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Compare Bible Translations

Updated on March 21, 2013

Choose the right one!

All around the world there are thousands of Bible translations and paraphrases. How do we know that we choose the right one when we study the Bible?

The most important detail for us is, to trust that God can watch over His own book. That He will keep an eye on men made phrases and interpretations. I am sure that He is capable of doing that.

I will show you different translations to show, that the meaning of the scribture is almost the same in each cases. Look at Mattew 24:14 here. The word Gospel is Greek and means Good news. You can continue your own search too.

Matthew 24:14

Living Bible
And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it, and then, finally, the end will come.
King James Verson
And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Today´s English Version
And this Good News about the Kingdom will be preached through all the world, for a witness to all mankind; and then will come the end.
New International Verson
And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
Jerusalem Bible
This Good News of the kingdom will be proclaimed to the whole world as a witness to all the nations. And then the end will come.
New World Translation
And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.
New English Bible
And this gospel of the Kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the earth as a testimony to all nations; and then the end will come.
Gospel is Greek for Good news. Proclaimed and preached is the same.

Eight Bible translations in one book

Eight Translation New Testament (Eight Translation NT: TLB)
Eight Translation New Testament (Eight Translation NT: TLB)

The Living Bible

King James Version

Phillips' Modern English

Revised Standard Version

Today's English Version

New International Version

The Jerusalem Bible

The New English Bible


Keep an eye on the punctuation too!

Have you heard the joke: Woman, without her, man is nothing.

Woman without her man, is nothing.

Depending on where you put the comma, the meaning gets so different!

The same can be said about the translations of the Bible. A little comma can change the meaning in a very important verse. Just a few examples. Did Jesus come to a paradise that day? NO - he died! So when the commma is after today in the NW translation, it makes sense. The commonly used expression "I say to you today" is used. And one day, that man will be resurected in the paradise and in that way, they will be together.

Punctuations Luke 23 : 43

New World Translation
And he said to him: “Truly I tell you today, You will be with me in Paradise.”
Jerusalem Bible
Indeed, I promise you, he replied, today you will be with me in paradise
Living Bible
And Jesus replied, Today you will be with me in Paradise. This is a solemn promise.
Neither of these men came to a paradise "TODAY"

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    • Elizabeth Mara profile image

      Elizabeth Mara 

      5 years ago from New Hampshire

      Hello, Irenemaria,

      Thank you for such an organized comparison of the more popular translations. I know that translations often differ in small details, such as how titles LORD, Lord, and lord may appear and why, and if the word 'sisters' is often added to create the phrase 'brothers and sisters' to be more gender inclusive. The first few pages of any translation explain what choices were made and can guide you further in your decision to study a particular work. I began reading scripture with the same translation my congregation uses because it was familiar to me and later chose a translation that reflected my growing interest in the original languages. With so many choices, it is easy to find one that makes an impact with the reader right away. I liked your observation, too, that God can look after His own book because, despite all the presure world wide to ban the Bible or burn it, it was the first book printed and has stayed in print ever since. He can, indeed, protect his message to us and will lead us to the best translation for us. Your article is useful place to begin. Thanks!


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