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What is the New Century Version (NCV)?

New Century Version, NCV

Question: "What is the New Century Version (NCV)?"

New Century Version – History
The New Century Version of the Bible is a revision of the International Children's Bible, which was aimed at young readers and those with low English reading and vocabulary skills. The ICB is written at a 3rd-grade level and is both conservative and evangelical in tone. The ICB was revised somewhat to be a bit more sophisticated (reading level grade 5) and was dubbed the New Century Version. This revised version was first published in 1991. Recently, the NCV text was combined with notes containing advice on teenage issues to form The Youth Bible and was updated in 2007. Thomas Nelson also publishes a version called NCV Clean, which contains the New Testament plus the books of Psalms and Proverbs.

New Century Version – Translation Method
According to Thomas Nelson, Inc., the publisher of the New Century Version, the translation process of the NCV was guided by a commitment to be faithful to the manuscripts in the original languages. A team composed of the World Bible Translation Center and fifty additional, highly qualified and experienced Bible scholars and translators was assembled. The team included people with translation experience on such accepted versions as the New International Version, the New American Standard Bible, and the New King James Version. The most recent scholarship and the best available Hebrew and Greek texts were used, principally the third edition of the United Bible Societies’ Greek text and the latest edition of the Biblia Hebraica, along with the Septuagint.

New Century Version – Pro’s and Con’s
The fact that the New Century Version is a revision of a Bible translation that was designed for children has likely hindered its acceptance among adults. While there is nothing "childish" about the NCV, and while there is nothing wrong with an adult reading a Bible that was designed for children, the stigma remains. Overall, the New Century Version is an excellent Bible translation, with a good balance of dynamic and formal equivalence.

New Century Version – Sample Verses
John 1:1, 14 – “In the beginning there was the Word. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word became a human and lived among us. We saw his glory—the glory that belongs to the only Son of the Father—and he was full of grace and truth.”

John 3:16 – “God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him may not be lost, but have eternal life.”

John 8:58 – “Jesus answered, ‘I tell you the truth, before Abraham was even born, I am!’”

Ephesians 2:8-9 – “I mean that you have been saved by grace through believing. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. It was not the result of your own efforts, so you cannot brag about it.”

Titus 2:13 – “We should live like that while we wait for our great hope and the coming of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ.”

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:

What is the Easy-To-Read Version (ERV)?

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

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

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

Should I use a paraphrase of the Bible?



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What is the New Century Version (NCV)?