If we keep in mind that Jesus and his disciples and hearers were not speaking Greek but rather Hebrew or Aramaic, or both, then we can see that we will only arrive at Jesus’ original words by translating the Greek texts of speeches in the synoptic Gospels back into their Semitic original.
God has a personal name: YHVH. Like Semitic names in general, it was intended to reflect something of the bearer’s character. YHVH is related to the root h-v-h, “to be”, and reflects God’s eternity and timelessness.
In this article, Dr. Ray Pritz, former head of the Bible Society in Israel, looks at another of the challenges faced by the Society’s translation committee in rendering the synoptic Gospels into modern Hebrew.
Most English translations consistently translate the Greek word Ἰουδαῖοι (Ioudaioi) as “Jews.” But this inflexible translation has often contributed to an anti-Semitic interpretation of the New Testament.
In this series Dr. Ray Pritz, head of the Bible Society in Israel, describes the challenges faced by the Society’s translation committee in rendering the synoptic Gospels into modern Hebrew, and some of the solutions it found.