complete verse (Luke 10:26)

Following are a number of back-translations of Luke 10:26:

  • Uma: “Yesus said: ‘What is written in the Law of the Lord? How do you read it?'” (Source: Uma Back Translation)
  • Yakan: “Isa answered, he said, ‘What is written in God’s law left by Musa? What do you read there?'” (Source: Yakan Back Translation)
  • Western Bukidnon Manobo: “And Jesus said to him, ‘What do the Laws of God say that were left behind by Moses. What do you understand from what you have read?'” (Source: Western Bukidnon Manobo Back Translation)
  • Kankanaey: “‘What does the written word of God say? What is your (singular) understanding?’ Jesus also said to him.” (Source: Kankanaey Back Translation)
  • Tagbanwa: “Jesus answered him, saying, ‘What is contained in what is written in the laws? What do you read there?'” (Source: Tagbanwa Back Translation)

formal pronoun: Jesus addressing religious leaders

Like many languages (but unlike Greek or Hebrew or English), Tuvan uses a formal vs. informal 2nd person pronoun (a familiar vs. a respectful “you”). Unlike other languages that have this feature, however, the translators of the Tuvan Bible have attempted to be very consistent in using the different forms of address in every case a 2nd person pronoun has to be used in the translation of the biblical text.

As Voinov shows in Pronominal Theology in Translating the Gospels (in: The Bible Translator 2002, p. 210ff.), the choice to use either of the pronouns many times involved theological judgment. While the formal pronoun can signal personal distance or a social/power distance between the speaker and addressee, the informal pronoun can indicate familiarity or social/power equality between speaker and addressee.

Here, Jesus is addressing religious leaders with the formal pronoun, showing respect. Compare that with the typical address with the informal pronoun of the religious leaders.

The only two exceptions to this are Luke 7:40/43 and 10:26 where Jesus uses the informal pronoun as a response to the sycophantic use of the formal pronoun by the religious leaders (see formal pronoun: religious leaders addressing Jesus).

In most Dutch translations, the same distinctions are made, with the exception of Luke 10:26 where Jesus is using the formal pronoun.

law

The Greek that is translated in English as “Law” or “law” is translated in Mairasi as oro nasinggiei or “prohibited things.” (Source: Enggavoter 2004)

In Yucateco the phrase that is used for “law” is “ordered-word” (for “commandment,” it is “spoken-word”) (source: Nida 1947, p. 198) and in Central Tarahumara it is “writing-command.” (wsource: Waterhouse / Parrott in Notes on Translation October 1967, p. 1ff.)
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