Which Bible translation is the best one?

The Bible was originally written in 3 ancient languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek. Since few of us speak those languages, it's a necessary part of God's plan for the Bible to be translated into the many modern languages of the world. More than 1300 languages have a New Testament translation, more than 500 languages have a full Bible, and about 2300 languages are being worked on. The majority of languages have only been translated once, however some are privileged enough to have multiple translations, such as the English language, which has hundreds. Translating anything from one language to another is a tedious undertaking. It requires a delicate understanding of the subtle underlying meanings behind words and phrases...of two languages at once! Because of the unique nature of the Bible and a sober concern for accuracy, credible translation teams are normally made up of a large number of scholars with wide ranging credentials in language expertise, and an open ear to the voice of God.

So, which is best?

There is an old saying: 'The best translation is the one you will read.' It's not the words that are important, but the meaning behind the words. One can describe the same object as, a car or an automobile and both options would mean the same thing. However, in certain regions or at certain education levels, one word or the other may be a more modern and natural usage, making it easier to read without getting bogged down in the words. Good example: Americans are often given a King James Version Bible, and even encouraged to believe it is somehow superior to other English translations, but soon get overwhelmed trying to understand the archaic 18th century Old English dialect.

One should always remember that the goal of reading the Bible is not to learn the Bible, but to know Jesus Christ! He is the living version of what you read on those pages - the Living Word. A person can only find Jesus in the scriptures as the Holy Spirit reveals Him, therefore - there is no perfect translation, only a perfect revelation. God uses the human words to speak to you, but He uses His language to explain what those words mean in your spirit!

Best English translations:

Questionable translations:

Bad translations (avoid these):