What Your Favorite Bible Translation May Say About You

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What Your Favorite Bible Translation May Say About You

By Shane Pruitt

(This Article was picked up by RELEVANTThe Christian Post & crosswalk.com)

Let’s be honest, when someone tells you what their favorite Bible translation is, you fairly or unfairly make certain immediate assumptions about that person; caricatures will pop into your mind. For example, if someone says their preferred translation is the NIV Bible, what immediately comes to your mind? What about the King James? ESV? See what we mean? What you think and what we think may be different, but that point is. . .something does pop up.

And, when it comes to our favorite Bible translations, we can get pretty defensive. Bible translations can often be hot-button topics for believers that can cause arguments, debates, and division.

Interestingly, there is positive intentionality behind having different translations. For example, some translations are word-for-word translations that translate words into English from the original languages of the Old and New Testaments. A thought-for-thought translation takes the main thoughts of a passage and translates them into easier to read and understandable versions. Then, there is The Message Bible, and honestly we don’t know what is going on with that translation.

I enjoy using several different translations, and have been impacted in some form or fashion by almost all of them. I enjoy teaching out of the ESV, reading the NLT during devotional times, and quoting from memory the NKJV because it was my first Bible. And, the man who first shared the Gospel with me, and baptized me preferred the King James Bible.

However, the point of this particular article is to create a fun and light-hearted profile of what your favorite Bible translation may say about you. These obviously are not absolutes, but rather profiles that may lighten us all up a bit. This is not intended to offend anyone, upset anyone, or promote any translation over another. After all, being able to laugh at ourselves is a great quality to have, and frankly is good for our souls. “A joyful heart is medicine for the soul… (Proverbs 17:22).”

Now, enjoy:

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King James Version (KJV)

 3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. Your favorite pew spot
  2. The Left Behind Series
  3. Matches to light the NLT on fire

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – The local Cracker Barrel, before 5 PM of course.

You Have The Uncanny Ability To – Use the King’s English while praying. “Lord, we cometh before Thee to ask Thou to putteth a hedge of protection around Thine people to keepth out Thine enemy – the NIV.”

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New King James Version (NKJV)

3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. The Jesus-fish on your car
  2. The Prayer of Jabez starter-kit
  3. Zip-up Bible cover that not only holds your Bible, but also all your church bulletins

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – D. C. Talk’s Jesus Freak Reunion Tour

You Have The Uncanny Ability To –Sneak out of church at high-noon whether the Pastor is done preaching or not, while also zipping up your Bible cover on the way out.

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New International Version (NIV)

3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. Polo’s and Dockers, because suits are for “squares”
  2. Jesus Calling devotional book
  3. A social media avenue to share your picture of that day’s devotional reading, your open Bible, and your cup of coffee in a Christian mug.

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – Applebee’s or Chili’s because you are way too rad to be seen with those KJV people at the Cracker Barrel.

You Have The Uncanny Ability To – Find and “share” every kitty-cat and/or flower scripture meme known to mankind on social media that says, “If you love Jesus, you’ll “share” this picture with ten people in the next ten minutes.”

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English Standard Version (ESV)

3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. Plaid-shirts and cardigans
  2. iWhatever (fill in the blank – pad? pod? phone? watch?)
  3. Black-rimmed glasses (Shhh. They may be cosmetic)

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – Anywhere you were “predestined before the foundation of the earth” to be.

You Have The Uncanny Ability To – Find a way to quote (or misquote) John Piper, Timothy Keller, or John Calvin in any and every situation.

 

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New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. Pleated-pants
  2. A backpack with wheels
  3. Your own personal blog (though the design hasn’t been updated since 2009)

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – A Conference that’s largely attended (well, actually you and three other people), where the word “and” from 2 Peter is being parsed. Now, that sounds like a party!

You Have The Uncanny Ability To – Inform anyone, even a complete stranger, that you know a tad-bit of Greek. Your barista to you: “Sir, here is your Venti Caffe Latte.” Your need to speak up: “Do you happen to know what Venti means in Koine Greek?” Their reply: “Sir, it’s Italian for ‘I don’t care’!”

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New Living Translation (NLT) 

3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. Essential Oils
  2. Flip-flops (Even when its forty-degrees outside)
  3. Your own personal expresso machine (Because, Starbucks is way too mainstream)

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – Any where that you “chose” to be by our own “free-will”.

You Have The Uncanny Ability To – Show up late every single time no matter where you go. However, you always have a really creative and convincing excuse.

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The Message Bible

3 Things You Can’t Live Without:

  1. The Shack
  2. A hemp necklace
  3. The saying, “Don’t give me theology, just give me Jesus.”

Most Likely To Be Spotted At – Anywhere but church.

You Have The Uncanny Ability To – Believe that you’re actually reading a real Bible translation.

 

A special thank you to John Rogers and Cooper Taylor for their input and crafting of the light-hearted jokes. (Anything that you’re offended by… please, know it is their fault.)

Shane Pruitt

Jesus follower, Husband, Father, Pastor

5 Comments

  1. Although the Message isn’t one of my favorites, I defend it because it’s really written much like we talk in everyday life and there are some very profound thongs in it. It helps people to understand what the other translations mean.

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