Friday, March 22, 2013

Denunciation of Apostates: 2 Peter 2:17

2 Peter 2:17 presents an interesting image in a lengthy denunciation of the teachers of apostasy.  A few translations follow:

" These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. "  (King James Version)

" These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm.  Blackest darkness is reserved for them. " (New International Version)

" These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm; for them the deepest darkness has been reserved. "  (Revised Standard Version)

" Das sind Brunnen ohne Wasser und Wolken, vom Windwirbel umgetrieben.  Ihr Teil ist die dunkelste Finsternis. "  (Martin Luther's German translation)

The alliteration in the first sentence of Luther's translation is intriguing, but probably unintentional.  (The word for "clouds" in Old English is "wolken."   It survives only as the obsolete, poetic term "welkin," referring to the firmament in general.)

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