Introduction - Part 1

The Purpose

The PlowShare Mission exists to allow a deep study of the actual Greek and Hebrew Bible texts (1550 Stephanus and 1525 Ben Chayyim, called the Textus Receptus) using an online Interlinear Bible. It does not exist to provide comparisons among hundreds of different and varied translations as this is contrary to its purpose.

Its purpose is to act as a stepping stone to the Greek and Hebrew texts by allowing the student to dig deep into the Word itself, thus the name "PlowShare." The intent is to "bring the English speaking person to the Word of God, and not the Word of God to the English speaking person."

Therefore, the priority is to enable the student to begin and continue the study of the Word of God itself, using the online interlinear bible or the print editions.

The Mickelson Clarified Translation (MCT) is Concept for concept, Context for context, Word for word.Yes, all three!

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Plowing the Field of Translation

Celebrating 10 full years of "plowing the field."

- Luke 17:7

More than 25,000 hours have been devoted to this endeavor at the plowman's own expense.

The Need

Many of the word choices used in the English translations today are derived from the historical word choices that were used to translate the Latin Vulgate into English long before the 1500s, first starting around the 700s. For most words choices, the translators had chosen to use a single English word instead of combining two or more English words to fully convey a single Greek (or Latin) word with its various shades and strengths of meaning. This translation process brought forth a diminished English Scripture vocabulary, since many of the original Greek and Hebrew words are actually complex/compound words.

A single one-to-one word correspondence has been the predominant rule of translation for centuries on end, and while it sufficed for many Mediterranean and Middle Eastern languages, the Ancient Teutonic English could not carry nor convey the depth and richness of Scripture with a one-to-one word correspondence. Nonetheless, with the existing standards of translation in place, and with the cost of paper and scribes at a premium, it was deemed necessary to use efficient one-word approximations -- even though it diluted or diminished the fullness of a passage.

The English translation used in the PlowShare Mission Interlinear is a precise unabridged translation, the MCT (Mickelson Clarified Translation). This is not a mere literal translation where the Greek word for woman "γυνή - gune" (Strong's G1135) is translated as "woman" at every occurrence, but rather as "woman" or "wife" based on the concept, context, and the given word choice of the Scripture writer.

While using "woman" is an overly simplified example, examine instead the word for law in Greek "νόμος - nomos" (Strong's G3551). By concept and context, it is clarified as "Torah Law," "Oral law," or as "law" while preserving the word choice of the Scripture writer. Also, two Greek words are expressed as the word "good" in English. They are clarified in this translation as "beneficially good" (G0018: ἀγαθός - agathos) and "morally good" (G2570: καλός - kalos). The same occurs with the English word "love," which is now clarified as "to love" (G0025: ἀγαπάω - agapao) and as "To be a friend to / to be fond of / to have affection for" (G5368: φιλέω phileo) with each shade of meaning being based on context and proper English expression.

The semantics of the words, with their shades and strengths of meaning, are preserved and expressed while bridging the cultural gaps of which many English speakers are unaware.

The Start

Started in 2003, this is an in-depth project to translate directly from the Greek and Hebrew into English using words that are current and stable in their meanings. This helps the reader to better see and understand how our ancient forbears actually discussed the precepts, truths, and Redemption which are presented in Scripture. Truth does not change, nor is it subject to change by its very nature. However, it can be obscured by lack of attention on the part of reader or translator, or it can be clarified by the attentive care of both.

The foundational Greek text is fully translated and available. Once the Hebrew text is fully translated and made available (roughly another 8-10 years of effort), another goal that is being considered is to duplicate this process for a select few of the other reputable and widely used Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic texts (in order to determine the level of conceptual and structural agreement among the texts -- in order to set that matter to rest).