Translations

Psalm 25:4 is a verse I have always thought of as being wonderful though for me a verse I can’t really grasp.

Depending on Bible translation the verse seems to indicate different meanings… and yet the same meaning.

From “the Voice” it sounds like this:
“DEMONSTRATE Your ways, O Eternal One. Teach me to understand so I can follow.”

In “The Message” it is written like this:
“Show me how you work, God; School me in your ways.”

In “the International children’s Bible” it sounds like this:
“Lord, tell me your ways. Show me how to live.”

“GOD’S WORD” translation writes it out like this:
“Make your ways known to me, O Lord, and teach me your paths.”

The “Good news translation”, which is a favorite of mine writes it like this:
“Teach me your ways, O Lord; make them known to me.”

And the ever so used “New International Version” writes it like this:
“Show me your ways, Lord,teach me your paths.”

Which would be your favorite and why?

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6 thoughts on “Translations

  1. Thanks for a wonderful question, Lene!

    I think ‘The Voice’ came closest. (“DEMONSTRATE Your ways, O Eternal One. Teach me to understand so I can follow.”) Here’s why:

    I looked at the King James version so that I could look up each of the words to see what their meaning was. Very interesting!

    “Shew me thy ways, O LORD; teach me thy paths.”

    “Shew” in Hebrew is yada`, which has a great many shades of meaning, but all of which boil down to a basic meaning of ascertaining or knowing something by SEEING it. I thought it was very interesting that the word yada` includes the word yad, which is Hebrew for HAND. We can see something because there is a physical manifestation, which in this case would be the Hand of God at work in our lives.

    “Thy ways” is the Hebrew word “derek” (journey, hence path, fig. mode of life), the root of which is “darak” (tread, march as in a marching army). This gave me the mental image of a man marching along as he journeys to his commander’s destination. He may not know exactly where he’s headed (the military rarely gives the soldier much information), but he trusts his commander to get him there and he trusts that there is a good reason for the journey.

    “O LORD” is of course YHVH, the Holy Name of Almighty God, which traditionally is hidden from us despite the fact that YHVH Himself says that we are to reverently pronounce His Name and be blessed by His Name.

    “Teach” is the Hebrew word “lamad” and has the distinct meaning of training or disciplining, particularly for war! That surprised me! It is also used in the context of striking animals, such as oxen, to train or discipline them. This gave me the image of very immediate, very physical and action-oriented instruction – we’re not talking about head knowledge here.

    “Thy paths” is the plural of the Hebrew word “orach”, which is a poetic word for ‘a course of living and acting,’ or ‘the counsels of God.’ Jer 23:18-22, Psalm 25:14 and others tell us that the ‘counsel of God’ is His Covenant and His Torah, and of course Torah is YHVH’s ‘course of living and acting’ put into writing.

    All that put together in my mind gives the following ‘version’ of the verse:

    “Demonstrate to me (by your perceivable presence) the journey and road that You, my commander, have planned for me, O YHVH; train and discipline me in the Counsels of God (i.e., Torah).”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is amazing Sue! Thank you so much ❤
      I'm literally baffled by this… now I can finally grasp this short but vivid verse and I also now suddenly understand why YHVH wants me to grasp it.
      I love your "version" of it and want to pray it for myself… which leads to my question which is just begging to be asked:
      How do you pronounce YHVH??
      Love you ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Lene! Yes, it is SO exciting when a verse comes alive to us! As for pronouncing YHVH, the Name has been kept ‘secret’ for so long that there is now much controversy as to its pronunciation, but the two most common are YAH-wey and Yeh-hoe-VAH. Some people prefer to simply spell the Name in Hebrew, which sounds like “Yode-Hay-Vav-Hay.” I wrote an article about the Name – you can read it at https://lambsservant.wordpress.com/2014/03/09/whats-in-a-name/

        Like

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