The Greek and Latin that is translated as “resurrection” in English is translated in Chicahuaxtla Triqui and Pohnpeian as “live-up” (i.e. return to life) (source: Reiling / Swellengrebel) and in Iloko as panagungar: a term that stems “from the word ‘agungar,’ an agricultural term used to describe the coming back to life of a plant which was wilting but which has been watered by the farmer, or of a bulb which was apparently dead but grows again.” (Source: G. Henry Waterman in The Bible Translator 1960, p. 24ff. )

In Estado de México Otomi, it is translated as “people will be raised from the dead,” in Teutila Cuicatec as “the dead having to come to life again,” in San Mateo del Mar Huave as “arose from the grave” (source: Viola Waterhouse in Notes on Translation August 1966, p. 86ff.), and in Kriol as gidap laibala brom dedbala or “get up alive from the dead” (source: Sam Freney in this article .)

Translation commentary on 2 Esdras 2:23

When you find any who are dead, commit them to the grave and mark it: For the religious duty to care of the dead, see Tob 1.17. When you find any who are dead does not mean that a person is going about his own business and discovers a dead body (so Good News Bible). It refers to taking responsibility for the burial of people who have no one to take care of their burial. So this clause is better rendered “When you find a dead person who has no family” or “When a person without a family dies.” The Revised Standard Version footnote on commit them to the grave and mark it indicates that the Latin expression here is ambiguous (literally “marking, commit to the grave”). The only real question is whether the Latin word signans refers to marking or sealing the grave. We assume that the grave (which would have been a natural cave or a place dug in the ground or a mountain) would be sealed. No footnote is really needed here. This clause may be rendered “bury that person and mark the grave.”

I will give you the first place in my resurrection does not mean being resurrected first since not everyone who performs this duty of burying the dead can be first, but it means receiving the honor that such an unselfish act deserves. We may say “For doing that I will give you a place of honor when I raise the dead.”

Here is an alternative model for this verse:

• When a person without a family dies, bury the person and mark the grave. For doing that I will give you a place of honor when I raise the dead.

Quoted with permission from Bullard, Roger A. and Hatton, Howard A. A Handbook on 1-2 Esdras. (UBS Helps for Translators). Miami: UBS, 2019. For this and other handbooks for translators see here.