Best Bible For Beginners (Top 4) – And More!

  • By: Brian Sloan
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If you are just starting out on your spiritual journey, or if you are looking for a new bible to read, then you may be wondering what is the best Bible for beginners. There are many different versions of the Bible available, and it can be difficult to decide which one to choose. In this blog post, we will discuss the top 4 best bibles for beginners. Why the top 4? Well, that’s just the number we landed on. Certainly, there are others. We will also provide a brief overview of each version and explain why it is a good choice for beginners or new believers.

Many believe that the New International Version (NIV) is perhaps the top all-around best bible for beginners. It is a very readable, modern English version that has been popular for some time. It is highly recommended and has largely become a favorite in many churches and denominations.

However, there are so many other modern translations to look at today. Keep in mind that this post is not about what we think is the best all-around Bible translation or the best Bible in general.

We are seeking the best Bible for beginners for those who might be new Christians, young in the faith, and need Bible translations that are easier to understand. It’s important that you read and understand God’s word and immerse yourself into Biblical teachings as much as you can. As you progress as a Christian you might move to a Bible version that is quite different than a Bible we might recommend for a beginner.

It’s not easy, nor an exact science to firmly state what is the best Bible version for anyone really. We just want to encourage you in your scripture reading as you learn the Biblical narrative, the perfection of God’s character, and how to apply Biblical truth, insights, and practical tips to encourage you in your Christian living.

God’s Word

“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17

The passage above encourages us about the purpose of God’s word. To read and study about the One True God is not simply about reading the Old or New Testament to simply attain knowledge, but to encourage, prepare, and equip new believers and also those who have been involved in scripture reading and Christian living for many years.

Recommending Accurate Versions For New Believers

Although there are all sorts of choices, we would not recommend a particular Bible that is not accurate as you begin your Bible reading. Nor, would we recommend any Bible translations in which we were not confident.

Differing Bible versions will use various wording of an individual word or passage. However, we believe that the general meaning should remain the same. At LivingPraying.com we believe that this generation is blessed to have many good bible translations. There are quite a few options when looking for the best bible for beginners.

While there are plenty of debates about which versions are the most accurate, we will only refer you to those that we believe are very accurate and will provide you with great opportunities for spiritual growth.

top 4 best bibles for beginners

Pick One and Get Started!

Yes, we are glad that there are many choices in Bible versions today. There are Bibles for men, and Bibles for women. However, don’t get caught in the weeds in selecting one.

Get any of the top versions and begin to read and feed yourself spiritually. Reading scripture, meditating on it, and praying will provide you with so much help in your life as you develop your spiritual walk.

Don’t look at any of these bibles as some kind of huge Christian to-do list. That’s just not the case. Many have called it a love letter from God. Yes, it can be that, but it is so much more. It can provide you with encouragement, the direction in life, help with decision making, and above all, help you learn and grow an intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. What is the best bible for beginners?

Top Bible Versions

First, we will provide some recommendations for the top Bible versions. Later on in this post, we will drill down and provide you with recommendations for specific Bibles for beginners or those who may be new to the Christian faith.

There are many different versions of the bible available, but which one is right for you? We will cover the 4 best bible translations for beginners as we see them from our perspective. Keep in mind that this post is not about what we think is the best all-around Bible translation or the best Bible in general.

So, we are talking about some of the best Bibles for those who might be new Christians, young in the faith, and using Bible translations that are easier to understand. As you progress as a Christian you might move to a Bible version that is quite different than a Bible we might recommend for a beginner.

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That doesn’t at all mean that we will recommend a particular Bible that is not accurate. Differing Bible versions will use various wording of an individual word or passage. However, we believe that the general meaning should remain the same.

At LivingPraying.com we believe that this generation is blessed to have many good bible translations. While there are plenty of debates about which versions are the most accurate, we will only refer you to those that we believe are very accurate and will provide you with great opportunities for spiritual growth. In today’s world, there are many more options in assessing what might be the best bible for beginners and we will take a look at some of the best.

Our Recommended Top 4 Bible Versions For Beginners or New Christians

Here is the list of the top 4 Bible versions or translations that we recommend for beginners or new believers. We will then go into more detail on those, plus make additional recommendations that you might want to consider as well.

  1. New International Version (NIV)
  2. New Living Translation (NLT)
  3. New American Standard Bible (NASB)
  4. Contemporary English Version (CEV)

For centuries the primary English translation of the Bible was the King James Version. We were blessed and still are blessed to have the King James Version and also the New King James Version. If the old English words and phrases are something that you like and prefer, then no problem.

However, you may be someone who is not well versed in the scriptures and just beginning your journey in the scriptures. You may have a desire to have a Bible translation that is more easily understood in today’s English. We would suggest that you begin with one of the modern translations of the Bible. We will suggest several of those.

1- Best Bibles for Beginners – New International Version

The New International Version (NIV) is a popular bible translation that is easy to read and understand. It’s perfect for people who are just starting out on their faith journey, as it provides an easy-to-follow translation of the scriptures. The NIV as a bible version has become the choice of millions of people. Click below to find some great NIV Bible choices.

The translators took great care to make sure that the wording was easy to read, while still staying true to the original text. This makes it a great choice for those who want to get a good overview of what the Bible has to say.

The publisher of the NIV version is Zondervan in the United States. As for the UK, the publisher is Hodder and Stoughton. There was a revision of the NIV in 1984 with a 2011 update as well. The NIV has definitely become one of the world’s most popular English translations of the bible.

Another reason why the NIV is a great choice for beginners is that it’s widely available. You can find it in most bookstores and online, and there are also many different editions available. So, you can choose the one that best suits your needs.

One of our favorites here at LivingPraying.com is The Life Application Bible. It comes in the NIV version and has many extra notes that help explain the Bible passage and is a great Bible is you are young in the faith and trying to learn what God is saying in the scriptures and apply it to your life.

Sale
NIV, Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition, Bonded Leather, Brown, Red Letter
  • Zondervan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 2496 Pages - 10/01/2019 (Publication Date) - Zondervan (Publisher)
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2- Best Bibles for Beginners – New Living Translation

The New Living Translation (NLT) was created to make the Bible more readable for modern people. It’s based on the popular English Standard Version, but it has been updated with contemporary language and phrasing. The NLT is perfect for people who want an easy-to-read Bible that doesn’t sacrifice accuracy.

Sale
NLT Study Bible, TuTone (Red Letter, LeatherLike, Twilight Blue/Brown)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 2416 Pages - 04/01/2017 (Publication Date) - Tyndale House Publishers (Publisher)

The New Living Translation is one of the best bibles for beginners. It is easy to read and understand, which makes it another popular Bible for people who are new to Christianity or new to reading the bible. This bible will help you discover more about God’s Word without being bogged down by confusing words or language structures.

And this translation was created by 90 Bible scholars-people with a deep understanding of what certain words mean in context-and reviewed by 50 Christian leaders from around the world before publication, making it an accurate translation that you can trust. Here is one of our favorite NLT Bibles for all-around spiritual health and study. If you need one that is smaller for on-the-go that has fewer additional study notes and help, there are some smaller NLT Bibles here.

We also highly recommend the Life Application Study Bible in the NLT version. It has become a great standard for home study use and it is one of our favorites.

Sale
NLT Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition (Red Letter, LeatherLike, Black/Onyx)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 2496 Pages - 05/04/2021 (Publication Date) - Tyndale House Publishers (Publisher)

3- Best Bibles for Beginners – New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The New American Standard Bible (NASB) is a great bible for beginners because it is easy to read and understand. The language is simple and straightforward, making it a good choice for those who are new to reading the Bible. Overall, the NASB is a well-rounded Bible that is perfect for those who are just starting out. Check it out today and see for yourself how easy it can be to read and understand the Bible! Personally, I have used the NASB many. many years.

The New American Standard Bible (NASB) was translated by a committee of scholars from different denominations in 1971. It is considered a very accurate translation and is still in use today.

The New American Standard Bible was updated in 1995 and is called the Updated NASB. It includes minor revisions and updates to the text, as well as a new concordance.

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The language of this Bible was updated so that it would be more accessible to modern readers. Additionally, there were a few mistranslations that had been corrected in the updated version.

One of the biggest changes in the updated version was that it used more literal translations instead of relying on modern language. The NASB is a word-for-word translation, so it stays true to the original languages as much as possible. Therefore, words from older English versions were taken out and replaced with their closest equivalents in the modern language. This makes the NASB more accessible for those who are not as familiar with biblical terms. Here is a version of the NASB that we recommend.

The updated version also took into account changes in English grammar over the past few decades. For example, pronouns were no longer capitalized and verb tenses were adjusted to reflect contemporary speech patterns. These small changes make the NASB more readable and understandable for modern audiences. Here is a page with quite a few other fine NASB Bibles.

4- Best Bible For Beginners – Contemporary English Version

The Contemporary English Version (CEV) is a bible that is written at a 5th-grade reading level, making it simple for novices to comprehend. The CEV is an excellent choice for those who want a simplified Bible with yet solid accuracy. It’s a full text of the Bible based on the original wording with the intent of being read at a lower reading level.

The CEV is a straightforward translation. It was produced by the American Bible Society in 2000. The creation of the CEV began as a consequence of research conducted by Barclay Newman in 1985 on spoken language patterns in novels, periodicals, newspapers, and television programming. These investigations concentrated on how people read and hear English. As a result, the CEV takes into account modern English sentence structure and vocabulary.

The CEV translators adhered to three guidelines. They required that the CEV: 1 – must be understood by those without stumbling in speech. 2 – must be understandable by people who do not understand “Bible” language. 3 – must be comprehended by all.

The translation of the CEV was reviewed by a committee of biblical scholars to ensure accuracy. In addition, it was read by numerous people from all walks of life to make sure that it would be easy for anyone to understand. The CEV is an excellent choice for those who want a simplified Bible with yet solid accuracy. If you are needing a CEV Bible, here are several choices.

Extreme Faith Bible: Contemporary English Version
  • Indexable
  • Maps
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 1314 Pages - 04/30/2000 (Publication Date) - American Bible Society (Publisher)
CEV Challenge Study Bible-Flexi Cover
  • Wilkerson, Don (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 2032 Pages - 11/01/2019 (Publication Date) - Bridge-Logos Inc. (Publisher)

Our Pick For The Best Bible For Beginners

There are a lot of things to think about in terms of recommending a Bible and we don’t take that likely. I would not feel bad if you chose any of the bibles on this page. Each one can teach you and help you grow in your faith in the Lord.

Easiest Version to Read

I think that just on grade level, simple reading it can be argued that out of these four bibles the Contemporary English Version (CEV) is probably the simplest to read. The Contemporary English Version is ideal for new Christians and non-readers of English.

CEV Challenge Study Bible-Flexi Cover
  • Wilkerson, Don (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 2032 Pages - 11/01/2019 (Publication Date) - Bridge-Logos Inc. (Publisher)

However, the New Living Translation is very easy to read as well, it is actually written in language appropriate for a 6th-grade reading. I began to use it after a good friend and former Senior Pastor of mine used the NLT very often. It is one that is familiar to me and I can recommend it. I find its writing to flow very well and the phrasing is easy to understand.

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The aim of every Bible translation is to accurately express the original Hebrew and Greek texts’ meanings to the present-day reader. The New Living Translation is informed by the most up-to-date research in translation theory. The translators’ goal was to produce a narrative that would have the same impact on modern readers as the original text had on ancient readers.

In the New Living Translation, this is achieved by translating complete thoughts (rather than simply words) into natural, everyday English. As a result of this, the translation is readable and understandable while still accurately conveying the meaning of the original text.

Best All-Around Version

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There are reasons why the NIV has become listed as the best-selling bible. The New International Version (NIV) became a brand new translation of the Bible. The NIV version was produced by more than 100 scholars while working from the best available Aramaic, Hebrew, and Greek texts.

The beginnings of the vision concerning the NIV bible were initially from a single man. His name was Howard Long, an engineer for the General Electric company. For his entire life, Long had been devoted to the King James Version (KJV) of the bible. However, when he shared those scriptures with other friends he found that the language of the KJV just didn’t connect people very well to the text of the scripture. So, he felt that there was a strong need for a translation that used more modern language in speaking the truths of the bible that he longed to share.

The translation of each individual book of the bible was given to teams of translators. Each team was made up of 2 lead translators, two consultants, and a consultant for style when it was necessary. Initially, the translations that were produced by those teams were very thoroughly scrutinized. Then they were revised by other types of intermediate editorial committees which contained five biblical scholars on each committee to check the new text against the source texts and assess each passage of scripture.

We have to give the NIV its kudos because it has been the constant companion of millions of bible readers. Although like most it has its critics, it has shown itself to be reliable. Here are some nice choices for the NIV translations:

A Favorite Bible Version With Us

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The New American Standard Bible (NASB) has been a go-to favorite for me. It has long been thought of as one of the most accurate translations available. The NASB doesn’t really try to interpret Scripture in the way that some modern translations do. Instead, the NASB sticks to a method called formal equivalence translation. This is method is precise and demanding and can give very accurate renderings of the text. The NASB is a very readable word-for-word translation that is both accurate and clear.

Sale
NASB Zondervan Study Bible, Indexed
  • Zondervan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 2080 Pages - 02/15/2000 (Publication Date) - Zondervan (Publisher)

Its greatest benefit is its consistency and fidelity to the source languages. In addition, individual verse printings were included in the NASB (although more recent editions are available in paragraph format.)

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What About the King James Version (KJV)?

Well, there are certainly a lot of great things to be said about the King James Version of the bible. It was the standard for so long and still remains very popular. It is so popular as a reliable source of scripture that there are many people who are a part of the “King James Only” movement, whose participants have very strong objections to the methods of translation and the basis of the texts used in modern translations. However, on the other hand, you have so many others who are just as convinced that some newer translations have made improvements over the King James bible.

If you like the old English that is used in the King James version with all of the “thees, thous, and wherefores” please use it if you like. It’s certainly a strong bible.

However, once again we say thank you to God that He not only allowed the KJV but now has given the opportunity for many modern translations that are quite a bit easier to understand in modern-day English verbiage. If you enjoy the KJV, there are many of those by clicking below.

Bottom Line In Choosing a Bible Translation?

The bottom line is simply to get a bible – a more modern bible if you need one and start reading. There are many good translations available and we encourage you to pick one and don’t be afraid that you are going to be led astray by a bunch of faulty interpretations. I won’t argue that some translations are better than others, but the top translations give a clear message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ which is our primary foundation and the primary story of God’s plan.

So choose a version and go for it. You can always readout of multiple versions to check for the various translations of each. I actually enjoy doing that. You can make the decision later about what version will be your primary bible version yourself.

Other Specific Bibles That We Recommend

Bibles For Women

The NIV Women’s Study Bible is a good bible for our ladies. It is designed to speak to ladies and in addition to the NIV scriptural text, it gives insights from over 80 women from a wide variety of life and culture. This bible has been very popular and has sold over 2 million copies since its release. 

The NLT THRIVE Devotional Bible for Women

This is a good choice for a New Living Translation Bible. It is for any woman who desires to have a deeper knowledge of God and have a more intimate relationship with their Savior. It also contains devotional readings, each of which has the main scripture, a letter of love from God, a treasure of truth, and it also contains reflections from author, Sheri Rose, and a special prayer.

Bibles For Men

Every Man’s Bible: New Living Translation, Deluxe Explorer Edition 

Men face quite a few challenges and this Bible is especially for them. This NLT version has all sorts of devotional features that will help men in their bible study and speaks to the topics that are prevalent with males. Commentary for this Bible is written by a very good Christian author, Steven Arterburn.

Best Beginners Bible for Teenagers

It’s very important that a teenager has a Bible that is very readable and as easy to understand as possible. We know that the teenage years are a very formative time for a person. So, you would want to have the best Bible versions for teenagers.

NIV, Bible for Teen Guys

Teenage boys travel a unique road and this NIV version has a lot of help directly for that age group.

NIV, Bible for Teen Girls

We know that teenage girls deal with issues that many will not understand. However, this NIV Bible for Teen Girls is packed with extras including daily readings for girls 13-18.

There are plenty of other Bibles to choose from. Our biggest suggestion and prayer for you is that you will pick one and read it, study it, and come to know the God of the Bible.

You can find some additional alternatives for Bibles for teenagers here.

Red Letter Bibles

Some Bible verses will print all of the verses that were spoken by Jesus in red. Some Christians look at those verses as more important than other verses in the Bible. Since all scripture is inspired by God, we consider all of the words of scripture as 100% truth. There is even a group called the Red Letter Christians that put an extremely great emphasis on the red letters in the Bible.

However, we believe that the words of Jesus are extremely important. He was God in the flesh. However, we believe that the writings of Paul and the other writers of the Bible were inspired by God and equally true,

More than just a book, it is a library of precious books that we believe God inspired and protected down through the ages.

Finally, there are other Bibles such as the New Believers Bible NLT put together by the popular Christian leader, Greg Laurie. Plus, the Christian Basics Bible is also another that you might just want to check out as you begin to read, study, and come to an understanding of basic Christian beliefs.

We pray that you will choose the version that is best for you.



For More Choice in Bibles Click Here.

Also check out our other Bible resources pages:


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