We’re excited to announce a unique addition to our library of Bible translations: the New Testament for Everyone!
On the surface, the New Testament for Everyone might seem similar to many other recent Bible translations: it renders the original Greek in easily readable modern English, aiming for both accuracy and accessibility. But what makes the New Testament for Everyone unique is that it was translated by single person—the respected theologian Tom Wright (also known as N. T. Wright)—rather than by a committee. Wright’s translation reflects his influential view and understanding of the New Testament.
Translation committees aren’t a bad thing (far from it!), but in this case, Wright’s approach allows him to focus in on specific translation questions that are especially important to him. One such area is the way that Bible passages connect to each other; the New Testament for Everyone smooths out transitions between Bible passages with the goal of making the text flow more naturally for modern readers. The translation itself remains fully faithful to the original Greek. The end result of Wright’s work is a Bible translation that is easy to read and understand, without sacrificing accuracy.
Wright’s motive for creating this new translation isn’t to “fix” or correct other translations, but to simply engage with the Bible the way that past generations have. “Translating the New Testament is something that each generation ought to be doing,” he writes in the preface. “Just as Jesus taught us to pray for our daily bread, we can never simply live on yesterday’s bread, on the interpretations and translations of previous generations.”
To give you a sense for how the New Testament for Everyone reads, here’s how it renders an excerpt from Romans 8:
So, therefore, there is no condemnation for those in the Messiah, Jesus! Why not? Because the law of the spirit of life in the Messiah, Jesus, released you from the law of sin and death.
For God has done what the law (being weak because of human flesh) was incapable of doing. God sent his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and as a sin-offering; and, right there in the flesh, he condemned sin. This was in order that the right and proper verdict of the law could be fulfilled in us, as we live not according to the flesh but according to the spirit.
Look at it like this. People whose lives are determined by human flesh focus their minds on matters to do with the flesh, but people whose lives are determined by the spirit focus their minds on matters to do with the spirit. Focus the mind on the flesh, and you’ll die; but focus it on the spirit, and you’ll have life, and peace. The mind focused on the flesh, you see, is hostile to God. It doesn’t submit to God’s law; in fact, it can’t. Those who are determined by the flesh can’t please God.
But you’re not people of flesh; you’re people of the spirit (if indeed God’s spirit lives within you; note that anyone who doesn’t have the spirit of the Messiah doesn’t belong to him). But if the Messiah is in you, the body is indeed dead because of sin, but the spirit is life because of covenant justice. So, then, if the spirit of the one who raised Jesus from the dead lives within you, the one who raised the Messiah from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies, too, through his spirit who lives within you. — Romans 8:1-11
You can start reading the New Testament for Everyone by clicking here, and you can also access it in the drop-down menu at the top of BibleGateway.com. You might find it useful to use Bible Gateway’s side-by-side Bible view to see how the New Testament for Everyone compares to your favorite Bible translation. If you’re interested in Wright’s theology and approach to the Bible, he’s published a comprehensive and well-received series of Bible study books which go along nicely with this New Testament translation. That series, also called New Testament for Everyone, is available in print at the Bible Gateway store.
We think that the New Testament for Everyone brings something valuable and unique to Bible Gateway’s library, and we hope that you’ll find it a useful addition to your personal Bible reading and study. We’re grateful to the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge for making it available on Bible Gateway.
Pictured: N. T. (Tom) Wright, scholar and theologian (and translator of the New Testament for Everyone).