Those who've had the pleasure of perusing our in-store selection will undoubtedly have noticed the preponderance of English Standard Version Bibles and the minimal number of other translations. While we don't have a problem with most translations (heretical texts and paraphrases would be marked exceptions), we've chosen the ESV as simply our favorite among many excellent choices.
Combining the word-for-word interpretive approach of the NASB (maintaining the original sentence structure and most literal word meaning possible) with the readability of more poetic versions like the NIV and KJV, the ESV lends itself to both study and daily reading. The King James Version was the standard English translation for about 400 years; the ESV upholds the KJV's strong, beautiful language while taking into account the changes English has undergone since the 17th century.
While the Word of God never needs "updating," sometimes languages change so significantly that older texts are no longer readily comprehensible to a contemporary audience. The ESV doesn't modernize the older language of the KJV or change the meaning of the verses, but it does "decode" it for those more familiar with John Steinbeck than John Donne.
A number of incarnations of the ESV are available, including study Bibles, reference Bibles, thinlines, etc. Again, our promotion of the English Standard Version can largely be reduced to personal preference. Its combination of aesthetic sensibility and scholarly rigor are appealing to both laypeople and ministers, and we anticipate it becoming a standard translation for generations to come.
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