I would say choose whichever translation you find comfortable to read (NAS or NIV flow nicely) then get a literal bible like Youngs and a concordance. You can then correct with pen in the copy you are comfortable with. They also make side by side Bibles with multiple version in it.
What is now the most accurate Bible to buy??
I'll stick to the KJ. I have been comparing Bibles for years and I will find words translated in other versions that I don't like at all. For instance other versians will change the fact that Mary was a virgen to Mary was a maiden. Maiden meaning unmarried woman, virgin or not.
I tried SDA, Seventh Day Adventists. They are just an offshoot of the WTBTS that stopped declaring the end of the world. This statement is incorrect. The JW's are an offshoot of the Adventist movement
This statement is incorrect. The JWs are an offshoot of the Adventist movement, not vice versa.
I am glad you are in a Calvary Chapel. They are a great movement, and have definitely impacted the world.
I have 3 favorite translations.
The Nelson Study Bible is the New King James Version, and is excellent for
cross references and study information.
The New American Standard Version is one of the most accurate, using
the most recent finds in old manuscripts.
The New Jerusalem is my favorite for just reading.
Also, read others as well. You may like another one better for yourself.
Just avoid the New World Translation. It's a poor excuse for a Bible.
As far as a Church to attend, take up the matter in prayer.
As a heads up, the Seventh Day Adventists share a common beginning with JW's with the
1840's teachings of William Miller, concerning predicting end times.
One sign of a good church is one that is founded on prayer and is free from rules which go beyond the Scriptures.
there is no 100% accurate English translation. you'll need to learn Greek, Aramaic and Hebrew and then get your hands on the original scrolls to be 100% sure.
You should get a few different ones for your library. To this add some of the CD-ROM collections that are out there. I found one for like 10 bucks that includes a number of bible translations and commentaries. Then there are many that are online, bookmark those.
Take all of those and compare the different versions whenever you want to figure out something in particular. If possible read some commentaries too.
If you really want to delve into it consult some concordances and Greek and Hebrew lexicons.
Pretty much everything is commented upon on the Internet so you can always Google it up too.
After all of that you will have as good of an understanding as is reasonable short of really getting scholarly.
By the way, it wouldn't hurt to learn about how the Bible Canon came about, read some of Bart Erhman's and others' books, learn about the Documentary Hypothesis, and learn some of the history of the translations and how they were done. Knowing something about the Manuscripts used by the translators is helpful too.
Pray about your understanding too.
For pure reading pleasure that is subjective. Some like reading Chaucery Old English style stuff and others want a modern take, even one of the politically correct sterilized of all patriarchal, gender-blind, versions of the bible. To each his own.
Jaredg, not sure if you were just kidding or not, but there are NO original scrolls extant. There is not a single original manuscript or even 1st generation copy of any of the Hebrew or Christian Greek scriptures available to us that were written by the original authors/writers/redactors.
the politically correct sterilized of all patriarchal, gender-blind, versions of the bible
LOL. That was so well put.
Thr reason why we are unable to give a categorical or outrightly dogmatic answer to the question of Bible translations is because a translation serves at least three different purposes, and the reader will need to assess for himself/herself what he/she is looking for.
Imagine a triangle with the words "readability" "accuracy" and "comprehension" at each of the points. Somewhere in the centre of the triangle is an invisible spot that all translations are trying unsucessfully to reach. If you are reading an "accurate" translation, ie one that is striving to tell you literally what the text is actually saying, you will find that readability, and consequently, comprehension suffer. The same goes for the other points. The more readable a translation is, the less accurate it tends to be.
A good gauge to measure a translation is to read how they have rendered the first seven verses of Rom ch 1. This is one long sentence with eight verbs and the corresponding number of clauses. The more you strive to bring out an "accurate" version, literally, word-for-word, the more readability is going to suffer, and correspondingly, one will have difficulty in understanding what the point is that Paul is trying to make. In order to make it readable, translators break down this one long sentence into smaller sentences, [as do the NIV, CEV, ]. It now becomes readable, but does not convey the complexity of Paul's introduction. To balance this, "comprehension" versions try to paraphrase the words, adding verbs that are not there, and removing some that are. Now not only is it readable, but comprehension, is increased, but then accuracy suffers. If, for instance you are tracing a certain verb, or noun, that Paul is using in his letters, this becomes impossible.
So which version? Depends. Depends on what you are looking for in a translation. Probably, because there is no one Bible that combines all three elements of Bible translation, it would be wisest to invest in several.
For literalness: New American Standard. The WEB translation, this is free internet translation available for download at esword.com it is a revision of the American Standard Version of 1901, and which, because it used "Jehovah"in the OT was widely distributed by the WTS. The revision now uses the more accurate "Yahweh" Youngs Literal version, probably the most literal version on the market today [but then almost impossible to read] Concordant Literal version, KJV [in Aust and commonwealth countries called the Authorized Version] NKJV. Any interlinear, either of the OT or the New. Chas. B Williams is a NT translation that tries to bring out a consistency of verb forms. Prof Kenneth Wuerst has a NT version, that tries to do this as well, but extends literalness to all language forms, nouns, adjectives etc. Another literal version also available free on the internet, is the Analylical Lit NT by seminary graduate Gary Zeolla.
For readability: NIV, RSV, NRSV [a revision of the RSV, but not as good as the original, in my opinion] Darby Version. A genuine scholar, Nelson Darby of the Brethren Church, learned 12 seperate languages including three of the Biblcal ones [Greek, Heb, Chaldee] His translation was made by him into English, French, and German.The Jerusalem Bible [an RC version], the revision, the New Jerusalem is now on the market. Byington [this was done by Stephen Byington a maverick from Andover Bible College, noted for its "liberal" scholarsticism. It is published exclusively by the WTS, who I believe, have allowed it to go out of print.] The NET Bible. This is also a free Bible available for download at Bible.org
For paraphrase: The Message, CEV, NLT, Knox [An RC version] 20th Cent version. Weymouth NT. JB Phillips NT. Barclays NT. New American [also an RC version]
The thing to ensure is that the translator[s] is[are] someone who has a deep love and respect for the Bible as the Word of God, as is not attempting to push some private agenda
Personally, I like variety. I think new translations can open up new thoughts and way of looking at old stories.
Scholars on this board have highly recommended the New Jerusalem Bible http://www.bible-researcher.com/new-jerusalem-bible.html
please research the 7th day adventists before you visit them. I think you will find they are judgemental finatics with a whole new set of black and white rules you must follow to gain salvation!