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What is the Good News Bible (GNB) / Today's English Version (TEV)?

Good News Bible, GNB, Today's English Version, TEV

Question: "What is the Good News Bible (GNB) / Today's English Version (TEV)?"

Good News Bible - History

The Good News Bible, also known as the Good News Translation and Today’s English Version, was first published as a full Bible in 1976 by the American Bible Society as a “common language” Bible. It was conceived because of a need in Africa and the Far East for a version of the Bible that was friendly to non-native English speakers. In 1979, the Apocryphal/Deuterocanonical Books were added to the Good News Bible and published as Good News Bible: Today's English Version with Deuterocanonicals/Apocrypha. In 1992, the translation was revised with inclusive language. It is described by the publishers as a clear and simple modern translation that is faithful to the original Hebrew, Koine Greek, and Aramaic texts.

Good News Bible - Translation method
The translation style of the Good News Bible is dynamic equivalence. That is, the meaning of the Hebrew and Greek is expressed in a "thought for thought" translation rather than "word for word." The GNB is written in a simple, everyday language, with the intention that everyone can appreciate it, and so is often considered particularly suitable for children and for those learning English. Included in the Good News Bible are introductions to each book of the Bible.

Good News Bible - Pro’s and Con’s
Overall, the Good News Bible / Today's English Version is a very good and accurate translation. It is easy to read and uses understandable modern English. If it has a general flaw, it does seem that the GNB is a little too dynamic in places, causing some of its renderings to be significantly different from what is said in the original languages. There is one particularly poor translation, however: "What the Law could not do, because human nature was weak, God did. He condemned sin in human nature by sending his own Son, who came with a nature like man's sinful nature, to do away with sin" (Romans 8:3). Romans 8:3 in the GNB/TEV essentially says that Jesus had a sinful nature, which obviously goes against many other Scriptures in the New Testament, even within the Good News Bible itself.

Good News Bible - Sample Verses
John 1:1, 14 – “In the beginning the Word already existed; the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word became a human being and, full of grace and truth, lived among us. We saw his glory, the glory which he received as the Father's only Son.”

John 3:16 – “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not die but have eternal life.”

John 8:58 – “‘I am telling you the truth,’ Jesus replied. ‘Before Abraham was born, I Am.’”

Ephesians 2:8-9 – “For it is by God's grace that you have been saved through faith. It is not the result of your own efforts, but God's gift, so that no one can boast about it.”

Titus 2:13 – “as we wait for the blessed Day we hope for, when the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ will appear.”

Recommended Resources: How to Choose a Translation for All Its Worth: A Guide to Understanding and Using Bible Versions by Gordon D. Fee & Mark L. Strauss and Logos Bible Software.


Related Topics:

Textual criticism - what is it?

Why are there so many Bible translations, and which is the best?

How does the translation process impact the inspiration, inerrancy, and infallibility of the Bible?

KJV Only movement? Is the King James Version the only Bible we should use?

What is the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)?



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What is the Good News Bible (GNB) / Today's English Version (TEV)?