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1.  OT = Written in Hebrew                              Septuagint (LXX)=OT translated into Greek around 250bc

     NT = Written in Greek


2.  OT translated from Hebrew into Greek about 250 BC by 70 men in Egypt from Israel, known as the Septuagint.  Jesus probably used this Greek version of the Old Testament.


3.  The next common language, after Greek, was Latin.  There were many versions and parts of the Bible available, but no common, accepted, or complete translation.  Jerome (400 AD) was commissioned by the Pope to translate the entire Bible from Hebrew and Greek.  The final version only included the apocryphal OT books after his death—he did not even finish translating them because they were not a part of the Hebrew Bible.  This version becomes the accepted version of the Bible by 700 AD, known as Jermome’s Latin Vulgate (modern version is the 1592 revision.)


4.  By the late middle ages there are many common languages.  The French are the only ones to have a Bible in their own tongue.  John Wycliffe (1350 AD) translates Bible into English from the Latin Vulgate.  Many other languages have only parts of the Bible translated.  At this time church leaders have forbidden translation of the Bible into the common language.


5.  Greek Versions of NT

            1516 (and 1522) Erasmus’ Greek New Testament—this is a major breakthrough because of the                                    use of the printing press to publish his version of the Greek NT for the very first time!  The                         stage is set and this Greek NT becomes the accepted Greek authority (Textus Receptus) of                         the NT.  (Although, Erasmus uses only a few available manuscripts that are not the

                        most reliable or accurate versions of the Greek Bible.)

            1881 Westcott and Hort New Testament in the Original Greek uses more reliable Greek                                                 manuscripts.

            1927 Nestle Novum Testamentum Graece (13th ed.).  Followed by 1957 23th ed.; 1963 25th ed.

                        Changed to Nestle-Aland in 1979 26th ed., with text significantly changed.

            1983 UBS Greek New Testament (3rd ed.).  Same text as Nestle-Aland 1979 26th ed.

            1982 The Greek NT According to the Majority Text


6.  Luther (1521) translates NT into German from Erasmus’s Greek NT, others do the same into French, Polish, Dutch, and English (William Tyndale, The Geneva Bible).



7. King James of England commissions a group of scholars to translate the Bible from Greek and Hebrew into English, now known as the Authorized KJV 1611 (it included the Apocrypha).  Based on the 1516 and 1522 Greek NT printed by Erasmus and Tyndale’s English translation.

            Revisions followed (generally not including the Apocrypha):

                        1769 KJV (Not official or ‘authorized,’ but accepted with 75,000 changes made, used in                                                         today’s current 1611 Authorized KJV printings)

                        1881 ERV (The English (British) revision, first version in paragraph form, used additional                                            Greek Manuscripts (Westcott and Hort), published entire NT in Chicago Times, OT

                                           ERV published in 1885)

                        1901 ASV  (The American revision based on the 1881 ERV)

                        1952 RSV  (A combination of the ERV and the ASV, generally followed 17th ed. of Nestle                                                     text., Revised in 1971)

                        1965 The Amplified Bible (A revision of the ASV, based on modern (critical) Greek                                                                                         manuscripts, with commentary) 

                        1971 NASB (A revision of the 1901 ASV, also using a modern (critical) Greek text—the                                                            Nestle 23rd ed.  Updated in 1995)

                        1971 Living Bible (By one person, based on 1901 ASV)

                        1982 NKJV (1979 NT is published.  A reworking of the 1611 Authorized KJV using no                                                            modern Greek manuscripts, so this means it is based on Erasmus’ 1516 NT,

                                             known as the Received Text or Majority Text type.)

                        1990 NRSV (Revision of 1952 RSV but based on the USB Greek NT 3rd ed. with Bruce                                                           Metzger et. al. as chief editor.)

                        2001 ESV  (A revision of the RSV with the goal of being a middle ground between the                                                            NASB and the NIV thinking the former too literal and the latter too idiomatic.                                                      J.I. Packer and Wayne Grudem as ed.) 


  Conclusion on modern KJV ‘versions’: NASB is in MSS competition with NKJV


8. Other Modern English Translations:  (one person vs. group; Catholic translations from Latin)

           1978 NIV (1973 NT is published.  Over 100 evangelical scholars from different countries.  Up

                              to a Middle School reading level.  The most thorough and systematic translation

                              since the 1611 KJV.  It is in fact, not a revision of any of the historic English versions, but a

                              true ‘new’ translation from the original Hebrew and Greek. A mix of literal and

                              paraphrased translations.  They did for the first time, unfortunately, leave ut the literary

                              italic pointer to words not actually in the Greek or Hebrew text (John 7:39).  2011

                              revision uses gender neutral language and has mixed reviews by conservative evangelicals.)

            2002 The Message (1993 NT is published.  Done by one person: Eugene Peterson) 

            2004 HCSB (The Holman Christian Standard Bible is largely a Southern Baptist translation

                                 based on modern Greek texts.  Though it does include a few translators from other


            2011 ISV (A fresh translation done by a very small committee of highly skilled and conservative          



9. What I use when I study:   NIV



                                                 1901 ASV                                          




10. Resources:     

       Great source on versions of the Bible

       Interlinear Greek and Hebrew free downloadable software

       Online source of Greek and Hebrew included parsing.

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