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The Chronicle Project: Worst Hebrew Translators Ever?

August 8, 2011

My friend Jeremy sent me this page asking what my thoughts were on The Chronicle Project. At first I was not interested enough to closely examine their linguistic claims, however, he was insistent so today I took a peek.

Personally, I usually start at someone’s about page to get an idea what I am dealing with:

Our Credentials

From the Chronicle Research Team:

It’s been well over a hundred years that modern professionals have been working with ancient Hebrew.  You can find their work in such volumes as the Strong’s concordance and others.
In all that time, no one seems to have discovered the simple patterns that we, without credentials, lay people as most of you, were able to see.

We believe that’s the point.  These words were given to shepherds and slaves, not Pharisees and scribes.  The experts have had a century, and now it is the time of the common man, you and I.  This is not to say that learning is without value, far from it.  It is just a reminder of the personality of God that HIS word would once again be found by common men, for common men.

So for those of you who wish to know, these are our only credentials:

We desired to know.

*sigh*… so much stupidity. Where to begin? How about, “These words were given to shepherds and slaves, not Pharisees and scribes.” Almost the entire Hebrew Bible was written by Scribes! And even if it wasn’t, the thought worlds of bronze age shepherds (who couldn’t write) are in no way, at all, in any manner, similar to ignorant, unknowledgeable modern persons. But… most of the HB was written during, and after, the Persian period by scribes!!!

So,

A: they wear their ignorance of biblical authorship like a badge on their shoulders

B: they are completely ignorant of the context of the HB

It gets worse unfortunately. The Chronicle Project claims:

The Following Pages Contain the Findings of the Chronicle Project Research Team SDH System: The Discovery of the Embedded Hebrew Language System, which Self-Defines Each Word in Ancient Biblical Hebrew.

What We Have Discovered

The following work is NOT a translation, but a restoration. It is the application of the newly discovered Self Defining Hebrew (or SDH) system, which was built into the ancient Hebrew language by its creator(s).

1. It is capable of defining a word from its revealed concept, because each letter in the Hebrew language has been found to be its own separate universal concept (see prime glyph set page in the research notes) and so a complete description of an item has been found to be in what was once thought of as a single word.

2. Once a word has been properly divided and defined, a definition applies to every placement of it in a text. One word, one definition. This is unlike standard translations which can use up to 84 different definitions for a single Hebrew word, because the initial definition is in error.

3. Each word can now be properly defined, even by a beginner with minimal help, thus speeding up the learning curve. Remember though, this site has only just begun and it is an ongoing work which will be posted as completed.

4. Due to the fact each word has a visible definition from its own description; doctrinal pressures can no longer sway the translation.
This discovery is not intended to create a new sect or division. It is intended only for the purpose of revealing the Hebrew text as close to its original form as we can.

Please do not send an email regarding the history of the language as is presently understood. We are well versed regarding history, development, and present understanding of the language, but thank you for the consideration.

Chris Tyreman

Research Head

The Chronicle Project

Please Note * This is the first time in the history of the Bible that the following texts have been translated properly and singularly from the Hebrew Texts without doctrinal pressure or bias.

This is why linguistic education is important. Among the myriad of completely childish conceptual errors above there’s this ignorance: “a definition applies to every placement of it in a text. One word, one definition.”

Totality transfer fallacy much?

Words have polysemy; this is one of the simplest and easiest linguistic ideas to demonstrate (think of the different meanings of the word ‘present': I’m giving you a present; live in the present; I present to you this medal). To argue that the appearance of every word in the HB is being used in a similar manner–in a compiled book of other books which includes different authors from different time periods–is unbridled ignorance and unfamiliarity with the Hebrew texts of epic proportions.

So,

A: they wear their ignorance of biblical authorship like a badge on their shoulders

B: they are completely ignorant of the context of the HB

C: they are clueless of basic concepts of how languages function

But, “This is the first time in the history of the Bible that the following texts have been translated properly.” OK, let’s take a peek at one of the revolutionary new translations Genesis 1:1:

את אלהים ברא בראשית
to accompany the supreme ones to begin to produce to chronicle
ה/ארץ ו/את ה/שמים
the planet Earth and to accompany the celestials

v1. To chronicle. to begin to produce, the supreme ones. to accompany the celestials. and to accompany the planet Earth.

If there any Hebrew professors who are not yet in a corner of their room crying in the fetal position that are still reading this, I’m sure this ‘translation’ can be a useful tool to demonstrate exactly how not to translate.

There are so many errors here it’s almost pointless to continue but I will merely pick a few:

בראשית as “to chronicle”. Really, the preposition bet suddenly turns the word into an infinitive? Really? roshit‘s one meaning is “chronicle”? I can’t come up with even the most stretched idea of how that could be possible. It’s just too impossibly stupid for someone to claim “chronicle” as roshit‘s ‘one’ meaning. Supposedly then, we are to believe that these modern “shepherds and slaves”–who supposedly really understand the meaning of a text because they haven’t been tainted by “any of that there book lernin'”–are offering us the ‘real’ translation of these texts–at last!–when they don’t even understand basic preposition or verbal functions.

Ok. Whatever. Let’s move on.

אלהים … of course, אלהים is going to mean something along the lines of ‘the supreme ones’–there’s always that ‘eureka’ moment of finding out what no one has ever known when the ignorant dilettante first sees that elohim is a plural. But even the most basic first-year undergrad Hebrew education will leave you with enough tools to understand the history of the word elohim and its function in the Hebrew text (Bob explains some of it here). Furthermore, obviously the ‘translators’ of this text don’t understand simple parsing–and this is why ignorant people commonly make this error–because, if you do know Hebrew, you would automatically see that elohim (supposedly plural in function) is using a third masculine singular verb: bara!

Lastly, though we could deconstruct the stupid in this ‘translation’ all day, the word ה/ארץ and it’s supposed ‘one’ meaning “the planet earth.” First, as anyone with any familiarity with ancient cosmology knows: the “slaves and shepherds” of antiquity did not think of ‘Earth’ as a planet (their conception was more like a snow-globe). Furthermore, to suggest that ha’aretz means “the planet earth’ as the one meaning for the rest of the story in Genesis would be one of the most ignorant translations of Genesis ever. ha’aretz in Genesis and the rest of the Hebrew Bible is the land that is promised to Abraham, Jacob, and the children of Israel: it is not planet earth. Any reading of ha’aretz as the “planet earth” (“The planet earth that I gave to Abraham and Isaac I will give to you, and I will give the planet earth to your offspring after you”) would be so tendentious, delusional, and idiotic that those three words would then come to describe the person(s) who offered such a translation.

I’m not saying the Chronicle project is bad, I’m saying it might be one of the worst translations ever!

19 Comments leave one →
  1. dan permalink
    August 8, 2011 9:44 am

    This kind of hermeneutic isn’t any different than Gnosticism. Should be shuffled into the trash pile with Lehay and the like. I mean if it was remotely possible that they are right then for the last 2000 years at least no-one has know what the old testament really says except now they do of course. When are they starting their new mega church, sudo religion based on their new shocking interpretation. As if there isn’t already enough irrational speculation in the visible church today.

  2. August 8, 2011 11:08 am

    I shook my head when I saw the word “Strongs”.

  3. August 8, 2011 11:08 am

    My favorite was: “which was built into the ancient Hebrew language by its creator(s).”

    Languages are not created, they develop – except of course, Elizabethan English which what God spoke!

  4. Robert permalink
    August 8, 2011 11:41 am

    When someone starts out by citing Strong’s Concordance as a serious work, you know what to expect!

    • Len permalink
      August 8, 2011 12:24 pm

      Strong’s Concordance is a very useful book. It has a definite place in my life. That place is on the kitchen floor, holding the door open against all kinds of breezes that swish through my apartment, when I open windows at the front and the back. Without “Strong’s” my life would be much noisier.

    • gmc permalink
      August 8, 2011 7:26 pm

      Serious Question: Can you clarify why Strong’s is bad? I’ve heard people reference it as a source before, but I’ve never seen anyone cite is as a bad reference tool.

      I’m not pro-Strong’s as I’ve never used it.

  5. August 8, 2011 2:15 pm

    All this project needs is William Tapley to be the perfect storm of stupid.

  6. August 8, 2011 6:09 pm

    This could open new Bible code prophecies!

  7. Matt permalink
    August 9, 2011 3:51 am

    Wow check out the bios! Apparently hot women dig bad bible translators.

    mmmmm gives me an idea :)

  8. 4xi0m permalink
    August 9, 2011 11:21 am

    “In all that time, no one seems to have discovered the simple patterns that we, without credentials, lay people as most of you, were able to see.”

    *sigh* It’s so annoying that the sort of certainty demonstrated in this quote (especially regarding one’s competence/aptitude) is inversely proportional to actual knowledge and understanding. As the saying goes, it’s the shallow streams that make the most noise.

  9. August 9, 2011 4:15 pm

    I’m starting to think this must be a hoax

    • August 11, 2011 11:52 pm

      Read the bios at their website. And weep when you realize it isn’t…

      • August 12, 2011 3:19 pm

        Yeah, I saw a video interview they did for some equally insane youtube show. It’s worth a watch as they explain the way they made their discovery and their methodology. They were too believable to be actors faking it.

  10. brian Hiebert permalink
    September 27, 2011 11:04 am

    AMEN,Chris Tyreman is a real idiot as i know him personally,unfortunately people will grasp at almost anything that is differant,this self proclaimed prophet has zero credibility he lives in a small town in saskathewan and has duped these young woman into believing in him,my wifes son is married to Jennifer she got sucked into this cult before David married her.does,nt it seem strange that these so called other researchers are young impressionable woman? he say,s Michelle is married but actually she is not as i know the relatives of this young lady,it is Chris that i believe has taken these other woman as spiritual wives and somehow has been able to bewitch himself and others by manipulating Gods word to feed his own selfish desires,Chris tried to convince me and my wife and several other couples to sell our house and possesions and all live communially with some other group he had joined,but even they went there separate ways as Chris believes he is some prophet and seeks only his own agenda.give people enough rope and they will hang themselves and one day people will see through his lies and he will go on to some other bizzare belief system. p.s no one in this group has any credentials they want you to believe them based on some so called revelation and that no one in history of mankind has figured out except them this is typical of any cult thinking.the internet is full of people just like Chris longing to be someone and control anyone.

  11. Yochannan permalink
    October 30, 2012 9:38 am

    Actually, many of the comments are themelves biased, and themselves without merit, and ignorant. My study of Greek and Hebrew has discovered many (shall we say errors) in translations. Hebrew in it’s ancient form was a “pictographic” lamguage, there was NO NEED for anyone to a “scribe” since all the conveyance was done through pictures. It was much later until the pictiographs developed over time into what is now called modern Hebrew. Add to this the corruption on vowel pointing, and well there you have it. So go ahead and believe you masters…..after all a shepherd boy can’t have any knowledge right???

    • October 30, 2012 11:06 am

      John,

      If you are going to make a comment somehow portraying yourself as “knowledgeable” then you may want to start with basic functioning grammar and spelling in English so that we might have a modicum of belief you have any demonstrable skills in Hebrew or Greek.

      Paleo-Hebrew is a descendant of the Phoenician alphabet (or Proto-Canaanite alphabet) and is a *non-pictographic* alphabet, also known as an abjad.

      If you’re going to do “research” try consulting some people who actually know what they are discussing.

      ““pictographic” lamguage” (sic)… lol!

  12. Douglas R permalink
    May 11, 2013 11:24 pm

    If Hebrew is a language created by the creator of heaven and earth it could be a word for word deal and not like english, developed by man, where one word has two meanings and many words mean the same thing.

    Even in the translations amazing themes are woven into the scriptures that make it pretty complex seeming beyond man’s knowledge. Just the fact that none of you has ever seen that the gospels are easily provable to have the same theme going in reverse through the 5 books of Moses I find to be quite amazing in itself.

    “Almost the entire Hebrew Bible was written by Scribes!”
    Where do you get that?
    I know the OT has been carefully COPPIED by scribes.

    Many things have been discovered by uneducated and handicapped people. Einstein couldn’t talk until he was well beyond most people’s talking age and failed math in high school.

    • Archimedesreborn permalink
      May 20, 2013 9:57 am

      Einstein did not fail math that’s a myth..and a bad one at that

      • Douglas R permalink
        May 22, 2013 5:27 pm

        Thanks for the correction about Einstein Archimedesreborn!

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