Pinterest A Grateful Life Lived: Bible Translation Hopping

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Bible Translation Hopping

     Let's just get this out of the way: I know you do it.  I know because I do it too.  In fact, I've seen it from some pretty notable people in the Christian faith, so it can't be that bad...right?  I'm talking about "translation hopping."
     Here's what we do: we hear or read a verse and therefore, look that one up to memorize.  The only problem is, we take to Bible gateway.  Innocently searching for the passage we heard at Bible study or a verse on hope, we begin to see the Promise Land of possibilities.  You may be a die-hard New Century Version lover or a lifelong International Reader's Version fanatic, but when it comes to scripture memorization, you Google and Bible Gateway search just like the rest of us.
  How could you not?  After all, there's NIV, NKJV, NLT, ESV, NIRV, NCV, the IRV and any other V or T you can think of.  We like how the NIV says "mercy" within a certain verse, but it says "great" instead of "abundant" like the NIRV does.  But then, the NIRV doesn't say "mercy," it says "love."  The KJV says both "mercy" and "abundant," but it uses really old fashioned language you can't understand.  So what do you do?  Memorize every verse in whichever version sounds the coolest or most holy, of course!
     Except, you never know which version you've memorized a verse in.  Even worse, you begin reciting the ICVV-- the I Combined Versions Version-- which I'm pretty sure is the sin of all sins.  Although its not quite at the level of adding or subtracting from the Bible, manipulating your own wording is coming dangerously close if you ask me.  The last time I caught myself doing this, I sat right down where I was and I made sure I knew the passage in one solid version before I was allowed to get up and continue with life.  In all honesty though, it's my favorite passage in the Bible, and when I recite specific verses, I still do so in different versions...but at least I'm not mixing versions within the verse, right?

     The worst part is, now that I've admitted this little sin to the worldwide web, I have now blown my "innocent mistake" excuse, and opened myself up for condemnation across seven continents!  Go ahead though, because I can recite Romans 8:1 in a solid NKJV-- although I might slip in and out of ICVV.
     Ha! I caught you: this isn't even NKJV.  I have a rousing suspicion that you do some translation hopping too....which is far worse than the alternative that you just don't know your versions of the Bible.  If that's the case: your not so bad.  At least you're not a heathen like the rest of us.

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