Common English Bible


Ok, so recently I discovered this Bible translation called the Common English Bible. The translation is atrocious (take a look at a sampling here: But besides the translation what got me interested in it in the first place was that it has in addition to the books found in a run of the mill protestant Bible it also has the deuterocanonical books and the extra books used by the Eastern Orthodox Church. I like the idea but hate the translation, so, does anyone know of something like this in a better translation?


Yes. Dump anything that relies on contemporary. Go for the RSV Catholic edition. I don’t leave home without it.


The Common English Bible was put together by a committee consisting of liberal Protestant groups including the Episcopal Church and the United Church of Christ. Stay away from this translation as the ‘scholars’ who put it together (let’s be honest, these ‘scholars’ are little more than people who just mine for evidence to discredit the traditional interpretation) are hostile to traditional Catholic teachings.

Benedicat Deus


I personally have been using this translation for a while and like it, but to each their own. By the way, at least ten of the translators for this bible are Catholic. My understanding is that their intent when translating it was to get people from all across the spectrum of Christianity to work on it.


The only change that didn’t irritate me was “the world was without shape or form.” I’d stick with the RSV-CE


To answer the OP’s question, some editions of the New Revised Standard Version include the Apocrapha in the middle.


Like the NIV, it appears that where possible, the text has been stripped of terms that might point to Catholicism. E.g., based on a few wordsearches at the website, I expect the word “bishop” is not to be found in the text, although it shows up six times in the KJV.


Thanks for the responses. The most memorable changes were probably referring to Adam (before Eve had been created yet) as human, to try and use gender inclusive language, and runner up being the change of Son of Man to the human one when referring to Christ.


What really drove me away from this translation (among other things) was the use of ‘the human one’ instead of the Son of man’ (even when Jesus uses the term).


I use it through the Bible app on my phone. There is a footnotes that say “or bishop” at the parts kkollwitz mentions, as well as ones that say “or Son of Man” where is says the Human One. I would like to point out that my NRSV Bible calls Adam man in the first few chapters of Genesis, and it is my understanding that that is what Adan means.


It still seems a bit weird. Adam is one of many, many, MANY Biblical names that had meanings in Hebrew. Even then, his name is Adam, and not Man, even though that’s what it means.

As a side note, your misspelling “adan” actually does mean “man” in Sindarin, one of the Elvish languages in Lord of the Rings


“Even then, his name is Adam, and not Man, even though that’s what it means.”

Exactly. And if this Bible translates like the NIV, many words and phrases such as bishop, deacon, Son of Man, communion, tradition, and works will also be translated away and reduce the Catholic sense of many passages.


I don’t know why but the CEB doesn’t seem to bother me as much. In fact, I’m using it as the main translation as I go through the NT for a second time (I’m not using it for OT reading though). Probably because I used the CEV the first time and prefer “easy-to-read” translations compared to extremely literal translations (has anyone seriously read the NASB? It’s almost unreadable in some places for me). And yes, this comes from a conservative (and not-so-perfect) Catholic such as myself; even one who is trying to teach herself NT Greek.

I think the CEB is a good translation if you are just starting out reading the Bible. It has fairly easy formatting and is easy on my eyes. However, if you’re expecting a fairly literal translation you may want to move onto something else, or just stay with a faithful Catholic translation. I still prefer the 1966 Jerusalem Bible over everything else (for now) but it still has quite some odd wording in places.

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