The Greek that is translated as “council” or “Council” in English is (back-) translated in a variety of ways:

Paul (icon)

Following is a Georgian Orthodox icon of Paul the Apostle from the 14th century (located in the Art Museum of Georgia, Tbilisi).

Orthodox Icons are not drawings or creations of imagination. They are in fact writings of things not of this world. Icons can represent our Lord Jesus Christ, the Virgin Mary, and the Saints. They can also represent the Holy Trinity, Angels, the Heavenly hosts, and even events. Orthodox icons, unlike Western pictures, change the perspective and form of the image so that it is not naturalistic. This is done so that we can look beyond appearances of the world, and instead look to the spiritual truth of the holy person or event. (Source )

See also Paul.


The term that is transliterated as “Paul” in English is translated in American Sign Language with a sign that signifies the many letters he wrote. (Source: RuthAnna Spooner, Ron Lawer)

“Paul” in American Sign Language, source: Deaf Harbor

In Spanish Sign Language it is translated with a sign depicting putting away a sword, referring to his conversion from a persecutor of Christians to a Christian leader. (Source: Steve Parkhurst)

“Paul (and Saul)” in Spanish Sign Language, source: Sociedad Bíblica de España

Click or tap here to see a short video clip about Paul (source: Bible Lands 2012)

See also Paul (icon).

complete verse (Acts 23:20)

Following are a number of back-translations of Acts 23:20:

  • Uma: “That child said: ‘There are Yahudi people that have made-plans to request to [you] Head, that tomorrow my uncle be taken to a meeting of the judges, pretending, they say, to examine his case further.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
  • Yakan: “He answered, he said, ‘The Yahudi have planned/agreed that tomorrow they will ask you ko’ to bring Paul to the council members, pretending to investigate him again.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
  • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And the young man said, ‘As for the Jews, they have agreed that tomorrow they will beg you to bring Paul there to the gathering place of the elders because they will thoroughly, they say, check up on what he did.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
  • Kankanaey: “The young-man answered and said, ‘The leaders of the Jews have-agreed-together to ask you (sing.) to take Pablo to their meeting-place tomorrow, in order that they will reportedly try/interrogate-him properly concerning his case.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
  • Tagbanwa: “The child said, ‘There are some Jews who have agreed together that tomorrow they will ask for Pablo to be taken there again by you and stood in the presence of the members of the Sanedrin for, they will say, they will interrogate him well.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)

request / beg (Japanese honorifics)

Like a number of other East Asian languages, Japanese uses a complex system of honorifics, i.e. a system where a number of different levels of politeness are expressed in language via words, word forms or grammatical constructs. These can range from addressing someone or referring to someone with contempt (very informal) to expressing the highest level of reference (as used in addressing or referring to God) or any number of levels in-between.

One way to do this is through the usage (or a lack) of an honorific prefix as shown here in the widely-used Japanese Shinkaiyaku (新改訳) Bible of 2017.

The concept of “requesting” is translated in the Shinkaiyaku Bible as o-negai (お願い), combining “request” (negai) with the respectful prefix o-.

(Source: S. E. Doi, see also S. E. Doi in Journal of Translation, 18/2022, p. 37ff. )

formal 2nd person pronoun (Spanish)

Like many languages (but unlike Greek or Hebrew or English), Spanish uses a formal vs. informal second-person pronoun (a familiar vs. a respectful “you”). Spanish Bibles all use only the informal second-person pronoun (), with the exception of Dios Habla Hoy (third edition: 1996) which also uses the formal pronoun (usted). In the referenced verses, the formal form is used.

Sources and for more information: P. Ellingworth in The Bible Translator 2002, p. 143ff. and R. Ross in The Bible Translator 1993, p. 217ff.

See also the use of the formal vs. the informal pronoun in the Gospels in Tuvan.