The Greek that is translated as “saint” in English is rendered into Highland Puebla Nahuatl as “one with a clean hearts,” into Northwestern Dinka as “one with a white hearts,” and into Western Kanjobal as “person of prayer.” (Source: Nida 1952, p. 146)
Other translations include:
The Greek that is translated in English as “greed” or “covetousness” is translated in Zande as “having a big heart for everything” (source: Jan Sterk).
In Tzeltal it is “small-hearted,” in Yucateco “desiring what other have,” and in Shipibo-Conibo “going crazy for things.” (Source: Nida, p. 133f.)
See also covet and extortioner / swindler.
The Greek that is translated as “sexual immorality” or “fornication” or similar is translated much more specifically in some languages. Morelos Nahuatl has “let a man not yield himself to another woman except only to his wife. Also let a woman not yield herself to another man except only to her husband” or in Lalana Chinantec as “not proper for them to mix themselves with other women. The same is true of women for other men also. (Source: Viola Waterhouse in Notes on Translation August 1966, p. 86ff.)
Following are a number of back-translations of Ephesians 5:3:
- Uma: “But let there not be any who commit adultery or do other dirty deeds or covet things of others. Deeds like that are not appropriate for us who are the portion of God. It is better that things like that not be talked about in our midst.” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
- Yakan: “You are God’s people, therefore as far as adultery, immorality and cravings/greed is concerned it is not fitting for you even to mention it.” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
- Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And since you are subjects of God, it’s necessary that you are not greedy, don’t do anything that’s filthy, don’t you meddle with someone who’s not your spouse; even to think or talk about it, don’t you do it.” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
- Kankanaey: “Therefore you shouldn’t commit-immorality-with (anyone) and do other kinds of filthiness. Neither should you be-greedy for what is not yours. Because even the relating only of evil-things like those, it isn’t fitting for you who are God’s people.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
- Tagbanwa: “But, because you are now the people of God, you really need to regard-as-dirty these kinds of behavior, all kinds of immoral-behavior with one not your spouse, habits or thoughts which are disgusting, and envy/desire for whatever belongings can be obtained here in the world. Hopefully these things won’t even enter your minds/inner-being.” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)
- Tenango Otomi: “You now are in the hand of God. Therefore let not immorality come to your hearts. Do not do any kind of evil. Do not want to just keep on making your money increase.” (Source: Tenango Otomi Back Translation)