The NIV, ESV, CSB and even The Message all take between 108 and 110 words to translate Psalm 18:1–6; Simmons takes 164. He is even more expansive later on (e.g., –34 take 290 words to the NIV’s 169). Where do all these extra words come from?
- Double translations of single hookupdate.net/de/thaifriendly-review/ words and clauses: ‘Love’ becomes ‘passionately love’ (v. 1); ‘rock’ becomes ‘Bedrock beneath my feet’ (v. 2); ‘torrents’ becomes ‘terrifying torrents’ (v. 4); ‘the snares of death’ becomes ‘to death’s door, to doom’s domain’ (v. 5); ‘my voice’ becomes ‘my troubled cry’ (v. 6); ‘blameless’ becomes ‘loyal and true’.
- Double translations of entire lines: ‘I passionately love you/I want to embrace you’ (v. 1), which Simons justifies in a footnote spuriously claiming the word used for love here ‘carries the thought of embrace and touch’. In the 44 remaining verses there are about 23 more cases, e.g., v. 31: ‘Could there be any other god like you? / You are the only God to be worshipped’.
- Often the doubled clause or line makes space for ideas (underlined) not represented in the original: ‘So all I need to do is to call on [sic] to you / Singing to you, the praiseworthy God’ (v. 3); ‘My sobs came right into your heart / And you turned your face to rescue me’ (v. 6). These cases of exegetical expansion count as alterations, not just additions.
Again, added vocabulary of physical and emotional intimacy is ubiquitous in the book, as evidenced in the frequent description of God’s people as his ‘lovers’
Sometimes he creatively alters the Hebrew (underlined below); elsewhere he creates stand-alone additions, or attaches them by hyphen to a word in the text. They mostly fall into two categories:
(1) ‘Spiritual’ images, especially of light, height and mystery, designed to inspire feelings of awe and worship; all but the words in [brackets] have no counterpart in the Hebrew:
Ray of brightness … shining (v. 2), singing (v. 3), spirit (v. 4), burning (v. 7), spirit-[wind] (v. 10), mystery-[darkness] (v. 11), blessing … treasure (v. 24), all at once … floodlight (v. 28), revelation … brightness (v. 28), worship (v. 31), ascend … [peaks of] your glory (v. 33), [warfare]-worship (v. 34), power within (v. 35), conquers all … lifted high … towering over all (v. 46), with high praises … highest [God] (v. 49), magnificent miracles (v. 50).
Double translation is Simmons’s principal translation technique, but his constant addition of images and ideas into the text is not confined within his double translations
Additions aimed at stirring up ecstasy are unsurprisingly prominent in TPT’s praise psalms. In Ps 148:2–3 Simmons plays DJ to the psalmist, expanding the repeated imperative to ‘praise him’ (NIV) with ‘go ahead’, ‘keep it up’, don’t stop now’, ‘take it up even higher’. He rounds off Psalm 150 by inserting ‘crescendo of ecstatic praise’.
Passionately (v. 1), embrace (v. 1), around me (v. 2), in you (v. 3), wrapped (v. 4), sobs (v. 6), heart (v. 6), reached down into my darkness (v. 16), I was helpless (v. 17), held onto me (v. 18), his love broke open the way (v. 19), heart (v. 24), surrendering to him (v. 24), taste (v. 25), you love (v. 25), wrap-around God (v. 30),5 wrapped (v. 32), your wrap-around presence … stooping down (v. 35), your loving servant (v. 50).
And he even uses it to translate words as neutral as ‘people’, e.g., Ps 95:7, where ‘we are the people of his pasture’ becomes ‘we are the lovers he cares for.’