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The Husband of One Wife and the NRSV

I have been studying Titus for an upcoming sermon series that I will be delivering in November at our church. That is why the last two posts have been from Titus 1 and 1 Timothy 3 concerning the qualifications for elders. I have made it around to reading Titus from the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV). It reads:

…someone who is blameless, married only once, whose children are believers, not accused of debauchery and not rebellious. (Titus 1:6)

As I pointed out in the last post, I think the elder qualification is that a man is faithful to his wife. I do not think the qualification is that he has been only married once in his life, regardless of God’s allowances for remarriage. However, that is exactly how the NRSV sounds with the phrase, “married only once.” Sorry all of you NRSV lovers, but that is terrible. At least it has a marginal note, “husband of one wife.” The NRSV should have used that rather than “married only once.”

It is frustrating to not have a perfect translation (yes, I know this is not practically possible). For Titus, I wish I could put combine some of the ESV renderings with some of the HCSB renderings and I would have perfection.

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