowing of a concordant translation of key terms lies in the exclusive representation of the same word or phrase from the original with always the same word or phrase in the translation without paying attention to the context (e.g. Elberfelder, Luther, etc.). Linguistic diversity is reduced to mechanical transmission and misses the true content of translation (see transmission versus translation debate; footnote 23).

[30] Chouraqui represents a translation-technical approach that wants to make ancient texts as such clear in translation. Philological reasons often play a role here by emphasizing the traditional “school translation”. Chouraqui, André N. 1994. Reflections on the problem and method of translating the Bible and the Koran. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck.

[31] Maréchal, Brigitte 2002. Teaching Islam at Publicly Financed Schools in Europe, in Shadid, Wasif AR & Van Koningsveld, Sjoerd (eds.): Intercultural relations and religious authorities: Muslims in the European Union, 138-148. Leuven: Peeters.

[32] Detailed information on the mnemonic technique of Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung and the influence of the “listening bible” as a medieval standard in Hövelmann, Hartmut 1989. Core passages of Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung: A guide to understanding the scriptures. Bielefeld: Luther publishing house.

[33] Kess, Joseph F. [1992] 1993. Psycholinguistics: Psychology, Linguistics, and the Study of Natural Language. Reprinted with corrections. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

[34] The Koran also follows this compilation of fragmentary memories, when the later collection of texts in the 8th - 9th centuries AD led to very small, coherent text elements, sometimes only to individual verses.

[35] It is not conclusive to produce a myth from this “remembering”, as Linnemann does with reference to Schadewaldt (1992: 157, 162-163). Rather, memory includes the normal storage capacity of knowledge (experience and information) and its retrieval.

[36] The best-known example is probably the Jewish-Greek idiom: “collect fiery coals on his head” (Proverbs 25:22; Romans 12:20 Elberfelder, Zürcher, Schlachter, Einheitsübersetzung). Only in comments and interpretations does the German-speaking recipient understand the meaning of the language image “shame on the enemy”. In communicative translations, the image would be dissolved or replaced by a native language metaphor.

[37] This translation was created by the New Testament Klaus Berger and the translation scientist Christiane Nord from a functional point of view. Berger, Klaus & Nord, Christiane 1999. The New Testament and early Christian writings - newly translated and annotated (INSEL). Frankfurt: Suhrkamp Insel.

[38] Worth, Roland H. jr. 1992. Bible Translations: A History through Source Documents. London: McFarland.

[39] Armstrong, Cameron D. 2013. The Efficiency of Storying. EMQ 49/2, 322-326. Wheaton: evangelical press association. Online: URL: http://www.emisdirect.com/emq/2807/2817 [status 2020-05-10].

[40] This includes all diaconal activities that are carried out from the global church in connection with one's own Christian belief, regardless of the recipient. It can be medical, social or economic support as well as Bible translation.

[41] The currently almost 7,000 actively spoken languages in the world have not yet been described in part. It is assumed that there are currently around two thousand unwritten languages, and countless sign languages are not even known.

[42] Presented at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Phonetic_Alphabet [as of 2020-05-10].

[43] It is interesting that High German could be reduced to 20 characters, if one would use a phonetic alphabet that only covers the sounds used. The same applies to other languages whose alphabets have grown historically. Such a language reformation is difficult to achieve in democratic states. When Turkey was founded in 1923, it experienced an “educational dictatorship”, which enabled, by change of the Arabic alphabet into the Latin, a cut in 1925. The Turkish alphabet was actually only based on the inventory of sounds. This is a unique and therefore noteworthy development.

[44] The particles and their connection with certain words and their position in the sentence structure represent the most difficult hurdles to be learned for non-native Bible translators. Mistakes are e.g.: “Are you looking?” instead of “What are you looking at?”, “Man is good” instead of “A good man” or “Has broken” instead of “It broke it” or “It is broken”.

[45] Prototypes are linguistic and cultural immanent ideas that are reflected in the encyclopedic world knowledge of the culture participants. Whether the prototypes are cognitive images or a phenomenon conveyed by language remains scientifically controversial (Albrecht 2000: 156-157). Albrecht, Jörn 2000. European Structuralism: An Overview of Research History. Tubingen: Francke. The prototype varies only slightly within a language group. In Scandinavian countries, for example, the birch tree dominates the prototype of the “tree”.

[46] The goose is nowadays, by the way, the largest European bird, but has not made it into the semantic prototype of the Germans.

[47] Bible translations already exist in national languages, which serve as the basis for translations. Werner, Eberhard 2012. Bible translation - interface between cultures. Studies on Iranian languages and cultures. Bonn: VKW.

[48] The term “Skopos” (translation science) comes from the Greek and is best translated with “goal, orientation”. The skopos of a translation is the guideline and yardstick of the translation (see footnote 99). The “Skopos” translation theory was introduced by Vermeer in 1978 and expanded by Reiss & Vermeer into translation science as a general model. Vermeer, Hans J. 1978. A framework for a general theory of translation. Living languages 23/1, 99-102. Munich: Langenscheidt. Reiss, Katharina & Vermeer, Hans J. 1984. Foundation of a general translation theory. Tübingen: Niemeyer.

[49] The reverence for the divine originator of the Holy Scriptures leads to an attribute of faithfulness to the scriptures based on a sacred text. As a consequence, Bible translators make philological translation a divine task. I plead, out of awe of the divine originator of the Holy Scriptures, for an everlasting and dynamic incarnation of the biblical texts into the contemporary world of the target audience.

[50] When we speak of “the translator”, the meaning of the translation work always means the “translation team”, since translation is a collaborative task. In order to provide a framework for the influence of translational intuition, several independent suggestions are required, which are tested by different people in different test phases. Martin Luther, together with a team, also immediately adapted his translation proposal in several revisions.

[51] Steiner, George 1990. From the Real Present: Does Our Speech Have Content? Munich: Carl Hanser. Steiner, George 1989. Real Presences. Chicago: University of Chicago.].

[52] Kade, Otto 1968. Chance and regularity in translation. Supplements to the journal Fremdsprachiges. Leipzig: VEB Verlag.

[53] Steiner, George [1975] 1998. After Babel, Aspects of Language & Translation. 3rd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[54] Sperber, Dan & Wilson, Deirdre 1987. Précis of Relevance: Communication and Cognition, in Behavioral and brain sciences 10, 697-754. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[55] In theology, the exegesis of the basic biblical text follows this type of translation. As Neudorfer emphasizes, for example, in the historically critical interpretation this created an artificial gap between the original text and the translation. A distance is created to the base-text, it is broken into atomized short contexts and an insurmountable epistemological gap is opened for the reader / the listener. Neudorfer, Heinz-Werner & Schnabel, Eckhard J. 2000. The interpretation of the New Testament in past and present, in Neudorfer, Heinz-Werner & Schnabel, Eckhard J. (eds.): The study of the New Testament: An introduction to the Methods of Exegesis, Volume 1, 13-38. Wuppertal: Brockhaus.

[56] This is followed by countless other translations: Extracts in Unrevidierte Elberfelder Bibel (1908), Menge (1994), Zürcher (2003), Allioli (1957), Hamp et. Al. (1966), Herz (1995), Zunz (1980), Einheitsübersetzung (1980), New World Translation (1997).

[57] I call all Bible translations that take place in a language area that is already religiously accessible by a Bible translation “revision translations”, “new translations” or translations “successors”. The term “first translation”, “missionary translation” or “new translation” is for the missiological area reserved, in which language areas are developed that do not yet have a Bible or parts of the Bible.

[58] In German-speaking countries, church Bible translations are still officially introduced today. In the Free Church realm it is more difficult because the impression of “church authority” of a “written” certificate (oral or written) should be avoided.

[59] This justifies the power of the Word of God. This position is referencing back to the Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek base-text from an in the “original” inherently assumed inspiration. In these circles it is difficult to deal with repetitive text passages or the different text-critical reading variants, since verbal inspiration leads to the absolute infallibility and inerrancy of the Holy Scripture as a document.

[60] Overall, the term “temple” occurs 156x. In this case, about 22x in Acts and the four Gospels 54x (Matthew and Luke 15, Mark 10 and John 14). Jesus uses the word 9 times and the rest speak of the location as a sanctuary. Acts 19 tells us of the Temple of Artemis.

[61] Temple of God in Daniel 5:3; Matthew 21:12, 26:61; in a figurative sense of community 1Corinthians 16:2, 17:4; 2 Corinthians 6:16; 2 Thessalonians 2:4; Revelation 3:12, 11:1, 19.

[62] Of the approximately 77 occurrences, 4 are in the NT, Matthew 12: 4; Mark 2:26; Luke 6: 4; Hebrews 10:21. Absolutely predominantly in Ezra 19x and 1 and 2 chronicles 22x.

[63] Eliade, Mircea 1961. The Sacred and the Profane: The Nature of Religion. Trans. Trask, Willard R. New York: Harper Torchbooks.

[64] This can be seen particularly in the worship of sources. According to tradition, these springs are guarded by good and bad spirits. They appear in the form of black and white snakes, which can also take human form (e.g. Kurdish peoples in Eastern Anatolia; Asatrian, Garnik Serobi 2002. The Lord of Cattle. Iran and the Caucasus 6 / 1-2, 1- 2. Leiden: Brill).

[65] This becomes particularly clear with the term “temple”, which still has to this day a Greek connotation. “Jewish / divine landmark”, “Jewish / divine monument”, “Jewish / God’s place of worship” or “God’s castle” would be terms that the intention of the Hebrew would come closer to term in relation to the divine place of worship.

[66] Within the framework of the active / experience inspiration, the fact is satisfied that the biblical text, both in the base-text and in the translation, can open up to the addressed person as inspired. Bible translators generally do not expect an inspired sacred to translate text and thus to translate inspiration from one context to another. This does not preclude them from having an awesome respect for the text, but this is put into perspective by the fact that the original text is reproduced in another human-transmitted form – the translation. In effect- or experience inspiration the result is determined by the Holy Spirit, who opens the “spiritual eye” for the biblical “text”. Many people don't experience this “being addressed”, which is why the Bible and its translation remain a normal, antique, non-inspired book.

[67] It is often overlooked that Martin Luther, too, had interpreting for as a model his translation (Eisen 2010: 4). In doing so, he unconsciously continues the incarnation principle of Bible translation, which continues the humanization of divinity in Jesus of Nazareth through the translation (Werner 2011: 328-329). Eisen, Ute E. 2010. »Quasi the same?« About the difficult and infinite business of Bible translation - Newer German Bible translations. ZNT 26/13, 3-15. Tübingen: Fool Francke Attempto. And online on the Internet: URL: http://www.narr.de/periodicals/znt/znt_26_2010.pdf [PDF file] [2020-05-10].

[68] Fabbro, Franco 1999. The Neurolinguistics of Bilingualism: An Introduction. Hove: Taylor & Francis.

[69] As the translator works as a freelancer, he is in accordance with his limited contract to the translation imperative. DIN standard 2345. Online on the Internet: URL: http://www.fask.uni-mainz.de/user/kiraly/gruppe8/ProfUni_DIN_html.html [as of 2020-05-10].

[70] Bi- or poly-lingual people have an advantage because they internalized the “switching process” between the two language and cultural groups (Kielhöfer & Jonekeit 1998: 28). Kielhöfer, Bernd & Jonekeit, Sylvie [1983] 1998. Bilingual child rearing. Tenth edition. Tübingen: Stauffenburg. On the other hand, they stand in the way of the transmission process because they do not know the disruptive elements of the translation, which would make it the easier for recipient to record the oral text (Steiner 2004: 134). [71] The followers of a “textual loyalty postulate” understand it differently, which translate to the conveyance of the base-text while maintaining the “understood strangeness” of the ancient environment (see above; also Alkier, Stefan 2010. On loyalty and freedom - or: From the desideratum of an ethics of translation in the biblical studies ZNT 26/13, 60 - 69. Tübingen: Narr Francke Attempto, and online on the Internet: URL: http://www.narr.de/periodicals/znt/znt_26_2010.pdf [ PDF file] [2020-05-10].

[72] Nord represents the functional translation model, which is a continuation of the Skopos approach (Reiss & Vermeer [1984] 1991). In this model, the translation determined order, the translation contract, which is to be fulfilled by the translation team. In the translation of the Bible, a great loyalty of the translation team to the base-text, but also to the public is required. Nord, Christiane [1997] 2001. Translating as a Purposeful Activity: Functionalist ApproachesExplained. Reprint Manchester: St. Jerome. Reiss, Katharina & Vermeer, Hans J. [1984] 1991. Foundation of a general translation theory. 2nd edition Tübingen: Niemeyer.

[73] Schülein relates this premise to “science” in general. He insists that the evidence of “feasibility” and “non-compliance” (English the verification of and falsification on) only if in the result of feedback, a hypothesis confirms this. Schülein, Johann August 2001. Everyday awareness and sociological theories, in Hug, Theo (ed.): How does science come to know? Introduction to the Methodology of Social and Cultural Studies, Vol. 3, 11-30. Baltmannsweiler: Schneider Verlag Hohengehren. Van Engen applies this principle to theology and missiology. He sees the fulfillment of God’s mission to the community and the global community based on the recursive method (feedback method; 1997: 26-27). Van Engen, Charles E. 1996. Mission on the Way: Issues in Mission Theology. Grand Rapids: Baker.

[74] The travels of the disciples of Jesus of Nazareth to the West, Asian and North African regions in the first and second centuries led to a wave of native-speaking oral and written Bible traditions. It was only the ecclesiastical fixation of the written canons of the Middle Ages that removed this dynamic. Some of the interpretative, dynamic, contextualized and thus theological overload was by living translations that added to traditions. In this sense, the Church councils, which were helpful church traditions, were a hindrance. [75] Werner, Eberhard (ed.) 2012. Bible Translation as Science - Current Issues and Perspectives: Contributions to the “Bible Translation Forum” from 2005 - 2011, 7-28. Stuttgart: German Bible Society.

[76] The term was taken up by the renowned Harvard scientist Lamin Sanneh and studied for decades. Sanneh, Lamin 2005. The Current Transformation of Christianity, in Sanneh, Lamin & Carpenter, Joel A. (Ed.): The Changing Face of Christianity, 213-224. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[77] Eugene Nida founded this umbrella organization in 1946. It is a network of independent national Bible Societies. With 146 national members in more than 200 countries, UBS is the global leader in matters of ecclesiastical Bible translation. Source: http://www.unitedbiblesocieties.org/ [as of 2020-05-10].

[78] Founded by Cameron Townsend in 1936, Summer Institute of Linguistics, is active in the archiving, development of language learning materials and the Bible translation of mostly non-literate peoples. Source: www.sil.org/ [as of 2020-05-10].

[79] Denominational barriers are difficult to overcome, as the church in their understanding as guardian of the source is well aware of the importance of Bible translation. In cases that denominational hurdles could be overcome, the audience and readers are significantly expanding.

[80] National translation consultants are increasingly being trained and able to accompany “texts” and projects. They break through the western dominance that prevails, this is the better as they are culturally closer to the language groups. An unsolved question is still who makes this advisory the last decision activity. As a rule, the translation as a consultant as “specialist”, has the last decision, but s/he often cannot speak the language and is also culturally far away, which is why the actual “expert” is the team of native-speaking translators, who should make the final decision. A global ethic has not yet in this regard crystallized. Werner, Eberhard 2012. Toward an Ethical Code in Bible Translation Consulting. Journal of Translation (JOT) 8/1, 1-8. Dallas: Summer Institute of Linguistics. Dallas: Summer Institute of Linguistics. Also online: URL: http://www.sil.org/siljot/2012/1/928474548941/siljot2012-1-01.pdf [PDF file] [accessed 2020-05-10].

[81] A selection of historically critical, evangelical, and denominationally different comments is helpful. Many comments are also included in the UBS handbooks for translation.

[82] Metzger, Bruce M. 1975. A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament. A Companion Volume to the United Bible Societies Greek New Testament (third edition). Stuttgart: United Bible Societies.

[83] The most common programs are Paratext 8/9, Lingua Links, Bible Works 10, Logos Bible Software 8.0, and specific linguistic and translational tools (e.g. Fieldworks, Toolbox, Translators Workplace 3).

[84] Above all, the UBS manuals for each biblical book provide extensive help and questions. They also provide the basis for translation consultants.

[85] Tworuschka, Udo 2000. Do they all believe in the same God? Religious studies inquiries, in Kirste, Reinhard, Schwarzenau, Paul & Tworuschka, Udo (eds.): Signs of hope for global community. Religions in conversation 6, 13-38. Balve: carpenter. Beyerhaus, Peter PJ 2013. World evangelization or change? Pentecost call to renew a biblical understanding of history mission. Gomaringen/ Tübingen: Diakrisis. http://bekenntbruderschaft.de/fileadmin/Dokumente/Tuebinger-Pfingstaufruf-2013-Lang versions.pdf [PDF file] [accessed 2020-05-10]. Salama, Abu l'Fadhl 1993. Missionary work in North Africa. Master thesis. Korntal: Free University of Missiology. [unpublished]. Bail, Ulrike et al. [2006] 2011. Bibel in gerechter Sprache (Bible in Just Language (BigS). 2nd rev. Aufl. Gütersloh: Gütersloh publishing house.

[86] Jerry, T. O. 1999. A Bible Storying Manual. Online: URL: http://www.chronologicalbiblestorying.com/short/cbs_short_forward.htm [accessed 2020-05-10].

[87] Armstrong, Cameron D. 2013. The Efficiency of Storying. EMQ 49/2, 322-326. Wheaton: evangelical press association. Online: URL: http://www.emisdirect.com/emq/2807/2817 [accessed 2020-05-10].

[88] The title of the biblical pericopes impressively reflects the ideological-intuitive and subjective direction of a translation team (Nord 2000: 1, 6). It is noteworthy that the Unrevidierte Elberfeld Bible (1905), and more recently the Bible in just language , has resisted this (Bail et a. 2006:13). One of the few studies on the pericope headings can be found at Nord. Nord, Christiane 2000. Unfair or zealous administrator? History, form and functions of the pericope in translations of the New Testament, in Heller, Susanne & Mecke, Jochen (ed.): Title, text, context: marginal areas of the text. Commemorative publication for Arnold Rothe, 281-302: Glieni>וְ in most Bible translations traditionally waw is almost always translated with και kai, which corresponds to a literal translation.

[99] The ethical basis of translation is formed by generally binding agreements between linguists and translators, as well as one's own conscience and thein the tied down translation order - that is the skopos of a translation framework conditions (translation process plan, project description, etc.; see footnote 37).

[100] Wheatcroft sets the triumph of the written tradition in the Western world firmly to the 15th century. At the same time, he notes the paramount importance of oral tradition in the Eastern world. The former was initiated by Gutenberg's printing technology, the latter he justified with the orthographic difficulties when writing Arabic in other languages (e.g. Ottoman Turkish, Persian, Sanskrit, Mandarin; 2005: 278-280). Wheatcroft, Andrew 2005. Infidels: A History of the Conflict between Christian Cathedral and Islam. New York: Random House.

[101] Schleiermacher, Friedrich [1813] 1963. About the different methods of translation, in Störig, Hans Joachim (ed.): The Problem of Translation, 38-70. Darmstadt: Scientific Book Society. Venuti, Lawrence S. [1995] 2008. The Translator's Invisibility: A History of Translation. 2nd ed. London: Routledge.

[102] Dreyer, Martin 2010. The Volxbibel Wiki. 6th Forum Bible Translation. Lecture manuscript. Holzhausen: Wycliff. [unpublished]. [See also online: http://www.volxbibel.de/]. Eisen, Ute E. 2010. »Quasi the same?« About the difficult and infinite business of Bible translation - Newer German Bible translations. ZNT 26/13, 3-15. Tübingen: Fool Francke Attempto. And online on the Internet: URL: http://www.narr.de/periodicals/znt/znt_26_2010.pdf [PDF file] [2013-12-09].

[103] Riesner assigns Jesus of Nazareth Beyond the term authority rabbi at the time, but he also makes it clear that Jesus qualified as a “rabbi” in his behavior and speech. Riesner, Rainer [1981] 1988. Jesus as a teacher. An investigation into the origin of the Gospel tradition. Scientific studies on the New Testament 2/7. 3rd extended edition. Tübingen: JCB Mohr (Paul Siebeck).

[104] Reiling, J. & Swellengrebel, JL 1993. A Handbook on the Gospel of Luke. UBS handbook series. Helps for translators. New York: United Bible Societies.

[105] Hübner, Rudolf 1922. Basic principles of German private law. 4th edition. Leipzig: A. Deichert.

[106] In comparison we offer three Bible translations: Bibel in gerechter Sprache (Bible in Just Language (2011): “Soon afterwards, the younger son took everything with him and moved to a far country. There he squandered his fortune and lived in rush.” Volxbibel (online 2013): “A few days later the packed up his things and went on a trip around the world. He lived in hotels and casinos, gambled his entire fortune in some bars and clubs until he went bankrupt.” The literal equivalent of the base-text would be, according to Unrevidierte Elberfelder (1905): “And after not many days the younger son brought everything together and traveled away to a distant country, and there he wasted his fortune by living.”

[107] In comparison the Bible in just language: “14 But after accomplished he had all of his, there was a tremendous hunger in that country, and he started to suffer. 15He went out and became look after dependent on a citizen of that country, who sent him to the fields to his pigs. 16He would have loved to eat his fill of the carob pods that ate the pigs, but nobody gave him away.” Luke 15: 14-16 in the Volx Bible: “14 Suddenly there was a great economic crisis in the country. Food prices rose and many people had nothing to eat. The son also got hungry. 15 After all, he got a job as a toilet man at the main station. It was a really badly paid, dirty and totally unpopular job. 16 The young man was so hungry that he wanted to food that toilet in the visitors threw garbage, but he wasn't even allowed to do that.”

[108] 14 eat the leftovers δαπανώντας δὲ αὐτοῦ πάντα ἐγένετο λιμὸς ἰσχυρίη χσχυρίη ἐσχυρίη καὶ αὐτὸς ἤρξατο ὑστερεῖσθαι. 15 καὶ πορευθεὶς ἐκολλήθη ἑνὶ τῶν πολιτῶν τῆς χώρας, καὶ ἔπεμψεν αὐτὸν εἰς τοὺς ἀγροὺς αὐτοῦ βόσκειν, 16 καὶ ἐπεθύμει χορτασθῆναι ἐκ τῶν κερατίων ὧν ἤσθιον, οὐδεὶς ἐδίδου καὶαὐτῷ. (NA27).

[109] Zwemer, Samuel M. 1912. The Moslem Christ: An Essay on the Life, Character and Teachings of Jesus Christ according to the Koran and Orthodox Tradition. New York: American Tract Society. Hertlein, Kathinka 2008. Micah Challenge - God’s Will or Social Gospel? An engagement with the using the integral mission example of Micah Challenge. evangelical missiology (em) 24/3, 95-97. Gießen: Working Group for Evangelical Missiology. Escobar, Samuel 2000. The global scenario at the turn of the century, in Taylor, William D. (ed.): Global Missiology for the 21st Century: The Iguasso Dialogue, 25-46. World Evangelical Fellowship. Grand Rapids: Baker.

[110] The Bible in just language does hit here not the matter, since the phrase “came a tremendous hunger” implies an independent force (based on Luthers translation/ Lutherübersetzung).

[111] Bible in just language: “17Then he went into himself and said: So many day laborers of my father have bread in abundance - and I'm dying of hunger here! 18I get up, hike to my father and say to him: 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me one of your day laborers!” Volxbibel: “17 Finally he pondered back and forth: 'At home with my father every worker in his company gets lunch and I die of almost hunger here! 18 The best idea is probably back to go home. Then I say to him: Papa, I messed up a lot, I moved away from you and also from God! 19 I really didn't deserve to belong to your family anymore. But can you maybe give me some job in your company?”

[112] 17 εἰς ἑαυτὸν δὲ ἐλθὼν ἔφη · πόσοι μίσθιοι τοῦ πατρός μου περισσεύονται ἄρτων, ἐγὼ δὲ λιμῷ ὧδε ἀπό. 18 ἀναστὰς πορεύσομαι πρὸς τὸν πατέρα μου καὶ ἐρῶ· πάτερ, ἥμαρτον εἰς τὸν οὐρανὸν καὶ ἐνώπιόν σου, 19 εἰμὶ ἄξιος κληθῆναι υἱός σου οὐκέτι· ποίησόν με ὡς ἕνα τῶν μισθίων σου. (NA27)

[113] Bible in just language translated: “20He got up and went to his father. His father saw him coming from afar, and pity stirred in him, and he hurried towards him, fell around his neck and kissed him. 21The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I'm no longer worthy to be called your son. ”22The father said to his slaves,“ Quick, bring the best dress and put it on, put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet! 23Get the fattening calf and slaughter it, let's eat and be happy! 24Because this, my son, was dead and is alive again, he was lost and found! And they began to rejoice.” The Volx Bible has: “20 So he went back to his father. When the son came through the entrance gate from the property, the father saw him from afar. With tears in his eyes, he immediately ran to him, hugged and kissed him. 21 The son immediately said: 'Dad, I messed up! I was wrong about you and God! I really didn't deserve your to be called son anymore. 22 His father didn't really listen to him. He quickly called a few employees and asked them: 'Immediately bring the best designer suit I have in my closet. Get some good shoes and get the family ring. 23 Get the best food, the things we have in store for a special occasion! Set the table and let's start a big party. 24 There is a reason to celebrate: my son was almost dead, but now he's back and lives! I was longing and waited for him every day and now he is finally back!”

20 καὶ ἀναστὰς ἦλθεν πρὸς τὸν πατέρα ἑαυτοῦ. Ἔτι δὲ αὐτοῦ μακρὰν ἀπέχοντος εἶδεν αὐτὸν ὁ πατὴρ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἐσπλαγχνίσθη καὶ δραμὼν ἐπέπεσεν ἐπὶ τχνα 21 εἶπεν δὲ ὁ υἱὸς αὐτῷ · πάτερ, ἥμαρτον εἰς τὸν οὐρανὸν καὶ ἐνώπιόν σου, οὐκέτι εἰμὶ ἄξιος κληθῆναιυ. 22 εἶπεν δὲ ὁ πατὴρ πρὸς τοὺς δούλους αὐτοῦ ·  ἐξενέγκατε στολὴν τὴν πρώτηνἐνδύσατε ταχὺκαὶαὐτόν,καὶ δότε δακτύλιον εἰς τὴν χεῖρα αὐτοῦ καὶ , 23 καὶ φέρετε τὸν μόσχον τὸν σιτευτόν, θύσατε, φαγόντες καὶεὐφρανθῶμεν, 24 ὅτι οὗτος ὁ υἱός μου νεκρὸς ἦν καὶ ἀνέζησεν, ἦν ἀπολωλὼς καὶ εὑρέθη. καὶ ἤρξαντο εὐφραίνεσθαι. (NA27).

[114] Luke 15: 25-32 in the Bible in just language: 25His older son was in the field. When he got home and approached the house, he heard singing and dancing. 26He called one of the young slaves and asked him what was wrong. 27He said to him, 'Your brother came, and your father had the calf slaughtered because he had kept it healthy!' 27He said to him, 'Your brother came and your father had the calf slaughtered because he had him got healthy again!” 28Then the brother got angry and didn't want to go inside. But his father came out and invited him. 29He replied to his father, 'Behold, I have been serving you for so many years and have never violated a command from you, and you have never me given a goat so that I would be happy with my friends. 30Now comes your son, who has devoured your property with fornication, and you have the calf slaughtered for him! '31He said to him:' Child, you have been all the time with me, and everything that belongs to me belongs to you. Now it is time to rejoice and be happy because your brother who was dead is alive. He was lost and found!‹« Luke 15: 25-32 in the Volx Bible: 25 At that time the older son was still at work. When he got home he heard from afar that there was a party at the start. 26 He asked one of the domestic workers what was going on. 27 'Your brother is back! Her father organized a fat party and had the very large cold buffet come, that for special occasions.' 28 But the older brother was totally pissed. He didn't want to celebrate at all and stayed outside the door. Finally the father came out and asked him, 'Why don't you come in, boy?' 29 'Man, father! How many years have I been working for you now? I worked like a stupid man, as if I would get a fat salary for it. All the time, I haven't even done anything you didn't want to do. But you didn't even come over a few sausages, so that Is nice with my friends could have had barbecue. 30 Now comes your other son, who threw your all money out of the window with some bitches, and you bring up the things that were actually only bought for very special celebrations?' 31 His father looked at him and said only: 'My dear, you have been with me all the time, we are both very close! Everything that me belongs to you too! 32 But let's celebrate a big party today! Your brother had already died for us, but now he's alive again! We had already him given up, but he found his way back home!'”

[115] The footnote contains the following note: *Literally: a young goat. ** Literally: a fattening calf (see V. 23).

[116] Weißenborn, Thomas 2011. Exegesis, biography and context: Is there a way out of the hermeneutic mess?, in Faix, Tobias, Wünch, Hans-Georg, Meier, Elke 2011 (ed.): Theology in the context of biography and Worldview, 37-61. Society for Education and Research in Europe e. V. Marburg: Francke.

[117] At least 495 Bibles in 2013, see http://www.unitedbiblesocieties.org/sample-page/bible-translation/ [accessed 2020-05-10].