NASB 2020 or CSB 2020?

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MWJ '90

Puritan Board Freshman
Hello all.

First I must mention that I am highly aware of the many posts here on the board concerning both the NASB 2020 and/or the CSB. However, since the CSB was slightly revised for 2020, I am curious to hear your thoughts on how these two translations now compare. If you have experience with both the NASB 2020 or have had a chance to look into the 2020 revisions of the CSB, please feel free to comment!

I also attached a PDF copy of the 2020 Revisions of the CSB and a link for the 2020 revisions of the NASB here in case you are interested.


Thanks!
 

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Taylor

Puritan Board Senior
Hi, Matthew.

I think both are very good and helpful translations. I have been particularly impressed with the NASB 2020 revision. I think almost everything they did was an improvement. Many were concerned with the introduction of "and sisters" (although in italics in the NASB) when translating αδελφοι in the NT, but I found that their use of it was still very conservative. This is not a feminist revision, at all. Same with the CSB. Our own Dr. Iain Duguid (@iainduguid) can testify to the CSB committee's being free from egalitarian bias.

I will say, though, that at some points the NASB's attempt to be more gender inclusive made the text fall flat. Here are two examples:

"Whoever sheds human blood,​
By man his blood shall be shed,​
For in the image of God​
He made mankind."​
—Genesis 9:6​
"Blessed is the person who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked..."​
—Psalm 1:1​

I find Genesis 9:6 in the NASB 2020 to be...odd. Why in the world would they translate one word (i.e., 'adam) in three different ways in the same verse? Notice that the CSB doesn't do this. And as for Psalm 1:1 in the NASB 2020, it is just hideous, really unacceptable. "One" would have been way better than "person." Again, s is a common complaint with the NASB in the past, there just seems to have been no concern for English. And I can't even begin to explain Genesis 9:6. The CSB seems to be better in this regard.

In the end, though, both translations will definitely serve you well.
 

MWJ '90

Puritan Board Freshman
Taylor, I always enjoy reading your thorough analysis. Thank you so much!

For whatever reason, I never really connected well with the NASB as a primary translation I tried, but just couldn't do it (gasps do I dare say that here among my reformed brethren :eek::eek::eek: ) However, be that as it may, I still consider the NASB to be in my personal top 5, though I prefer the NJKV, ESV, and CSB over it. But I've always loved how the NASB translates Romans 8. Specifically, verses 13, 14, 26, and 37.
 
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Georgiadis

Puritan Board Freshman
The real question is, are you team Propitiation or team Mercy Seat? Just kidding! ...but seriously?

I tend to lean towards the CSB. Curious if you’ve found many CSB 2020s in print? I’ve only seen the CSB verse-by-verse, Holy Land Illustrated, and the latest Quentel from $chuyler. No doubt there are more to follow in 2021 but seems like slim pickings at the moment.
 

MWJ '90

Puritan Board Freshman
Georgiadis, I literally just found out about the 2020 revision last week and haven't started looking for printed editions yet. But I definitely plan to soon.
 

MWJ '90

Puritan Board Freshman
The real question is, are you team Propitiation or team Mercy Seat? Just kidding! ...but seriously?

I tend to lean towards the CSB. Curious if you’ve found many CSB 2020s in print? I’ve only seen the CSB verse-by-verse, Holy Land Illustrated, and the latest Quentel from $chuyler. No doubt there are more to follow in 2021 but seems like slim pickings at the moment.
In regards to your initial question, I personally prefer Mercy Seat in that context not only because it's the more literal rendering, but most importantly I personally believe it communicates a more vivid picture of the nature and function of Christ's sacrifice on our behalf. I love the way it displays how the Old Testament act of the priests sprinkling the blood of animals on the Mercy Seat is ultimately fulfilled in the ultimate sacrifice, the Lamb of God Himself, Jesus Christ. So yeah I'm definitely team Mercy Seat! Lol.
 

jwithnell

Moderator
Staff member
I have the new NASB John on order to take a peak. I didn't see any formats for the whole revision that I'd want.
 

B.L.

Puritan Board Sophomore
The preaching and teaching at my church is primarily done from the CSB though on occasion a curriculum or study guide is keyed to the NASB. Nobody in my family uses either translation and I'm not overly familiar with either one to comment in detail.

I tend to fall in the same camp as @C. M. Sheffield and prefer a settled text, but I will refer to the newer revisions when using Bible Gateway's passage lookup function.

--

Not to distract too much from the OP, but I started reading Cornelis Venema's book The Promise of the Future this week and found this comment in the preface written 20 years ago to be interesting and rather relevant. Just think of how many new translations and subsequent revisions have flooded our churches since this was written back in 2000.

"Last the Bible version used in this study is the 1979 edition of the New American Standard Bible....Unfortunately, the English-speaking church continues to suffer from a proliferation of new English versions based upon different text traditions. Readers are encouraged, accordingly, to make use of several of the better translations as a companion to their reading and study."​
Over the years I have accumulated physical copies of just about every translation but the CSB and NASB actually. This wasn't necessarily intentional either. The first church I ever attended used the NIV; the next the KJV and switched to the ESV after a small-scale translation civil war erupted; and my current church switched from the ESV to the CSB five years ago. While I count the English-speaking church to be blessed to have a plethora of translations available, I also find the roller coaster ride to be dizzying and feel enough is enough already. Give me a settled text por favor. your mileage may vary.
 

MWJ '90

Puritan Board Freshman
I have the new NASB John on order to take a peak. I didn't see any formats for the whole revision that I'd want.
What's your preferred format?

I've long for the days when Center-Column references were more commonplace. It seems as if publishers are moving further away from that for whatever reason. I'd rather have the option available even if it's not their default format.

I'm one who makes a constant habit of looking in the margins and I've always preferred to have them in the center of the page. I also like verse by verse formatting especially while teaching because it helps with locating passages quicker.
 

MWJ '90

Puritan Board Freshman
The preaching and teaching at my church is primarily done from the CSB though on occasion a curriculum or study guide is keyed to the NASB. Nobody in my family uses either translation and I'm not overly familiar with either one to comment in detail.

I tend to fall in the same camp as @C. M. Sheffield and prefer a settled text, but I will refer to the newer revisions when using Bible Gateway's passage lookup function.

--

Not to distract too much from the OP, but I started reading Cornelis Venema's book The Promise of the Future this week and found this comment in the preface written 20 years ago to be interesting and rather relevant. Just think of how many new translations and subsequent revisions have flooded our churches since this was written back in 2000.

"Last the Bible version used in this study is the 1979 edition of the New American Standard Bible....Unfortunately, the English-speaking church continues to suffer from a proliferation of new English versions based upon different text traditions. Readers are encouraged, accordingly, to make use of several of the better translations as a companion to their reading and study."​
Over the years I have accumulated physical copies of just about every translation but the CSB and NASB actually. This wasn't necessarily intentional either. The first church I ever attended used the NIV; the next the KJV and switched to the ESV after a small-scale translation civil war erupted; and my current church switched from the ESV to the CSB five years ago. While I count the English-speaking church to be blessed to have a plethora of translations available, I also find the roller coaster ride to be dizzying and feel enough is enough already. Give me a settled text por favor. your mileage may vary.
BL I actually agree with you in regards to having too many translations and far too frequent revisions of those translations as English speakers. I too believe it is a blessing. I honestly wish there were only 3-5 solid English translations that existed. (Preferably 3 of the more Formal Equivalent tranlations and 2 solid translations on thI think that range is enough for good comparison and analysis between the English and the original Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic, but not too many to the point where we are now.
 

Taylor

Puritan Board Senior
I will say, though, that at some points the NASB's attempt to be more gender inclusive made the text fall flat. Here are two examples:

"Whoever sheds human blood, By man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made mankind." —Genesis 9:6
I was reading this passage again tonight, and I actually think I can see what the NASB revisers were doing here.

As far as I can tell, when the NASB uses "human," it is almost functioning as an attributive adjective, distinguishing what is modified from other things. So here in Genesis 9:6, we are to understand that it is human blood as opposed to other types of blood. That seems fine to me.

In the same way, when the NASB uses "man," it is most often a placeholder for any human individual. So, again, here in Genesis 9:6, they said "man" because it sounds better than "a human" or "a person."

Lastly, when the NASB uses "mankind," it speaks of the human race as an abstracted, entire, created entity.

So, upon further analysis, I think Genesis 9:6 may actually be really good as it is found in the NASB 2020. All the terms are a little more nuanced than "man," yet they are all specific enough as to exclude the possibility of them being interchangeable. So, for instance, none of these make as much sense:

"Whoever sheds man's blood,​
By mankind his blood shall be shed,​
For in the image of God​
He made humans."​

This doesn't make sense because "mankind," an abstraction, cannot shed someone else's blood.
"Whoever sheds mankind's blood,​
By a human his blood shall be shed,​
For in the image of God​
He made man."​

This one doesn't make sense because, again, "mankind" is an abstraction and so doesn't have blood.
 

jwithnell

Moderator
Staff member
What's your preferred format?

I've long for the days when Center-Column references were more commonplace. It seems as if publishers are moving further away from that for whatever reason. I'd rather have the option available even if it's not their default format.

I'm one who makes a constant habit of looking in the margins and I've always preferred to have them in the center of the page. I also like verse by verse formatting especially while teaching because it helps with locating passages quicker.
I'm fine with a single column, but I too like keeping a close eye on references. My current NASB also puts alternate wording there for difficult-to-translate words. These are the only features I want along with room for notes. I've considered having my current Bible rebound.
 

convicted1

Puritan Board Freshman
Hello all.

First I must mention that I am highly aware of the many posts here on the board concerning both the NASB 2020 and/or the CSB. However, since the CSB was slightly revised for 2020, I am curious to hear your thoughts on how these two translations now compare. If you have experience with both the NASB 2020 or have had a chance to look into the 2020 revisions of the CSB, please feel free to comment!

I also attached a PDF copy of the 2020 Revisions of the CSB and a link for the 2020 revisions of the NASB here in case you are interested.


Thanks!
First I heard of the updated CSB. I have the 2017(or is it 2015?) CSB, and it’s pretty good, but I prefer the 1995 NASB, and will not be looking to purchase the 2020 updated NASB. The 1995 is all I need in regards to the NASB.

NASB
NIV
ESV
CSB


In that order.
 
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