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Bible Translation Reviews

Often, we will grow up reading a single translation of the Bible; traditionally, churches tend to only use a single translation of the Bible.  This can be for a variety of reasons.  Some churches believe that certain translation is more accurate, while others tend to use a certain translation because it is easier to understand, or sometimes a single translation is used just to make it easier for the church members to follow along with Scripture reading.  Whatever the reason, it can become routine to read from a single translation.

However, sometimes it is beneficial to read from multiple translations.  Often, a translator will focus their translation on the aspect of the verse or passage that they find most important.  As well, translators will use certain tone or vocabulary throughout their entire version.  By reading multiple translations of the Bible, you will get a well-rounded understanding of the verses you are studying.  You will be able to compare how each translation states the passage, and will also be able to see the way different translators interpreted the verse both in the context of the passage and the Bible as a whole.  The following are a few translations that are beneficial for studying.

NKJV Study Bible

For many years, the King James Version of the Bible was the definitive translation.  However, in 1975 the translation was updated, creating the New King James Version.  This version attempted to retain the style and poetic beauty of the older version, but also use phraseology that would be easier to interpret for modern readers.  This version was completed in 1982, and is still available today.

The NKJV Study Bibles also include many extra resources.  Typically, concordances are included in the back.  On top of this, there is extra explanation of specific verses and words throughout the Bible underneath the text.  This allows readers to quickly peruse the extra information and return to their Scripture reading.

The Amplified Bible

The Amplified Bible also known as AMP is an interesting work that deals specifically with the interpretation of Scripture.  In it, scholars looked at both word meaning and context in the original languages, and translated as they believed correct.  When the scholars disagreed on interpretation of certain passages, they kept each of the interpretations and included them in the Bible.  This means that some verses have multiple translations in line with each other.

The benefit of this is that you are able to clearly see the different interpretations of the verses you are reading, and understand how the verse can be understood depending on the focus of the interpreter.  However, it can also be difficult to follow, making it a great study tool, but not necessarily the easiest version to read.

The Good News Bible

This version is known for its accuracy and close relationship to the original language of the Bible, being translated directly from the Hebrew and Greek texts.  However, it was designed to be understood easily, and is written in contemporary language to help new readers easily understood the truth of the Bible.

While it is an easy version to read and understand, it can also simplify ideas to the point where elements are missed.  As such, this version tends to be used in a lot of evangelistic events and movements where new believers are present.  However, as believers grow, they will often seek out other versions to read alongside their Good News Bible to add complexity and make the text more dynamic.

Best Online Options For Christians/Believers

In the past decade, the idea of reading the Bible as a book has changed.  With improvements to the Internet and the rise of mobile technology, Bible resources are now available quickly, and can also be transported quite easily.  In fact, there are many apps now that provide online options for those wanting to study the Bible.

One great app is The Daily Bible Guide.  This app is free, and allows users to access many versions of the Bible, such as the NKJV and Good News Bible, online, and easily flip between translations for study purposes.  It also includes resources such as biblical dictionaries, concordances, and free Bible study lessons.  Beyond this, it can be set up to help you with your reading routine; it will email you different Bible verses each day for your study, and can be set up to provide devotional material each day.

Conclusion

While all versions of the Bible attempt to share the truth of the Bible accurately and clearly, it can be helpful to use multiple versions in your studies.  Each of the versions mentioned above are known for their accurate and clear attempts at interpreting the Bible, and can be a great resource if you pair them with your personal choice of translation.  If you are on-the-go, downloading the bible on your computer or cellphone will allow you the freedom to study the Scriptures during free moments regardless of your location.  This will allow you to carve out the time to work through your Bible reading on even the busiest of days.

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