But this morning I was reading in Romans 8 and ran across v15, which reads like this:
The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father."
It caught me off guard because I'm used to something like the NIV, which reads, "For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear..." Part of the reason why I like reading different translations is that it offers different renderings that cause you to go back and look at what Paul is really saying, which is what happened here.
I'll tell you what I don't like about the TNIV rendering: it causes an unnecessary tension with other passages where Paul clearly tells us that we are slaves (or servants, they are the same word in Greek). For instance, in Romans 6:22 Paul says, "But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life." So the question is: are we slaves or not? The answer, of course, is that we are slaves, but to whom? This is the key to understanding the difference between slavery in 6:22 and in 8:15.
But if one read Romans 8:15 in the TNIV in isolation, they would assume that Paul has no place for "slavery" in the Christian life. However, when you read 6:22, and even note that Paul starts this letter with "Paul, a slave [servant] of Christ Jesus", you realize that Paul is quite comfortable with such language (as is the rest of the New Testament). Being both slaves and sons, servants and children, is an apparent paradox, but nonetheless a powerful truth. I think that the TNIV muddies the waters a bit when it doesn't have to, but perhaps I'm missing something. Can any of you think of a reason why the TNIV translation is preferable in this instance?