The fact that there are so many English Bible translations is both a blessing and a problem. It is a blessing in that the Word of God is available to anyone who needs it in an easy-to-understand, accurate translation. It is a problem in that the different translations can create controversy and problems in
Bible studies, teaching situations, etc.
The differences between the translations can also be a subject of great division within the church body.
It is difficult to say which translation is the "best." "Best" would be determined by a combination of the translation method personally considered best and your interpretation of the textual data underlying your translation.
Best Known Translations
Courtesy of Bible Study Tools (https://www.biblestudytools.com/)
The ESV Bible is a relatively new Bible translation that combines word-for-word precision and accuracy with literary excellence, beauty, and readability.
The HCS is a highly readable, accurate translation written in modern English. It is published by Holman Bible Publishers, the oldest Bible publisher in America.
The KJV is the first version of Scripture authorized by the Protestant church and commissioned by England's King James I.
The Message is a paraphrase from the original languages written by Eugene, H. Peterson. The Message provides a fresh and unique Bible-reading experience.
The NAS is written in a formal style, but is more readable than the King James Version. It is highly respected as the most literal English translation of the Bible.
The NIV offers a balance between a word-for-word and thought-for-thought translation and is considered by many as a highly accurate and smooth-reading version of the Bible in modern English.
The NKJ is a modern language update of the original King James Version. It retains much of the traditional interpretation and sentence structure of the KJV.
Using modern English, the translators of the NLT focused on producing clarity in the meaning of the text rather than creating a literal, word-for-word equivalence. Their goal was to create a clear, readable translation while remaining faithful to the original texts.
The New Revised Standard is a popular translation that follows the traditions of the King James and Revised Standard Versions. It was written to preserve the best of the older versions while incorporating modern English.
New Testament Only