The Jewish New Testament by David Stern

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The Jewish New Testament by David Stern

Post by Jax » Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:45 pm

While reading up on the KJV only debate I came across this book reference and have found a site that hosts it

What are your thoughts on this translation (if any)?


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Re: The Jewish New Testament by David Stern

Post by DCHindley » Sat Apr 21, 2018 7:47 pm

Jax wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 3:45 pm
While reading up on the KJV only debate I came across this book reference and have found a site that hosts it

What are your thoughts on this translation (if any)?

There have been attempts to *translate* the Greek NT into Hebrew, but I do not know of any that tries to make an ET sound *more* Jewish. Oh, there might be some out there. Hugh Schonfield had created his "Original New Testament" (1985) which was a revision of his 1948 "Authentic New Testament":

ONT Galatians
To the Communities of Galatia

(Probably written from Antioch in the early Summer of AD 531)

1.1-5 Paul the envoy - not from any body of men or appointed by any man, but by Jesus Christ and God the Father who raised him from the dead - and all the brothers who are with me, to the communities of Galatia. May peace and prosperity be yours from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave him-self for our sins to reclaim us from the present evil world in accordance with the will of our God and Father, to whom be praise for evermore.2 Amen.

6-9 I am amazed that you have so quickly turned your backs on the one who called you in Christ's mercy for some other version of the News. It is not really another, but there are certain people who are confusing you and want to alter the terms of the News of Christ. But even should I, or an angel from heaven, proclaim to you anything different to what I did proclaim to you, cursed be he! Having said that, I am going to repeat it. If anyone proclaims to you anything different to what you received, cursed be he!

1) Some date the letter as late as AD 57, perhaps from Corinth. In favour of this view is the likeness to the letter to the Romans.
2) Paul constantly follows the practice of pious Jews in adding a doxology when speaking of the ways of God.
That JNT (translated 1989, commentary 1991) you cited has:
Galatians Jewish New Testament and comments of David H. Stern

chapter 1
1. From: Sha’ul, an emissary — I received my commission not from human beings or through human mediation but through Yeshua the Messiah and God the Father, who raised him from the dead — also from all the brothers with me

Rabbi Sha'ul from Tarsus is Paul (Ac 13:9&N).

Emissary, Greek apostolos, "someone sent," usually rendered "apostle" (Mt 10:2-4N).

I received my commission, etc. The basis of Sha'ul's authority as an emissary of the Messiah Yeshua is one of the two main topics of this letter (see 1:10-2:14, 5:11, 6:12-14).

Who raised him from the dead. This shows that God's power and authority surpass those of any human claimant, and that Yeshua's power and authority did not cease when he died (compare Ro 1:3-4).

Also all the brothers with me. What Sha'ul writes to the Galatians on the very important issues raised in this letter carries not only his authority but that of all the fellow-believers with him. 

2. To: The Messianic communities in Galatia:

Messianic communities or "congregations," Greek ekklisiai, usually rendered "churches" (see Mt 16:18N).

Galatia. a region in what is today central Turkey where Sha'ul established congregations (Ac 13:51-14:23) and later returned to strengthen them (Ac 15:36, 16:1-6). 

3. Grace and shalom to you from God our Father and from the Lord Yeshua the Messiah,

Shalom. A greeting; denotes more than just "peace" (see Mt 10:12N). 

4. who gave himself for our sins, so that he might deliver us from the present evil world-system, in obedience to the will of God, our Father.

5. To him be the glory forever and ever! Amen.

Together with v. 1, this epitomizes the Good News — Yeshua the Messiah's atoning death, forgiveness of sins, salvation, obedience to God's will, resurrection and continuing authority, all for God's glory. This is the standard against which to measure the false "supposedly 'Good News'" of vv. 6-9. Amen. Intended to prompt a congregational response, when the letter is read aloud; see Ro 9:5N. The Galatians' "Amen" is a public statement of affirmation and agreement with Sha'ul's version of the Good News, contrasting with the version described in the following verses. 

6. I am astounded that you are so quick to remove yourselves from me, the one who called you by the Messiah’s grace, and turn to some other supposedly “Good News,”
7. which is not good news at all! What is really happening is that certain people are pestering you and trying to pervert the genuine Good News of the Messiah.
8. But even if we — or, for that matter, an angel from heaven! — were to announce to you some so-called “Good News” contrary to the Good News we did announce to you, let him be under a curse forever!
9. We said it before, and I say it again: if anyone announces “Good News” contrary to what you received, let him be under a curse forever!

Is Sha'ul a martinet with an uncontrollable temper, or is he filled with venom against anyone whose opinions differ from his own? The answer depends on whether one believes there is such a thing as a true Gospel, God's genuine Good News, summed up in vv. 1 and 3b-5, answering the deepest questions of human existence. If in fact Yeshua called Sha'ul by his grace to proclaim God's Good News, then this is the true Good News that saves. Any other "gospel" is not good news at all but misleading bad news, capable of drawing off to perdition people who began on the road to salvation. This unique truthfulness of God's Good News is a presupposition of the entire letter to the Galatians.

Moreover, the idea that there is absolute truth which matters absolutely is the constant presumption of both the Tanakh and the New Testament. Any other view relegates the Bible to the category of "great literature" or "valuable historical evidence" or "wise sayings of great men." It is all of these, but, more than that, it is God's unique word to humanity, containing the only completely reliable guide toward everlasting life and away from everlasting death.

It becomes clear in what follows that the particular bad news to which the Galatians have been exposed is legalism. Legalism I define as the false principle that God grants acceptance to people, considers them righteous and worthy of being in his presence, on the ground of their obedience to a set of rules, apart from putting their trust in God, relying on him, loving him, and accepting his love for them.

On Sha'ul's use of the word "curse" (Greek anathema, see Ro 9:2-4a&N and 1С 16:22&N. As the man responsible for establishing the Galatian congregations on the right path, Sha'ul has no choice but to condemn in the strongest possible language those who try to destroy what is not merely his own work but God's work. Those who wilfully and in defiance of the truth choose for base reasons (2:3-5,6:12-13) to preach a sub-gospel should not be spared; they have earned their punishment (5:7-10) and deserve accursedness if they will not repent; elsewhere Sha'ul teaches that repentance remains open to them (Ro 2:4, 10:13; 2 Ti 2:25; compare 2 Ke 3:9). Therefore I conclude that Sha'ul's animosity is not personal in this passage (whether the same is true at 5:12 is a separate question; see note there).
Stern's Wiki page kind of lays it out. He is a Messianic Jew who wants to make the New Testament sound like it was written by a modern Jew. Lots of replacement of Greek derived English words with Hebrew equivalents, but transliterated. Stern is a modern Orthodox-like Messianic Jew with some courses in NT theology (he has a PhD in Economics) and that Jewishness is what, I suppose, "drives" his translation, not his knowledge of Koine Greek. That comes across as a bit forced to me.

In contrast, Schonfield is actually a bona-fide bible scholar with a genuine comprehension of the Greek and Hebrew languages. His comments are short and sweet and are nuanced to accommodate the historical situation as described by Josephus and others.

An interesting thing is that in 1927 he also made an English translation of Shem Tov's 1385 Hebrew translation of Matthew's Gospel (An Old Hebrew Text of St. Matthew's Gospel), see here:

DCH :cheeky: 

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Re: The Jewish New Testament by David Stern

Post by Jax » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:38 pm

Thanks Dave, I'll check Schonfield out. :thumbup:

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Re: The Jewish New Testament by David Stern

Post by perseusomega9 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:57 am

Why did he change his name to Sha'ul, we don't have a single letter from a guy named Sha'ul

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