How to Pick The Right Bible For You

There are a multitude of Bible translations in existence today — a bewildering amount. If you doubt what I say, simply stop by your local religious bookshop — or even a secular bookstore. If you need and her over to see religion and philosophy section, you will probably find several shells filled with different types of Bible translations. Are we angels If you have not done much reading or studying of the Bible before in your life, you may be at quite a loss as to know which Bible translation you should choose. In this article I would like to give you some things to think about — I won’t actually tell you what your choice should be, I’d just like to come along side of you for a few minutes and help you do your own thinking —

One of the things you need to think about is what you plan to do with your copy of the Bible. Are you primarily interested in studying the Bible in an in-depth manner — or are you more interested in just sitting down and reading it, perhaps for extended periods of time? Certain translations of the Bible are more “conversational” in tone — they are sometimes called paraphrases or Dynamic-Equivalence translations. Many people find them the easiest types of Bible translations to read. On the other hand, you may prefer a more literal or traditional type of Bible if you are interested in doing in-depth biblical studies or research.

Another important consideration here is the amount of education that you have received. No, I am not insisting that the Bible is understandable only to those who are educated — rather, the amount of formal educational training you may have received will again factor into the type of Bible that you will be comfortable in using. People who are college educated, or who have received prior religious instruction will probably feel more at home with a traditional Bible translation or one which is more literal in its translation approach. On the other hand, folks with limited training — both secular and/or religious — may find it easier to begin with one of the modern language Bibles.

Something else to think about: Will you be reading or studying the Bible with others? Will you be taking religious education classes of some type — or will you be studying it in a home group meeting? If you will be reading or studying the Bible with other people, you may wish to check with them to see what types of Bible translations are preferred by your group. If you are taking religious training in a classroom setting, your instructor may have a preference or a particular translation of the Bible may even be required. If you will be using your Bible in a church setting — perhaps for following along with scripture readings — then you may want to investigate using a translation of the Bible that is approved and preferred by your local church.

Choosing the right Bible — in particular the right Bible translation — is not necessarily an easy task. Especially for those of us who live in the West, we have an unbelievable number of options available to us! But you can manage to work through the confusion, if you do a little reading and researching on your own, and think about what your present and future needs are, you should be able to make a good choice. And for those of us who are a part of the Judeo-Christian tradition, the choice of a good Bible translation is absolutely essential to our continued spiritual growth.

If you need help with your Bible study — or would just like to know what Bible study tools and methods are available, then you’ll want to stop by [] – Bible Study Methods [] — where you can find more information on Bible Translations, Bible Study Tools and Methods, and even a Bible Software Guide!

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