Douay-Rheims is confusing

I tried reading the first chapter of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians last night, and I really didn’t understand it.

That’s all I have to say. :slight_smile:

What didn’t you understand about it?? What version of the Bible were you using before hand?? Have you tried and looked at the Commentary???

The language is confusing.

v. 4 - "unspotted"
v. 5 - "Who hath predestinated us unto the adoption"
v. 8 - "Which hath superabounded in us"
v. 10 - “the dispensation of the fulness of times”

And that’s just the first 10 verses. There are 13 left in the chapter!

Plus, the punctuation is really…precise. Awkwardly precise…making verses last for paragraphs…with each verse beginning in a capital letter. :confused:

Hahahaha, I saw this thread and just knew tobinator would be all over it :D. I find it really confusing too, I guess I need to expand my vocabulary before I can read this version. I prefer a version that’s not a double translation anyway. Not that the D-R is bad, I just think that the RSV is easier to read while still being faithful to the texts. And I know, tobinator, that you don’t like the idea of a Protestant based Catholic Bible, but there were changes made to make the Bible more accurate, and, it’s translated directly from the oldest manuscripts.


Ver. 4-8. As by his eternal decree, according to the purpose of his good will and pleasure, he hath made choice of us to be his adoptive sons, and predestinated us to be saved and glorified by the merits and grace of his beloved Son, our Redeemer, without any merits of ours to the glorious praise and riches of his grace, by which he hath made us abound in all wisdom and true prudence. (Witham)

[For additional comments on verses 6 and 8, see the Notes section, below.]

Ver. 9. That he might make known to us, and to all men, the mystery of his will and pleasure in establishing his new law, of calling all Gentiles, as well as Jews, to believe in his Son, made man for us, in the dispensation of the fulness of times, (that is, at the time decreed from eternity) to establish, to accomplish, and, as it is in the Greek, to recapitulate all things in heaven and on earth, in Christ, and through him, and his merits; on earth, by fulfilling all the types, figures, and prophecies concerning the Messias; and in heaven, by filling up the number of his elect. (Witham) — The mystery of his will. The word mystery signifies a secret, an unknown design. It was the will of God, to reveal to us the great design he had in the incarnation of his Son, viz. the formation of one great body of true adorers; composed, without distinction, of Jew and Gentile: till (ver. 10) when the time appointed shall come, he will reunite and perfect in or under Christ this one body, composed of the Church triumphant, Angels and saints in heaven, and the Church militant upon earth. (St. Chrysostom, Estius, &c.)

Ver. 8. In all wisdom and prudence; which may be either referred to the wisdom and prudence of God, the giver of grace, or to the gifts of wisdom and prudence bestowed upon the elect. (Witham)

Ver. 9. Which he hath purposed in him;[2] i.e. in Christ: but in the Greek the sense is, in himself; i.e. in God the Father, who sent his Son. (Witham)

Ver. 10. In the dispensation of the fulness of times. It may perhaps be translated, at the appointed fulness of time, which is generally expounded to signify at the time decreed from eternity. — To establish (or restore) all things in Christ.[3] The Greek is to recapitulate, or, as the Protestant translation, to gather together all things in Christ; which St. Jerome expounds, by a fulfilling at once in Christ all the ancient figures and prophecies of the former law. (Witham)

these come from the Haydock Bible Commentary. I will be back later to get the technical meaning to you.

Verse 4. unspotted (being clean)

Verse 5. just as it is in the verse

Verse 8 provided from above

Verse 10 do you not no what fulness mean???

I have copies of DR and KJ- don’t use either in study.The language DOES get in my way.Read whatever translation you get the most out of. If it is unclear it serves not purpose to you and clarifies nothing. I personally think a parallel Bible can help you get the most out of scripture . What is unclear in one translation can be made crystal clear in another. Or you can use one translation to verify another.Or use a commentary. Collegeville is good as well as the Ignatius bible study. the come in individual books which are text and commentary- what’s good is they are very affordable.Good Hunting;)

Very true you are

Did English really evolve so fast like that? While I would agree that verses 5 and 8 are a bit tricky to understand in modern parlance, I just took it for granted that native English-speakers would at least know what, say, “unspotted” or “thrice” is. :shrug:

P.S. No offense meant.

My opinion is that any well read, literate person can understand the DR with ease. That means someone that can read and understand Shakespeare, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Goldsmith, Thoreau, Whitman, Hawthorne, Poe, and any of our older literary masters, would have no trouble whatsoever with Challoner’s version of the DR, and should even be able to read the original DR with little difficulty.

Are these authors even read in the schools anymore? That is my question. :confused:

=Epistemes;4926935]I tried reading the first chapter of Paul’s letter to the Ephesians last night, and I really didn’t understand it.

That’s all I have to say. :slight_smile:

I hesitate to mention this, but try a different Bible version. Perhaps the NIV, or the New American which is used at Mass, but is not the most faithful of translations.

I too tried reading the Douay-Rheims, and your right. The Kings English (or whatever it is) makes for difficult reading.

It is still the bible use for andclairification questions of any other bible translation.

Peace and love,

So if you don’t prefer DR your illiterate? I love Shakespeare, Milton, Chaucer but it doesn’t mean I don’t require some annotation to some words or phrases. .Elizabethan English is not my English.And since syntax, form and idiom change from era to era , I prefer to use a
translation or translations that I feel the most comfortable with. Just because someone feels that the DR is confusing, doesn’t make them ignorant.Study or just enjoy the Bible translation you are most comfortable with;)

Yes. I have read Shakespeare, Thoreau, Whitman, Hawthorne and Poe when I was in school and I graduated from college 5 years ago. I highly doubt that much has changed as far as some stuff being read. Shakespeare was required back when I was in high school and in college. I have no trouble understanding Challoner’s version of the D-R.

NO, NO, NO!!! A Catholic should not be reading the NIV. It isn’t even complete by an standards. It is missing the 7 deutrocanonical books, parts of Esther and Daniel as well as verses to other books like the Gospel of Matthew for example 18:11 does not exist. It was relegated to a footnote. A footnote!!! Also in Matthew 6:13 it added to the Bible. “For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, now and forever”. Catholics should stick to Bible approved by the Catholic Church.

AmbroseSJ is not insinuating that if one doesn’t prefer the Douay-Rheims that they are illiterate. He is however applying the factor that those who are familiar with Elizabethan literature should have a better grasp on the Douay-Rheims. However the Douay isn’t the only translation available out there. The like of the Haydock Bible Commentary was design to help understand the scripture better and one should take that into consideration if they having trouble with the Douay-Rheims.

Thanks Tobinator! :wink: St Paul’s Epistles are never easy anyway. They’re not easy to translate and their not easy to understand. A good commentary is a must. The Haydock Bible has excellent commentaries to help with the DR translation. :smiley:

The Haydock Bible is huge…

What if I want to take my Bible somewhere?

Lugging the Haydock Bible around is a cross in and of itself.

Mine only weighs 20 lbs. :smiley:

Well, for a one volume catholic bible with commentary you really only have two options: NAB or NJB. Both of them will have cross-references, which are invaluable when reading Paul, as well as some commentary of varying quality.

You could, of course, pick up one of the various ecumenical NRSV study Bibles. The three most well-known are the HarperCollins, Oxford Annotated (older versions are better), and the New Interpreters Study Bible. All three, as I said, are ecumenical, so I would recommend checking each out before buying. They also come in various formats and bindings.

If you want a small one volume commentary, then certainly the Ignatius Study bible edition on Galatians and Ephesians would be both compact, yet helpful.

Mine doesn’t weigh a single ounce. :thumbsup:

I use the NAB online. The english recommended version by the Vatican.
NAB Bible here online.

It’s free, but most of all? No paper cuts. :rolleyes:

Oh yeah, mine doesn’t weigh a single little ounce. :smiley:


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