Ever wonder which Bible translations we like best? Everybody has a favorite and we wanted to share ours with you. And if you are curious about the differences in translations and translation methods, we encourage you to read How to Judge a Book by its Cover.
Teri Lynne: Oh so hard!! I love the English Standard Version (ESV) for study and that’s what I carry to church. But I also use the New Living Translation (NLT) for devotional reading. So those are the two that I turn to most often … but I can’t deny my fondness for the Amplified Bible (AMP) or the New American Standard Bible (NASB) which is what I grew up with.
Julie: I’ve been using the English Standard Version (ESV) as my primary translation for the past couple of years. Not only have I appreciated the word for word translation, I’ve also really enjoyed the study notes in my particular version. Much of what I have memorized and studied until now has been from the New American Standard (NASB). I logged most of my early spiritual growth in the NASB.
Sandra: My go-to Bible translation is the English Standard Version. I think it’s easy to read while sticking close to the original text. I especially love the study Bible version (it’s heavy though so it stays home!). I get this question every week because I work at LifeWay, and I always recommend the ESV.
Kathy: I use the NIV and the ESV for study, but I love to use the New Living Translation for my devotional reading. The NLT is a “dynamic (or functional) equivalence” translation, which translates thought-for-thought rather than word-for-word as in the formal equivalence. Although not as literal, it makes for easier devotional reading since it updates idioms and figures of speech. (Here is a great article about the kinds of translations and how to choose one.)
Stephanie: Amplified. Since I’m a studier and a word girl, my hands-down favorite is always the Amplified. I read the New King James for my quiet time and I use the New Living Translation when I want to convey something in modern terms. Yet, I still love the King James Version – especially when I’m reading through the Psalms.
Kristi: For serious study, I love my NASB! Just this past year I have begun using the ESV for study, also, and I’ve really enjoyed it. My most common go-to is the NIV, however. I grew up on the NIV, have memorized most consistently out of the NIV, and just find it comforting and familiar. Speaking of… my favorite well-marked, well-traveled, well-loved NIV disappeared after church a few weeks ago, so if you’ve seen it send it back. I miss it. :)