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My 5 Favorite Bible Translations

Updated: Dec 20, 2023

favorite bible translations

I've had a couple of people ask me the version of the Bible I prefer. As a seminary graduate, I don't have a single answer. So I've compiled a list of my 5 favorite Bible translations. These are translations I use most in my personal study—and the pros and cons for each. I hope that it helps others who are looking to purchase one of the versions listed below:

5 Favorite Bible Translations

1. ESV

Pros: Good literal translation of the original Greek

Cons: Recent translation, so not as widely used as other versions


2. CSB

Pros: Readability and good literal translation of original Greek

Cons: One of the newest kids on the block when it comes to translations.



Pros: Improves on the treasured RSV, taking advantage of advances in scholarship and biblical translation since RSV's original release

Cons: Fairly recent translation (1989) and makes some decisions on gender-neutral language that some don't like


4. NIV

Pros: Widely used in evangelical Christianity

Cons: Some questionable decisions when dealing with some of Paul's writings


Pros: Most pure and closest to original writings

Cons: Need to be able to read Koine Greek to use it


Honorable Mentions:


The Message



Question: What version of the Bible do you prefer?

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