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Why does the NIV Bible have missing verses? Find out here:

Why does the NIV Bible omit or have missing verses?

Did you know that modern Bible translations have fewer verses in them than some of the earliest printed Bibles such as the King James Version, Gutenberg, and Geneva Bibles?

Who Decided Which Books to Include in the Bible? | HowStuffWorks

Yep, there are several places in modern Bible translations where words and entire sentences are skipped. For example:

Many of us grew up with these words concluding the Lord’s Prayer in Matthew 6:13, “For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.”

Most modern translations don’t have that.

But don’t worry. This is a good thing. In fact, if you are reading a modern Bible, such as the NIV, it is actually truer to the Bible as it was originally written than some of the older translations that include more words and verses.

Here’s why.

The Committee on Bible Translation (CBT), the team of translators responsible for the New International Version (NIV) Bible, is composed of world-class scholars and leaders in their respective fields. Their goal is to accurately translate the Word of God in a way that enables readers and listeners to hear the Bible as it was originally written, and understand the Bible as it was originally intended.

From the beginning, the translators have been committed to getting the words right. That means being true to the original Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic of the Bible while at the same time capturing the Bible’s original meaning in natural, everyday English. Each NIV translator believes that the Bible is God’s inspired Word. That conviction, along with their years of studying biblical languages, has helped them capture the depth of meaning in the Bible in a way that is accurate, clear, and trustworthy.

When comparing the NIV with the King James Version (KJV), it would seem that there are some verses “missing” in the NIV (and other trusted translations such as the CEV, CSB, ESV, GNB, HCSB, NET, NLT, etc.). Actually, that is not the case. In 1611, the translators of the KJV used the best resources available to them at that time. For their day, the King James translation was a monumental achievement. However, one of its shortcomings is that the KJV translation committee of 50 scholars drew heavily on William Tyndale’s New Testament. As much as 80% of Tyndale’s translation is reused in the King James version. Tyndale used several sources in his translation of the Old and New Testaments. For the New Testament, he referred to the third edition (1522) of Desiderius Erasmus’s Greek New Testament, often referred to as the Textus Receptus (“Received Text”).

In the years since 1611, many older manuscripts have been discovered and carefully evaluated by scholars. Their conclusion is that the older manuscripts are more reliable. This has given modern translators unprecedented access to manuscripts much closer in time to the original documents. Therefore, translations such as the NIV actually reflect better Bible scholarship than was available in 1611 when the KJV was published.

The verses or phrases that appeared in the KJV, but have been “omitted” in most trusted translations today, are not found in the oldest and most reliable manuscripts. Modern translators include or reference them in footnotes. These footnotes are intended to help the reader understand that certain perceived differences in the text are due to improved biblical scholarship. The treatment of these verses has not changed recently and reflects a consensus among the majority of Bible scholars.

It is important and comforting to note that no doctrines of the Christian faith are affected by differences between the KJV and translations such as the NIV that follow more reliable sources.

So, Does the NIV Omit Verses?

So, if somebody tells you your NIV Bible or other modern translation such as the CSB, ESV, NASB, NET, NLT, or NRSV is missing verses, you’ll know what to say. It’s not that our Bibles today are missing verses. It’s that our Bibles today are based on older and more reliable manuscripts, which are closer to the original writings put down thousands of years ago.

Additionally, here’s an explanation from Dr. Bill Mounce, who is a member of the Committee on Bible Translation, which oversees the NIV Bible translation:

The Bible can provide us with truth, but it can also be difficult to decipher! Whether you’re looking for some biblical direction, stumped on scriptural questions, or just want to confirm that you’re already on the right track, continue following us for more biblical interpretations.  

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