Alright, so we’ve all heard by now that the NIV 2011 is online and that the translators’ notes are available. I’ve just finished reading the notes and it seems like they’ve made some good improvements. Most occurrences of σάρξ have been rendered flesh rather than sinful nature (see p. 8) which I know a lot of folks will be happy with. I was never bothered by sinful nature because that’s always what I understood the KJV use of flesh in those passages to mean, but I’m fine with them translating it as the KJV has since the KJV is brilliant! But I digress. I appreciated this note on pp. 2-3 under the subheading “Progress in Scholarship”:
When the NIV was first translated, the meaning of the rare Greek word harpagmos, rendered ‟something to be grasped,” in Philippians 2:6 was uncertain. But further study has shown that the word refers to something that a person has in their possession but chooses not to use to their own advantage. The updated NIV reflects this new information, making clear that Jesus really was equal with God when he determined to become a human for our sake: ‟[Christ Jesus], being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage.”
I’m not too happy about their dropping “O”s from a number of vocatives (see p. 8). I suspect that folks will have a more difficult time discerning vocatives without them. Time will tell. Gender language was obviously a big issue—so much so that it makes up 25% of the changes in the NIV 2011, that is, if I’m understanding this correctly:
In matters unrelated to gender language — which account for about 75 percent of the changes made from the 1984 NIV to the TNIV — the committee’s work has been further developed, and in places critiqued, for the updated NIV. Careful readers will notice many previously unseen enhancements to accuracy and readability in the new text alongside others that have already been seen in the TNIV. (p. 4)
I’ll look forward to getting a hard copy to peruse once they’re released. I doubt I’ll spend much time with the online version. I do wonder whether BW8 and Logos 4 (and I suppose Accordance should be included as well) will be able to offer the NIV 2011 as a free download in the near future. Does anyone know anything about that?