Something I’ve discovered in the last couple of years is how to get more out of my Bible reading time. When I do full on, hard core Bible study, I usually stick with the New International Version. I love the NIV! I’ve been using it faithfully for 20+ years. For a while I was truly enamored with the New American Standard Bible translation. It’s one of the closest translations of the original Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic texts. For me, it got a little daunting and I returned to the NIV.
The problem I encountered during my more private, quiet times with the Bible is that I had a terrible habit of just reading over the verses and not letting them sink in. For me, reading the same thing for such a long period of time gave me too much familiarity with the text. About the time I was really struggling with this, my husband bought a One Year Bible using The Message translation. I know, I know . . . . . I had a few issues with The Message, too. Mostly they were issues I was told to have from other’s points of view. I decided one day to pick it up and read a little for myself.
Yeah. That was the day my world was rocked in a very good way. The Message is amazing. If you, too, have issues with it, I’d ask you to read this post from Melissa Fitzpatrick. Her mother, Beth Moore, posted Melissa’s answer to a question someone had about the validity of The Message. Melissa is a Bible scholar . . . . one undergrad and two graduate degrees in all things Bible. I take her viewpoint very seriously because she has the training I don’t.
Fast forward a year or so and I am more in love with God’s word than ever. I have been reading through the New Testament and, well, there aren’t words for it. The book of Philippians in The Message alone was enough to chew on for months.
You can take a test drive of sorts with The Message. BibleGateway is a free, online resource that has dozens of translations of the Bible. You could read the entire Message online for free if you were so inclined.
So, reading a new version of the Bible to get more out of God’s word works for me!!! Join the Works for me Wednesday fun at We Are That Family.