I went into a bookstore to buy a Bible for our grandson the other day, because he's just entering college and I thought it would be a good idea to have a new one. Finally, I just gave up, however, because there are so many to choose from. Why are there so many different versions of the Bible?


I’m thankful you want to give a Bible to your grandson as he heads away to college, and I hope you won’t be discouraged because there seem to be so many choices. In the next few years, he will face many decision and challenges, and the most important thing he can do is turn to God’s Word, the Bible, for guidance. The psalmist declared, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path” (Psalm 119:105).

I know it can be confusing to select the right version for your needs. One way is to take a familiar passage from the Bible (such as Psalm 23) and read it in several translations. A good translation isn’t only accurate, but it should also be readable and easy to understand. Your pastor or local Christian bookstore manager may also be able to help you choose a version.

You may also want to consider giving your grandson what’s called a study Bible, which includes not only the text of the Bible, but also some explanatory notes. Some study Bibles are written especially for students or for people who have not read the Bible extensively.

Remember: The Bible is God’s Word, which He has given to us so that we can learn about Christ and His will for our lives. Make the Bible part of your life every day—and encourage your grandson to do so as well.