“The Wartburg Project” is a group of Lutheran pastors and professors who are working together to produce a new translation of the Bible, the Evangelical Heritage Version™.
Dr. John Brug, Professor-emeritus of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary (Systematic Theology and Old Testament), serves as the general editor and Old Testament editor. Rev. Brian Keller, Pastor at St. Stephen Evangelical Lutheran Church, Adrian, MI serves as the New Testament editor. The New Testament is already finished and is being set up for publication. We have a group of faithful translators at work, who are preparing the translations of the Old Testament books. (See the progress chart at the end of this page for updates). We are blessed with gifted technical reviewers, who review and examine our translations for accuracy on the basis of the original Hebrew and Greek languages. One example is Professor-emeritus David Kuske of Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, who serves as a translator/reviewer and helps us determine the best NT manuscript evidence. We are pleased to be working with more than 100 participants (and counting), including laypeople who serve as proofreaders and popular reviewers. They come from the ELS and all 12 districts of the WELS.
Lord willing, we plan to publish through Northwestern Publishing House a “New Testament and Psalms Special Edition” in time for the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation in the fall of 2017.
The product to be produced by the Wartburg Project could best be called a translation/revision. Although our translation is based on the Hebrew and Greek texts, templates are often being used as a starting point in the translation process. This approach builds on the tradition of English and Lutheran Bible translation. The primary resources, of course, are the original Hebrew and Greek texts. We are standing on the shoulders of giants. We make use of the World English Bible (WEB), which is a public domain descendant of the King James Version (KJV) and the American Standard Version (ASV). We are also grateful to Concordia Publishing House (CPH) and Northwestern Publishing House (NPH) for the scholarship provided by their commentaries.
Our latest progress report is below.
We published our early test translations of Matthew and Psalms on the Kindle format. The updated versions that make use of the input we received will be published soon.
We made a Passion History available to pastors for testing during Lent 2015. Again, we received helpful encouragement and input. An updated edition will appear for Lent 2017.
As more OT books are ready for popular review, we hope that everyone who has volunteered to be a participant will be able to become involved in reviewing.
Our team of editors, translators, and reviewers determine the appropriate amount of time that they can devote to this project without letting it interfere with their other duties. For our participants, this has been a labor of love and an effort in continuing education.
Technology has certainly been a big help with this project. Technology has connected our participants from all around the world. We can have meetings without even leaving our homes and offices.
Our priorities for 2016 are to finish the set-up of the New Testament and Psalms for publishing. We also hope to finish a substantial part of the Old Testament. There are many facets involved in that work. We are hopeful that the editorial pace will pick up as we have editors who can devote more time to the project. God has really blessed our efforts.
We have come a long way in three years! We thank God for all this progress. But, we also realize that there is much work yet to be done to complete the translation. We appreciate the prayers and generous financial support we have been receiving.
The Wartburg Project is a 501(c)(3) [parasynodical] organization in fellowship with ELS and WELS, with our own EIN#. To donate to support this project, checks may be made out to: “The Wartburg Project” and sent to this address:
907 Mattes Drive
Midland MI 48642-3708
The project began entirely with volunteers working over and above their regular calls. Now we have received sufficient donations to speed up the process of producing a translation by granting “release time” for editors to focus on this work more. We thank all who have offered prayers for this project and its participants.
The Wartburg Project is a purely positive effort. The Wartburg Project is not about being against something, but for something. We are for working together to produce a Bible that communicates the gospel clearly to today’s people, the Evangelical Heritage Version™.
Feel free to contact us for more information.