I actually use several different translations in the course, and I don’t really have a favorite. My everyday Bible is King James, but I also like the readability of the NLT.
The important thing to understand is that no English translation will really do the original message justice. You have to understand 1) the culture, and 2) the original languages to really get the full context. Fortunately, there’s some great digital tools for this like Logos and Accordance that allow you look up the original Greek or Hebrew word in the Strong’s.
Let me give a quick example of why this is important…
There are actually several words in the Bible for what we would call “love”:
- Eros - sexual/erotic love
- Phileo - brotherly love
- Agape - perfect love (God’s kind of love)
So when you read a passage and you see the word “love” in English, it’s worth digging in to understand, “does it mean phileo or agape?”
Now, that doesn’t mean I’m doing deep word studies every day that I read my Bible. But it does mean that I know I’ve got more work to do if I really want to understand what a passage is really saying.