The 2001 Translation Translator NotesNote

Bless or Praise?

This is a tough one, and we won’t say that our position on the translation of this word can’t be changed. The Greek word that we are struggling with is eulogetos, which is usually translated as ‘blessed’ or ‘blessing.’
Notice that the first part of the word eu, is Greek for good.
And the last part of the word, logetos means words (or expressions).
So a literal translation of eulogetos is good words.
And our question is:
Is this all that a blessing amounts to?

Yet you might wonder:
Why are we questioning the traditional translating of eulogetos as bless, blest, and blessing as it appears in other Bibles?
Because we have found too many errors in commonly-accepted renderings of many Greek words.
And here, for example, if eulogetos should be properly translated as blessing each time (which carries the nuance, ‘causing good things to happen’), then how can humans ‘bless God?’ So since all that we can do is praise God, we have concluded that ‘praise’ is a better translation of eulogetos in many instances.

Also notice that eulogetos is where we derive the English word eulogy (the kind words that are said of the deceased at a funeral). In this case, we couldn’t say that a eulogy is said as a blessing, because it’s a bit late for that.
So really, all we can do is speak in praise of the deceased individual.
Yet, despite all of these arguments, there are definitely places in the Bible where eulogetos is best translated as bless or blessing, because it best fits the context.

Notice that this isn’t the same Greek word that we have rendered as blest in other portions of this translation (for an example, see Matthew 5:5). The word in question there is makarios, which is rendered as blessed and as happy in other Bibles. However, if you read the following Note, you will see why we have chosen the word blest as the better translation of that Greek word.

See more translator notes