Best English Bible versions

Christianity / Bible / Modern translations

Best English Bible versions

First of all, there is no such translation. There are adherents of different versions of the Bible, claiming that this is he - the same translation that they were waiting for. However, it's great that someone has decided and is satisfied.

But here's what to do for us, for whom English is not a native language, but translations are huge, what should we choose?

For beginners, it's better to choose a translation for plain English and certainly not the classic KJV, written in obsolete English.


The sales rating is a good indicator. Figures are a stubborn thing. You can talk as much as you like about the popularity of the translation, but if you do not buy it, then you do not actually use it.

So, in recent years, most are buying NIV, NLV, KJV and NKJV. All of them alternately occupy the first place in sales. So most people choose these translations.


Among the Russian translations, the standard is the Synodal Bible. If the book uses Bible quotations and does not specify the version of the Bible, we know that these are quotes from the Synodal.

In English, this standard is KJV. There are many people who believe that this is the only correct translation. But this is not and can not be. When translating, something is necessarily lost, such is the specificity of the language.

Popular Versions

The popularity of KJV was said.

NIV - emphasis is placed on a laconic modern language without distorting the word. That is an extremely difficult task. There is a translation of Living Bible, which is not a translation, but a paraphrase (we have a similar translation - New Testament "The Word of Life"). NIV is very popular in Youth with Mission.

NASB is popular with teachers. When the original of the Bible describes something not categorically, it is not clear (allows variants), NASB also does not give a clear translation, unlike KJV or NIV. That is, NASB more accurately transmits the Word.

NLV - the most popular among foreigners is its simple English. This is the most popular translation in plain English.

Amplified Bible is an extended translation of the Bible, also popular with many, because it does not just translate, but interpret the text. What is convenient, no need for dictionaries, additional literature.

The Message. I can not help but mention. This is not a direct translation, but a retelling in modern, beautiful literary English. If you want to take a fresh look at the Bible, it will be very interesting.


It is clear that the places change periodically.

John 3:16-17 (or Genesis 1:1 for the OT)

The most common translations of the Bible in English

(On sales and popularity, the list is created from a number of sources)
  1. King James Version
  2. New International Version
  3. New American Standard Bible
  4. New King James Version
  5. English Standard Version
  6. New Living Translation
  7. Holman Christian Standard Bible
  8. New Revised Standard Version
  9. New Century Version
  10. New English Bible
  11. American Standard Version
  12. Good Safe Bible
  13. Today’s English Version
  14. Amplified Bible
  15. Today’s New International Version
  16. New English Translation
  17. Revised Standard Version
  18. Contemporary English Version
  19. God’s Word Translation (GW)
  20. Common English Bible
  21. Recovery Version of the Bible
  22. New International Reader’s Version
  23. Easy-To-Read Version
  24. Complete Jewish Bible
  25. Bible in Basic English
  26. 21st Century King James Version
  27. Modern King James Version
  28. Modern English Version
  29. World English Bible
  30. Revised English Bible (REB)
  31. Jerusalem Bible
  32. New American Bible
  33. The Living Bible
  34. The Message
  35. Young's Literal Translation
  36. The Bishops' Bible
  37. Douay-Rheims Version
  38. Tyndale Bible
  39. Geneva Bible
  40. The Voice

(Google's rating on the citation of Bible translations on the Internet)
  1. King James Version
  2. New International Version
  3. New Revised Standard Version
  4. English Standard Version
  5. New King James Version
  6. Revised Standard Version
  7. New American Standard Bible
  8. New Living Translation
  9. New American Bible
Much more often than all, KJV is cited, although in the 1990s it lost a little of its position from ~ 45% to ~ 33%, it keeps quite stable.
Quoting ESV is growing steadily.
Citation RSV on the contrary falls. The rest are kept exactly.