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The NAB Revised Edition

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The NAB Re

As promised, the US National Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), did release the Revised Edition of the New American Bible on March 9 (10, GMT+8), 2011. This initial release date will be followed by others in the months following of different formats (e.g. in flash drives, etc.) of this new edition.

The NAB Re is briefly described as follows (I am highlighting a few phrases)

Released on March 9, 2011, the New American Bible, Revised Edition (NABRE) is the culmination of nearly 20 years of work by a group of nearly 100 scholars and theologians, including bishops, revisers and editors. The NABRE includes a newly revised translation of the entire Old Testament (including the Book of Psalms) along with the 1986 edition of the New Testament.

The NABRE is a formal equivalent translation of Sacred Scripture, sponsored by the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, using the best manuscripts available. Work on most books of the Old Testament by forty revisers and a board of eight editors began in 1994 and was completed in 2001. The 1991 revision of the Psalter, the work of thirty revisers and six editors, was further revised by seven revisers and two editors between 2009 and 2010. Work on the New Testament, begun in 1978 and completed in 1986, was the work of thirteen revisers and five editors.

Please note that the New Testament of the NAB Re is the same one that you are probably holding now, if you use the NAB copyrighted 1991 and published by the Philippine Bible Society. The revisions are on the Old Testament which was last revised in the 1970s. Of the books of the OT, the Psalms of the NAB were last revised in 1986. So all in all, since the 1960s when the NAB first came out, the NAB Re is the revised edition of the OT, the NT of 1986 being retained.

The revision was made “using the best manuscripts available”. But which manuscripts? “Maybe I’m missing something” writes The Sacred Page, “but exactly what new and better manuscripts have been discovered in the last 20 years that would call for a revision of this translation?” Despite the doubt expressed, I know that for Ben-Sirach at least, scholars have been reconstructing the Hebrew text of a book that has been previously known to us only in its Greek translation. When I left the Biblicum in 1992, work was still in progress. If I am right on this, perhaps this sample comparison on Sirach would explain my remark

A preview of the NAB Re is featured in this page which features the seven penitential psalms and the songs of the Suffering Servant. The page features a commentary and an audio version of each of the text; it is also offered as a service of the USCCB website for the season of Lent.

TAN Books already sells the NAB Re online. But it is not necessary to purchase it immediately: the old NAB will still be used in the liturgy. And as already mentioned, the NT of the NAB Re is the same one that we are already using. But if you do buy it, it would be interesting to know whether the notes to the Old Testament have been improved and whether the OT ritual texts are clearer now in the NAB Re than in the older version.

Originally posted 2011-03-12 01:00:42. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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