How did you choose the translation of the Bible that you use? What was the process for evaluation? What factors did you consider?
My guess is that many folks “chose” somewhat arbitrarily. Maybe they were given a nice Bible as a gift, and they decided that would become their main Bible. Maybe a friend showed her a study tool in his Bible, and she thought she would like to have those tools as well. Perhaps they’ve simply used the same Bible since they were a child-- and they can’t even remember where they got their Bible!
When I was first beginning at Hickory Withe PC, one of the members asked me, “which Bible translation will you be preaching from?” It turns out that he and his wife wanted to do their devotional reading in the same Bible that they would use on Sunday mornings-- which they wanted to be the same translation that the preacher would be using.
This is a great idea-- and an easy way to make what is becoming a more and more difficult decision: which Bible translation should I use?
There are a lot of factors that go into a Bible translation, and there is an increasing number of useful and good translations. Evaluating them can be tricky.
Thankfully, there is a new website whose intended purpose is to guide people through understanding the different translations: Best-Bible.org. Whether you’re looking for a new Bible, curious about the differences between your translation and others, or wondering what translation philosophy went into the Bible you love, you’ll find a great amount of helpful information over there.
[Full disclosure: I had been meaning to mention this helpful tool already; however, by linking to them today I’m entered in a drawing to win a free copy of the forthcoming ESV Study Bible.]