complete verse (John 1:12)

Following are a number of back-translations of John 1:12:

  • Alekano: “He showed the way to the ones who loved him so that they could become God’s people. He did that to the ones who believed concerning him.”
  • Lalana Chinantec: “But there were some who did accept him, who believed on him. They are the ones who were given authority to become the sons of God.”
  • Tenango Otomi: “But all those who looked favorably upon him and believed that he is the savior were given permission to become the children of God.” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
  • Uma: “But whoever received him and believed in Him, he gave them authority [lit., seat] to become children of God.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
  • Yakan: “But whoever receives/received the Word and believes/believed in him, he gives/gave them authority to become children of God.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
  • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “However, anyone who did receive and believe in him, he gave them the right so that they might become the children of God.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
  • Kankanaey: “But there were however some who received (him) who were the ones who believed in him. It was to them that he gave the right to become children of God.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
  • Tagbanwa: “But there were indeed people who believed-in/obeyed and trusted-in/relied-on him. These ones, he gave them the authority/right to be able to be regarded as children of God.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
  • Tenango Otomi: “But all those who looked favorably upon him and believed that he is the savior were given the permission to become the children of God.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)
  • complete verse (John 1:19)

    Following are a number of back-translations of John 1:19:

    • Uma: “Like this the testimony of Yohanes the Baptizer saying who Yesus is. The rulers of the Yahudi people in Yerusalem sent several priests and Lewi people to Yohanes. When they arrived at Yohanes, they asked: ‘The reason we (excl.) have come, is to ask you (sing.) who you (sing.) are. Are you (sing.) really the Redeemer King? ‘” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
    • Yakan: “One day priests and helpers of the priests who were told-to-do-so by the leaders of the Yahudi in the city Awrusalam went to Yahiya to ask him who he was.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
    • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “There were some people, priests and descendants of Levi, who came to John the Baptist. They were sent by the leaders of the Jews from Jerusalem so that they might ask John who he was.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
    • Kankanaey: “On one-occasion, there were priests and descendants of Levi who went to where Juan was. The leaders of the Judio (Jews) in Jerusalem sent them to go inquire of Juan as to who he was.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
    • Tagbanwa: “Once there were some sent by the leaders of the Jews who were taga Jerusalem. The ones they sent were priests and Levita who were their helpers, the workers in the Templo, because they were being caused to ask Juan what he was. This is the testimony of Juan which was his answer to them.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
    • Tenango Otomi: “The Jews who were leaders in Jerusalem sent priests and their helpers. These went to John to question him about who he was.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)
    • Yatzachi Zapotec: “The important people of our nation of Israel in Jerusalem sent some priests to the man named John, along with some other people born in the family line of Levi, people whose responsibility it was to do the work in the important church of us Israelites. They sent the people to John in order that they might know who he was.”
    • Alekano: “When the Jews sent priests and those who were servants in the sacrifice house from Jerusalem place, when they went to John and asked him saying, ‘Who are you? Are you the Messiah?’, he told them his own character.” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)

    complete verse (John 1:20)

    Following are a number of back-translations of John 1:20:

    • Yatzachi Zapotec: “He said to them clearly, ‘I am not the Christ, the person whom God is to send to help the nation of us Israelites.'”
    • Ojitlán Chinantec: “He said, ‘I am not the Christ, the chosen of God for a particular task.’ John showed the truth. He did not speak lies.”
    • Huehuetla Tepehua: “Well he admitted the truth. He immediately made it plain to them that he wasn’t Christ whom it was said God would send.”
    • Mezquital Otomi: “. . . I am not the Christ, whom God chose.”
    • Alekano: “Then not denying it, revealing it, he told them this: ‘I am not the Christ.'”
    • Chol: “John did not keep it a secret . . . ” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
    • Uma: “Yohanes answered them plainly, he said to them: ‘I am not the Redeemer King.'” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
    • Yakan: “Yahiya did not hide (anything) instead really confessed/spoke the truth, he said, ‘I am not the Almasi.'” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
    • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And this is what John said because he did not hide it. He said, ‘As for me, I am not the one chosen by God to rule.'” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
    • Kankanaey: “Juan didn’t deny the truth of it but rather he admitted saying, ‘I am not the Messiah.'” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
    • Tagbanwa: “He really didn’t make-claims for himself but on the contrary he told the truth, saying, ‘It’s not I who am the Cristo who is that promised Savior King.'” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
    • Tenango Otomi: “John straightly spoke. He said, ‘I am not the Christ whom God appointed to rule.'” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)

    John as a first-person evangelist (John 2:17)

    In the Yatzachi Zapotec translation of the Gospel of John, any reference to the evangelist and presumed narrator is done in the first person.

    The translator Inez Butler explains (in: Notes on Translation, September 1967, pp. 10ff.):

    “In revising the Gospel of John in Yatzachi Zapotec we realized from the start that the third person references of Jesus to himself as Son of Man had to be converted into first person references, but only more recently have we decided that similar change is necessary in John’s references to himself as ‘the disciple whom Jesus loved.’ As I worked on those changes and questioned the informant about his understanding of other passages in the Gospel, I discovered that the reader misses the whole focus of the book as an eyewitness account unless every reference to the disciples indicates the writer’s membership in the group. In view of that we went back through the entire book looking for ways to cue in the reader to the fact that John was an eyewitness and a participant in a many of the events, as well as the historian.

    “When the disciples were participants in events along with Jesus, it was necessary to make explicit the fact that they accompanied him, although in the source language that is left implicit, since otherwise our rendering would imply that they were not present.”

    In this verse, the Yatzachi Zapotec says: “Then I said to Peter . . . Then when Simon Peter heard me say to him . . .” The Alekano translation her also uses the first-person: “After that, I, the man Jesus loved, said this to Peter.”

    complete verse (John 3:4)

    Following are a number of back-translations of John 3:4:

    • Huehuetla Tepehua: “How can an old man get little and be born again? Can he get inside his mother and be born again?”
    • Xicotepec De Juárez Totonac: “. . . How can a grown man have a new life? He cannot enter into the womb of his mother to be born again.”
    • Alekano: “. . . One having become big, how will he appear new? How will he enter up into his mother’s stomach and she give birth? ” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
    • Uma: “Nikodemus said: ‘Can a person who is already old be born again? Can he put himself in the womb of his mother and be born a second time?'” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
    • Yakan: “Nikodemus said, ‘How can a person be born again when he is already old? He cannot enter again the womb of his mother and be born again.'” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
    • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And this Nicodemus asked saying, ‘How can a man who is already old be born again? He can’t return back to the stomach of his mother so that he can be born again.'” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
    • Kankanaey: “And then Nicodemus inquired, ‘How perhaps can a grown-man be born again? Can-he-return do-you-suppose into the stomach of his mother in order to then be born a-second-time (lit. repeat to be born)?'” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
    • Tagbanwa: “Nicodemo asked, ‘How can a person be born again when he is now old/mature? Can he yet enter again into the womb of his mother and be born again?'” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
    • Tenango Otomi: “Nicodemus asked, ‘But how can he? How can a man who is old again live anew? Can he again enter into the inside of his mother in order to again live anew?'” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)

    Son of Man

    The Greek that is translated as “Son of Man” and is mostly used by Jesus to refer to himself is (back-) translated in the following languages as (click or tap for details):

    • San Miguel El Grande Mixtec: “I who am a person”
    • Tzotzil: “I who am equal with men” or “The Older Brother of Everybody” (“expressing the dignity and authority of the Messiah and the universality of his work”)
    • Chuj: “I who became human”
    • Terêna: “The True Man”
    • Tenango Otomi: “The Man Appointed” (i.e. the man to whom authority has been delegated) (source for this and preceding: Beekman, p. 189-190, see also Ralph Hill in Notes on Translation February 1983, p. 35-50)
    • Huehuetla Tepehua: “friend of all men”
    • Aguaruna: “I, the one who was born becoming a person” (source for this and two above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
    • Yatzachi Zapotec: “I whom God sent, I was born a human” (a direct translation would have suggested “that the father is unknown due to the indiscretions of the mother” and where “he is the son of people” is used when one wants to disclaim responsibility for or relationship with a child caught in some mischief — source: Reiling / Swellengrebel)
    • Mezquital Otomi: “I, the son who became a person” (Source: B. Moore / G. Turner in Notes on Translation 1967, p. 1ff.)
    • Alekano: “the true man who descended from heaven” (source: Ellis Deibler in Notes on Translation June 1986, p. 36ff.)
    • Central Tarahumara: “I have been stood up to help” (“This suggests that Christ has been given authority to some appointed task. A very generic word, help, was selected to fill in the lexically obligatory purpose required by the word which means to appoint or commission. Usually this word is used of menial tasks but not exclusively. The choice of this generic term retains the veiled reference to the character of Christ’s work which He intended in using the ‘Son of Man’ title.”)
    • Chicahuaxtla Triqui: “He who is relative of all people.” (“The Triqui word for relative is a rather generic term and in its extended sense sometimes is diluted to neighbor and friend. But the primary meaning is relative.”)
    • Xicotepec De Juárez Totonac: “Sibling of All People”
    • Tepeuxila Cuicatec: “I, the Person who Accompanies All People.” (“The literal equivalents ‘son of man’ and ‘son of people’ were both rejected because of the false inference of natural birth involving a human father. Furthermore, it was necessary to expand any translation of the Bible by the addition of the pronoun ‘I’ so as to clarify the fact that Jesus is using the third person in referring to Himself. A common expression used by the Cuicatecos when difficulties befall someone, is to say to that one, ‘don’t worry, we are accompanying you.’ By this they mean they share that person’s sorrow. When wedding guests arrive at the home of a son who has just been married, they say to the father, ‘We have come to accompany you.’ By this they mean that they have come to share the father’s joy. These expressions do not refer to ordinary physical accompaniment, which is expressed by a set of different verbs. For example, visits are always announced by some such greeting as, “I have come to visit you,’ ‘I have come to see you,’ or ‘I have come to ask you something.’ The desire to accompany a friend on a journey is expressed by saying, ‘I will go with you.’ Translation helpers used the verb ‘accompany’ in constructing the phrase ‘I, the Person who Accompanies All People.'(…) It reflects the fact that Jesus closely identified Himself with all of us, understands our weaknesses, shares our burdens, rejoices with us in times of gladness, etc.”) (source for this and the three preceding: Beekman in Notes on Translation January 1963, p. 1-10)
    • Guhu-Samane: “elder-brother-man” (“Since the term denotes an elder brother in every way such as honor, power, leadership, representation of the younger, etc. it is a meaningful and fitting — though not ostentatious — title.” Source: Ernest Richert in The Bible Translator 1965, p. 198ff.)
    • Avaric: “Son of Adam” (“from Islam, which means ‘human'”) (source: Magomed-Kamil Gimbatov and Yakov Testelets in The Bible Translator 1996, p. 434ff.)
    • Navajo: “Diné Silíi’ii” — “Man he-became-the-one-who” (“This terra presented a difficulty not only in Navajo but also one peculiar to all the Athapaskan languages. It lies in the fact that all these languages, so far as we know, have a word phonetically similar to the Navajo diné which has three meanings: ‘man, people in general,’ ‘a man,’ ‘The People’ which is the name the Navajos use for themselves. (The name Navajo was first used by the Spanish explorers.) Although it seemed natural to say diné biye’ ‘a-man his-son,’ this could also mean ‘The-People their-son’ or ‘a-Navajo his-son,’ in contrast to the son of a white man or of another Indian tribe. Since the concept of the humanity of Christ is so important, we felt that diné biye’ with its three possible meanings should not be used. The term finally decided on was Diné Silíi’ii ‘Man he-became-the-one-who.’ This could be interpreted to mean ‘the one who became a Navajo,’ but since it still would impart the idea of Christ’s becoming man, it was deemed adequate, and it has proven acceptable to the Navajos.”) (Source: Faye Edgerton in The Bible Translator 1962, p. 25ff.)
    • Toraja-Sa’dan: “son (lit. child) descended in the world” (“using a poetic verb, often found in songs that [deal with] the contacts between heaven and earth”) (source: Reiling / Swellengrebel)
    • Obolo: Gwun̄ Ebilene: ” it is translated as itutumu ijo isibi : “Child of Human” (source: Enene Enene).
    • Mairasi: Jaanoug Tat: “Person Child” (source: Enggavoter 2004)
    • Morelos Nahuatl: “Christ who became man”
    • Teutila Cuicatec: “the One Who Accompanies all people”
    • Isthmus Mixe: “Jesus Christ, the one who is a person” (source for this and two above: Viola Waterhouse in Notes on Translation August 1966, p. 86ff.)
    • Northern Puebla Nahuatl: “son of men” (source: B. Moore / G. Turner in Notes on Translation 1967, p. 1ff.)
    • Costa Rican Sign Language: “It was impossible to translate the expression ‘Son of Man.’ The son-man sign simply means ‘male child.’ The Costa Rican Sign Language (LESCO) team opted for an interpretation of the term and translated it ‘Jesus.'” (Source: Elsa Tamez (in The Bible Translator 2008, p. 59ff.)

    In many West African languages, using a third person reference as a first person indicator is common practice with a large range of semantic effects. Languages that use the exact expression “son of man” as a self-reference or reference to another person include Lukpa, Baatonum, Mossi (“son of Adam”), Yoruba (“son of person”), Guiberoua Béte, or Samo. (Source: Lynell Zogbo in: Omanson 2000, p. 167-188.)

    In Swahili the expression Mwana wa Mtu or mwana wa mtu or “son/daughter of human person,” which is used by several Bible translations, also has “the idiomatic meaning of ‘a human being’” (source: Jean-Claude Loba-Mkole in An Intercultural Criticism of New Testament Translations 2013, see here). The same is true for the Lingala expression Mwana na Moto — “son/daughter of human person.” (Ibid.)

    In Balinese “we are again bordering on theological questions when we inquire as to which vocabulary shall be used to translate the texts where Jesus speaks of himself as ‘the Son of man.’ One of the fixed rules governing the use of these special vocabularies is that one may never use the deferential terms in speaking of oneself. This would be the extreme of arrogance. Now if one considers the expression ‘Son of man’ primarily as a description of ‘I,’ then one must continually indicate the possessions or actions of the Son of man by Low Balinese words. In doing this the mystery of the expression is largely lost. In any case the vocabulary used in most of the contexts would betray that Jesus means the title for himself.

    “However, a distinction can actually be made in Balinese between the person and the exalted position he occupies. For example, the chairman of a judicial body may employ deferential terms when referring to this body and its chairman, without this being taken as an expression of arrogance. Considered from this standpoint, one may translate in such a way that Jesus is understood as using such deferential words and phrases in speaking of himself. The danger is, however, that the unity between his person and the figure of “the Son of man” is blurred by such usage.

    “On request, the New Testament committee of the Netherlands Bible Society advised that ‘the sublimity of this mysterious term be considered the most important point and thus High Balinese be used.'”

    Source: J.L. Swellengrebel in The Bible Translator 1950, p. 124ff.

    In Malay, Barclay Newman reports on the translation of “Today’s Malay Version” (Alkitab Berita Baik) of 1987:

    “One of the first things that we did in working through the earlier part of the New Testament was to decide on how we would translate some of the more difficult technical terms. It was immediately obvious that something must be done with the translation of ‘the Son of Man,’ since the literal rendering anak manusia (literally ‘child of a man’) held absolutely no meaning for Malay readers. We felt that the title should emphasize the divine origin and authority of the one who used this title, and at the same time, since it was a title, we decided that it should not be too long a phrase. Finally, a phrase meaning ‘the One whom God has ordained’ was chosen (yang dilantik Allah). It is interesting to note that the newly-begun Common Indonesian (Alkitab Kabar Baik, published in 1985) has followed a similar route by translating ‘the One whom God has chosen’ (yang depilih Allah).”

    Source: Barclay Newman in The Bible Translator 1974, p. 432ff.

    See also Son of God.

    complete verse (John 3:6)

    Following are a number of back-translations of John 3:6:

    • Umiray Dumaget Agta: “That which originates from the body of a person is the body of a person. That which originates from the Spirit of God is spirit.”
    • Aguaruna: “Those born from people are people. Those born by God’s spirit, they have God’s spirit.”
    • Ojitlán Chinantec: “All the children of human beings are human beings by birth. All who are born another time, this being the work of the Holy Spirit, these are new people.”
    • Xicotepec De Juárez Totonac: “One who is a child of people, he has his flesh and bones. And one who has his new life by the power of the Holy Spirit, he has the Spirit of God.”
    • Chol: “He who is born of a mother is given a body. He who is born of the spirit is given life in his heart.”
    • Alekano: “One that people give birth to will surely have a person’s soul. One that the Spirit gives birth to, he will surely have the Spirit’s soul.”
    • Tenango Otomi: “A child, when it is born, if his parents are only people, is also only a person. But in order for a person to live anew, only the Holy Spirit can cause it.”
    • Lalana Chinantec: “People’s flesh and blood causes our flesh and blood to be alive when we are born. But the great Spirit of God causes our hearts to be alive.” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
    • Uma: “Man lives in this world, and is born from his parents. But the new life of his soul he receives from the Holy Spirit.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
    • Yakan: “What is born of mankind is mankind/human. But if a person is born again from the Spirit of God, he is made a child of God.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
    • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “That which is born by means of a human is only human also, but that which is born by means of the power of the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit lives in him.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
    • Kankanaey: “Because the one to whom a person gives-birth, he is humanlike (connotes limited, sinful humanity), but the one by-contrast to whom the Holy Spirit gives-birth, he is spiritual (loan naispiritoan).” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
    • Tagbanwa: “Because the one given birth to by a human, he is indeed human, a slave yet to sin. But that one who has been given birth to again, for he has been given birth to by the Espiritu Santo, he is now free from that slavery.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
    • Tenango Otomi: “A child, when it is born and his parents are only people, is also only a person. But in order for a person to live anew, only the Holy Spirit is able to cause it.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)

    complete verse (John 3:14)

    Following are a number of back-translations of John 3:14:

    • Huehuetla Tepehua: “Moses hung up the snake out where it was quiet. Well, also in the same way it is necessary that I should be hung up, I who am the friend of all men.”
    • Alekano: “Just like Moses a long time ago in the wilderness lifted up the thing made to look like a snake, they will surely lift up me the true man.” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
    • Uma: “‘Long ago in the wilderness, the prophet Musa made an image of a snake from brass, and he put it on the end of a wooden pole and stuck it in the ground to stand it up. Whoever was bitten by a snake, if they looked up at that brass image of a snake, they would live. So, like that brass snake was made high long ago, so also I the Child of Mankind must be made high,” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
    • Yakan: “Musa in old times, at the time when he was there in the lonely place together with the tribe of Isra’il, he made (a thing) in the shape of a snake from brass and lifted it up and hung it onto a post so that when the people who had been bitten looked at that snake would get well. Likewise I, the Son of Mankind, I also have to be lifted up onto a post and be killed,” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
    • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And then Jesus said again, ‘Long ago when Moses was still out in the land where nobody lives, he made a brass snake and he put it on wood and he raised it up. As for me, the older sibling of mankind, that is the same thing that is going to happen to me in the future because I also will be fastened to a wood and raised up.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
    • Kankanaey: “And what will happen to me, it is like what happened to the imitation/fake snake which Moses fastened-to and raised-up on a post when they were walking through the place with no inhabitants. Because I also who am Child of a Person, I must be fastened-to the cross and be-raised-up” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
    • Tagbanwa: “And in the way in which Moises put-up-high what he’d made which was like a snake there in the wilderness, putting it on wood/tree which he set up, like that indeed is what will be done to me who am the One From Heaven Born of Man. They will nail me to a cross and then put-up-high like that snake which was made.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
    • Tenango Otomi: “There in the wilds, Moses made a metal snake and standing up a pole he raised it high. In like manner it will happen to the Man who came from heaven, it is necessary that the cross be stood up with him on it.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)

    complete verse (John 5:40)

    Following are a number of back-translations of John 5:40:

    • Ojitlán Chinantec: “And you do not want to believe in me so that I might give you eternal life.”
    • Alekano: “But though you should come to me and have eternal life, you confusedly reject me.”
    • Lalana Chinantec: “Even though the word of God speaks about me, you are not willing to become my people. If you became my people, you would come to life.” (Source for this and above: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125.)
    • Uma: “But even so, you still do not want to come to me, in order to receive that good life.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
    • Yakan: “But you do not want to follow me and-what’s-more I can give you life without end.'” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
    • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “I would that you would believe because you would be given eternal life.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
    • Kankanaey: “and you still refuse to be-joined-to me so that I would give you life.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
    • Tagbanwa: “But well, you just don’t want to follow/obey me so that I might give you life which has no ending.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
    • Tenango Otomi: “And you do not want to believe in me to have the new life.'” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)

    prophet

    Eugene Nida wrote the following about the translation of the Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek terms that are typically translated with “prophet” in English:

    “The tendency in many translations is to use ‘to foretell the future’ for ‘prophesy,’ and ‘one who foretells the future’ for ‘prophet.’ This is not always a recommended usage, particularly if such expressions denote certain special native practices of spirit contact and control. It is true, of course, that prophets of the Bible did foretell the future, but this was not always their principal function. One essential significance of the Greek word prophētēs is ‘one who speaks forth,’ principally, of course, as a forth-teller of the Divine will. A translation such as ‘spokesman for God’ may often be employed profitably.” (1947, p. 234f.)

    Following is a list of (back-) translations from other languages (click or tap for details):

    • San Blas Kuna: “one who speaks the voice of God”
    • Central Pame and Vai: “interpreter for God”
    • Kaqchikel, Navajo, Yaka: “one who speaks for God”
    • Northern Grebo: “God’s town crier” (see more about this below)
    • Sapo: “God’s sent-word person”
    • Shipibo-Conibo, Ngäbere: “one who speaks God’s word”
    • Copainalá Zoque: “one who speaks-opens” (a compound meaning “one who discloses or reveals”)
    • Sierra Totonac: “one who causes them to know” (in the sense of “revealer”)
    • Batak Toba: “foreteller” (this and all the above acc. to Nida 1961, p. 7)
    • Alekano: “the true man who descended from heaven” (source: Ellis Deibler in Notes on Translation June 1986, p. 36ff.)
    • Aguaruna: “teller of God’s word” (source: M. Larson / B. Moore in Notes on Translation February 1970, p. 1-125)
    • Ekari: “person who speaks under divine impulse”
    • Chinese: 先知 xiānzhī — “one who foreknows” (or the 1946/1970 translation by Lü Zhenzhong: 神言人 shényánrén — “divine-word-man”)
    • Uab Meto: “holy spokesman” (source for this and two above: Reiling / Swellengrebel)
    • Kouya: Lagɔɔ gbʋgbanyɔ — “the one who seeks God’s affairs” (source: Saunders, p. 269)
    • Kafa: “decide for God only” (source: Loren Bliese)
    • Martu Wangka: “sit true to God’s talk” (source: Carl Gross)
    • Eastern Highland Otomi: “word passer” (source: John Beekman in Notes on Translation November 1964, p. 1-22)
    • Obolo: ebi nriran: “one with power of divine revelation” (source: Enene Enene)
    • Mairasi: nonondoai nyan: “message proclaimer” (source: Enggavoter 2004)
    • Highland Totonac: “speaker on God’s behalf”
    • Central Tarahumara: “God’s preacher” (source for this and above: Waterhouse / Parrott in Notes on Translation October 1967, p. 1ff.)
    • Coatlán Mixe: “God’s word-thrower”
    • Ayutla Mixtec: “one who talks as God’s representative”
    • Isthmus Mixe: “speaker for God” (source for this and two above: Viola Waterhouse in Notes on Translation August 1966, p. 86ff.)
    • Mezquital Otomi: “God’s messenger” (source: Waterhouse / Parrott in Notes on Translation October 1967, p. 1ff.)
    • Nyongar: Warda Marridjiny or “News Traveling” (source: Warda-Kwabba Luke-Ang)

    In Ixcatlán Mazatec a term is used that specifically includes women. (Source: Robert Bascom)

    About the translation into Northern Grebo:

    “In some instances these spiritual terms result from adaptations reflecting the native life and culture. Among the Northern Grebo people of Liberia, a missionary wanted some adequate term for ‘prophet,’ and she was fully aware that the native word for ‘soothsayer’ or ‘diviner’ was no equivalent for the Biblical prophet who spoke forth for God. Of course, much of what the prophets said referred to the future, and though this was an essential part of much of their ministry, it was by no means all. The right word for the Gbeapo people would have to include something which would not only mean the foretelling of important events but the proclamation of truth as God’s representative among the people. At last the right word came; it was ‘God’s town-crier.’ Every morning and evening the official representative of the chief goes through the village crying out the news, delivering the orders of the chief, and announcing important coming events. ‘God’s town-crier’ would be the official representative of God, announcing to the people God’s doings, His commands, and His pronouncements for their salvation and well-being. For the Northern Grebo people the prophet is no weird person from forgotten times; he is as real as the human, moving message of the plowman Amos, who became God’s town-crier to a calloused people.” (source: Nida 1952, p. 20)

    See also prophesy and prophesy / prophetic frenzy.