The Good News Translation: Top Ten Bible Versions #8

“In the beginning, when God created the universe,
the earth was formless and desolate.
The raging ocean that covered everything was engulfed in total darkness,
and the Spirit of God was moving over the water.”

(Gen 1:1-2 GNT)

Thus begins the Good News Translation. The well-read Bible reader immediately notes the change in Gen 1:1 which in standard translations reads, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth...." The GNT's use of universe accurately communicates the all encompassing Hebrew idiom, "heavens and earth, and for many readers, this simple rendering allows better understanding of the writer's point that everything that exists was created by God.

When I first compiled my list of top ten favorite translations for this blog, I wanted to include an entry for a common language translation. Part of my selection of the GNT is sentimental, but I hope that I can demonstrate the value of this translation as well.

What's in a Name?

First things first: what exactly is this translation called? The Good News Bible? Good News for Modern Man? Today's English Version? The Good News Translation? Throughout it's history, it's been called all of the above, and frankly it's confusing. In the blog entries where I've mentioned this version, I've probably used every one of those terms at some point.

Well, see if you can follow this. When the New Testament was first released in 1966, it was referred to as The Good News for Modern Man in Today's English Version. Then a decade later when the entire Bible was completed, it became the The Good News Bible in Today's English Version. It was revised in 1992, but the title didn't change. In fact, I didn't even know there had been a revision until last year and I collect translations of the Bible! In 2001 the name was changed again when Zondervan obtained North American publishing rights and asked that the designation be changed to Good News Translation since many perceived the GNT to be a paraphrase and not an actual translation (which it is).

An ironic aside: one of the main features of the 1992 revision was the further use of inclusive language for human references when the context warranted it. After Zondervan obtained publishing rights, one of the titles they resurrected (no doubt for familiarity's sake) was the classic title Good News for Modern Man, although that title is decidedly not inclusive. Happy

Nevertheless, in spite of all the titles, it does seem a bit confusing. Interestingly, my copy of the text in Accordance is labeled "Today's English Version" and abbreviated "TEV" even though it has the 1992 copyright date of the 2nd edition. And when I ordered my copy of the 1992 revision directly from the American Bible Society (the owner of the translation), I noticed that my copy has both "Good News Bible" and "Good News Translation" on both the cover and the spine! Even more confusing, in looking at the most recent online catalog on the ABS website, I observed that there are pictures of the Bible that have both "Good News Bible" AND Today's English Version on them.

In keeping with most recent nomenclature, I will refer to this Bible version as the Good News Translation (or GNT for short) even when referring to the older editions.

What Kind of Bible Is This Anyway?
Back in the summer I came across a blog entry written by a youth leader who had tried to convince one of the young ladies at his church to get a different Bible than the GNT she was reading and for which she had a strong preference. Although in hindsight he regretted this discussion with her, he went on today how much he hated (he literally used that word) the GNT. When I tried to engage him in the comments about his opinion (and I tried my best to do so in a friendly way), he responded back that he was not even going to address my question, but concluded that "from a scholarly perspective, I believe I am on solid ground in saying that the Good News Bible is drivel."

Well, such a response is regrettable and I chose to pursue the discussion no further. But it does reveal ignorance about the GNT, its history, method of translation, and intended purpose.

The GNT started out as a project of the American Bible Society to create a New Testament specifically aimed at readers for whom English was a second language. Very quickly, however, they realized that there was an even broader audience. From the preface to the current edition of the GNT:

In September 1966 the American Bible Society published The New Testament in Today's English Version, the first publication of a new Bible translation intended for people everywhere for whom English is either their mother tongue or an acquired language. Shortly thereafter the United Bible Societies (UBS) requested the American Bible Society (ABS) to undertake on its behalf a translation of the Old Testament following the same principles. Accordingly the American Bible Society appointed a group of translators to prepare the translation. In 1971 this group added a British consultant recommended by the British and Foreign Bible Society. The translation of the Old Testament, which was completed in 1976, was joined to the fourth edition New Testament, thus completing the first edition of the Good News Bible Translation. Through previously known as Today's English Version (TEV) and commonly known as the Good News Bible (GNB), the translation is now called the Good News Translation (GNT).

The GNT was one of the first major Bible versions to apply the translational principles of dynamic equivalence as developed by Eugene A. Nida. A year after the release of the full edition of the Good News Bible, Nida himself wrote a wonderful little book that serves as an introduction to the translation, Good News for Everyone: How to Use the Good News Bible. Although out of print, the book is still obtainable through used book sources. The value in this volume lies not only in its introduction to the GNT, but also as an explanation and defense of dynamic equivalency from the leading developer and proponent of the method himself. On the principle of dynamic equivalency, Nida writes on p. 13,

The principle of dynamic equivalence implies that the quality of a translation is in proportion to the reader's unawareness that he is reading a translation at all. This principle means, furthermore, that the translation should stimulate in the new reader essentially the same reaction to the text as the original author wished to produce in his first and immediate readers. The application of this principle of dynamic equivalence leads to far greater faithfulness in translating, since accuracy in translation cannot be reckoned merely in terms of corresponding words but on the basis of what the new readers actually understand. Many traditional expressions in English translations of the Scriptures are either meaningless or misleading. How many present-day readers would know, for example, that "children of the bridechamber" (Matt. 9:15) really means "the guests at the wedding party" or that "bowels of mercies" (Col. 3:12) is better rendered as "compassion"?

The GNT is also in a category of translations known as a "common language Bible." In regard to this, Nida writes, "...the translation is produced in what is known as 'the common language.' This is the kind of language common to both the professor and the janitor, the business executive and the gardener, the socialite and the waiter. It may also be described as the 'the overlap language' because it is that level of language which constitutes the overlapping of the literary level and the ordinary, day-to-day usage" (p. 11-12).

The GNT is usually rated at about a 5th or 6th grade reading level, which puts it in the same market as similar translations that purposefully avoid larger vocabulary or technical language when possible such as the CEV, NCV, and NIrV. If an in-depth comparison of these specific translations exists I'm not familiar with it, but such analysis would certain be interesting.

To get a feel for the dynamic equivalency of the GNT compared a very literal translation such as the NASB, consider the following passages:

Proverbs 1:8-9
8 My child, pay attention to what your father and mother tell you.
9 Their teaching will improve your character as a handsome turban or a necklace improves your appearance.
10 My child, when sinners tempt you, don’t give in.
11 Suppose they say, “Come on; let’s find someone to kill! Let’s attack some innocent people for the fun of it!
12 They may be alive and well when we find them, but theyll be dead when were through with them!
13 We’ll find all kinds of riches and fill our houses with loot!
14 Come and join us, and we’ll all share what we steal.”
15 My child, don’t go with people like that. Stay away from them.
16 They can’t wait to do something bad. Theyre always ready to kill.
17 It does no good to spread a net when the bird you want to catch is watching,
18 but people like that are setting a trap for themselves, a trap in which they will die.
19 Robbery always claims the life of the robber—this is what happens to anyone who lives by violence.
8 Hear, my son, your father’s instruction
And do not forsake your mother’s teaching;
9 Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head
And ornaments about your neck.
10 My son, if sinners entice you,
Do not consent.
11 If they say, “Come with us,
Let us lie in wait for blood,
Let us ambush the innocent without cause;
12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol,
Even whole, as those who go down to the pit;
13 We will find all kinds of precious wealth,
We will fill our houses with spoil;
14 Throw in your lot with us,
We shall all have one purse,”
15 My son, do not walk in the way with them.
Keep your feet from their path,
16 For their feet run to evil
And they hasten to shed blood.
17 Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net
In the sight of any bird;
18 But they lie in wait for their own blood;
They ambush their own lives.
19 So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence;
It takes away the life of its possessors.
Matthew 6:1-8
   1 “Make certain you do not perform your religious duties in public so that people will see what you do. If you do these things publicly, you will not have any reward from your Father in heaven. 2 “So when you give something to a needy person, do not make a big show of it, as the hypocrites do in the houses of worship and on the streets. They do it so that people will praise them. I assure you, they have already been paid in full. 3 But when you help a needy person, do it in such a way that even your closest friend will not know about it. 4 Then it will be a private matter. And your Father, who sees what you do in private, will reward you. 5 “When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites! They love to stand up and pray in the houses of worship and on the street corners, so that everyone will see them. I assure you, they have already been paid in full. 6 But when you pray, go to your room, close the door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. And your Father, who sees what you do in private, will reward you. 7 “When you pray, do not use a lot of meaningless words, as the pagans do, who think that their gods will hear them because their prayers are long. 8 Do not be like them. Your Father already knows what you need before you ask him.    1   “Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.
   2   “So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. 3 “But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.
   5   “When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. 6 “But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.
   7   “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. 8 “So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.
Rom 7:15-25
   15 I do not understand what I do; for I don’t do what I would like to do, but instead I do what I hate. 16 Since what I do is what I don’t want to do, this shows that I agree that the Law is right. 17 So I am not really the one who does this thing; rather it is the sin that lives in me. 18 I know that good does not live in me—that is, in my human nature. For even though the desire to do good is in me, I am not able to do it. 19 I don’t do the good I want to do; instead, I do the evil that I do not want to do. 20 If I do what I don’t want to do, this means that I am no longer the one who does it; instead, it is the sin that lives in me. 21 So I find that this law is at work: when I want to do what is good, what is evil is the only choice I have. 22 My inner being delights in the law of God. 23 But I see a different law at work in my body—a law that fights against the law which my mind approves of. It makes me a prisoner to the law of sin which is at work in my body. 24 What an unhappy man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is taking me to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who does this through our Lord Jesus Christ! This, then, is my condition: on my own I can serve God’s law only with my mind, while my human nature serves the law of sin.

   15 For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. 16 But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. 17 So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. 19 For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. 20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
    21   I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, 23 but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.

These are standard passages I look at for readability in a translation. I always look at the Romans passage because I still remember my confusion as a child after reading it in the KJV. One thing you might note above in the passage quoted from Proverbs is the loss of the Hebrew poetic doublet. Whereas the NASB's literal rendering reads "Hear, my son, your father’s instruction / And do not forsake your mother’s teaching;" the GNT translators were more concerned with communicating the message of Prov 1:8 than reproducing the poetic form. Thus the GNT simply renders the verse "My child, pay attention to what your father and mother tell you." This accurately communicates the message of the Hebrew, but does not follow the poetic form. That might be bothersome to some people, but keep in mind the original purpose of the GNT to provide God's Word first to those to whom English is a second language and to communicate in common language. Common language probably does not include understanding of how Hebrew poetry functions. If a person is going to study the form of Hebrew poetry, a more traditional translation might be preferable, although the GNT used alongside would aid with understanding the text itself. Having said that, however, poetic form is often retained in many passages, including those in Job, Psalms, and elsewhere.

I could have just as easily placed the text from the NIV in the passages above instead of the NASB. Although critics of the NIV/TNIV like to refer to it as a dynamic equivalent translation, in reality, it is not purely dynamic, but more of a halfway point between formal and dynamic equivalency. The GNT easily shows off the nature of what is a truly dynamic equivalent, or meaning-driven translation; and is in fact, even a bit spunkier (for lack of a better term) in places than the NIV/TNIV.

The original 1976 edition was one of the first translations to concern itself with gender inclusive issues. Consider Psalm 1:1 in which traditional literal translations begin with "Blessed is the man..." The GNT rendered this phrase, "Happy are those..." The second edition in 1992 took this a step further by changing "evil men" to "evil people" since, after all, women can be evil as well as men. Happy

Psalm 1:1
GNT (1st ed.)
GNT (2nd ed.)
How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,
Nor stand in the path of sinners,
Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!
Happy are those
who reject the advice of evil men,
who do not follow the example of sinners
or join those who have no use for God.
Happy are those
who reject the advice of evil people,
who do not follow the example of sinners
or join those who have no use for God.

I should note that like other mainstream versions that pay attention to gender concerns (NLT, NAB, NJB, REB, NCV, NRSV, CEV, TNIV, the Message), inclusive gender is only applied to humans when the context is appropriate and never to God. The 1992 revision brought not only further changes related to gender, but also concentrated on "passages in which the translation had been seen as problematic from either a stylistic or an exegetical viewpoint. Two examples are given below:

Genesis 1:2
GNT (1st ed.)
GNT (2nd ed.)

...the earth was formless and desolate. The raging ocean that covered everything was ingulfed in total darkness, and the power of God* was moving over the water.

*or the spirit of God; or a wind from God; or an awesome wind.

the earth was formless and desolate. The raging ocean that covered everything was engulfed in total darkness, and the Spirit of God* was moving over the water.

*or the power of God; or a wind from God; or an awesome wind.

Philippians 2:6
GNT (1st ed.)
GNT (2nd ed.)

He always had the nature of God, but he did not think that by force he should try to become equal with God.

*or remain.

He always had the nature of God, but he did not think that by force he should try to remain* equal with God.

*or become.

I certainly agree with the changes made in the above verses, but it's worth noting as I've pointed out in some of my translation reviews before that this is yet another example of a revision of a translation becoming more conservative and less risky than an earlier edition. I've demonstrated this in the NEB/REB, the NIV/TNIV (gender issues aside) and especially in the NLT1/NLT2.

What--There's Controversy?!
I suppose it would be unfair to write about the GNT without at least briefly mentioning some of the controversy surrounding it. Some controversy is hardly worth mentioning. Some people don't like the GNT simply because they don't care for dynamic equivalency. And then there's also that crowd that makes a fuss about any new translation, no matter what it is.

One of the charges made early against the GNT was that it removed all mention of the blood of Jesus. First, this claim is simply not true. The blood of Christ is indeed rendered literally in a number of places in the GNT:

John 6:53 Jesus said to them, “I am telling you the truth: if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you will not have life in yourselves. 54 Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood have eternal life, and I will raise them to life on the last day. 55 For my flesh is the real food; my blood is the real drink. 56 Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood live in me, and I live in them.

Heb. 9:14 Since this is true, how much more is accomplished by the blood of Christ! Through the eternal Spirit he offered himself as a perfect sacrifice to God. His blood will purify our consciences from useless rituals, so that we may serve the living God.

Heb. 10:29 What, then, of those who despise the Son of God? who treat as a cheap thing the blood of God’s covenant which purified them from sin? who insult the Spirit of grace? Just think how much worse is the punishment they will deserve!

Heb. 13:12 For this reason Jesus also died outside the city, in order to purify the people from sin with his own blood.

1John 1:7 But if we live in the light—just as he is in the light—then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from every sin.

But there are indeed some passages where blood is being used as an idiom for death (physical or spiritual) and these are rendered somewhat differently for the sake of clarity (don't forget the purpose of the GNT). Compare these passages from the GNT with a more traditional/literal translation:

Matt. 27:24 When Pilate saw that it was no use to go on, but that a riot might break out, he took some water, washed his hands in front of the crowd, and said, “I am not responsible for the death of this man! This is your doing!” 25 The whole crowd answered, “Let the responsibility for his death fall on us and on our children!”

Acts 20:26 So I solemnly declare to you this very day: if any of you should be lost, I am not responsible.

Just as I remember claims that the GNT removed the blood of Christ from the Bible, I am also reminded of the controversy years ago when the claim was made that John MacArthur denied the blood of Jesus. I was in college at the time working in a small independent bookstore, and we had a woman come in declaring that we had to immediately pull all John MacArthur books from our shelves. Such claims are nonsense and stem from ignorance of the issues involved.

The only real controversy, in my opinion, associated with the GNT had to do with remarks made by Robert Bratcher, the chief translator for the GNT New Testament. Speaking in 1981 at a Bible conference sponsored by the Southern Baptist Convention, Bratcher, then head of the American Bible Society said,

"Only willful ignorance or intellectual dishonesty can account for the claim that the Bible is inerrant and infallible. To qualify this absurd claim by adding 'with respect to the autographs' is a bit of sophistry, a specious attempt to justify a patent error ... No thruth-loving, God-respecting, Christ-honoring believer should be guilty of such heresy. To invest the Bible with the qualities of inerrancy and infallibility is to idolatrize it, to transform it into a false God ... No one seriously claims that all the words of the Bible are the very words of God. If someone does so it is only because that person is not willing thoroughly to explore its implications ... Even words spoken by Jesus in Aramaic in the thirties of the first century and preserved in writing in Greek 35 to 50 years later do not necessarily wield compelling or authentic authority over us today. The locus of scriptural authority is not the words themselves. It is Jesus Christ as THE Word of God who is the authority for us to be and to do."

(quote retrieved from Michael Marlowe's review of the GNT)

Obviously, to use a technical term, this was a boneheaded thing to say, not only as the head of the ABS, but also at an SBC-sponsored conference. Soon thereafter the ABS board requested Bratcher's resignation. But even these statements should not unduly take away from the value of the GNT because not only did Bratcher work on the GNT New Testament with an editorial board (and therefore not in isolation), but he was also a good and honest translator in spite of his personal theology.

2 Tim 3:16 is still rendered accurately in the GNT:

All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults, and giving instruction for right living,

Marlowe says this blunder by Bratcher led to the rejection of the GNT by evangelicals. Although some undoubtedly did have nothing to do with the version after Bratcher's remarks, the evangelical world did not totally reject the GNT; although undoubtedly, it lost much of its momentum.

The Wikipedia entry on the GNT notes the popularity of the GNT in Evangelical, Mainstream Protestant, and Roman Catholic circles, marking it as truly a translation for nearly all faith expressions:

The GNT has been a popular translation. By 1969, Good News for Modern Man had sold 17.5 million copies. By 1971, that number had swelled to 30 million copies. It has been endorsed by Billy Graham and Christian groups such as the Roman Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention, the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod, and the Presbyterian Church (USA). The GNT is one of the authorized versions to be used in the Episcopal Church. Excerpts from the New Testament were used extensively in evangelistic campaigns, such as the Billy Graham crusades and others, from the late 1960s right through to the early 1980s. In 1991, a Gallup poll of British parishioners showed that the GNT was the most popular Bible version in that nation. In 2003, the GNT was used as the basis for a film version of the Gospel of John.

It's All About the Pictures...
Kathy says I'm partial to the GNT because I simply like the pictures. This is partly, but not wholly true. But I have to admit that I really am taken with the pictures by swiss artist, Annie Vallotton. Because of the millions of copies of the GNT distributed in the last forty years, Vallotton has been designated "the best-selling artist of all time."

Although the claim is often made that Vallotton's work in the GNT is dated, I suppose I'm too familiar with it to even notice. From the memories of my very earliest days, we had multiple copies of Good News for Modern Man in the house. Before I could even read, I spent many hours looking at the pictures in "that book" as I called it.

I am all for illustrations in Bibles, even for adults. But they should be purposeful, not superfluous. A recent edition of another Bible (which will remain nameless) comes loaded with pictures. But when I examined a copy and looked, for instance, at the picture of a very traditional, full-color picture of Noah's ark accompanying Gen 6, I had to wonder what purpose it served. But I never feel that way with the pictures in the GNT. They are certainly not elaborate, but merely simple line drawings, and they say so much. The drawings don't add idolatrous images to the text, but rather pulls the reader in and points to the passage itself. Vallotton's drawings are reflective in nature--never distracting, and perhaps that's why I like them so much.

I won Kathy's favor toward these pictures when I began adding them occasionally to the handouts I make for our Sunday School class. I used the picture accompanying Eccl 5:12 on one of them and Kathy remarked, "It's amazing that I can see the worry in his eyes, his face, his posture."

In his book Good News for Everyone, Nida devotes an entire chapter to Vallotton's drawings with his selected analysis. Regarding the depiction of Zacchaeus in Luke 19, Nida explains,

When artists make pictures of Zacchaeus, they usually put him up in a tree, but Annie Vallotton illustrates this man's real problem, by his small stature, by showing him almost lost on the crowd. Furthermore, by not picturing Jesus, she symbolizes Zacchaeus's plight in not being able to see what is happening.

I really wish the ABS would release a CD with the illustrations by themselves. I know of only one company authorized to distribute these images as clip art. They were kind enough to send me a CD free from the UK, but I was greatly distressed to note that they had colored the images! Adding color to them takes away from their simplicity in my opinion. However, digging into the folders on the CD, I found the original scans they made (without color), all in PCX format. I haven't used PCX format since the old days of my hand scanner, which may have been the original tool to capture these images.

How Do I Use the GNT?
A reasonable question to ask me is "Why the GNT over CEV?" That's a good question. And truthfully, until a year or two ago, I was under the impression that the CEV was merely a revision of the GNT. Here's how that happened...

In the mid-nineties when the CEV was about to be released, Thomas Nelson Publishers had obtained the initial commercial publication rights to it from the American Bible Society, also the copyright holders of the GNT. At that time, I was working as assistant manager at a Baptist Book Store (now Lifeway), and a Thomas Nelson rep gave both me and my manager unedited proof copies of the CEV. For years I referred to this as my "errant Bible" because the cover specifically warned of possible mistakes in the text. However, this rep mislead both of us by incorrectly describing the CEV as a revision and replacement to the TEV. At the time I did not know that the Good News Bible (a.k.a. TEV) had been updated in 1992. And for years when anyone mentioned something about a revised GNT, I assumed they were referring to the CEV.

My preference for the GNT over the CEV is not based on any objective, logical grounds. The fact is that I've just never spent enough time with the CEV because when I was first handed a copy by the Thomas Nelson rep and told it was a revision of the TEV, my first thought was "What, no pictures?" So, the GNT is preferred primarily for sentimental reasons, but I'm sure that one day I will attempt to get better acquainted with the CEV as it certainly comes highly recommended from a number of individuals I respect. And I highly admire the brains behind the CEV, Barclay Newman.

To be honest I don't use the GNT as much as I used to, but it will always have a place in my heart. In recent years when speaking in front of groups not as familiar with the Bible, I've often used the New Living Translation or even the Message. In the old days, I would have used the GNT, but there are a lot more choices for freely rendered Bibles now than there were when the GNT was at its peak.

When I was in college, I used it almost exclusively in my devotions, which were separate from study of the Bible. I also had a friend who DJ'd the local college radio station on Sunday mornings. He invited me to come by and give on-air devotions on my way to church, and thinking of my audience (mostly unchurched college students), I always used the GNT because I felt the dynamic equivalent renderings of the passages would connect better with them.

If I were buying a child of reading age a Bible, I would not hesitate to purchase the GNT. The ease of reading and the addition of pictures makes this the absolute best choice to give to a child. And certainly there is still value in using the GNT with it's original audience: English as a second language readers.

And as I mentioned earlier, I still use the pictures by Vallotton in many of the handouts I make for my Sunday School class.

What's Available in the GNT?
The GNT is available in a number of editions with or without the Apocrypha/Deuterocanonicals. Both my original 1976 edition and my 1992 revision were ordered directly from the American Bible Society. They are both hardback, and sadly, as far as I know there are no current leather editions available that do not say "Catholic" on the cover. This is a shame. Years ago Thomas Nelson published a Good News study Bible of sorts that had the GNT and a number of reference features added, all in bonded leather. And in spite of Zondervan having the exclusive North American rights to sell the GNT, they only offer a couple of communion BIbles and a retro copy of the old Good News for Modern Man paperback (with the 1992 revision).

Your best bet for obtaining a copy of the GNT is through ABS at the link in the above paragraph.

Some Bible software programs offer the GNT as well. I have it in Accordance (of course, as I mentioned earlier, it's incorrectly labeled "TEV"). Sadly my electronic copy does not include the textual notes or proper poetic formatting. And I discovered a couple of typos in it as I was preparing this review.

I suppose the lack of nice editions in print or available electronically probably signals that the GNT has seen its peak come and go, but it will always be in my top favorites when it comes to Bible translations.

For Further Reading:
- American Bible Society Website
- Better Bible Blogs page on the GNT
- Wikipedia page on the GNT
- Bible Researcher page on the GNT
- Ken Anderson's GNT page
- Eugene A. Nida. Good News for Everyone: How to Use the Good News Bible. Waco, Texas: Word Books, 1977.

Next Bible version in series: The Wycliffe New Testament of 1388