Now I'm Incensed Okay, I've


Now I'm Incensed

Okay, I've complained about the NAB before, but now I'm seriously incensed. I read some of the readings for next week when I stumbled upon this atrocity:

Brothers and sisters: Be subordinate to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives should be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is head of his wife just as Christ is head of the Church, he himself the savior of the Body. As the Church is subordinate to Christ, so wives should be subordinate to their husbands in everything.

Now, we all know what the word should be in place of subordinate. But because subordinate sounds so much more corporate and politically correct, we have this gross alteration of biblical text to accommodate modern sensibilities. I am distressed, chagrined, and overall torqued. By what right does anyone tinker with the word of God to adjust to anyone. The Word of God is a constant challenge to all of us. Here is a quote from an e-mail I sent that nicely encapsulates what I thought at the time and still think.

I am profoundly offended at this sneaky revision of translation that disguises itself as NAB. The Ephesians reading substitutes the more political correct, softer, and utterly inane "be subordinate" for "be submissive." They are not the same either denotatively or connotatively, and it is undermining all that gets taught. I am subordinate to God, whether I act it or not--subordination is a fact of life, submission is an act of will.

As I said, subordination is a fact of life, a reality--women are NOT naturally subordinate to men, but to be subordinate indicates nothing of the will. I can be subordinate but utterly deprecating of those in power. I can do as they ask and undermine them at the same time. Subordination is about power. Submission is about love--it is an act of will that joins two persons in a relationship. If one is submissive, one not merely does the will but goes beyond to try to do what may lie in the future. Submission requires not only the action but also the intent behind the action in the doer. We do what we do for love of God, not merely to fulfill a commandment. I am seriously distressed at this infelicity of language and at the revision that has taken place over the course of a couple of years, slowly and subtly replacing difficult texts. I know that the old NAB had the word submissive in these lines. So the question comes down to, why aren't the defenders of the faith minding the store a bit better. It's one of the reasons that some groups of protestants prize the KJV. Admittedly, there have been changes through the years, but it's difficult to pull some of this subtle language shifting and wholesale slaughter of intent.

I guess more correctly what I'm asking, is what can I do about this? How can I contribute to stopping this creeping modernism that assaults, disassembles and dissects a text reassembling it into some Frankenstein's monster of its original. Altering the words of scripture is altering the deposit of faith and it is occurring now, as we watch, beneath our very noses, and most of us don't even notice it. I've pointed out before the atrocity of the translation--the sheer lack of facility with the language that seems to dominate the translation council.

Where is the loyalty to tradition in this constantly shifting translation? How can I make this travesty known to those who do care about these things? To quote from one of my favorite films--so apropos in so many situations: "Is anybody there? Does anybody care?"

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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on October 25, 2002 5:51 PM.

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