Why Crossway Stopped Translating the ESV

Last week, the Crossway board of directors and English Standard Version (ESV) Translation Oversight Committee announced that, after 17 years, it would be making no further revisions to the ESV translation.

“The decision now to create the permanent text of the ESV was made with equally great care—so that people who love the ESV Bible can have full confidence in the ESV, knowing that it will continue to be published as is, without being changed, for the rest of their lives, and for generations to come,” the publishers wrote in a statement. (Read CT’s story.)

What’s behind Crossway’s decision? Craig Blomberg, who has advised the translation teams of the ESV, New International Version, Holman Christian Study Bible, and New Living Translation in various capacities in his professional career, shared his insights on Quick to Listen this week.

“The ESV is produced by a publisher, and men on the committee, many of whom I know, are of the mindset that they want to foster confidence in the Bible as God’s Word,” said Blomberg, who is New Testament professor at Denver Seminary. “I don’t know to what extent the word has gotten around to media, publishers, general public, but when the ESV was first created, the committee continued to meet on a regular basis, as do other Bible translation committees, and made a number of comparatively minor changes and updates to what they believed were improved translations to various passages and then simply introduced them in the new printing without any publicity or any fanfare.”

Here’s Craig Blomberg, a New Testament professor at Denver Seminary, offering Morgan and Katelyn an inside scoop into the translation process, whether the number of translations serves or hinders the church, and what’s up with the dozens of Bibles tailored to moms, athletes, and small children.

Additional Reading

Craig Blomberg’s past contributions to Christianity Today

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Why Crossway Stopped Translating the ESV