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THE
NEW TESTAMENT IN MODERN SPEECH



3HT



THE NEW TESTAMENT
IN MODERN SPEECH

AN IDIOMATIC TRANSLATION INTO EVERY-

DAY ENGLISH FROM THE TEXT OF THE

RESULTANT GREEK TESTAMENT

BY THE LATE

RICHARD FRANCIS WEYMOUTH

M.A., D.Lrr. (London)
Fellow of University College, London, and formerly Headmaster of
Mill Hill School. Editor of "The Resultant Greek Testament"



Edited and Partly Revised by
ERNEST HAMPDEN-COOK, M.A.

Formerly Exhibitioner and Prizeman of St. John's College, Cambridge
B.A., London



THIRD EDITION
(fifth imprf-ssion)



LONDON
JAMES CLARKE & CO.. 13 &' 14 FLEET STREET

1915



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mo 'n-^ATJ'M:-i,-



•^•iilo-J 2'n(io(_



PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION



THE Translation of the New Testament here offered to
English-speaking Christians is a bona fide translation
made directly from the Greek, and is in no sense a revision.
The plan adopted has been the following.

1. An earnest endeavour has been made (based upon more
than sixty years' study of both the Greek and English lan-
guages, besides much further familiarity gained by continual
teaching) to ascertain the exact meaning of every passage
not only by the light that Classical Greek throws on the
language used, but also by that which the Septuagint and
the Hebrew Scriptures afford ; aid being sought too from
Versions and Commentators ancient and modern, and from
the ample ei cetera of apparatus grammaticus and theological
and Classical reviews and magazines — or rather, by means
of occasional excursions into this vast prairie.

2. The sense thus seeming to have been ascertained, the
next step has been to consider how it could be most
accurately and naturally exhibited in the English of the
present day ; in other words, how we can with some
approach to probability suppose that the inspired writer
himself would have expressed his thoughts, had he been
writing in our age and country.^

3. Lastly it has been evidently desirable to compare the
results thus attained with the renderings of other scholars,
especially of course with the Authorized and Revised
Versions. But alas, the great majority of even " new
translations," so called, are, in reality, only Tyndale's
immortal work a little — often very little — modernized !

4. But in the endeavour to find in Twentieth Century
English a precise equivalent for a Greek word, phrase, or
sentence there are two dangers to be guarded against.



I am aware of what Professor Blackie has written on this subject
'.chylus, Pref., p. viii) ; but
Translation is as aoove stated.



(Aeschylus, Pref., p. viii); but the problem endeavoured to be solved in this
*" ' " • abov



I, 44.*^



PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION

There are a Scylla and a Charybdis. On the one hand
there is the EngHsh of Society, on the other hand that of the
utterly uneducated, each of these patois having also its own
special, though expressive, borderland which we name
'slang.' But all these salient angles (as a professor of
fortification might say) of our language are forbidden
ground to the reverent translator of Holy Scripture.

5. But again, a modern translation — does this imply that
no words or phrases in any degree antiquated are to be
admitted? Not so, foi" great numbers of such words and
phrases are still in constant use. To be antiquated is not
the same thing as to be obsolete or even obsolescent, and
without at least a tinge of antiquity it is scarcely possible
that there should be that dignity of style that befits the
sacred themes with which the Evangelists and Apostles
deal.

6. It is plain that this attempt to bring out the sense of
the Sacred Writings naturally as well as accurately in
present-day English does not permit, except to a limited
extent, the method of literal rendering — the verho verbum
reddere at which Horace shrugs his shoulders. Dr.
Welldon, recently Bishop of Calcutta, in the Preface (p. vii)
to his masterly translation of the Nicomachean Ethics of
Aristotle, writes, "I have deliberately rejected the principle
of trying to translate the same Greek word by the same
word in English, and where circumstances seemed to call
for it I have sometimes used two English words to represent
one word of the Greek ; " — and he is perfectly right. With a
slavish literality delicate shades of meaning cannot be re-
produced, nor allowance be made for the influence of inter-
woven thought, or of the writer's ever shifting — not to say
changing —point of view. An utterly ignorant or utterly
lazy man, if possessed of a little ingenuity, can with the help
of a dictionary and grammar give a word-for-word rendering,
whether intelligible or not, and print ' Translation ' on his
title-page. On the other hand it is a melancholy spectacle
to see men of high ability and undoubted scholarship toil
and struggle at translation under a needless restriction to
literality, as in intellectual handcuffs and fetters, when they
might with advantage snap the bonds and fling them away,
as Dr. Welldon has done : more melancholy still, if they are
at the same time .racking their brains to exhibit the result
of their labours — a splendid but idle philological tour de force
— in what was English nearly 300 years before.

7. Obviously any literal translation cannot but carry
idioms of the earlier language into the later, where they



PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION

will very probably not be understood ; ' and more serious
still is the evil when, as in the Jewish Greek of the N.T.,
the earlier language of the two is itself composite and
abounds in forms of speech that belong to one earlier still.
For the N.T. Greek, even in the writings of Luke, contains
a large number of Hebrew idioms ; and a literal rendering
into English cannot but partially veil, and in some degree
distort, the true sense, even if it does not totally obscure
it (and that too where perfect clearness should be attained,
if possible), by this admixture of Hebrew as well as Greek
forms of expression.

8. It follows that the reader who is bent upon getting
a literal rendering, such as he can commonly find in the
R.V. or (often a better one) in Darby's New Testament,
should always be on his guard against its strong tendency
to mislead.

9. One point however can hardly be too emphatically
stated. It is not the present Translator's ambition to
supplant the Versions already in general use, to which their
intrinsic merit or long familiarity or both have caused all
Christian minds so lovingly to cling. His desire has rather
been to furnish a succinct and compressed running com-
mentary (not doctrinal) to be used side by side with its
elder compeers. And yet there has been something of a
remoter hope. It can scarcely be doubted that some day
the attempt will be renewed to produce a satisfactory
English Bible — one in some respects perhaps (but assuredly
with great and important deviations) on the lines of the
Revision of 1881, or even altogether to supersede both
the A.V. and the R.V. ; and it may be that the Trans-
lation here offered will contribute some materials that
may be built into that far grander edifice.

10. The Greek Text here followed is that given in the
Translator's Resultant Greek Testament.''

11. Of the Various Readings only those are here given
which seem the most important, and which affect the
rendering into English. They are in the footnotes, with
V. L. {varia lectio) prefixed. As to the chief modern critical
editions full details will be found in the Resultant Greek
Testament, while for the original authorities — MSS., Ver-
sions, Patristic quotations — the reader must of necessity
consult the great works of Lachmann, Tregelles, Tischendorf,
and others, or the numerous monographs on separate

I. A flag:rant instance is the "having in a readiness" of 2 Cor. x. 6, A.V.
althoug-h in Tyndale we find "and are redy to take vengeaunce," and even
Wiclif writes "and we han redi to venge."

a. Published by Messrs. Jas. Clarke & Co., London. Price as. 6d. net.



PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION

Books. ^ In the margin of the R.V. a distinction is made
between readings supported by " a few ancient authorities,'*
"some ancient authorities," "many ancient authorities,"
and so on. Such valuation is not attempted in this work.

12. Considerable pains have been bestowed on the exact
rendering of the tenses of the Greek verb ; for by inexactness
in this detail the true sense cannot but be missed. That the
Greek tenses do not coincide, and cannot be expected to
coincide with those of the English verb ; that — except in
narrative — the aorist as a rule is more exactly represented
in English by our perfect with ' ' have " than by our simple
past tense ; and that in this particular the A.V. is in scores
of instances more correct than the R.V. ; the present
Translator has contended (with arguments which some
of the best scholars in Britain and in America hold to be
"unanswerable" and "indisputable") in a pamphlet^ On
the Rendering into English of the Greek Aorist and Perfect.
Even an outline of the argument cannot be given in a
Preface such as this.

13. But he who would make a truly English translation
of a foreign book must not only select the right nouns,
adjectives, and verbs, insert the suitable prepositions and
auxiliaries, and triumph (if he can) over the seductions
and blandishments of idioms with which he has been
familiar from his infancy, but which, though forcible or
beautiful vv^ith other surroundings, are for all that part
and parcel of that other language rather than of English :
he has also to beware of connecting his sentences in an
un-English fashion.

Now a careful examination of a number of authors
(including Scottish, Irish, and American) yields some
interesting results. Taking at haphazard a passage from
each of fifty-six authors, and counting on after some
full stop till fifty finite verbs — i.e. verbs in the indicative,
imperative, or subjunctive mood — have been reached (each
finite verb, as every schoolboy knows, being the nucleus
of one sentence or clause), it has been found that the
connecting links of the fifty-six times fifty sentences are
about one-third conjunctions, about one-third adverbs or
relative and interrogative pronouns, while in the case of
the remaining third there is what the grammarians call
an asyndeton — no formal grammatical connexion at all.

1. Such as McClellan's Four Gospels ; Westcott on John's Gospel, John's
Epistles, and Hebrews; Hackett on Acts; Lightfoot, and also Ellicott, on
various Epistles ; Mayor on James ; Edwards on i Corinthians and Hebrews ;
Sanday and Headlam on Romans. Add to these Scrivener's very valuable
Introduction to the Criticism of the N. T.

2. Published by Messrs. James Clarke & Co., London. Price is. net.

viii



PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION

But in the writers of the N.T. nearly /2£/o-thirds of the
connecting links are conjunctions. It follows that in order
to make the style of a translation true idiomatic English
many of these conjunctions must be omitted, and for
others adverbs, &c., must be substituted.

The two conjunctions for and therefore are discussed at
some length in two Appendices to the above-mentioned
pamphlet on the Aorist, to which the reader is referred.

14. The Notes, with but few exceptions, are not of the
nature of a general commentary. Some, as already intimated,
refer to the readings here followed, but the great majority
are in vindication or explanation of the renderings given.

Since the completion of this new version nearly two years
ago, ill-health has incapacitated the Translator from under-
taking even the lightest work. He has therefore been
obliged to entrust to other hands the labour of critically
examining and revising the manuscript and of seeing it
through the press. This arduous task has been undertaken
by Rev. Ernest Hampden-Cook, M.A., St. John's College,
Cambridge, of Sandbach, Cheshire, with some co-operation
from one of the Translator's sons ; and the Translator is
under deep obligations to these two gentlemen for their
kindness in the matter. He has also most cordially to
thank Mr. Hampden-Ccok for making the existence of the
work known to various members of the Old Millhillians'
Club and other former pupils of the Translator, who in
a truly substantial manner have manifested a generous
determination to enable the volume to see the light. Very
grateful does the Translator feel to them for this signal mark
of their friendship.

Mr. Hampden-Cook is responsible for the headings of the
paragraphs, and at my express desire has inserted some addi-
tional notes.

I have further to express my gratitude to Rev. Frank
Ballard, M.A., B.Sc, Lond., at present of Sharrow,
Sheffield, for some very valuable assistance which he has
most kindly given in connexion with the Introductions to the
several books.

I have also the pleasure of acknowledging the numerous
valuable and suggestive criticisms with which I have been
favoured on some parts of the work, by an old friend. Rev.
Sydney Thelwall, B.A., of Leamington, a clergyman of the
Church of England, whom I have known for many years as
a painstaking and accurate scholar, a well-read theologian,
and a thoughtful and devout student of Scripture.

I am very thankful to Mr. H. L. Gethin, Mr. S. Hales,



PREFACES

Mr. J. A. Latham, and Rev. T. A. Seed, for the care with
which they have read the proof sheets.

And now this Translation is humbly and prayerfully com-
mended to God's gracious blessing.

R. F. W.

Brentwood, Essex.
in I. i. July 1902.



PREFACE TO THE THIRD EDITION



FOR the purposes of this edition the whole volume has
been re-set in new type, and, in the hope of increasing
the interest and attractiveness of the Translation, all con-
versations have been spaced out in accordance with modern
custom. A freer use than before has been made of capital
letters, and by means of small, raised figures, prefixed to
words in the text, an indication has been given whenever
there is a footnote. "Capernaum" and "Philadelphia" have
been substituted for the less familiar but more literal
' ' Capharnahum " and ' ' Philadelpheia. " Many errata have
been corrected, and a very considerable number of what
seemed to be infelicities or slight inaccuracies in the English
have been removed. A few additional footnotes have been
inserted, and, for the most part, those for which the
Editor is responsible have now the letters Ed. added to
them.

Sincere thanks are tendered to the many kind friends
who have expressed their appreciation of this Translation,
or have helped to make it better known, and to the many
correspondents who have sent criticisms of the previous
editions, and made useful suggestions for the improvement
of the volume.

E. H.-C.

Sandbach, Cheshire. .'

October 1909. ^.^ -

X



THE BOOKS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT

The probable order of time in which they were written

PAGE

Paul's First Letter to the Thessalonians (53 a.d.) . 547
Paul's Second Letter to the Thessalonians {54 a.d.) . 557



Paul's Letter to the Galatians (53 a.d.) . . . 499

I Paul's First Letter to the Corinthians (56 a.d.) . 437

Paul's Second Letter to the Corinthians (56 a.d.) . 47*5

Paul's Letter to the Romans (between 53 and 58 a.d.) 395



Paul's Letter to the Philippians (61 or 62, a.d.) . 527

Paul's Letter to the Ephesians (62 or 63, a.d.) . . 513

Paul's Letter to the Colossians (63 a.d.). . . 537

Paul's Letter to Philemon (63 a.d.) . . . 591



The Good News as recorded by Mark (between 63

AND 70, A.D.) . . .... 95

The Good News as recorded by Luke (63, 80 or 100,

A.D.) ....... 149

The Acts of the Apostles (between 66 and 70, a.d.,

or between 80 AND 90, A.D.) .... 307



Paul's First Letter to Timothy (66 a.d.) . . . 563

Paul's Second Letter to Timothy (67 a.d.) . . 575

Paul's Letter to Titus (67 a.d.) .... 585

zi



THE BOOKS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT



The Letter to the Hebrews (67 or 68, a.d.)
James's Letter (67 a.d., or between 44 and 50, a.d.
Peter's First Letter .....
John's First Letter .....
The Revelation of John (67 or 96 a.d.) .



I'AGK

595
627

639
661
687



The Good News as recorded by Matthew (between

70 AND 9c A.D.) ......

The Good News as recorded by John (between 80 and

no A.D.) .

Jude's Letter .
Peter's Second Letter
John's Second Letter
John's Third Letter .



237
681

651
677



(.a. A ^;^) YHTOl/iT



xu



ABBREVIATIONS USED IN THE NOTES

Aorist Dr. Weymouth's Pamphlet on the Rendering of the
Greek Aorist and Perfect Tenses into EngHsh.

A.v. Authorised English Version, 1611.

Cp. Compare.

Ed. Notes for which the Editor is responsible, wholly or in part.

I.E. That is.

Lit. Literally.

LXX. The Septuagint (Greek) Version of the Old Testament.

n. Note.

nn. Notes.

N.T. New Testament.

o.T. Old Testament.

R.v. Revised English Version, 1881-85.

S.H. Sanday and Headlam's Commentary on ' Romans.'

v.L. Varia Lectio. An alternative reading found in some
Manuscripts of the New Testament.

vv. Verses.



In accordance with modern English custom, ITALICS are used

to indicate emphasis.
Old Testament quotations are printed in small capitals.



During Christ's earthly ministry even His disciples did not always
recognize His super-human nature and dignity. Accordingly, in
the Gospels of this Translation, it is only when the Evangelists
themselves use of Him the words " He," *' Him," " His," that these
are spelt with capital initial letters.

The spelling of "me" and "my" with small initial letters, when
used by Christ Himself in the Gospels, is explained by the fact
that, before His Resurrection, He did not always emphasize His
own super-human nature and dignity.



ZIU



There are ample reasons for accepting the uniform
tradition which from earliest times has ascribed this Gospel
to Levi the son of Alphaeus, who seems to have changed
his name to * Matthew ' on becoming a disciple of Jesus.
Our information as to his subsequent life is very scanty.
After the feast which he made for his old friends (Luke v. 29)
his name only appears in the New Testament in the list of
the twelve Apostles. Early Christian writers add little to
our knowledge of him, but his life seems to have been quiet
and somewhat ascetic. He is also generally represented
as having died a natural death. Where his Gospel was
written, or where he himself laboured, we cannot say.

Not a little controversy has arisen as to the form in which
this Gospel first appeared, that is, as to whether we have
in the Greek MSS. an original document or a translation
from an earlier Aramaic writing. Modern scholarship in-
clines to the view that the book is not a translation, but was
probably written in Greek by Matthew himself, upon the
basis of a previously issued collection of * * Logia " or dis-
courses, to the existence of which Papias, Irenaeus, Pan-
taenus, Origen, Eusebius and Jerome all testify.

The date of the Gospel, as we know it, is somewhat
uncertain, but the best critical estimates are included
between 70 and 90, a.d. Perhaps, with Harnack, we may
adopt 75, A.D.

The book was evidently intended for Jewish converts,
and exhibits Jesus as the God-appointed Messiah and King,
the fulfiller of the Law and of the highest expectations of
the Jewish nation. This speciality of aim rather enhances
than diminishes its general value. Renan found reason for
pronouncing it **the most important book of Christendom —
the most important book which has ever been written."
Its aim is manifestly didactic rather than chronological.



noiydE-



nii^n



THE GOOD NEWS AS RECORDED BY
MATTHEW

The Names ''^^® 'Genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son ot i

of Christ's David, the son of Abraham.

Forefathers Abraham was the father of I saac; Isaac of Jacob; 2

JacoT? of Judah and his brothers. Judah was the father (by 3
Tamar) of 3 Perez and Zerah ; Perez of Hezron ; Hezron of

Ram ; Ram of Amminadab ; Amminadab of Nahshon ; Nah- 4

shon of Salmon ; Salmon (by Rahab) of Boaz ; Boaz (by Ruth) 5

of Obed ; Obed of Jesse ; Jesse of David— the King. 6

David (by Uriah's widow) was the father of Solomon ;

Solomon of Rehoboam ; Rehoboam of Abijah ; Abijah of 7

Asa ; Asa of Jehoshaphat ; Jehoshaphat of Jehoram ; 8

Jehoram of Uzziah ; Uzziah of Jotham ; Jotham of Aliaz ; 9

Ahaz of Hezekiah ; Hezekiah of Manasseh ; Manasseh of 10

Amon ; Amon of Josiah ; Josiah of Jeconiah and his brothers 1 1
at the period of the Removal to Babylon.

After the Removal to Babylon Jeconiah had a son 12

Shealtiel ; Shealtiel was the father of Zerubbabel ; Zerub- 13

babel of Abiud ; Abiud of Eliakim ; Eliakim of Azor ; Azor 14

of Zadok; Zadok of Achim ; Achim of Eliud ; Eliud of 15

Eleazar ; Eleazar of Matthan ; Matthan of Jacob; and 16
Jacob of Joseph the husband of Mary, who was the mother
of JESUS who is called CHRIST.

There are therefore, in all, fourteen generations from 17
Abraham to David ; fourteen from David to the Removal

Both the A.V. and the R.V. head this first chapter, The Gospel according
TO St. Matthew, a mistranslation of the heading: found in the mass of later
MSS., which should be rendered The Holy Gospel according to Matthew.
And so in the other three Gospels.

1. (vv. i-i7.)Cp. Luke iii. 23-28.

2. Genealogy] Lit. ' Book of Generation.' Or it may be rendered ' history ' (and
so Baxter), as also may the corresponding expression in the Hebrew of Gen. ii. 4 ;
XXX vii. 2.

3. Perez] Of this and other Old Testament proper names the forms here given
are those which were adopted by the O.T. Revisers.



f n^j^i



CRITICISMS OF THIS TRANSLATION, AND SUGGESTIONS WITH
REGARD TO FUTURE EDITIONS, WILL BE WELCOMED
IF ADDRESSED TO THE EDITOR, MR. E. HAMPDEN-
COOK, C/O MESSRS. JAMES CLARKE AND CO.,
13 AND 14, FLEET STREET,
LONDON.



•...-1 ,;,.>pr.^ r.(,-



THE GOOD NEWS AS RECORDED
BY MATTHEW



There are ample reasons for accepting the uniform
tradition which from earliest times has ascribed this Gospel
to Levi the son of Alphaeus, who seems to have changed
his name to * Matthew ' on becoming a disciple of Jesus.
Our information as to his subsequent life is very scanty.
After the feast which he made for his old friends (Luke v. 29)
his name only appears in the New Testament in the list of
the twelve Apostles. Early Christian writers add little to
our knowledge of him, but his life seems to have been quiet
and somewhat ascetic. He is also generally represented
as having died a natural death. Where his Gospel was
written, or where he himself laboured, we cannot say.

Not a little controversy has arisen as to the form in which
this Gospel first appeared, that is, as to whether we have
in the Greek MSS. an original document or a translation
from an earlier Aramaic writing. Modern scholarship in-
clines to the view that the book is not a translation, but was
probably written in Greek by Matthew himself, upon the
basis of a previously issued collection of "Logia" or dis-
courses, to the existence of which Papias, Irenaeus, Pan-
taenus, Origen, Eusebius and Jerome all testify.

The date of the Gospel, as we know it, is somewhat
uncertain, but the best critical estimates are included
between 70 and 90, a.d. Perhaps, with Harnack, we may
adopt 75, A.D.

The book was evidently intended for Jewish converts,
and exhibits Jesus as the God-appointed Messiah and King,
the fulfiller of the Law and of the highest expectations of
the Jewish nation. This speciality of aim rather enhances
than diminishes its general value. Renan found reason for
pronouncing it "the most important book of Christendom —
the most important book which has ever been written."
Its aim is manifestly didactic rather than chronological.



no!7d/>!l oj Iji



THE GOOD NEWS AS RECORDED BY
MATTHEW

The Names ''^^^ ''Genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son ot i

of Christ's David, the son of Abraham.

Forefathers Abraham was the father of Isaac; Isaacof Jacob; 2

Jacol) of Judah and his brothers. Judah was the father (by 3
Tamar) of 3 Perez and Zerah ; Perez of Hezron ; Hezron of

Ram ; Ram of Amminadab ; Amminadab of Nahshon ; Nah- 4

shon of Salmon ; Salmon (by Rahab) of Boaz ; Boaz (by Ruth) 5

of Obed ; Obed of Jesse ; Jesse of David— the King. 6

David (by Uriah's widow) was the father of Solomon ;

Solomon of Rehoboam ; Rehoboam of Abijah ; Abijah of 7

Asa ; Asa of Jehoshaphat ; Jehoshaphat of Jehoram ; 8

Jehoram of Uzziah ; Uzziah of Jotham ; Jotham of Ahaz ; 9

Ahaz of Hezekiah ; Hezekiah of Manasseh ; Manasseh of 10

Amon ; Amon of Josiah ; Josiah of Jeconiah and his brothers 1 1



Online LibraryRichard Francis WeymouthThe New Testament in modern speech : an idiomatic translation into everyday English from the text of the Resultant Greek Testament → online text (page 1 of 72)