Fifteen minutes after the bookstore opened at the Christians for Biblical Equality conference near Minneapolis, vendors sold out of the New International Version, Inclusive Language Edition Bible (NIVI), unavailable for retail sale in North America.
"We are finding ways and means of bringing in the NIV Inclusive," said Catherine Clark Kroeger, founder of Christians for Biblical Equality (CBE), which celebrated its tenth anniversary during a three-day meeting on the campus of Bethel College. "Now that they can't have it, everybody wants it." In addition to buying out the bookstore of about 50 copies, nearly 100 people signed a protest letter to Lars Dunberg, president of the International Bible Society (IBS). The letter asked the society to allow licensed publishers to keep in print the NIVI and the NIV, Readers Version, both of which use inclusive language. Second, the letter asked for the IBS to resume "aggressive efforts to update the North American edition of the NIV with gender-accurate language."
The letter says, "As a Bible-believing, evangelical Christian, I urge IBS to stand firm in the midst of pressures from subgroups within the Christian community who would attempt to impress their specific social and theological agendas on Bible translation."
In June, IBS, under growing pressure, announced that it was abandoning efforts to produce for the North American market an updated NIV (CT, July 14, 1997, p. 62). The version would have used inclusive language that translates gender-specific terms from the Greek and Hebrew into inclusive-language equivalents in English. For example, he or man may translated as you, we, or they in instances where the translators believe it is warranted. ...1
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