Friday, March 19, 2010

different Bible translations

As I was writing the post just before this one (that I posted just a few minutes ago) I started thinking about the different Bible translations we have available to us in our world. Sometimes when I'm in the Christian bookstore I'm surprised when I look at the number of different translations of Scripture we have available for us to purchase. There are a lot of them.

For many of us we're most familiar with the NIV. It's the one we use most often in churches and Bible studies because it is easier than some of the others to read and understand. But, if you're like me and have grown up in church, there is a danger that comes with the familiarity of the NIV . . . you know what's coming next so you stop really reading it. You begin to just skim over many passages because you figure you know what it is going to say.

I've been there. And that's one of the reasons I started reading other translations. I may know generally what is coming next but because the language used to say that same thing is slightly different I find myself slowing down and actually reading the words on the page. I don't always know what the next word will be, so I have to read it. And it's good for me, it makes me pay attention to what I'm reading and to what God wants to say to me through what I'm reading. For more specific study I still use the NIV, but when I'm reading to hear from God I find that other translations can be helpful in slowing me down enough and making me pay enough attention that I actually listen.

The other translations available in the Christian bookstore shelves or various places online can be very helpful in our growth as followers of Christ. In the English language, we can be thankful that we have so many options.

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