Concordant Literal Bible Version – CLV Evaluation

My evaluation below


This presentation of the CLNT does not include the various textual notations of the printed text or the PDF files, we trust these pages will serve as a further means of introducing you to the CONCORDANT VERSION. For more information:

As an earnest Bible student, desiring to understand the Word of God, the compiler discovered that practically all solid progress in the recovery of truth during the last century had come through use of concordances. He found that those of his friends who based their study on a concordance made the surest and speediest advance in their knowledge of God. Hence he also began to test and correct his ideas as to the meaning of Bible words by tracing them through all their occurrences. The immense profit and pleasure of this plan awoke in him a strong desire to do all in his power to assist others in this safe and satisfactory method of assuring themselves of the real revelation which God has given.

Thus it was that the idea of a Concordant Version suggested itself to his mind. Instead of occasionally making current translations more harmonious with the Original by using a concordance, why not make a version which is already concordant? Indeed, such a version might do far more to bring the reader into accord with the facts than would be possible by the patient and prolonged study of a concordance. The greatest benefit would come, not only to the serious student, but also to the humble reader who would prayerfully use the Version and allow the contexts to color each word and define its force for him. The concordant method of studying the Scriptures uses a concordance to discover the meaning of a word. This is done by tracing the occurrences of the words in the Original, and not according to the various vocabularies found in English versions. The aim is to discover the usage and fix its signification by its inspired associations. It is in line with the linguistic law that the meaning of a word is decided by its usage. In this Version the efficiency and value of this method has been greatly multiplied by extending it to the elements of which the Greek words are composed, and by combining with it the vocabulary method, which deals with each word as having a definite province of thought which must be carefully kept within its own etymological and contextual boundaries.

The CONCORDANT LITERAL NEW TESTAMENT is not a “modern” version. Neither is it archaic. The method is such that little regard could be paid to the outward embellishment of thought. All appearances are subordinated to accuracy. Truth is itself both desirable and beautiful. The living Word was not clothed in sumptuous garb to entice the eye. He had no form nor comeliness. There was no beauty, that they should desire Him. The written Word needs no ornamentation. Familiar, finely phrased error will appeal to the ears, but inspired, precisely translated truth should be the pattern accepted into the sound mind. The concordant method seeks to convey the truth of the Word, not to adorn it for appeal.

Copyright © 1999-2011 Concordant Publishing Concern.

My Evaluation

While the premise is attacking a problem in translations where the same original word is translated different ways in English (such as aggelos being translated at times “angel” and at other times “messager”) the problem does not “go away” with this translation. So if a translation team is going to be consistent throughout the Bible with this, it gives the English speaker that cannot read Greek nor Hebrew a help. But that help is not of so much help really. The words in the Old Testament and New Testament for woman, is variously translated in the authorized version as “woman” or “wife”, depending on the context.

This is the real problem, there is a measure of interpretation both in the translation of angel and woman. Where do we draw the line. In one place in Thessalonians wife is “vessel” (possess his own vessel). There is confusion in the originals on these points because the words in the original can mean more than one thing in different contexts, and we always have the famous “play on words” where the speaker uses a word with two meanings, and he uses one to present a thought, but really in meditation he also wants the listeners to think about the secondary meaning. Even “angel” is hard to decipher at times as the Angel of the Lord in the Old Testament receives worship, thus he must be God (preincarnate Jesus). And Jesus is even called an angel in the New Testament. So does “angel” mean messenger, a spirit being dwelling primarily in heaven, or a human messenger or just any messager/servant between two persons. These are the problems that are not solved by forcibly making a single word “fit all”. In this we have to follow the KJV translators precedent in trying to discern the context and giving the best translation in the context, but we admit that this is interpreting things, and there can be human error in the translation that is not there in the originals.

While I applaud their effort, and I think there is a group of non-professional students of the Word that maybe can use this effectively and to great advantage, I don’t think this is a substitution for actually learning Greek and Hebrew.