Friday, January 28, 2022
WM 222: Barrett, Modern Translations, & Eternal Generation
In this episode I review Matthew Barrett's comments on problems with modern translations, with respect to the doctrine of the eternal generation of the Son, in his book Simply Trinity (Baker 2021), recently named by Christianity Today as a 2022 book of the year in the category of theology and ethics (read about it here).
Among other things, Barrett points out that in the twentieth century scholars "erased 'only begotten' from John's corpus and replace this phrase with 'only' or 'unique' instead," adding that due to this change "generations of Christians were never introduced to the concept of eternal generation" (186). He also announces, "that consensus is now changing, and fast" (187).
This illustrates the sometimes subtle (or not so subtle) theological problems that arise from modern texts and modern translations.
I also covered this issue in WM 207, reviewing part of a conversation between Barrett and Charles Lee Irons, and I did a text note on John 1:18 in WM 56.