Direct translation of passage in Mark

Hi! Listening to the readings, it caught my attention (as it hasn’t before) that in the Gospel, Mark chapter 10, verse 27, it reads "Jesus looked at them and said, “For human beings it is impossible…”. Is that a correct, acceptable translation, or is it ‘inclusive’ language? My RSV says, “…for men…”. Thanks!!

The NAB uses “human beings.” Other translations may use other words. If all translations were the same there wouldn’t be a need for multiple versions. Use the one you prefer.

1 Like

From the Vulgate:

“Et intuens illos Jesus, ait : Apud homines impossibile est, sed non apud Deum : omnia enim possibilia sunt apud Deum.”

The Douay-Rheims:

“And Jesus looking on them, saith with men it is impossible; but not with God. For all things are possible with God.”

Sounds like you could go with either!

Why is men an acceptable translation of homines?

It’s both.

Is there any reason you’re under the impression that moderate horizontal inclusive language is incorrect and unacceptable?

Are you aware the “official” American English Catholic Bible uses moderate horizontal inclusive language?

“Homines” is the plural of “homo”, a person. It is acceptable in English to refer to humans as “man” or “men” in a neutral sense. The Catechism does this. They could have also said “humans”, but it sounds too robotic.

1 Like

I have an Interlinear Greek-English New Testament and it gives this translation in the English text under the Greek words for Mark 10:27 (the brackets and other marks are in the Bible’s interlinear translation):
Looking at them - Jesus says: With men [it is] impossible, but not with God; for all things [are] possible with - God.

Thank you!

1 Like

Thank you, John!

The Greek word is ἀνθρώποις, or anthropois. Man, mankind, human beings are all acceptable translations of that word.

Our concern with inclusive language is primarily wrapped up in passages that refer to Christ.

Acceptable to some, unacceptable to others.

There is no connection to gender in the Greek. Using an English term like man does not accurately convey the neutrality of the Greek, so it really is not accurate. It is like translating ballon from French as red balloon.

This topic was automatically closed 14 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit