Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Flirting With NLT

Today the pastor flirted
With a little NLT.
It made the sermon real;
It spoke so much to me.

But then he shifted back
To old favorite: NIV.
The pastor ended up
Explaining words to me.

Why explain God's Word
When the explanation's here--
Waiting to be read
From NLT, the Truth made clear?


Joe Blackmon said...

The NLT, it's just junk
"Translated from Greek", that's just bunk
Joul Osteen likes it, and he's just a punk
The NASB, now that's a slam dunk

I'm sorry. I really mean no offense. I mean, I do loathe the NLT but if you read it I'm not saying that's a problem. I just like writing short rhymes and I couldn't resist.

R. Mansfield said...
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R. Mansfield said...

Joe, if you happened to see my deleted comment, I want to apologize. I admit that I can be overprotective when it comes to my wife sometimes.

I would suggest however that it's okay to appreciate one version of the Bible without putting down other versions. I really like the NASB, too, but if I wanted to start picking it apart, I could easily do so.

Instead, I'd encourage you to read a couple of my posts:
My review of the NLT
Rise of the NLT

Wayne Leman said...
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Wayne Leman said...

Thank you for your thoughtful poem.
I totally agree.
I want a Bible to be written
in language used by me.

I have linked to your poem, Kathy.

Wayne Leman said...

Joe, I am a career Bible translator. I carefully study English Bible versions. I can assure you that the NLT is not at all "junk." It is one of the best English Bible versions ever produced. It is written in current English, which is a requirement for any Bible translation, that it be written in the current language of the people for whom it is produced.

goulablogger said...

This would be NLT 1, wouldn't it, not NLT2 or NLT2.5?

Of course, since I use the internet beta- tested NET, I wonder what version number my bible would actually be on?

Chuck Grantham

Juan Martinez said...
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Kathy Mansfield said...

@Wayne, Thanks for linking to my post!

@Goulablogger:Always NLT1!

J. L. Watts said...

Kathy - excellent ditty.

You are right about the NLT. Of course, for many of the hard time KJV'ers, they refuse to explain anything simply relying upon what the text says. In other words, when words become outdated - they simply use the modern definitions.

The NASB still has a committee feel - but the NLT is like a voice.

Kevin said...

I love the NLT and use it along with my TNIV and ESV.
Thanks for Rick's link to this and I have added your blog Kathy to my favorites now.

Joe Blackmon said...

Um, guys, it was a joke. Joke?? You know, like, joke? It wasn't meant to be taken seriously. If someone wants to use the NLT, bully for them. I mean, would I recommend it? Nope. But as far as I'm concerned as long as your Bible doesn't say "...as edited by the prophet Joseph Smith..." or "Published by the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society" you're probably ok.

Boy, I'm glad I didn't ask if the NLT Study Bible came with a big 8 back of oversized crayons. Ok, that too was a joke and not intended to be taken seriously.

My final word on the matter: If you want to use the NLT as the Bible you use to study, I'm all for it. AND I would never recommend someone change Bible versions if they were comfortable with the one they used.

Elizabeth said...

I loved this Kathy! I am not a theologian so it is just "fyi".

Craig said...

Great post

Curt Parton said...

As someone who taught for years from the NIV but is now using the NLT, I know exactly what you mean, Kathy. I have been amazed at how clear the NLT is, and how I can zero right in to the actual point of the passage, rather than first explaining what the translation means. I still love the TNIV, but the clarity of the NLT has been a tremendous tool in my teaching. Of course, you expressed that a lot more creatively than I did!

Anonymous said...

Hi All

I too love the NLT. However, I prefer the NIV. What, in your opinion, makes the NLT better than the NIV? I am not quite convinced to completely switch over to the NLT. Perhaps you can convince me!


Curt Parton said...

Hi Sharon,

Because translations often have very different intended uses and purposes, I would hesitate to say that one is generally "better" than another. I evaluated the NLT for my specific purpose of teaching (and teaching in the specific context of my local church).

Because of a frustration with the lack of support for the TNIV, and also due to hearing appreciative reviews of the NLT by people I respected, I decided to check out the NLT (Second Edition). Since we were using the TNIV, I compared the two chapter-by-chapter through the entire NT and much of the OT. I was blown away by the clarity of the NLT! And I was impressed that it communicated the meaning of the text so clearly without sacrificing accuracy. In fact, in many passages, I would suggest that the NLT is actually more accurate because it more clearly communicates the real meaning of the passage.

This doesn't mean that I agree with every reading. As with any translation, there are going to be translational choices that we agree with and those that we don't. (Although I've learned to not put myself in the place of the expert by declaring some readings "wrong!") But over and over again I've been delighted by the way the NLT conveys the flow of thought in the passage in a very understandable way. I love the TNIV, but there are just many passages where I had to spend time explaining what the wording meant (not the meaning of the passage). I love the way the NLT eliminates most of that confusion by simply translating the text the way people today actually speak!

I was so enthused that I not only wanted to start teaching from the NLT [I'm the primary teaching pastor of our church], but I wanted to make the translation available for our people as an option for their personal reading and study. And we've received a lot of positive feedback from the people, some telling us that they're really understanding the Bible for themselves for the first time.

For what it's worth, that's my experience. Hope it helps!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Kurt

You are right about the NLT being so clear. That is what makes me not trust it all the way. I know it sounds crazy, but it reads too modern! I do like it, but I feel that at this point I can only use it as a supplement. You were very nice to post. Thank you.


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