Is My Bible Translation “Watered Down”? LIVE Q&A from Brazil with David Guzik on March 21, 2024

Is My Bible Translation “Watered Down”? LIVE Q&A from Brazil with David Guzik on March 21, 2024

Is My Bible Translation Watered-Down?

From Timothy via email 02/16/2024 –

I was wondering what’s brother David’s opinion on the new Gen Z Bible translation? I’m trying to get my 14-year-old into the word more and was thinking about getting him one. Is it watered down? the apostle Paul states that a watered-down gospel is dung. Is it watered down? What’s brother David’s opinion on that translation? Thanks

An August 30, 2023, online article in the New York Daily Post with the headline, Gen Z gives Bible edgy makeover with slang-filled translation: ‘It’s giving savior of the world’ – this article was not about an actual Bible, but an anonymous TikTok user who posted Bible verses in Gen Z slang (often thought to be those born from the mid 1990s to the mid 2010s).

But on online sellers, you can find The New Testament for Gen Z, published in August of 2023, written by “Broseph Smith.” There is also an Old Testament for Gen Z available. This claims to be an “Unofficial Chat GPT translation of the Bible.”

Here’s a comparison of some of the passages:

Matthew 6:1-2: NKJV

Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.

The New Testament for Gen Z
“Keep your acts of kindness hush-hush, and your heavenly Father, who sees everything, will give you props for real, like in public and stuff. Now, when it comes to prayin’, don’t be like those hypocrites. They love showin’ off, prayin’ loud and clear in the synagogues and on street corners, just so people will notice them. Let me tell ya, they’ve already got what they were after.”

Matthew 24:1 NKJV

Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple.

The New Testament for Gen Z
“So Jesus bounced from the temple and his crew rolled up to him, flexing the sick architecture of the place.”

Mark 5:13 NKJV

And at once Jesus gave them permission. Then the unclean spirits went out and entered the swine (there were about two thousand); and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the sea, and drowned in the sea.

The New Testament for Gen Z
“So, Jesus was like, ‘Alright, go for it.’ And those unclean spirits bounced out of the guy and straight into the pigs. The whole herd freaked out, ran like crazy down a steep slope, and ended up drowning in the sea. There were about two thousand of them, man.”

Luke 11:38, NKJV

When the Pharisee saw it, he marveled that He had not first washed before dinner.

The New Testament for Gen Z
“But then, this Pharisee homie sees that Jesus didn’t wash his hands before dinner, and he’s all shook, like, ‘What’s up with that?’”

The bottom line is that this isn’t a serious Bible translation, and I wouldn’t recommend it for regular Bible reading. It’s basically a novelty Bible translation. Novelty Bible translations exist:

  • Klingon Bible
  • Pirate Bible
  • Cockney Bible
  • Hippie Bible
  • Cotton Patch Bible

This Gen Z Bible is like these. It should not be used for regular Bible reading. I’m not big on telling people what they can’t read – so if someone really wants to read the New Testament for Gen Z, go ahead – but just remember what it is. It isn’t a serious Bible translation; it is a novelty Bible.

A good, easy-to-understand Bible translation for your 14-year-old is the New Living Translation.