Versions

38 Comments

  1. Gene Burnham
    Posted April 13, 2009 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    What about the Berkeley version (see http://homepage.mac.com/rmansfield/thislamp/files/20070521_modern_language_bible.html)?

  2. Posted April 14, 2009 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    What about the Berkeley version?

    I remember when the Berkeley version was used by some people. I haven’t studied it and don’t know much about it. Have you used it, Gene?

  3. Posted June 26, 2009 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

    May I offer another translation? My Mom has done an original translation of the New Testament from Greek, along with a detailed set of translators notes. Both are available on PDF from her blog, http://pioneernt.wordpress.com.

    I know she has been seeking serious linguistic critique for years. I’m not the one to help her with it; I learned enough Greek from her to do basic word study and that’s it. If any of you would engage her in the dialog I can tell you she’d be grateful…and since she also did training at SIL years ago, she’d enjoy knowing that several of you have that background.

    Peace,

    Dan

  4. Posted June 28, 2009 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    I would like to suggest my translation as a study tool. I make no claims to divine inspiration. It is a harmony of the Gospels and not paraphrase, or exact word for word translation, think of it as scholarly notes to myself.

    http://www.biblebureau.com/otherbibleversions.htm

    The Gospel of the Kingdom: Retold
    a 476 page PDF by Robert Roberg
    robertroberg.com

  5. Jennifer Blackwood
    Posted July 13, 2009 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    Hi there,
    I am wanting to buy my first bible. I really want an accurate translation (eg. pharmakos translated as witch doesn’t seem as accurate as poisoner or one who uses potions;) but also one with gender inclusive language where sensible (eg. adelphoi translated as brothers and sisters, but not Jesus referred to as Child of God rather than Son of God which he was, being male!).
    I also want an anglicised version i.e British or U.K English as I am Australian and get bothered when I have to read savior instead of saviour. Many American bible publishers have also produced an anglicised version but I am finding it hard to find one to purchase.
    Any suggestions are most welcome (e.g. recommendations of British online shops or suggested translations, etc.)
    I am attracted to the NLT and The Green Bible which I think is a NRSV translation but I can’t find out if they are published in a UK engkish version.
    Thanks, Jennifer

  6. Posted July 14, 2009 at 5:59 am | Permalink

    Jennifer, if you can understand the sometimes non-standard (for all dialects of English) English, I think you might be most pleased with an anglicised version of the NRSV. I think you would have a greater sense of accuracy as you use it than you would with more idiomatic translations.

    Here’s an edition on amazon.com:

    Here’s a Catholic edition with Anglicized (sorry for my American spelling!) English from an Australian bookstore:
    http://reviews.au.shopping.com/review/create/39040949

    If you google on keywords “anglicised nrsv bible”, you can find other booksellers.

  7. Posted July 15, 2009 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

    Jennifer, ditto to Wayne’s plug for the NRSV. It is superb. The best edition in print is a nice goatskin anglicised version from Allan’s here (I own an ESV in the same binding – very nice):
    http://www.bibles-direct.com/category.phtml?Category=100

    The TNIV is also worth a punt. There is a cracking anglicised edition here (I own this one):
    http://www.cambridge.org/uk/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=9780521675130

  8. Tim H.
    Posted August 12, 2009 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    I couldn’t help noticing that the above list of translations did not include our beloved KJV. Why not…
    Every bible listed above was translated from corrupted Greek Text…You even listed the Catholic Bible…are you insinuating that you believe that the Catholic Religion is the Truth…and if you’re not…then why in the world would you try and promote the false with the real…
    I am a truth seeker….and from everything I have found and learned….Westcott & Hort were not men that could be trusted with the true Word of God.

  9. Scott W
    Posted August 17, 2009 at 4:00 am | Permalink

    Dave-
    The following link is for the Eastern Orthodox Bible,an ongoing project for English-speaking Orthodox Christians. Presently, the NT and Psalter are complete. It emphasizes text critical comparisons,noting the differences of the ecclessiastical text of the NT with the current critical text and the LXX to the MT.

    http://www.orthodoxanswers.org/eob/download.asp

  10. Daniel Imburgia
    Posted September 6, 2009 at 2:45 am | Permalink

    Hello, I am looking for a new bible translation. I am thinking about the ‘catholic study Bible,’ that I believe is an updated NAB. I am looking for some evaluation of these as well as recommendations of other Bibles. Can you offer some advice? thanks so much, Daniel

  11. Posted September 6, 2009 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Daniel –

    its hard to give recommendations based on no information other than I suppose you are Catholic. The NAB as a bible is very wooden, if you want to sample the NAB you can try it online http://www.usccb.org/nab/bible/ . I think of all the Catholic bibles the NJB study bible ( http://www.amazon.com/New-Jerusalem-Bible-Henry-Wansbrough/dp/0385142641/ ) would be my recommendation for study reading, providing you are comfortable with a 8 point font for notes. If you don’t go with the NJB most of the others Catholic bibles read poorly and if you want this bible mainly for reading and no so much for study I’d pick much more dynamic translations then the ones we are talking about.

    The NRSV has my favorite study bible (the NISB) and had Catholics on the translation team.

    The Navarre NT study notes http://www.amazon.com/Navarre-Bible-New-Testament-Expanded/dp/1594170754 are worth a look.

    If you decide to get the NAB study bible I’d try and get it used it is available often for free (or very cheap) + shipping.

  12. Daniel Imburgia
    Posted September 6, 2009 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

    C-D Host, thanks so much for your reply. I read from NJB some years ago and recall appreciating it. Is the tiny font your only critique? Is there somewhere I can find a scholarly, non-sectarian discussion/review (for non=specialists) of Bible translations, that includes Catholic scholarship. For a study Bible I would prefer a scholarly, accurate Bible (understanding all the caveats that go with that, I often teach Heiddeger and Derrida! alas I failed at Greek and Hebrew in my youth) and would sacrifice some readability and poetic ‘écoulement.’ Thanks so much for your consideration, Daniel.

  13. Posted September 6, 2009 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

    Daniel –

    Scholarly, accurate and you like Derrida and Heidegger so I’m gathering you aren’t part of snarly right, you will love the NISB http://www.amazon.com/New-Interpreters-Study-Bible-Apocrypha/dp/0687278325 ! You see the praise above the the NRSV, it is the standard scholars translation and there is a reason for that.

    You sound sort of similar taste wise to me so I’ll point you to:
    http://church-discipline.blogspot.com/2009/04/10-really-good-bibles-you-may-not-know.html

    Yes my main criticism of the NJB (for a Catholic) is the font. The NJB is an excellent Catholic translation and really the only actually Catholic translation I would recommend. The notes are so/so and the book lacks graphic. I’m a little hesitant given the non graphical nature of the NISB to pair those.

    The NAB study bible would pair well with the NISB since the NAB study has a lot of the basics. The big you would still have is a bible that reads well at the paragraph level.

    A nice pairing (even better than the NJB) for the NISB would be the the NLT Study Bible though this does have substantial Protestant Bias.

    The NRSV is formal while the NLT is dynamic
    The NISB is scholarly while the NLT is high school scholarly (i.e. get the facts fast)
    The NRSV reads well on the line level while the NLT reads well on the paragraph level.

    Other possible pairs for the NISB:
    CEV learning bible: not sectarian, less theologically biased, study bible aimed even younger
    Oxford NEB: excellent 2nd bible, dynamic, Catholic friendly also lacks the graphics though
    TNIV Study Bible: Similar to the NLT Study bible but less dynamic in translation slightly higher reading level
    and from a different angle
    NET Bible which is mediating with a focus on translation while the NISB focus on interpretation

    In terms of Catholic scholarship the Navarre is really good. Stepping up in price and quality to get best of Catholic / liberal Protestant scholarship:
    http://yalepress.yale.edu/yupbooks/SeriesPage.asp?Series=144
    Also there is quite a bit of free Catholic scholarship online. I read church fathers and Summa regularly .

    As for as discussion, you are on a pretty good blog for translation discussion. If you click through to the links of most of the posters here their own blogs have quite a bit on translations. You are in the right place.

  14. Posted September 6, 2009 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    Sorry 2 sentences got mangled:

    The big problem you would still have is a bible that reads well at the paragraph level.

    A nice pairing (even better than the NJBNAB) for the NISB

  15. Daniel Imburgia
    Posted September 6, 2009 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

    Thanks so much for all your help and great info, obliged and blessings, Daniel.

  16. Posted November 20, 2009 at 4:33 am | Permalink

    Two more of the many translations you didn’t mention:
    1. The Christian Community Bible is a Roman Catholic translation with study notes. (I’m not Roman Catholic.) I haven’t read much of it. My impression is that the translation is fairly literal, graceful, and sometimes quite unconventional. The entire Bible is available for book-by-book free download in PDF or MS Word format at http://www.bible.claret.org/bibles/. There are sister versions in 6 other languages.

    2. The AV7 (see http://www.av7.org/) contains the New Testament only thus far. I became aware of it when I saw it at a Dollar Tree store a year or two ago, selling for a dollar. It’s mostly a computer-generated revision of the AV. They used computer tables to update the AV and often to improve its literalness. Surprisingly, it’s gender-neutral. The edition I bought has lots of room for improvement, but is actually a quite serviceable translation, better than I would have thought possible to produce via the means used.

  17. Posted November 20, 2009 at 5:45 am | Permalink

    The AV7 is at http://www.av7.org/ . (Your end parenthesis threw it off.)

    I particularly like how that Catholic one has an audio version geared for non-native speakers to learn English, much like the Let’s Start Talking missions program does with the book of Luke.

    http://www.bible.claret.org/bibles/conciseMP3/index.html

  18. LeRoy
    Posted November 20, 2009 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    I am sorry to say you will not find a Bible today which represents the true Greek. Therefore you must search diligently for the actual words used and follow the various translations available with careful consideration.
    The most common mistake is trying to fit Koine meanings into literal English.
    The ambiguous belief in a Literal Baptism is shown by: The Lives of SS. Nazarien and Celsus: Nazarien then came to Rome and found his father, then old and christian, and enquired of him how he was *christened, which said that Peter the apostle had appeared to him and bade him believe as his wife and son did.
    The Life of S. Marcial S.: Marcial that he would pray God that it might please him to raise his squire from death to life, and he would believe in the faith of Jesu Christ and be *christened. http://www.ccel.org/

    1Cor 1:14 I thanke God that I christened[βαπτίζειν]none of you but Crispus and Gayus
    17 For Christ sent me not to baptyse [βαπτίζειν]but to preache ye gospell not with wysdome of wordes lest the crosse of Christ shuld have bene made of none effecte.
    Direct quote from (William Tyndale’s Bible)

    **You will note that the word used is CHRISTENED and not baptised.
    (English – Greek Technical Dictionary) βαπτίζω= christen educate, train

    J.J.Greisbach says, “Tyndale’s, Matthew’s’ Coverdale’s, Whitchurch’s, Geneva, ; none of these were made from the original Greek, but only compare with it- being all translated from the VULGATE Latin.
    The Greek text from which they were compared was compiled from 8 MSS, all of which only dated to the 10th Century, and is now proved to be the very WORST Greek Text extant.

    In translation we also must deal with the meaning of whole phrases, sentences, and paragraphs, not simply isolated words. Each word in a sentence contributes to the meaning. But we want to translate the message, the meaning of the whole, not simply words in isolation. Translators must take into account the many ways in which word meanings interact when they occur in discourse.

    The problem can be illustrated from the Septuagint, the ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament. The Greek word for “God,” theos, in the pagan, polytheistic Greek context, meant one of the “gods” of the Greek pantheon [or cf Sanskrit deva, Latin deus (connected with Zeus or Dios) the bright or shining one].
    Used in the TRIAD of chaos, theos, cosmos — THREE hypostases on the matter side of cosmic evolution — meaning respectively the storehouse of cosmic seeds, the builders, and the universe built thereby.
    Of Israel and Juda exists in the texts semitic north-western countries in the form of Tetragram. (YHWH); Yahweh; with added vowels; cf. *Jehovah.. The name YHVH or YHWH is written with four consonants only; it is the holy Tetragrammaton, or in Hebrew, Shem Hameforash sometimes called the mirific.

    Hebrew has no vowels. In ancient times, it didn’t even have vowel points. These were added much later, and at that time pronouncing the name was already forbidden for generations. So no one knows how the most ancient name of God was pronounced. The vowel points make it sound like Yehova, and later it was anglicized to Jehovah. The reader may not say it. He or she must say instead the name Adonai, which means “My Lord.” (Encyclopedia Mythica)

    “The mirific name derived from the substance of deity and showing its self-existent essence. Jesus was accused by the Jews of having stolen this name from the Temple by magic arts, and of using it in the production of his miracles” Hebrew) [from shem name + ham def article + mephorash from the verbal root parash to separate, declare, specify] (TG 297). http://www.theosociety.org

    No word in Greek perfectly meshed with the Old Testament teaching about the one true God. When the Old Testament was originally translated from Hebrew to Greek, the translators had to decide what was the best rendering within the constraints of Greek vocabulary.
    The Greek word αμαρτία with the meaning “failure, fault,” can mean “guilt” OE synn (n.), syngian (v.); prob. related to L. sons, sont- ‘guilty’; within a philosophical context.

    But it does not perfectly mesh with Old Testament teaching about sin, iniquity, offense, before a holy, infinite God.

    Six important papyri are illustrated in the chart below. The symbol for each papyrus is Ì followed by a number (e.g., Ì45). The most important papyri cited in the NET NT footnotes are as follows:
    Papyri Name Date NT Books Covered General Characteristics

    Ì45
    Chester Beatty papyrus
    3rd century AD
    Gospels, Acts 4-17
    Mark (Caesarean); Matt, Luke, John (intermediate between Alexandrian and Western texttypes)

    Ì46
    Chester Beatty papyrus
    ca. AD 200
    10 Pauline Epistles (all but Pastorals) and Hebrews
    Overall closer to Alexandrian than Western

    Ì47
    Chester Beatty papyrus
    3rd century AD
    Revelation 9:10-17:2
    Alexandrian; often agrees with Sinaiticus (Í)

    Ì66
    Bodmer Papyrus
    ca. AD 200
    John
    Mixed text between Western and Alexandrian

    Ì75
    Bodmer papyrus
    early 3rd century
    Luke and John
    Alexandrian, often agrees with B

    Codex Vaticanus (B), since 1481, at least, the chief treasure of the Vatican Library, and universally esteemed to be the oldest and best manuscript of the Greek New Testament; 4th century. In the Gospels the divisions are of an earlier date than in Codex Sinaiticus.

    Codex Sinaiticus found by Tischendorf at Catherine’s Monastery on Mt. Sinai and now in the British Library of London; 4th century. This is the only uncial which contains the New Testament entire. It also has the Epistle of Barnabas and part of the Shepherd of Hermas and possibly originally the Didache.

    Probably the earliest system of chapter divisions is preserved in Codex Vaticanus, coming down to us from Alexandria probably by way of Caesarea.

  19. Posted November 29, 2009 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    I’m curious. Since the emerge of the NLT, I cannot find the Living Bible online anywhere. I understand that the NLT basically replaced it, but shouldn’t the Living Bible still be out there for those that may want to use it for personal study or observation?

  20. Posted November 29, 2009 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

    Good question, Donald. My own opinion would be “yes”, since LB and NLT are so different (while retaining some similarities). But I assume that Tyndale felt it was better to replace the Living Bible than to keep it out there along with the NLT.

  21. letusreason
    Posted December 4, 2009 at 10:53 pm | Permalink

    Since you have included may bibles, why have you not included the NWT, as this seems to smack of deliberate bias, since may scholars have recognised the NWT as a fine translation; especially when compared to the KJV, NKJV, TEV, AB, etc! How would you fair, if you were put in front of a tribunal?

    Just as thought!

  22. Posted December 4, 2009 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    letusreason, there are a number of English Bible versions which are not on this list. The list is not meant to be exhaustive. We have had many discussions about the NWT on our sister email discussion list:
    http://bible-translation.110mb.com/list/index.html

    In general, the versions on this list are the most recent ones, ones which can be evaluated in terms of current English language usage. The KJV is not on this list, quite a few others are not, also. There was no bias shown against the NWT by its not being on this list, just as there was no bias against the KJV, Phillips, the Living Bible, Williams, Weymouth, Barnstone, Tyndale, RV, ASV, etc.

  23. Posted March 9, 2010 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

    Concept for concept, Context for context, Word for word.™ Yes, all three!
    I recommend Mickelson’s Hilkiah Edition Greek Translation, Interlinear, and Dictionary. Free online Interlinear at http://plowsharemission.com, and the books are available in print at Barnes & Noble – http://productsearch.barnesandnoble.com/search/results.aspx?WRD=mickelson+hilkiah

  24. Posted April 6, 2010 at 2:21 am | Permalink

    I’m working on a free, browser-based Study New Testament (Greek interlinear, grammar notes, and translation) and would welcome any comments. So far I have only finished the first draft of the Gospel of John and 1 Tim. 1 through v. 11, and would be interested also in any opinion of the English rendering on the right. This is by no means a scholarly effort but a personal one. Thanks in advance. :•)

    http://paulafether.org/

  25. Dannii Willis
    Posted April 6, 2010 at 2:26 am | Permalink

    Hi Paula, make sure you specify which encoding the page uses, otherwise it’s unreadable!

  26. Posted April 6, 2010 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the reminder, Dannii. :-)

    It’s utf-8 and the SPionic font.

  27. Posted April 6, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    Paula –

    First off this is excellent! nice job! Now a few comments:

    1) I would tie the block on the lower left more closely to the “-more-” popups. This is meant to be basic instruction, you use terms like “indicative” those should either dynamically populate or you should be able to make the blue boxes sticky and click.

    2) You may want to after verse notes test with various sizes. You are using a static design. For example verse 14 at 1280×800 bleeds all over the place.

    3) I think the English translation you are using is too dynamic and flowy for a Greek.

    4) I think you want to expand on the Aorist tense. Also under your description of verb tenses in addition to giving examples with “to give” you might want to also give examples with “to be” in English.

    5) I think the greek words themselves should be links to more information. For example all verses containing the word and perhaps expanded discussion of meaning / usage.

    6) Most interlinears use a technique of ~ to denote flips in word order. I think that is a good convention.

    7) The search box is great, but the links that come up should be dynamic.

    I could keep going but I’m not sure if this is what you were looking for. Anyway, terrific start!

  28. Posted April 6, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    Hi CD-Host,

    Thanks very much for the helpful critique.

    1) Great idea! Tons of work, but it would be a nice feature. Right now the popup info is in the dictionary entry for each word, so I’ll need to find a way to tie in to the grammar, which for now is a simple text document.

    2) Yes, I’ll see about styling the verse notes to go to a new line, instead of my trying to be ultra-compact.

    3) The issue with the English translation is that I really don’t know who the target reader is. I’m hoping this will turn out to be an entry-level tool, so I wanted to lean on the “flowing” side. My main concern is whether it conveys the sense of the passage, not just the verse. But of course I’m open to any specific improvements.

    4) Good thought on conjugating “to be”, but I’m not sure exactly the extent you have in mind for expanding on the aorist. That can get pretty involved, as I understand.

    5) When it comes to the popups in an html page, they take up as much memory as if they were all displayed at once. So I didn’t want to put too much in there. But if this is to eventually wind up as a standalone app (anybody want to teach me Java or Xcode? I have this running with both mySQL and sqLite) that wouldn’t be an issue.

    6) Can you elaborate?

    7) I thought about links but haven’t got that far yet. This is still in “proof of concept” state, and I alternate between working on the content and the software.

    But yes, this is the sort of feedback I was after. Thanks again! I’d like this to be always free and as independent of platform as possible– someday.

  29. Larry
    Posted July 5, 2010 at 3:06 am | Permalink

    Under “Versions” above you have listed (if I counted accurately) 26 ‘versions’ and the neither the KJV nor the Authorized KJV is listed. I was wondering why. Is it considered in some modern category seperate from the ‘versions’? Since it is the most widely used, best seller of all time one would think it would surely be listed in some fashion.

  30. Larry
    Posted July 5, 2010 at 3:20 am | Permalink

    Oops, sorry about that post. I didn’t realize this was the same blog I had promised not to post on! No comment expected or necessary. Thanks Larry

  31. Posted July 5, 2010 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    Wayne wrote:
    In general, the versions on this list are the most recent ones, ones which can be evaluated in terms of current English language usage. The KJV is not on this list, quite a few others are not, also. There was no bias shown against the NWT by its not being on this list, just as there was no bias against the KJV, Phillips, the Living Bible, Williams, Weymouth, Barnstone, Tyndale, RV, ASV, etc.

  32. Posted April 7, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    Do you have any information/posts written by your authors on the KJV?

  33. Posted April 8, 2011 at 12:43 am | Permalink

    Hi Heather, yes many posts have been written about the KJV. Try searching for kjv in the search box to the left.

  34. Posted April 21, 2011 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

    Hello,
    I discovered this post via Heather’s blog. One I wouldn’t list under versions or translations per say is The Message. The Message is written more in a novel format and I personally wouldn’t consider that a translation along the likes of the NIV, KJV, etc.

  35. Tizawiza
    Posted June 18, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    The best Bible to get is an Interlinear. I have a J. Green’s Interlinear, which is number coded to Strong’s. But there are others to consider too. Once you have an Interlinear, which mine is Hebrew-English-Greek, then you won’t consider any more Bibles unless you just want to see what the translators did.

    Also, Hebrew almost certainly did have vowels. The letters that make up Yahweh’s name are Hebrew semi-vowel letters, meaning his name is complete in and of itself. The vowel sounds are ee-ah-oo-ay.

    Now I’m interested in the Jonathan Mickelson’s Interlinear, but I need to ask him some questions. I wonder if he considered the Hebrew Gospel of Matthew by Prof. George Howard, and the Hebrew Book of Hebrews that Sebastian Munster had received from some Jewish Christians.

  36. Posted August 4, 2011 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

    BibleWord Rare Bibles on eBay

    This guy has a lot of different (Rare) English Bible Translations for sale:
    http://stores.ebay.com/BibleWord-Rare-Bibles

    Thought everyone here would be interested.

    Thanks,
    Kevin

  37. Posted August 9, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Nice bible info thanks … Here is the King Iames 1611 Edition with all symbols headings notations and original text in an electronic html form, you may be interested in … http://www.kjvtruth.com/FreeHolyBibleLinks.htm

  38. Posted October 17, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Dear Editors,

    We have just launched the Knox translation of the Bible.

    The press release can be found here:

    http://www.baroniuspress.com/KnoxPressRelease

    You may wish to add to any article on the Knox Bible that today both the Archbishop of Canterbury and Archbishop of Westminster have written to us praising the publication of the Knox Bible.

    “Ronald Knox’s translation of the Bible remains an exceptional achievement both of scholarship and of literary dedication. Again and again it successfully avoids conventional options and gives the scriptural text a fresh flavour, often with a brilliantly idiosyncratic turn of phrase. It most certainly deserves republication, study and use.”

    Archbishop Rowan Williams

    “I am delighted at the republication of Mgr Ronald Knox’s translation of the Bible. It was my father’s favourite translation and I can remember the trouble he went to in order to replace a lost edition of the New Testament. Mgr Knox was a distinguished priest of the Diocese of Westminster and such a gifted preacher and giver of retreats. His memorable phrases are still quoted. He brought that same skill, together with considerable scholarship, to the immense task of Biblical translation. Many will welcome this new publication of his achievement.”

    Archbishop Vincent Nichols


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