Work on the 'The Holy Bible in Modern English' began in 1853 by a London businessman named Ferrar Fenton (1832–1920). The complete Bible was first published in 1903, though some individual bible 'books' were published as separate volumes during the preceding 11 years.
Fenton is well known for a rearranging of the books of the Bible into what the author believed was the correct chronological order. In the Old Testament, this order follows that of the Hebrew Bible. The name of God was translated throughout the Old Testament as "The Ever-Living".
Fenton is an exciting translation that shows respect and gives clarity in many areas where other translations fall short. This Bible is described as being "translated into English direct from the original Hebrew, Chaldee, and Greek languages."
Henrik Borgström assisted Fenton with his translation of the Book of Job, which first appeared in 1898. The book of Job was "rendered into the same metre as the original Hebrew, word by word and line by line". His translation of the New Testament is based on the Greek text of Westcott and Hort. The ordering novelty in the New Testament is that it places the Gospel of John and the First Epistle of John at the beginning before the Gospel of Matthew, thus placing the Acts of the Apostles immediately after the Gospel of Luke.
Notable as well, is Ferrar Fenton's restoration of the Psalms into the musical verse form as close to the original as he could get. The Psalms were, quite literally, songs, complete with instructions for the "choirmaster" as well as descriptions of the proper musical instruments to be used. Today Psalm 48, Psalm 137, and Psalm 23 are still sung in churches, albeit to tunes not the original.
This bible is named the "Revised Fenton" because it puts things back into chronological order. In many cases, whether in error or not, Ferrar moved some parts of the scriptures down to the footnote section. These re-ordered verses have been returned to their chronological order as they are currently found in the King James Version. There was no alteration of the wording or intended meaning of what was originally intended by Mr. Fenton."
Welcome to the new blog section. Join us in this exciting effort to display the works of Ferrar Fenton! The Holy Bible in Modern English is now fully digitized and can be seen for it's creative and artistic beauty as well as for the spiritual edification that we all need through the daily study of the scriptures.
This project actually began in 2012 when the conversion of scanned images, using OCR software, revived a very beautiful but tangled digital version of Ferrar Fenton's work. The major part of the editing, including verse alignment, OCR errors and chapter breaks took over one year. Still, as we go there are minor fixes to punctuation and a few odd necessary edits.
In its very raw form, 'The Holy Bible in Modern English' went online with a free but very undependable web hosting service in 2014, where it has been ever since.
With thanks to the generosity of others, just recently, the site has been moved to its current home. This hosting service is by far superior to the previous but costs are high so we are maintaining an ad service to help offset the costs.
|RF SA2 12:1|| (B.C. 1034.) Nathan's Parable. The little Ewe Lamb.
The EVER-LIVING consequently sent Nathan the Preacher to David, and he came to him, and said:—' " There were two men in a certain city, one rich and the other poor.
|RF SA2 12:2||The rich man had very great flocks and herds,|
|RF SA2 12:3||but the poor had nothing except a little single she-lamb, which he had bought, and he comforted it and it grew up with him and his children, and ate of his crumbs, and drank of his cup, and lay on his lap, and was like a daughter to him.|
|RF SA2 12:4||"But a traveler came to the rich man, who grudged to take from his own flocks and herds to prepare and offer to his visitor,|
|RF SA2 12:5||but seized the she-lamb of the poor man and prepared it for the man who had come to him." Then David was very furious at the man, and exclaimed to Nathan, " By the life of the EVER-LIVING! the man who has done that shall die!|
|RF SA2 12:6||And for the she-lamb, he shall pay four as a fine, whoever has done this thing,—and he shall have no pity!"|
|RF SA2 12:7|| But Nathan replied to David,
"You ARE THE MAN!
"Thus says the EVER-LIVING God of Israel: I consecrated you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul,
|RF SA2 12:8||and I gave you the palace of your Prince, and the wives of your Prince to your bosom, and I gave you the Houses of Israel and Judah,—and I added portions to you from here and from there.|
|RF SA2 12:9||So why have you despised the commandment of the EVER-LIVING by committing this sin in His sight? You have cut off Uriah the Hitite by the sword, and have taken his wife to yourself as a wife, and have murdered him by the sword of the Beni-Amon;|
|RF SA2 12:10||so now the sword shall not depart from your house for ever,—as a punishment—for you despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uriah, the Hitite, to be a wife for yourself! '|
|RF SA2 12:11||"Thus says the EVER-LIVING, I will raise against you outrage from your own family, and I will cause your wives to be taken in your sight, and given to your neighbour, and he shall ravish your wives in the sight of this sun;|
|RF SA2 12:12||for YOU have done it secretly; but I will effect this event in the presence of all Israel, and in the face of the sun! '"|
|RF SA2 12:13|| Then David exclaimed to Nathan, " I have sinned against the EVER-LIVING."
When Nathan replied, " The EVER-LIVING, also, will pardon your offence,—you shall not die.
|RF SA2 12:14||However, since you have given occasion for the enemies of the EVER-LIVING to libel, by this thing, the son that will be born to you will certainly die!"|
|RF SA2 12:15||Nathan then went to his home. The EVER-LIVING subsequently struck the child which the wife of Uriah had born to David, and it was mortal.|
|RF SA2 12:16||David, however, entreated GOD on account of the child, and mourned, and slept on the ground,|
|RF SA2 12:17||until the officers of his palace came to him, and took him up from the earth. But he would not be comforted, and would not eat bread with them.|
|RF SA2 12:18||At the end of seven days, however, the child died, but David's officers feared to tell him that the child was dead; " for," they said " when the child was alive, and we spoke, he would not listen to our voice, therefore if we should say, ' The child is dead, ' he will do worse!"|
|RF SA2 12:19|| David, however, perceived that his ministers were whispering, and David understood that the child was dead; so David asked his ministers,
"Has the child died? " and they replied, " He has died."
|RF SA2 12:20||Then David arose from the ground, and washed, and dressed, and changed his clothing, and went to the House of the EVER-LIVING, and worshipped; then he went to his palace, and asked for, and they offered him, food, and he ate.|
|RF SA2 12:21||But his ministers asked him, " What a thing this is that you did on account of the child! You mourned and wept for him when alive,—but now the child has died, you get up and eat bread!"|
|RF SA2 12:22||When David replied, " Whilst the child was alive, I mourned and wept, for I reflected, " Who knows but the EVER-LIVING will pity me, and let the child live?|
|RF SA2 12:23||But now he has died, —why should I grieve? Am I ever able to bring him back to me? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me!"|
|RF SA2 12:24||David also comforted Bathsheba his wife, and went to her and slept with her, and she bore a son and called his name Solomon,1 and the EVER-LIVING loved him;|
|RF SA2 12:25||and sent by the means of Nathan the Reciter, and called his name J'adidiah,—"Pardoned by the EVER-LIVING."|
|RF SA2 12:26|| Joab captures the Capital of the Beni-Amon, but sends for David to take the Fortress.
Joab, however, was warring with the Beni-Amon at Rabah, and he captured the Royal City.
|RF SA2 12:27||So Joab sent messengers to David to say, "I am fighting at Rabah, and have captured the City of Waters,|
|RF SA2 12:28||so now collect the remainder of the forces, and come to the citadel to capture it, or I shall capture the citadel and they will fix my name upon it."|
|RF SA2 12:29||David consequently collected the forces and went to Rabah, and attacked and captured it,|
|RF SA2 12:30||and took the crown from off the head of its king. Its value was a talent of gold: and the beautiful stone on the top was David's. And they brought out from the town a very great quantity of booty.|
|RF SA2 12:31|| He also brought out the people and settled them in Megrah, and at the iron-works, and to manufacture iron, and distributed them through his dominions, and did the same to all the cities of the Beni-Amon. After which David returned with all the forces to Jerusalem.'
1 The name in Hebrew means PEACE, or REST.—F.F.
2. Ch. 12, V. 31. The hideous cruelties represented by the Septuagint, Vulgate, and our old translators, to have been practiced upon his captives by David, have perverted this passage into one totally contrary in meaning to the Hebrew text, which is as I render it. The Latin translators, full of the national brutality of their countrymen, the Romans, seemed to imagine that the more atrociously cruel they represented a man to be, the more glorious and admirable he would appear. This was the ideal of the heathen Romans, but not of the Sacred Scriptures, and it is a shame to modern scholars to have been enslaved to it so long.—F.F.