As modern versions go, the ESV should be counted as one of the best for use in teaching ministry. It is more literal than the NIV, and so it is largely free of the problems that come with the use of so-called "dynamic equivalence" versions; but it is not so severely literal that ordinary readers will struggle to understand it. Its English recalls the classic diction of the KJV, and so it has some literary power (this is not unimportant in a Bible version). Its handling of the Old Testament is agreeable to conservative principles of interpretation. As a revision of the RSV, it is much better than the NRSV in several ways. However, there are some weaknesses in it. We have noticed the bad influence of the NIV in several places. So, for close study the ESV is less suitable than the NASB or NKJV. These latter versions, despite their difficulties and obscurities, continue to be the most useful for detailed and careful study.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
I found a good review on the ESV that I thought was balanced and demonstrated its strengths and weaknesses. This is the concluding summary: