“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” – Psalm 119:105
With numerous translations of the Bible out there, it can be pretty confusing as to which one to use. Is one better than another?
In short, the best Bible to use… is one you use! In other words, find a Bible and pick it up. Some of you may have to knock the dust off of it, but pick it up and start reading.
Remember that every translation is a little deficient in some ways, but still points towards one thing, Jesus Christ. There is an old saying that says “the translator is a traitor”. Not on purpose, but it is not easy to translate faithfully and still keep the original wording. In every translation you lose a little something from the original. Some are closer than others however.
I was raised on the King James Version and still read it as my main source of scripture. If you are just starting out or find it hard to understand all of the older style of language, then a newer translation like the New Living Translation or the Contemporary English Version may be more to your liking. Still yet, if you want the closest thing to the original Greek and Hebrew wording, an Interlinear Bible would be great. They are all good in their own ways, but some are more akin to your understanding, especially at different points in your Christian journey.
For most Christians, it is easier to start reading in the New Testament so that you gain an understanding of Jesus and His thoughts and actions. if you start in the Old Testament, especially around the Leviticus and Numbers areas, it tends to bog down and not flow very well due to it being deeper in history and details. That being said, once you gain more and more understanding of Jesus in the New Testament, the Old Testament is more understandable. The whole of scripture points towards Jesus Christ, and you can see Him in different situations in the Old Testament. Either way, get a Bible and read. Like the Apostle Paul said, all scripture is good for teaching, for correction and for training in righteousness.
Also, don’t worry about memorizing Bible verses. You will naturally pick up some verses that speak more clearly to you for a given situation. Instead, just focus on truly listening to what is contained in the Bible. If you wonder about God and what He has to say, then just start reading. You aren’t going to understand it all, but you’ve got to start somewhere. In fact, before even picking up the Bible, pray to God that He will help you really get what He has to tell you. He will help you, I promise. Who better to help you read the Bible than the one who wrote it?
If you are interested in somebody, you will want to know more and more about them. God loves you. He loves you so much that he sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross for you and your sins. Get interested in God. Your faith and understanding will grow the more that you listen to Him and read the Bible, the Holy Word of God.
God’s blessings to you.