Back in the 1970s evangelical Christians felt the need for their own Bible translation – and the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible was born. Conservatives loved it. It was so popular they asked the same group of scholars to reconvene over the last several years to develop a new translation that might be more accessible to younger (18-35) readers. What they didn’t count on was that the scholars would produce a translation with inclusive gender language. Today's New International Version (TNIV) of the Bible is just being released and conservatives can’t figure out what went wrong. How did gender equality creep into their Bible?
Is that the Holy Spirit I hear whispering Galatians 3:28 into the ears of the TNIV translation committee?
For the record, I’ll still be using my New Revised Standard Version. This translation was put together with Biblical scholars representing an ecumenical group. It isn’t perfect – no Biblical translation is because of the difficult resources we have to work with. However, the NRSV is widely regarded among many different denominations. Though the scholars who work on the NRSV might consider learning something from the TNIV and use some of that gender inclusive language for their next update.