Anonymous asked in Society & CultureReligion & Spirituality · 1 decade ago

With so many different versions of the Bible, how do we know which one is the right one to read?

Just one quick look in the bookstore and I see the King James Version, the New International Version, The Good News Version, etc...I saw over 20 different versions. How do I know which one is the best. Are they all basically the same, or are there major differences between the different versions. What version do you own and read?

13 Answers

  • Tom W
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You will see a lot of answers to this question by people who have a concept of God is on their side and that others are wrong. Thats something that occurs in the human psyche, that we have to have something like God so that we don't have to think for ourselves and we will be forgiven for the evil in our hearts if we spout this crap. The number of religions on earth with mindless followers who believe that only they are the true believers is ample proof that all are wrong. You do not need man made religions, man written scriptures to love God. You should not let self serving "spokesmen" for God get between you and God. Read all of the entries that come after and you will see one theme, that you have to believe this or that just because, no other reason. And also, that I am right and all others are wrong and only we are the true believers. God would not permit that to be the case, all are right or all are wrong. Religion is an evil force in the world.

  • 1 decade ago

    The King James Version is by far the closest to the original English translation. People were killed for this English translation because the Pope did not want it to happen.

    Since the last author of the Bible has been dead 1,900 years, there are definite problems in understanding the exact meaning of certain passages of the Bible. There are differences in words that we use and words that they used back then. Certain rivers mentioned in the Bible have dried up. Some places are not on our modern map. Bible speaks of Kings and empires that existed years ago.

    Always remember that the Bible is God's infallible, inerrantly inspired Word. There are no mistakes in the Bible. Different men saw certain things in different ways, just as we do today. Always interpret according to the context of the verse.

    Get the King James Study Bible for studying. If you want to read it straight through get an NIV, New International Version because you miss the "ye" and "thou," and it gives you a basic Bible.

    If you have never read the Bible, start with the Book of John in the New Testament.

    I love the King James Version because I hear from God more while reading it than my other Bibles. The old English language is quite beautiful. You learn to say "you" for "ye," and keep going.

  • 1 decade ago

    The difference in the Bible versions is the text from which they are translated. The KJV was translated from the Textus Receptus, and the other versions were translated from a compilation of different texts.

    It really boils down to which text was used. The Textus Receptus was the text carefully kept and copied by religious leaders throughout the centuries, the other texts (Vatican, Alexandrian, etc) were texts found all over the place, such as in a trash can at a monastery, in Alexandria, Egypt, where the keepers/copiers of the text didn't even believe it was sacred...So which would you rather trust?

    Lots of books have been written on the subject, and two which I have read are "Touch Not the Unclean Thing" and "New Age Bible Versions." They would help clear up a lot of questions you might have.

  • 1 decade ago

    I recommend going to a web site like They have all the different translations including the original Greek for the New Testament.

    The KJV was written to be elegant, not to be a proper translation. That is common knowledge, so I'm not sure why people recommend that book. Stay away from the NIV and any "paraphrasing" versions. Probably the most objective translation is the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV). That's the one we used in college for my religion courses.

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  • Gayle
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Learn even some *basic* Greek and Hebrew... then you'll realise the KJV isn't perfect. Only in the originals languages is it "perfectly" God's Word. And there are plenty of faithful translations. Like the NASB, ESV, NIV... and for the most, even the KJV. But to teach that the KJV is the only "perfect" translation... Well we know what the bible says about those who pressume to be teachers... (James 3:1)

  • 1 decade ago

    the KJV is the closest translation to the hebrew available...its more reliable


    Men have been "handling the word of God deceitfully" (II Cor. 4:2) ever since the devil first taught Eve how. From Cain to Balaam, from Jehudi to the scribes and Pharisees, from the Dark Age theologians to present-day scholars, the living words of the Almighty God have been prime targets for man's corrupting hand. The attacks on the Word of God are threefold: addition, subtraction, and substitution. From Adam's day to the computer age, the strategies have remained the same. There is nothing new under the sun.

    One attack which is receiving quite a bit of attention these days is a direct attack on the Word of God as preserved in the English language: the King James Version of 1611. The attack referred to is the myth which claims that since the King James Version has already been revised four times, there should be and can be no valid objection to other revisions. This myth was used by the English Revisers of 1881 and has been revived in recent years by Fundamentalist scholars hoping to sell their latest translation. This book is given as an answer to this attack. The purpose of the material is not to convince those who would deny this preservation but to strengthen the faith of those who already believe in a preserved English Bible.

    One major question often arises in any attack such as this. How far should we go in answering the critics? If we were to attempt to answer every shallow objection to the infallibility of the English Bible, we would never be able to accomplish anything else. Sanity must prevail somewhere. As always, the answer is in God's Word. Proverbs 26:4-5 states: Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.

    Obviously, there are times when a foolish query should be ignored and times when it should be met with an answer. If to answer the attack will make you look as foolish as the attacker, then the best answer is to ignore the question. For instance, if you are told that the Bible cannot be infallible because so-and-so believes that it is, and he is divorced, then you may safely assume that silence is the best answer. On the other hand, there are often questions and problems that, if true, would be serious. To ignore these issues would be to leave the Bible attacker wise in his own conceit. I believe that the question of revisions to the King James Version of 1611 is a question of the second class. If the King James Version has undergone four major revisions of its text, then to oppose further revisions on the basis of an established English text would truly be faulty. For this reason, this attack should and must be answered. Can the argument be answered? Certainly! That is the purpose of this book.

  • 1 decade ago

    You will want to check out 'how' each one is written. some bibles are translated from other bibles and things can get lost in the translations... others are directly translated from the original greek and hebrew. some of them are one person's thoughts/ideas/translation (like 'the message') while others are tranlated directly by a group of people who can keep each other accountable to the true meaning (like the 'New Living Tranlation')

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I think you should read which ever one you understand best. Personally I don't like the KJV because it uses old English and is difficult to understand. I read the NIV.

  • 1 decade ago

    I know its can be so confusing. The devil has made so. Pick the original one given by God through the Holy spirit to the Catholic Church. They determined which books were to go into the Bible.

  • 1 decade ago

    I must commend You on that Question, I Myself have always Questioned; Why so Many Religions, so many Believes and so many Bibles.

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