As time goes on and my studies progress, my taste in Bible translations has ‘evolved’ as well. I have come to place a great value on the more literal versions for continuity in my studies. My favorites have come to include the NASB, ESV, NKJV and KJV. Having recently acquired a D James Kennedy Study Bible in the Modern English Version (MEV), I’m starting to appreciate that one also. Along with the more literal translations, I think it is good to have a dynamic version such as the NIV handy, as well. I know many people don’t care for the new 2011 NIV because of its gender inclusive nature, but aside from that I think it’s an excellent dynamic translation worthy of its place on a Christian’s bookshelf. Perhaps for those who can’t get beyond the gender objection, a New Living Translation (NLT) might fit the bill.
Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law. -Psalm 119:18 (NIV)
All too often Christians tend to look at the Old testament as a separate book containing archaic laws that are hard to understand and impossible to follow. Moreover they assume that, since they are “under grace,” they are not subject to the same code of conduct as those of ancient Israel were. Of course, any serious Bible student will tell you that the Bible, while a collection of 66 ‘books,’ is really only 1 book containing the information God wants us to have and hold within our heart.
For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. – 1 Corinthians 1:18 (NIV)
While those of us who are saved may not consider any Scripture to be foolish, we may not give it the sort of attention it deserves — if we don’t understand it or think it somehow doesn’t pertain to us. The best way to know whether something in God’s Word is relevant to us is to ask Him. It is good to open any study or simple reading of Scripture with prayer.
We also speak these things, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual things to spiritual people. – 1 Corinthians 2:13 (HCSB)
Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.-Colossians 4:5-6 (NIV)
I have heard it said that the greatest enemies of Christ are sometimes Christians. It’s sad to say that I understand how folks might sometimes think that, given the way I have seen people sometimes act toward others and the way I myself have behaved at times. This is a good reminder to strive to be the person my Savior wants me to be. When I am conscious of that and strive to do so, it is a much better, fulfilling life.