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Analytical-Literal Translation

Suggestions for the ALT:


The following are e-mails I received in 1999 commenting on the Analytical-Literal Translation (ALT). The e-mailers' comments are in black and enclosed in "greater than" and "lesser than" signs. My comments are in red.

Dear Gary,

I suggest that you use another word or phrase instead of "hope" to translate the NT Greek word transliterated as elpis.

I know that English dictionaries do define "hope" as "expectation" or "confident expectation" BUT I notice, in my daily life, that people do NOT mean this when they use the word "hope". They always just mean "wish" with NO confident expectation. I can't remember anyone in my daily life ever using "hope" to mean anything other than "wish".

I have never waited with patience for something I only wished for because I am not confident of something that I only wish for.

In current popular usage, "hope" is too weak to be used as a synonym for elpis. Even "expect" may be too weak.

For example, which best translates Romans 8:25?

"But if we hope for that which we do not see, we wait for it with patience."

Maybe it is better translated as:

"But if we expect that which we do not see, we wait for it with patience."

Maybe it is best translated as:

"But if we confidently expect that which we do not see, we wait for it with patience."

Please give this some thought.

Best Regards,
Larry Lindley

Your suggestion and reasoning are very good. I did some study of the noun elpis and the cognate verb elpizo. My conclusions and plans are reflected in the following entry I plan on adding to the ALT: Glossary:


Hope: Greek, elpis, elpizo. The basic meaning of the noun is "confident expectation" or simply "expectation." The verb can mean: trusting, wishing, confidently expecting, or expecting. The English word "hope" can function as a noun and a verb and has all of these connotations. So it is the ideal translation. However, in popular usage, the word "hope" generally means "wish" (as in, "I hope it doesn’t rain tomorrow"). It is rarely used with the connotation of "confidence" or "trust" to it.

So for consistency sake, the word "hope" has been used throughout to translate both the noun and verb. But for clarity sake, alternate translations of "trust" or "confident expectation" and the like are bracketed as context warrants.

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