The Baptist, Functional Bible Translations
But Jesus answered them, "My Father has been working until now, and I, too, am working (Jon 5:17, KJV)."

There are several hundred translations of the Holy Bible, which could be good or bad depending on how you look at it. Have you ever wondered why so many translations and what the difference between them is? We did, so we decided to see what we could find out. There are four general types of Biblical translations; literal, paraphrase, thought-for-thought, and those that are a combination of these or just don't fit any particular category. We've tried our best to put the various translations in the proper category (difficult since a word-for-word translation is almost impossible), and for those that we were not able to categorize or that are poor translations we have an "Other" category. Please email us with your comments and, if you can, to fill in some of the blanks, as we'd like to be accurate. Below you'll see what are call "literal" translations of the Bible, although to be honest almost all of them are not. Greek and Hebrew do not directly translate into English, therefore a word-for-word translation is difficult to read and is almost nonsensical at times. Literal in this sense means as literal as possible and still be readable. There are various levels to this of course, so think carefully and pray before choosing your Bible. Each of these has a little something about the translation and how that translation depicts John 3:16 if we could find it. You'll also find a link to some information on the original texts used in translations and other information on our Bible Translation Information page. Please understand that we did not gather most of this information, and that it came from a variety of sources (with permission). Please let us know if you feel anything here is incorrect so we can check it out.

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1 American King James Version (AKJV) 27 Literal Translation of the Holy Bible, also known as Green’s Literal Translation (LITV) 
2 American Standard Version (ASV) 28 Matthew Bible (MB) 
3 Analytical-Literal Translation (ALT)  29 Modern King James Version (MKJV) 
4 Ancient Roots Translinear Bible (ARTB) 30 New American Standard Bible (NASB) 
5 The Apostles’ Bible (AB) 
6 AV7, The New Authorized Version
31 The New Authorized Version in Present-Day English (AV7) 
7 Beck’s American Translation (BECK) 32 New Cambridge Paragraph Bible (NCPB)
8 Bishops’ Bible, 1568 (Bishops)  33 New King James Version (NKJV) 
9 Brenton’s English Translation of the Septuagint  34 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
10 Cambridge Paragraph Bible (NCPB)  35 The Quaker Bible (QB) 
11 Challoner’s revision of the Douay-Rheims Bible  36 Recovery Version of the Bible (RcV)
12 The Common Edition New Testament (TCE)  37 Revised English Bible (REB)
13 The Complete Apostles’ Bible (CAB)  38 Revised Standard Version (RSV)
14 The Complete Jewish Bible (CJB) 39 Rotherham’s English Bible (REB) 
15 A Conservative Version (ACV)  40 Taverner’s Bible 
16 Darby Bible (DBY)  41 Third Millennium Bible 
17 Emphatic Diaglott  42 Thomson’s Translation 
18 English Majority Text Version (EMTV)  43 21st Century King James Version (KJ21) 
19 English Standard Version (ESV)  44 Tyndale Bible 
20 Geneva Bible, 1587 (GB)  45 Updated King James Version (UKJV) 
21 Great Bible or Great Byble (GB)  46 A Voice in the Wilderness Holy Scriptures 
22 Green’s Literal Translation, also known as Literal Translation of the Holy Bible (LITV)  47 Webster Bible, 1833 (WB) 
23 International Standard Version (ISV)  48 World English Bible (WEB) 
24 Julia E. Smith Parker Translation  49 Wuest Expanded Edition (WET) 
25 King James 2000 Version  50 Wyclif’s Bible 
26 King James Version (KJV) 51 Young’s Literal Translation, 1898 (YLT)

39. Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible (EBR) - For God so loved the world that his Only Begotten Son he gave -- that whosoever believeth on him might not perish but have life age-abiding.
With the New Testament first appearing in 1878 and the entire Bible in 1902, Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible (EBR to avoid confusion with the Revised English Bible REB) was produced by Joseph Bryant Rotherham, a Biblical scholar and minister of the Church of Christ. This translation attempted to add emphasis to bring out the underlying meaning of the original Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic, with the New Testament based on the Greek text of Westcott and Hort, and the Old Testament from the Masoretic Text.

40. Taverner’s Bible (RTB) - John 3:16 not available.
First published in 1539, the Taverner’s Bible was a minor revision of the Matthew Bible, which was translated from the Masoretic Text, the Textus Receptus, the Vulgate, the Luther Bible, and a French version of the scriptures.

41. Third Millennium Bible (TMB) - "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.
This translation is done in modern language by replacing the more archaic spelling and obsolete words with their modern equivalent from the newest Webster’s Dictionary. “Biblical” language has been retained however, and this translation includes the Apocrypha. First published in 1999, this translation is based on the 21st Century King James Version (KJ21), which is based on the King James Version (KJV), which was translated from the Masoretic Text and the Textus Receptus.

42. Thomson’s Translation (CTB) – John 3:16 not available.
First published in 1808 and the first American translation, this respected translation took Charles Thomson 19 years to complete, and was the first English translation using the Greek Septuagint. One especially interesting thing about this translation is that Charles Thomson was Secretary of the Continental Congress from 1774 to 1781, and Secretary of the United States Congress from 1781-1789, when he resigned to pursue his translation of the Holy Scriptures.

43. 21st Century King James Version (KJ21) - 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.
First published in 1991, the 21st Century King James Version (KJ21) was a minor revision of the King James Version (KJV). The KJ21 still retains some of the language of the KJV, but some words that are nonsensical to the modern reader are replaced. Also, more familiar passages of the Bible are formatted differently than less familiar passages. Another edition of the KJ21 was published without the unusual formatting and includes the Apocrypha. This translation is the Third Millennium Bible.

44. Tyndale Bible (WT) - John 3:16 not available.
The Tyndale Bible generally refers to the body of biblical translations by William Tyndale. The term Tyndale's Bible is not strictly correct, because Tyndale only translated the New Testament and about half the Old Testament. Of the latter, the Pentateuch and Jonah were published during his lifetime. His remaining Old Testament work was first used in the Matthew Bible and then in most subsequent versions. Tyndale used the Masoretic Text, the Textus Receptus, and the Vulgate as the source for his translations.

45. Updated King James Version (UKJV) - For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
First released online in 2004, this translation is an update to the King James Version (as the name itself implies), that seeks to make the language of the KJV less archaic. The KJV itself is translates from the Masoretic Text and the Textus Receptus. This translation in online only, and is in the Public Domain.

46. A Voice in the Wilderness Holy Scriptures - For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that everyone believing into Him should not perish but have eternal life.
A Voice In The Wilderness Holy Scriptures is a translation of the Holy Bible by Paul Becker that is based on the Masoretic Text and the Textus Receptus. A literal translation to the extent possible, this translation renders most references to "the LORD" in the Old Testament (the tetragrammaton YHWH) as Jehovah, except in some of the Psalms where it uses the shortened form Yah. Another distinction between this translation and others tend to be in the area of word useage, such as "immersion" for baptism, "do homage" for worship, and "shofar" for trumpet. References to hell are rendered as Sheol in the Old Testament, and as Hades, Gehenna, and Tartarus in the New Testament. This translation also renders all references to James in the New Testament as Jacob, even so that the book of James is called the book of Jacob. First published on the Internet in 2003, there have been at least two updates since then, with the latest being in 2006.

47. Webster Bible, 1833 (WB) - For God so loved the world, that he gave his only-begotten Son, that whoever believeth in him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Released by Noah Webster in 1833, it uses the King James Version (KJV) as a base,  which was translated from the Masoretic Text and the Textus Receptus. Webster consulted the Hebrew and Greek along with various other versions and commentaries. Webster molded the KJV to correct grammar, replaced words that were no longer used, and did away with words and phrases that could be seen as offensive.

48. World English Bible (WEB) - For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
A translation that is in the process of being finished and in the public domain with no copyright, the World English Bible (WEB) is based on the American Standard Version of the Holy Bible, the Biblia Hebraica Stutgartensa Old Testament, and the Greek Majority Text New Testament.

49. Wuest Expanded Translation (WET or KWE) – For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten (the One and Only) Son, that whosoever believes in Him (Jesus) shall not perish, but have (with God) everlasting life.
Translated by Professor Kenneth S. Wuest and published in 1961, the Wuest Expanded Translation is a literal New Testament translation which strictly follows the word order in the original Greek. One problem with this is that the translation can be difficult to read.

50. Wyclif’s Bible - For God louede so the world that he yaf his oon bigetun sone, that ech man that beliueth in him perische not, but haue euerlastynge lijf.
Wyclif's Bible is the name now given to a group of Bible translations into Middle English, that were made under the direction of, or at the instigation of, John Wycliffe. They appeared over a period from approximately 1382 to 1395. These Bible translations were the chief inspiration and chief cause of the Lollard movement, a pre-Reformation movement that rejected many of the distinctive teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

51. Young’s Literal Translation, 1898 (YLT) - for God did so love the world, that His Son--the only begotten--He gave, that every one who is believing in him may not perish, but may have life age-during.
The Literal Translation is unusual in that, as the name implies, it is a strictly literal word-for-word translation of the Masoretic Text and the Textus Receptus (to the extent possible). Translation made by Robert Young and originally published in 1862, He published a revised version in 1887, with another revised version published after his death in 1898.


Literal Bible Translations

Which Bible translation should I choose?

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