Comparing translations can be very helpful when we study the Bible. The International Bible Lessons Commentary
includes commentaries on five different translations to help you prepare for your class.
In five different translations, compare this portion of Genesis 15:1 where the LORD is talking to Abram:ESV: I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.KJV: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.NASB: I am a shield to you; Your reward shall be very great.NIV: I am your shield, your very great reward.
NRSV: I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.
Hebrew scholars probably have good reasons why the ESV, the NASB, and the NASB, differ from the KJV and the NIV. But I agree with the KJV and the NIV. Personally, I cannot think of any greater reward than knowing God and having a personal relationship with God by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Of course, the reward of knowing God is not something I have earned, but a matter of pure grace that Bible teachers before me helped me to understand and accept.
The reward of teaching is at least twofold: our greatest reward as teachers comes from knowing God personally and being known by God; the other part of our reward is knowing that we are helping others come to know God personally too — as their “very great reward” through faith in Jesus Christ as the Bible teaches us.
So, when we study the Bible, God the Holy Spirit comes to help us, a very great reward. When we teach the Bible to our students, God the Holy Spirit comes to help all of us learn, a very great reward indeed!
What do you think? Let us know on the forum.
May God continue to bless your teaching and encourage you by His Word and Spirit!
Follow this link and go to the International Bible Lesson Commentary and International Bible Lesson
for additional Uniform Sunday School Lesson Series Resources.
For the love of God's Word,
L.G. Parkhurst, Jr.