Jubilee Bible FAQ
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So if I believe the gospel of Christ I’ll receive “health?” Would anyone in their right mind conclude “salvation” here? They’ll conclude that the gospel will help them get rid of a cold.
The Jubilee Bible is based on the scholarship of the early Reformation.
It is translated in such a way that each unique Hebrew word is matched to a unique English word (within the possibilities and limitations of the English language).
In many English Bibles two very different Hebrew words are both translated Salvation. In the Jubilee Bible these two different words are separated as the early reformers give precedent.
One word describes Salvation as an accomplished fact. The other as an ongoing process.
This is the meaning of the word health in Hebrew (William Tyndale is the one that coined the “saving health” rendition). The Jubilee Bible then matches the Hebrew with the Greek using places where the Lord Jesus and the Apostles quote Scripture in the NT as the guide.
The NT writers were thinking Hebrew even as they wrote in Greek. Therefore many commentaries that use the Pagan meanings of the Greek as the primary meaning are confusing and do not track with the Hebrew. In NT Greek the Hebrew meanings are prime and the pagan meanings are secondary.
Casiodoro de Reina translated consistently as salud (health) the unique word that I mentioned above. I felt in English to go with the rendition of Tyndale because our word health in English is not as comprehensive as the word salud in Spanish.
Since the Jubilee translation renders the same thing the same way consistently the value of how God is using the word will be established clearly in the narrative of the first half of the OT.
Then, once the meaning and value is clearly set, the last half of the OT (the part having to do extensively with prophecy) is what is quoted the most in the NT. Once we are able to see where the NT quotes the OT (which is much more extensive than is apparent in many English translations) it allows us to see which Hebrew words match the Greek words selected by the inspired writers of the NT.
Even if you do not agree with the choice of English words in the Jubilee translation; due to the fact that the translation is consistent, you can study the where the word is introduced and see how God uses each unique word through the scope of the entire Bible (first usage and last usage are important) and see beyond any shadow of a doubt what meaning God has assigned to the original word.
This will free you from the spin (intentional or unintentional) that occurs frequently with Bible Dictionaries done by modern scholars.
I take umbrage with the word “backslidden” as opposed to the king james “fallen away.”
The vast majority of the terminology in the Jubilee Bible begins in the OT and develops through the prophetic books (which are quoted profusely in the NT allowing translators to make the right match between the Hebrew key word and its Greek counterpart. We have used the scholarship of the early Reformation in the light of two or three witnesses. The translation of Hebrews 6:4-6 is not a mistake.
Here is some of the trajectory of the word through the OT as the word “backslide” is introduced and developed by God.
The backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways, and the good man shall be separated from him. Proverbs 14:14
Therefore a lion out of the forrest shall slay them, and a wolf of the desert shall destroy them and a tiger shall lie in wait over their cities; anyone that goes out from there shall be torn in pieces because their rebellions have been multiplied, and their backslidings are increased. Jeremiah 5:6
How long wilt thou wander, O thou backsliding daughter? for the LORD will bring forth a new thing upon the earth, A woman shall compass the man. Jeremiah 31:22
Why glories thou in the valleys? Thy valley has slipped, O backsliding daughter that trusted in her treasures, she that saith, Who shall come against me? Jeremiah 49:4
The OT use of this word, backsliding, comes with serious warnings to Israel and to Ammon (meaning of the people) and also holds out hope for restoration after going through severe chastisement.
The Greek usage in Hebrews 6 is also a serious warning that those who blatantly sin with their eyes wide open cannot be renewed by simple repentance. They will definitely suffer serious consequences. It is summed up in the next verses:
For the earth which drinks in the rain that comes often upon it and brings forth herbs in season for those by whom it is dressed receives blessings from God; but that which bears thorns and briers is rejected and is near unto cursing whose end shall be by fire. Hebrews 6:7, 8
This means that those “backsliders” who receive the discipline and correction of the Lord will be blessed if this causes them to bring forth good fruit. Those who bring forth evil fruit “thorns and briers” are given yet another serious warning.
Also, the literal Greek is quite graphic giving yet another witness to why the early reformers chose this translation.
Can you please explain Psalms 51:5? It is the only translation that says it the way the JUB does.
In Hebrew a double negative is like multiplying two negative numbers in mathematics. The answer will always be positive.
The JUB is based on scholarship from the early reformation and this is the way Casiodoro de Reina and others that learned Hebrew as a spoken active language translated. Modern scholars have only studied these texts as a dead language.
As a result of this and other problems many verses got obscured or inverted.
This passage may be difficult to understand naturally, but it is as close to the original as possible and it makes sense when read in light of the above explanation. Pray that the Lord will give understanding where needed.
The very first part of the verse reads differently than ALL other translations. It doesn’t make sense and was wondering if it is a translator issue, copy/print issue, or a me issue.
The Greek has a conditional verb tense that we do not have in English. However, Spanish does have it. And other Spanish translations like the 1602 Biblia Del Cántaro agree with the work of Casiodoro de Reina in 1569 and with Francisco de Encinas in his 1534 NT as well as some more modern editions on the rendition of this verse.
Since English does not have a conditional verb tense the JB translation is slightly clumsy having to couple the words “even if” with “were saved” to attempt to convey meaning into English that is built right into the verb in Greek and Spanish.
Even so, I can’t think of a better way to express it.
Not only here but I calculate that there are close to 33,000 promises in Scripture and virtually all of them are flagged with a condition or a conditional verb because Hebrew also has a conditional verb tense.
Hebrew, Greek, and Spanish also have a command form and Greek and Hebrew have an exclusive form neither of which exist in English and which are used in thousands of verses.
We are aware of efforts to “rehabilitate” Calvin, but what we know for sure is this:
1) John Calvin was very much in charge of Geneva. It was his doctrine and his concept of law that clearly dominated. Therefore it would not be possible to even have the option of a death penalty by burning at the stake without him having been in prior agreement to having this type of penalty on the books.
2) I have seen several “modern” Calvinistic textbooks that stress that Calvin, even though he brought the initial accusations against Miguel Servet, afterwards made a written plea for clemency. They then leave it at that and it turns out that the supposed plead for clemency is to have Miguel beheaded instead of burned at the stake. It looks to me like this supposed plea could very well have been written in hindsight because I have not been able to find any mention of it in the Spanish history documents that I have read on the subject.
In some ways this is similar to the murky circumstances regarding the death of William Tyndale where he was supposedly granted “clemency” at the last minute and was therefore “strangled” before being burned at the stake. I simply stated that Tyndale was burned at the stake because this was clearly the case, even if someone tried to strangle him first.
3) The Spanish history books clearly state that Miguel Servet was burned at the stake in Geneva because John Calvin brought doctrinal charges against him regarding his views on the Trinity even though Servet made a clear case for his belief from Scripture and the word “trinity” does not occur in Scripture.
4) In fact, the situation was so bad that when Casiodoro de Reina stood up for him and told Calvin that he was making Geneva into a New Rome, Calvin’s fury knew no end and Casiodoro de Reina had to flee from Geneva to England to escape being burned at the stake by Calvin and his fanatical cohorts.
5) The statement in the “To The Reader” intro to the Jubilee Bible is definitely accurate when it says, “the government of Geneva under John Calvin burned Miguel Servet at the stake over differences on points of doctrine.”
6) Pure and simple, John Calvin had responsibility in the matter because it was his concept of the doctrine of the Trinity that he wanted defended at all costs even to the point of sentencing any detractors to the death penalty, be it by burning at the stake or with “clemency” and simply having their heads chopped off.
Why does it translate Matzevah (מצבה)as “Pyramid” instead of “Pillar” or “Monument” as other translation do
The Jubilee Bible relies primarily on the scholarship of the early Reformation before Bible translations had to be approved by the organized church or by the king. At least two of these old Spanish editions use the word ¨title¨ (not pillar or even monument) with the explanation in a note in the margin saying that the Hebrew literally reads “Pyramide Intitulada” which in English means “a pyramid titled.” This could mean that in ancient Hebrew this word, Matzevah, could have had a fairly wide range of meaning that could then be narrowed or focused by the context in which it is used. With a limited vocabulary of only about five thousand basic Hebrew words used in the Scriptures it is the clear indication of the early reformation Hebrew scholars of Spanish origin that this is the Hebrew word literally used to describe a pyramid as well as being used to describe a title or monument. William Tyndale translated this word as, ‘pillar’ even though it is clearly distinct from the word describing the pillars of the temple or the pillar of fire by night. In old English the word, “pillar” can also mean a huge pile of material, such as tailings at a mine.
Another criterion for the Jubilee Bible translation is to use the exact literal meaning of the text unless this is clearly not feasible in which case there will be a footnote giving the literal value of the textual words in question. Since we have at least two sources giving this literal explanation this is a primary reason why we used this exact wording. There are, of course, other factors such as the numerical value of the Hebrew letters in the passage that sometimes also shed light. In this case the decision of the early reformers to go this rendition of the text obviously does not refer only to the Hebrew word, “Matzevah” but also to all the little nuances regarding the entire Hebrew phrase. There are other places, such as Genesis 28:18 where this word is rendered, “título” or title in the Spanish Jubilee Bible. English is further removed linguistically from Hebrew than Spanish and so, in some cases, we allowed the original rendition of William Tyndale to stand if we thought it would avoid confusion.
Overall, in the Book of Isaiah there are more than four hundred significant changes in which the Jubilee Bible goes with the scholarship of men like Casiodoro de Reina (considered to be the last scholar to study Hebrew as a living language before the Inquisition effectively terminated the speaking of Hebrew). In other translations Isaiah is filled with footnotes stating, “Hebrew obscure.” This does not happen in the Jubilee Bible.