Posted by: St. Mark Lutheran Church | April 6, 2011

Bible Translation Revision

In November 2010 Zondervan Publishing House released a new edition of the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible.  This revision is meant to replace the current version of the NIV, last revised in 1984.  For the sake of discussion, the new NIV is called either NIV2010 or NIV 2011, the current NIV is referred to as NIV1984.

Since the 1980s, the Wisconsin Synod has used NIV1984 as its translation of choice for synodical publications.  This does not make it our “official” or “synodical” translation.  Some congregations in our Synod use other translations, like the King James (KJV) or Beck (AAT).

Normally, this wouldn’t be an enormous situation, except Zondervan has decreed that that after 2013, the NIV1984 will no longer be available to buy.  This, also, would not be the biggest deal (at least, immediately).  Except also linked to that, is that in 2013, at least for the Wisconsin Synod, as of right now, the NIV1984 can not even be used in our publications.  Zondervan has decided to not allow anyone to have the rights to use NIV1984 (in hymnals, books, pre-printed bulletins, etc.).

This situation means that the Wisconsin Synod has to decide if it will move forward with the NIV2010/11, or with another translation. Since the new NIV was released, a committee has been studying it.  This committee will be reporting some of the results of its study to circuits, conferences, and districts this spring and early summer before reporting to the Synod meeting in Convention.  Individual pastors, teachers, and Christians, along with circuits, conferences, and districts will also be studying the new NIV along with other translations to determine what is the best direction to take.

Linked here are some articles and reports from various WELS entities (the Committee, professors, etc.) on the work being done and progress being made.

At St. Mark, we are also endeavoring to study this new version of the NIV.  Copies are available for members to ready and compare to NIV1984 and other translations.  The pastor, elders, and Sunday School teachers are also studying it.


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