Psalm 138:2 Magnified thy word ABOVE all thy name
Gary Hudson is a typical Bible corrector. He generally "prefers" the New KJV, but like all other Bible correctors who have placed their own minds as the final written authority, and do not believe that any Bible on this earth is the inerrant words of God, he is free to correct even his own preferred version whenever he chooses to do so.
Mr. Hudson says: "Psalm 138:2 is accurately translated in the NASB as "according to thy name." God's Word and God's name are equally holy, and both equally reveal His character and attributes. His Word is NOT "above" His own name, and never could be because HE IS GOD."
My Response -
Here is a case of pure human reasoning placing itself above the very words of God, and thus in the place of God Himself who has given us His infallible words. What supreme irony!
Another typical King James critic recently posted at one of the Bible clubs: Psalm 138:2: "I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name."
Then he says: "This is an example of a very poor rendering, given all the other verses where God says HIS NAME is supreme, & that He's given JESUS a name above all other names. It SHOULD read, "magnified Your word ALONG WITH all Your name." Call me a Bible-corrector if you wish, but when the TRANSLATION doesn't exactly follow its SOURCE BEING TRANSLATED, it calls for correction." (Caps are his, not mine)
Psalm 138:2 KJB - "I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy TRUTH: for thou HAST MAGNIFIED THY WORD ABOVE ALL THY NAME."
NIV 1982 edition - "...your faithfulness, for you have EXALTED ABOVE ALL THINGS YOUR NAME AND YOUR WORD."
NIV 2011 edition - "...your faithfulness, for you have so EXALTED YOUR SOLEMN DECREE THAT SURPASSES YOUR FAME." !!! Say What?
New Living Translation - "...your faithfulness, for YOUR PROMISES ARE BACKED BY ALL THE HONOR OF YOUR NAME."
ESV 2011 - “I bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness, for you have EXALTED ABOVE ALL THINGS YOUR NAME AND YOUR WORD." Footnote - Or, you have exalted your word above all your name.”
NASB - "...Your truth, For you have MAGNIFIED YOUR WORD ACCORDING TO ALL YOUR NAME."
Holman - "... faithfulness. You have EXALTED YOUR NAME AND YOUR PROMISE ABOVE EVERYTHING ELSE."
ISV - "for you have done great things TO CARRY OUT YOUR WORD CONSISTENT WITH YOUR NAME."
NET (Dan Wallace) - "...and faithfulness, for you have EXALTED YOUR PROMISE ABOVE THE ENTIRE SKY." Huh???
Judaica Press Complete Tanach - "for You magnified Your word OVER ALL YOUR NAMES."
The Message- "Most holy is your name, most holy is your Word."
Catholic Douay Rheims - "for thou hast magnified THY HOLY NAME ABOVE ALL."
Lamsa's translation of the Syriac - "for thou hast magnified thy word above EVERY name."
Catholic St. Joseph NAB - "...your truth; for you have MADE GREAT ABOVE ALL THINGS YOUR NAME AND YOUR PROMISES."
Catholic New Jerusalem bible - "...your constancy; YOUR PROMISES SURPASS YOUR FAME."
The New English Bible 1970 - "for thou hast MADE THY PROMISE WIDE AS THE HEAVEN." ???
The Work of God’s Children Illustrated Bible 2011 - “for you have magnified YOUR HOLY NAME ABOVE ALL.” (completely omits “word”)
The phrase in Psalm 138:2 "thou hast magnified thy word ABOVE all thy name" is found in the 1917 Jewish Publication Society translation and 1936 Hebrew - English versions, the Revised Version 1885, the New Berkeley Version 1969, the NKJV 1982, the American Standard Version 1901, Green's interlinear 2000, Webster's 1833, The Jewish Family Bible 1864, Darby 1870, the Smith Bible 1876, The Revised English Bible 1877, The Sharpe Bible 1883, Youngs 1898, Rotherham's 1902 Emphasized Bible, The Ancient Hebrew Bible 1907 - "thou hast magnified thy word ABOVE all thy name", the Complete Jewish Bible 1998, the 21st Century KJV 1994, the Orthodox Jewish Bible of 2011 - " I will worship toward Thy Heikhal Kodesh, and praise Shmecha (Thy Name) for Thy chesed and for Thy emes; for Thou hast magnified Thy Word above Kol Shimcha (all Thy Name; Yn 1:1, 14 OJBC)."
Psalm 138:2 “above all your name” is also the reading found in The Word of Yah 1993, Green’s Literal 2005, Context Group Version 2007, Bond Slave Version 2009, Hebraic Transliteration Scripture 2010, Online Interlinear 2010 (André de Mol), Conservative Bible 2011, the Hebraic Roots Bible 2012, the Natural Israelite Bible 2012 - “For You have magnified Your word ABOVE ALL YOUR NAME.” and The Holy Bible, Modern English Version 2014 - “for You have exalted Your WORD ABOVE ALL YOUR NAME."
Jewish Virtual Library The Tanakh [Full Text] 1998
“for thou hast magnified thy word ABOVE ALL THY NAME.”
The 2004 Judaica Press Complete Jewish Tanach has: “for You magnified Your word OVER all Your names.”
Foreign language Bibles that read like the KJB are the French Martin 1744 “car tu as magnifié ta parole au-dessus de toute ta renommée”, the Italian Diodati 1649 “tu hai magnificata la tua parola, sopra ogni tua fama.” the Portuguese Almeida Corriigida E Fiel and the A Biblia Sagrada em Portugues - "pois engrandeceste a tua palavra acima de todo o teu nome.", the Spanish Cipriano de Valera 1602 - "porque has magnificado tu palabra SOBRE TODO TU NOMBRE." and the 2004-2010 Spanish Reina Valera Gomez translation - "porque has magnificado tu palabra por sobre todo tu nombre." This is literally what it says.
The NASB however says: "For Thou hast magnified Thy word ACCORDING TO all Thy name".
The word is # 5921 - (al) - and it means "above" as in Gen. 1:7 "the waters were ABOVE the firmament", Gen.27:39 "the dew from heaven ABOVE.", Psalm 8:1 "hast set thy glory ABOVE the heavens", Psalm 95:3 "a great king ABOVE all gods", Psalm 97:9 "thou Lord, art high ABOVE all the earth", Psalm 99:2 "he is high ABOVE all the people", Psalm 137:6 "prefer not Jerusalem ABOVE my chief joy" etc.
The NIV 1984 edition, Holman, and the 2001 ESV read: "You have exalted above all things your name and your word."
Just by switching a few words around they have changed the meaning of the whole sentence. But at least they correctly translated "above" whereas the NASB did not.
However the new NIV of 2011 has utterly changed even what the old NIV said. The NIV 1984 edition said: "for you have exalted ABOVE ALL THINGS YOUR NAME AND YOUR WORD."
But the new NIV 2011 now reads: "for your unfailing love and your faithfulness, for you have so exalted YOUR SOLEMN DECREE THAT IT SURPASSES YOUR FAME."
They changed "word" to "solemn decree" and "your name" to "your fame". This is a completely different meaning than the "old" NIV.
The RSV is interesting in that it reads: "Thou hast exalted above everything thing Thy name and Thy word." It reads basically like the NIV, ESV, but the RSV tells us in their footnotes: - 'Hebrew "exalted Thy word ABOVE all thy name."
The NRSV reads like the RSV, and its footnote tells us that the Hebrew literally says what is found in the KJB. A similar footnote is found in the ESV.
The International Standard Version 2014 is different from them all, saying: “For you have done great things to carry out your word consistent with your name.”
The New English Septuagint Translation 2014 is different still, with: “because you magnified your saying UPON EVERY NAME." (Say, What?)
The New International Readers’ Version 2014 is a paraphrase, but it is similar to the KJB - “You have honored your holy word EVEN MORE THAN YOUR OWN FAME.” (Yes, that is “fame” not “name”)
Daniel Wallace's goofy NET version renders the verse: "for you have exalted YOUR PROMISE ABOVE THE ENTIRE SKY."
Then in his footnote he tells us: "The MT reads, “for you have made great OVER ALL your name your word.” If retained, this must mean that God's mighty intervention, in fulfillment of his word of promise, surpassed anything he had done prior to this. However, the statement is odd and several emendations have been proposed. Some read, “for you have exalted over everything your name and your word,” while others suggest, “for you have exalted over all the heavens your name and your word.” The translation assumes an emendation of “your name” to “your heavens” (a construction that appears in Pss 8:3 and 144:5). The point is that God has been faithful to his promise and the reliability of that promise is apparent to all." (end of Dan Wallace and company notes)
How foolish of men to change the true words of God. The result of "altering the text" by men like Daniel Wallace is that they "understand neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm" (1 Timothy 1:7).
There is no specific promise made in this Psalm that "surpassed anything he had done prior to this", as Mr. Wallace tells us. David is merely praising God for the Truth of His word in all circumstances. It is foolish presumption on the part of some self absorbed "scholar" to alter the text of the inerrant words of God merely because he doesn't understand the meaning of a certain passage.
The fault is not with the Text, but with the Fool who places his own understanding above what God has written. Men like Wallace clearly do not believe in an inerrant Bible in any language.
The King James Bible was the FIRST ENGLISH TRANSLATION TO GET IT RIGHT.
Wycliffe 1395 - "for thou hast magnefied thin hooli name aboue al thing."
Geneva Bible 1599 - "for thou hast magnified thy Name ABOVE ALL THINGS BY THY WORD."
Coverdale 1535 - "for thou hast magnified thy worde, acordynge vnto thy greate name."
The Great Bible 1540 - "for thou hast magnifyed thy name AND thy worde aboue all thynges."
Matthew's Bible 1549 - "for thou hast magnyfyed thy worde, ACCORDYNG UNTO thy greate name."
English Standard Version 2001 - "for you have exalted above all things your name AND your word." FOOTNOTES: OR, YOU HAVE EXALTED YOUR WORD ABOVE ALL YOUR NAME." At least they got it right in their footnote!
NOTE - The previous RSV (I have a hard copy right here in front of me) reads: "for thou hast exalted ABOVE EVERYTHING THY NAME AND THY WORD." and the it actually has this footnote. It says: "Compare Greek, Tg: HEBREW THOU HAST EXALTED THY WORD ABOVE ALL THY NAME."
It comes right out and states that the Hebrew reads exactly as the King James Bible has it!
The so called Greek Septuagint (or the LXX) is of no help here because it differs from ALL other versions and the Hebrew text. The LXX says: "for thou hast magnified THY HOLY NAME ABOVE EVERYTHING." - thus omitting the Hebrew "word" and adding "holy", which is not found in the true text.
The Syriac Peshitta, translated in 1933 by Lamsa, gives us yet another meaning for the verse. It says: "for thou hast magnified THY WORD ABOVE EVERY NAME."
Is God really this confused or unable to give us His sure words?
"For thou hast magnified thy word ABOVE ALL THY NAME." This is what the Hebrew and the King James Bible read, but the new version editors have a much lower view of God's word, and Psalm 138:2 is one example of many where they have changed what God really said.
In what sense then can God magnify His word above His name? My understanding of this is that God Himself is subject to His spoken word and compelled by His very nature to fulfill what He has sworn to do. Let's look at some examples of this.
Hebrews 6:13-18 "For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multplying I will multiply thee...For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife. Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which is was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us."
We see God's spoken words promising a seed to Abraham and making a mighty nation from his loins. See Genesis 15:5; 21:13. Yet later in Israels history when they had grievously sinned and God threatened to destroy them, Moses pleads with God in Exodus 32:7-14 "Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom THOU SWAREST BY THINE OWN SELF, and SAIDST unto them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give unto your seed, and they shall inherit it forever." Then we read "And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people."
Christ Himself was God manifest in the flesh and when it came time for Him to go to the cross and become sin for His people, His soul was exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death. He prayed that if it were possible this cup of suffering might pass from Him. Yet He knew the Scriptures promised that these things must be so and He yielded to the Father's will and word. "The scriptures must be fulfilled"; and "Thus it is written, and thus IT BEHOOVED Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day." See Mark 14:49, Luke 24:46.
If God has sworn in His word to do something, then He is subject to this oath and bound by His word to fulfill it, no matter what the cost to Himself nor to His Son, and without regard to the sins and unfaithfulness of His people.
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