Recent reports indicate that the English Standard Version (ESV) of the Holy Bible moved up to the number three position on the CBA bestseller list in June.
The ESV is the version worship.com has chosen to scroll on our site, and it is the version we currently prefer. Here’s what we wrote on the blog about the ESV last fall:
At times we are asked what Bible versions we recommend. Although there are several good ones in use, our first preference is the relatively new ESV Bible. We believe God’s words are timeless and best understood through the study of the original writings, and that interpretations intended to clarify and amplify Scripture references are best left in the Bible notes rather than by the modification of the actual words of God. We have found the ESV to be the closest English presentation of God’s actual words and thoughts and it is the version we publish on our sites. We encourage you to make the ESV your primary version for your Bible Study and to use other translations and paraphrases, including those listed at the bottom of this posting, as supporting tools of study.
If you’re not familiar with this version, Crossway describes is as follows:
The ESV Bible is a new, essentially literal Bible translation that combines word-for-word precision and accuracy with literary excellence, beauty, and readability. The English Standard Version (ESV) is a “word-for-word,” essentially literal translation because every word of the Bible is inspired by God. Based on this principle, more than sixty of the world’s leading Bible scholars pored over every word and phrase to achieve the unique accuracy, excellence, and beauty of the ESV Bible. The result is a new Bible translation (published in October 2001) that has a timeless quality and enduring relevance—a translation to trust for today and for generations to come.
For further study, check out the ESV website for a comparison between the ESV and other translations and paraphrases (KJV, NIV, TNIV, NLT, NKJV, Holman HCSB, NASB, and The Message), and for a list of endorsements, which include Joni Eareckson Tada, Steve Brown, John Piper, Dr. Albert Mohler, Skip Ryan, Carolyn Mahaney, Max Lucado, Ravi Zacharias, Jerry Bridges, Erwin Lutzer, Dr. Paige Patterson, Steve Green, and Mark Driscoll.
A free electronic version is available for use at www.esv.org. We’re also looking forward to the release of the The ESV Literary Study Bible expected later this year.