The Spaceships of Ezekiel
Are there Flying Saucers in the Bible?


Bibles and Commentaries Blumrich Used


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Keywords: UFO, unidentified flying objects, Bible, flying saucers, prophecy, Paleo-SETI, ancient astronauts, Erich von Däniken, Josef F. Blumrich, Zecharia Sitchin, Ezekiel, biblical prophecy, spacecraft, spaceship, NASA, Roswell, aircraft, propellant, extraterrestrial hypothesis, Jacques Vallee, interdimensional hypothesis, Project Blue Book, Condon Report, ancient history, Jesus, Judaism, Christianity, Middle East, end times, engines, rockets, helicopters, space travel, aliens, abductions, alien abductions, crop circles, extraterrestrials, astronomy, economics, biology, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Space Shuttle, Apollo, stars, planets, solar system, scriptures, design, fuel tank, aerodynamics, fuels, hydrogen, oxygen, wheels





Bibles and Commentaries Blumrich Used

This page discusses the Bibles Blumrich lists as his References in Section A, Bibles and Bible Commentary, as well as some general issues and concerns with Bibles. It primarily emphasizes the two mistranslated verses, Chapter 1, Verse 7 regarding "round feet" and Chapter 43, Verse 3 regarding "vehicular structure".

See Textual Analysis: General Translation Issues

Bibles Blumrich used

Reference 5

1957 German Bible Translation (brand new translation not based on Martin Luther)
This is examined first because this is the source of the problem.
This is the Bible translation with the mistranslations that convinced Blumrich Ezekiel saw a UFO.

This was a "new" translation that often uses "dynamic equivalence". This particular translation shows why scholars prefer "established" translations that have "stood the test of time", such as the Martin Luther translation in German, the King James translation in English or the Reina-Valera translation in Spanish. The 1957 translation was only about 15 years old when Blumrich used it. Because it was not an "established" translation there were few, if any, critiques of the translation. Of course, most people would assume that any Bible that received the Catholic Church's imprimatur (an official certification that the book conforms to Catholic doctrine) is reasonably accurate and a few "quirks" don't make the overall book unreliable.

References 1 and 2

Mid-nineteenth century Luther-based translations

I have not been able to examine copies of these Bibles.  However, they are both based on Martin Luther's translation, which is considered the standard against which all other German-language Bible translations are measured and which is widely available on the Web.  Like all translations (in a wide variety of languages . . . ) other than the above 1957 translation, Luther's text does not describe the feet as "round" or use the term "vehicular structure" and does not provide a basis for Blumrich's interpretation. Considering that these particular editions are from the mid-nineteenth century, it is extremely unlikely that they contain much commentary, if any.

Reference 3

The Protestant Revised Standard Version (RSV) is a widely-available, well-regarded update of the Shakespeare-era King James Version intended primarily for the general public rather than scholarly use. Of course, it does not support Blumrich's interpretations. Like other Bible translations, it does not contain detailed commentaries.

Reference 7

The Roman Catholic New American Bible (NAB) is a modern English translation widely used by American Roman Catholics.
This is the English-language Bible Blumrich used as a check—which, unfortunately, just happened to have the same "round feet" mistranslation!

I was quite surprised to find that the NAB translators basically "butchered" parts of Ezekiel, completely resequencing verses from several chapters—in essence writing their own version of the events. However, a casual reader such as Blumrich likely would not realize how objectionable scholars would view such tampering.


    1) Doesn't the fact that two Bibles use the term "round feet" prove that it is a valid translation?

    No, it doesn't. What proves a translation valid is what the original Hebrew says. The original Hebrew definitely says, "like the sole of the foot of a calf" and it definitely does not include the word "round".

    2) How could two groups of translators independently make the same mistake? That sounds too weird to be believable!

    You're absolutely right. And here again is a problem that arose because Blumrich was writing outside his field of expertise. Professional translators routinely are multi-lingual. With any well-known text that has been translated many times, such as the Bible, the Koran, War and Peace, Goethe's Faust, Shakespeare's plays, translators normally would look at past translations—including translations into a variety of languages. Translation of the NAB began before 1945 and was completed in 1970. It is extremely probable that the translators of the Catholic NAB looked at a variety of modern translations including the 1957 Catholic German translation. They realized the problem the German translators saw—the average modern city dweller will have no idea what a calf's foot looks like or what is important about it. The Germans chose "round" as the most recognizable characteristic. That probably made sense to the NAB translators, so they probably copied the idea from the 1957 Bible.

    Unfortunately, not being familiar with these types of translation issues, when Blumrich saw variant wording in translations, he made the reasonablealthough entirely incorrect—assumption that they resulted from multiple versions of the Hebrew source text.


Commentaries—References 4 and 6

Although Blumrich describes References 4 and 6 as "highly detailed biblical commentaries", the editors of those works describe them as introductory materials for the general public.

Reference 4

A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture. This was the first English-language Roman Catholic Bible commentary intended for the general public. It was not intended as a reference work for scholars. The entire Ezekiel chapter is only 20 pages.

Reference 6

Ezekiel - Soncino Ed. The translation, JPS-1917, is the King James Version with minor rewording and does not support Blumrich. In the Forward by the General Editor, page v, Dr. A. Cohen, M.A., Ph.D., states, "(ii) The exposition is designed primarily for the ordinary reader of the Bible rather than for the student, and aims at providing this class of reader with requisite direction for the understanding and appreciation of the Biblical Book. ... (iv) It offers a Jewish commentary" (italics in original), i.e., it did not attempt to cover the range of either Christian or secular perspectives in any detail.


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