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Does having so many Bible translations lead to disunity and confusion?

Rhonda from North Carolina asked: Does having so many Bible translations lead to disunity and confusion?”

Rhonda, 

We need to begin with the fact that translations of the Bible are a blessing, and they are necessary, unless an individual can speak and understand Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic. I believe that pastors should have been trained in those languages, but for most people, it’s not practical or possible. We need translations so that people can read and understand God’s Word in their own language. There are still hundreds of languages that don’t yet have a translation of the Bible so there is much work to do. 

Like you, I have seen disunity emerge over the various English Bible translations. Most of the time, the confusion and disunity is not between believers and unbelievers. More often than not, there is disunity among believers about Bible translations.

I do think that there are more English translations than what we need. Some of this is unfortunately driven by economics. The Bible is the worlds all-time best-selling book, so some people have published new translations to make money. 

For decades, I've used the New American Standard translation. More recently, I’ve used the English Standard Version. Both of those are very good translations and have focused on being faithful to the original languages in which the Bible was written. 

Thanks for your question,

Stephen

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