Translating of Elohim

menorah-windowHow God became God

Wycliff who produced the first English translation was worried because the word Elohim is plural, and he felt that translating it straight across into the English Bible might take the English back into their pagan polytheism. As English had no general word for deity he looked around for another word. In the end he chose the personal name of a long forgotten deity God or Gad. The curious thing is that English  language has changed because of this. The postmodern English reader only thinks of God as God, as we have no memory of God/Gad the pagan god. God is the equivalent of Elohim, the great creator God, not some long forgotten deity from our pagan roots. For better or worse every English translator of the Bible has followed Wycliff’s solution.

Over the years I have found that many Christians are offended for instance, when they find out that the Arabic Bibles say Allah. (It is how one says God in Arabic.) Actually of all the languages in the world Allah is actually the closest to the Hebrew Elohim as they both root from the Semitic word El or Al.

Most English reader are surprised to find that the word God or Gad is the personal name of ancient Britain’s god of luck or fortune, and is actually in the Hebrew text as a pagan god.

But you who forsake the LORD, who forget my holy mountain, who set a table for Fortune and fill cups of mixed wine for Destiny; Is. 65:11 

FYI: Destiny is a translation of the word Meni and is the god that weighed ones soul against a feather to determine ones destiny in the afterlife. [c.f. Dan. 5:25]

Conclusion

Can or should we do anything about this? Probably not! At this point changing back to Elohim would only confuse and/or anger the Christian population, especially the “King Jame’s Only” people. Believers however should to be aware that this change has been made to the English language. We how have a word for deity it is God. There are several other changes to the English language that the  translation and general reading of the Bible has made

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