CSB side-by-side Comparison

Posted by Aaron Lewendon  ·  Be the first to comment

In the final post of our series on the new CSB Bible, we compare its verses with four other Bible translations.

Bible Logos

We all know that the best way to find the perfect pair of shoes is to simply try them on. You see what fits above anything else. So, similarly, the best way to find which Bible translation Bible best suits you is to try each one out for size.

But who has the time to read the whole Bible in several times over before choosing one?

Here are some of the most popular Bible verses of all time, verses written on the hearts of millions believers the world over, presented in 5 different Bible translations - the Christian Standard Bible (CSB), New International Version (NIV), King James Version (KJV), New Living Translation (NLT), and English Standard Version (ESV).

John 3:16

Arguably, the most iconic verse of the whole Bible, this aphorism of God’s gift and Christ’s coming is a verse of hope for millions. These different translations each bring out in their own way. Some are direct into laying out their purpose, most notably the CSB which paints His gift of Jesus as the way due to it’s emphasising use of ‘in this way’.

[CSB] “For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

[NLT] “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

[KJV] “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

[NIV] For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

[ESV] “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”

Jerehmiah 29:11

Bringing comfort for the future, Jeremiah 29:11 inspires readers, and features a notable distinction between modern and classical translations. Aside from the KJV, all the verses end with both ‘hope’ and ‘future’, rather than ‘an expected end’ which can be an enigmatic notion to modern readers.

(Also, the KJV’s use of ‘thoughts of peace’, rather than ‘plans’, as used by all the others, is a fascinating starting point for those interested in the KJV’s theology.)

[CSB] “For I know the plans I have for you” ?— ?this is the Lord’s declaration ?— ?“plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

[NLT] “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

[KJV] “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”

[NIV] “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

[ESV] “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

Psalm 23:1-2

Whenever the Psalms are mentioned most people think of this pastoral Psalm of God’s protection. Note the uses of ‘want’ and ‘need’ between the translations. Such differences are both a great opening into discussions of the verse, and a route into finding which translation carries a greater resonance with you.

[CSB] “The Lord is my shepherd; I have what I need. He lets me lie down in green pastures”

[NLT] “The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows;”

[KJV] “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures”

[NIV] “The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures”

[ESV] “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures.”

Romans 12:12

The shortest verses can be as illuminating as the long, and stirring yet laconic verse of Romans 12:12 shows just that. Each translations contains several subtle changes that characterise the differences these translations embody.

[CSB] “Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer.”

[NLT] “Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.”

[KJV] “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;”

[NIV] “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”

[ESV] “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.”

Genesis 1:1

Ending with the beginning, the very first verse of the Bible is a poignant reminder that whatever the translation, there is only one ever message of God’s power and love for humanity that prevails throughout. There is one book, one story, and one God: the words may change but the message always remains.

[CSB] “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

[NLT] “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

[KJV] “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

[NIV] “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

[ESV] “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.”

The CSB Bible

For more information about the new CSB Bible, check out either our previous posts on what the CSB is & how it is different from previous traslations. 

6th April

April 6th, 2017 - Posted & Written by Aaron Lewendon

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