Sticking with the NIV?

My NIV has been a joy to me.  Despite occasional frustrations with word-renderings (like when “walk” in Ephesians is repeatedly translated “live”), I’ve found it a reasonably accurate and highly readable translation.  It’s served me well in reading and preaching; I often memorize from it; and I even use it for study when supplemented with more literal versions like the ESV and my Greek and Hebrew helps.

It’s the best-selling and most popular version of the Bible in the world, and I especially like how it smoothes out verses that have often proved awkward for translators, like John 1:16 and Ephesians 2:10.

Now it’s going to be revised, and this seems to be the week’s major religious story in the press.  The revision will roll out in 2011, and that may mark the end of my NIV days.  After the TNIV fiasco, I don’t have a lot of confidence in the outcome of the upcoming revisions. 

If I do lay aside my NIV as a “Preaching Bible” in 2011, I’ll probably switch to the HCSB Version (although I can never remember the sequence of those four letters—why didn’t they just use three?), or the more literal ESV.  My ESV Study Bible, edited by Wayne Grudem, is the finest Study Bible I’ve ever owned.

Well, we’ll stay tuned.  Maybe we’ll be pleasantly surprised with the new NIV.  But if not, we’ve got some other excellent options to consider.

3 thoughts on “Sticking with the NIV?

  1. Hi Rob,

    I agree with your sentiments regarding the NIV. Actually, I left the NIV about 2 years ago and moved into the HCSB. The HCSB is my “study and preaching bible” and I have been very pleased with this translation. I think you will be pleased as well. (I agree, the 4 letters get confusing at times!) 🙂

    Also, my son, Tyler enjoys attending TDF while in college in Nashville. Thanks for your faithfulness in handling God’s Word.

    Have a blessed day!

    Jon Cannon

  2. Keep us up to date with what you find! I’ve found that the NIV for 20-something adults who have grown up in church is almost equivalent to the KJV for the older generation. It’s difficult because we lose some commonality with each new revision or edition — but if we don’t update translations we lose a generation’s ability to connect with Scripture.

    Concerning the TNIV stuff, check out this article:

  3. Hey Rob,

    I hope you are doing well my friend. I have recently switched from the NIV to the ESV and have found the transition to be fairly easy. I do think that the HCSB is an excellent translation as well.

    David Ponder

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