Endorsements

The Transparent English Version has received enthusiastic endorsements from a wide range of academics, ministers, students, and lay people.

“In my view, the Transparent English Version of Genesis makes an invaluable contribution to our understanding of this magnificent and difficult work.   Not only does it open up new possibilities for Biblical study and discussion, it also brings the reader closer to the spirit and sense of the original sources than any other translation I have seen. Considering that Genesis may be the most influential book ever published, this translation should be of enormous interest to general readers as well as to specialists both in this country and abroad.”

Dr. Richard E. Rubenstein, University Professor, George Mason University

 

“Professor Tabor’s consistent attempt to capture in English translation the sound and sense of Genesis in its original form has the salutary effect of causing the reader to stop and think again about the meaning of the text. Readers who can encounter the text only in English now have an opportunity to look behind layers of theologically motivated translations to something as close as we will probably ever come to the original text.”

Dr. Eugene V. Gallagher, Rosemary Park Professor of Religious Studies Emeritus, Connecticut College

 

“Finally, a truly transparent translation! I have taught biblical texts for almost 25 years and have longed for a translation that didn’t pull any punches when it came to the difficult passages, or that didn’t try to “spin” the meaning of the text in the interests of later theology and doctrine (whether Jewish or Christian). Tabor’s translation of Genesis renders the Hebrew not just with unparalleled accuracy and fidelity to the text, it also offers readers a sense of the unfamiliar elegance and strange power of the original. Beautifully conceived and executed, Tabor’s translation is the result of a lifetime of critical learning and scholarly acumen. It is also a courageous undertaking. I have no doubt that it will quickly become the standard.”

Dr. A. J. Droge, Professor of Humanities, University of Toronto

 

“Finally we have a translation of Genesis that is transparent. Tabor not only reveals the nuances of the Hebrew language in his English translation and detailed footnotes, but he uses the oldest manuscript traditions to do so. This is a marked departure from traditional scholarly practice, which has relied on a modern eclectic text, one that has been created by a scholarly committee out of hordes of manuscripts spanning the centuries. But James Tabor’s translation is based on our oldest two manuscripts, and so it represents a version of Genesis that would have been known and used by the ancient people. This type of serious manuscript translation will revolutionize scholarship.”

Dr. April DeConick, Isla Carroll and Percy E. Turner Chair for Biblical Studies, Rice University

 

“The Transparent English Bible is a unique, innovative translation which successfully offers to readers an impression of the rough-hewn nature of the original Hebrew text with its Semitic syntax and idiomatic expressions. Though it is not intended to replace more conventional versions, it should pique the interest of many who have an interest in getting closer to the original. The incorporation of new readings from the Dead Sea Scrolls, and various explanatory notes add to the usefulness of the edition.”

Dr. Edwin Yamauchi, Professor Emeritus, History Department, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio

 

 

“I am delighted to hear that the Transparent English Bible translation of Genesis may soon be published. I know of no other translation quite like it, and envision recommending it both to the prospective ministers I teach in an ecumenical divinity school and to the educated, curious readers I meet in community groups and congregations where I often lead studies.   Varied though their particular motives and investments may be, many such readers are intrigued by the complexities of Biblical interpretation, and eager for tools that allow less dependence on “received” views, including standard translations.   The TEB rendering of Genesis both de-familiarizes the text and makes its diction, figures, and syntax accessible in ways that afford real insight. Its superscripts, notes, and other conventions create transparency in method, not just translation. The translation captures the lively play of Hebrew, and invites an answering clarity and energy of interpretation from readers. I hope Genesis is published quickly, with more to follow soon.”

Dr. B. Diane Lipsett, Assistant Professor of  New Testament and Christian Origins, Salem College

 

“I have worked in linguistics for 25 years now and have been a lay reader of the Bible. Reading the new translation of Genesis is at once familiar but also like reading something I’ve not read before. There’s an ancient, mysterious quality about it that makes me want to like Moses take my shoes off while standing on holy ground. There’s the feeling that I’ve discovered something that’s been hidden for ages.”

Dr. James Langford, Professor of Linguistics, Abilene Christian University

 

 

“James Tabor’s Transparent English Bible is such a good idea, it is a wonder someone has not done it before. This is a translation that will have immense appeal to those who have studied Hebrew and Greek and perhaps more so to those who have not. To both groups it provides the first ever opportunity to come as close as possible to hearing the original tongue in English. “Transparent” is a perfect descriptor of what I have read. The TEB seems to have it all—poetic beauty, accuracy, and notes to show the main textual variants. It is everything a student of the Bible could want in an accurate, literal translation. In short, it is amazing. It will provide all kinds of new opportunities for bringing the Bible to life in a fresh way while ensuring that the original author’s intent is not being distorted. I eagerly look forward to using this invaluable new translation in my work as a parish pastor and college instructor.”

The Rev. Jeffrey J. Bütz, M.Div., S.T.M., Pastor, Grace Lutheran Church, Nazareth, Pennsylvania, Instructor of Religious Studies, Pennsylvania State University

 

“The Spanish wit Cervantes said, ‘Reading a translation is like looking at a tapestry on the wrong side.’ Dr. Tabor has attempted to set the tapestry on the right side and look through it as if it were transparent. It is a novel approach that will be welcomed by those of us who see a need for freshness in reading the venerable text. The TEB will provide that freshness, piquing readers to ask questions of the text: ‘Why did the writer put it that way? Am I missing something?’ What better way to learn? Presenting the ancient biblical text dynamically, I believe, is TEB’s greatest contribution. It sets aside the encrusted religious traditions of centuries and breaks the stained glass of orthodoxy by giving the reader the opportunity to see the Text with greater clarity, and without theological spin. It meets a need unmet by other English translations.”

Pastor Kenneth Westby, Founder and Executive Director of the Association for Christian Development, Seattle, Washington, Bible teacher and pastor for 46 years

 

“Unless a student of Scripture is willing to complete the arduous task of learning an original language of the Bible, they cannot truly taste the marrow of it’s meaning or sense the mind it gives expression to in an English translation. It is like walking around a construction site only to surmise about what is being built by looking at the tools and material at hand. With this translation of Genesis using a concept called Transparency, James Tabor has given us access to the blueprints. For the first time, students without training in Hebrew can begin to perceive the marvelous distinctions, resonant patterns and eloquent simplicity of the language. This is a must-have work that will surely add unique acuity to one’s endeavor to understand the Bible’s original texts.”

Lee Hutchison, Religious Studies Graduate, UNC Charlotte

 

“I am just enthralled at how beautiful the wording is and excited to read it aloud to the children especially! Talk about a fascinating story! It reminds me of a play being read. I can imagine someone like Mark Twain doing a reading with such life and beauty and meaning that you feel like you are there. It makes me stand up and move around and use body language as I read because I can visualize the whole scene. Believe me, my grandchildren are going to love the Bible now! Like the word soil-man, how much more explanatory can a word get?”

Linda Scoggins, Lay Reader, Trout Lake, Washington

 

“Reading the words of this new translation has been beautiful and inspiring. Although it sounds different when read aloud in comparison to the more traditional bible translations, I feel it really does come as close as possible to capturing the beautiful poetic nuances of the original Hebrew.”

Catherine Cashmore, Lay Reader, Melbourne, Australia