I know this has been discussed before, but I want to reopen the topic. I am currently reading Ray Franz's memoir Crisis of Conscience and ran across this footnote with respect to the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures:
"The New World Translation bears no translator's name and is presented as the anonymous work of the "New World Translation Committee." Other members of that committee were Nathan Knorr, Albert Schroeder, and George Gangas. Fred Franz, however, was the only one with sufficient knowledge of the Bible languages to attempt translation of this kind. He had studied Greek for two years at the University of Cincinnati but was only self-taught in Hebrew."
Now I have no concern with Fred Franz background as far as it goes. He probably knew enough koine Greek to attempt translating the New Testament himself. Anyone sufficiently trained could do that and many people have done just so down through the centuries. Well and good. But I doubt he knew enough about Hebrew to tackle the Old Testament. And in addition to Hebrew he would also have had to know Aramaic in order to translate portions of the book of Daniel.
So my questions are, Who are/were the people who produced the New World Translation? Fred Franz clearly could not have done this alone, and the other named members of the New World Translation Committee lacked the training and competency for such work. Strong scholarship is needed to undertake the arduous task of Bible translation, and the named committee members lacked this. And if we don't know who these people were, how can we put any trust in their work or have confidence in them?
I like the New World Translation. I think its restoration of the Divine Name to the text (even in the New Testament) is a great strength, and its contemporary language is refreshing. However, just because I like it doesn't mean that I should put blind faith in it. Also I have also come to realize that real Bible study means using a wide variety of translations as well as different Bible concordances, Greek and Hebrew lexicons and dictionaries, and other tools. I am in the process of acquiring these and I also want to study koine Greek when the opportunity presents itself. But now I am having grave concerns about the quality of the New World Translation itself. How reliable is it? How can I check its accuracy? What other resources should I consult and use in my personal Bible study and reading? I no longer consider WTS publications to be as reliable, accurate, or unbiased as they should be although there are a few that can still be useful.
So I would appreciate any help, suggestions, and counsel that any of you would like to share. I don't believe I am alone in my concerns or interests in this matter. And while not everyone who wants to serve God has an interest in biblical languages or scholarship, I like to think there are not only a fair number who are so inclined, but that they also want to associate with others of like mind. My friends, I want to thank you in advance for your help and I await your replies.