A Friend of Christ: NLTse Concern

Posted: 14th May 2007 by ElShaddai Edwards in Translation

Gary Zimmerli has posted on some concerns regarding the NLTse:

 “I have been recommending the new NLTse, and plan on continuing to do so. It’s a fine translation, easy-to-read, and gives you the Word quickly and clearly… as long as you don’t look too close.”

His concerns track with some of the notes I previously had made in comparing the NLTse and TNIV, where the latter’s more formal approach made it more familiar and comfortable to me. Actually the NLTse has been very fine in the Old Testament passages I’ve been comparing – it seems that there may be more translational issues in the New Testatment, or perhaps we’re just more familiar with those.

  1. gzimmy says:

    I appreciate the link, ElShaddai.

    I find it frustrating, because I really enjoy the easy read of the NLTse. I love knowing that if I point somebody in that direction, they won’t be misled by the translation, and overall I do trust Tyndale.

    But when I see things that don’t quite match the original languages, it makes me pause. And so I go to “Blue Letter Bible” and check out what the original Greek says.

    I agree with you, the TNIV is so similar to the NIV that I’m more comfortable with it.

  2. elshaddai says:

    I’m not familiar with the original languages, but there are verses where I’ve grown so accustomed to the traditional “Bible language” that the choice of alternate wordings in the NLTse throws me for a loop, even if the translation means the same. That makes it a great choice for someone new to the Bible, but maybe not a primary Bible for someone with more theological background. I’ll be very curious to compare the NLTse Reference Bible that hit the shelves earlier this month with the TNIV due out this fall.

    Ironically, as I’m coming from NASB roots, I’ve never really trusted the NIV, so leaning toward the TNIV is rather a bold step for me. I really wanted to like the HCSB as a more literal/formal translation and an alternative to the maligned ESV, but it’s left me somewhat indifferent in the Old Testament; maybe the NT will be better. When I feel “radical”, I dig out my old NEB.

  3. Brandon says:

    I, too, have read the HCSB and enjoy it greatly. I have yet to read the NLTse. I use primarily, right now, in my teaching and preaching, the TNIV. I have also been reading the ESV.

    When it is all said and done, the TNIV is usually where I camp out. Perhaps because it’s the most familiar, as I have been an NIV guy since I’ve become a Christian.