Responding to hundreds of complaints about proposed gender-related revisions to the New International Version, the International Bible Society (IBS) has canceled plans for all revisions—including those based on new archaeological findings and current biblical scholarship. "It is clear that the evangelical church said: Don't mess with our NIV. IBS has said: We hear you," says Steve Johnson, director of communication for IBS, which is based in Colorado Springs and holds the NIV copyright.
Meanwhile, IBS and Zondervan Publishing House in Grand Rapids, Michigan (which has exclusive publishing rights to the NIV), have asked the Evangelical Press Association (EPA) to investigate World magazine's reports on the now-scuttled revision.
The Asheville, North Carolina-based World, circulation 75,000, began a series of articles about an inclusive edition of the NIV with a March 29 cover story by assistant editor Susan Olasky, which called the proposed NIV "The Stealth Bible." World's inside headline referred to the possible NIV revision as a "Femme Fatale" and a "feminist seduction of the evangelical church."
Referring to the publication of an "inclusive version" of the NIV published exclusively for the British market by Hodder & Stoughton (now Hodder Headline), World alleged that the NIV was "quietly going gender neutral," which would "cloud the uniqueness of men and women."
Officials at both IBS and Zondervan say that World's reporting—especially the NIV cover story—may violate the first standard of EPA's code of ethics. That standard says Christian publications should be "characterized by sincerity, truthfulness, ...1