NIV 2011 Banned by Southern Baptists?

This resolution came forward at their current meeting:

5:14 p.m. — In a surprising and dramatic move moments ago, messengers voted first to consider a resolution highly critical of the TNIV 2011 and then passed the resolution nearly unanimously. The resolution came from the floor — introduced by messenger Tim Overton — and not from the Resolutions Committee. Overturn’s appeal for messengers to consider the resolution passed by at least a 2-to-1 margin, and the resolution itself got only a handful of opposing votes. The Resolutions Committee had asked messengers not to consider the resolution.

The resolution states:

WHEREAS, Many Southern Baptist pastors and laypeople have trusted and used the 1984 New International Version (NIV) translation to the great benefit of the Kingdom; and

WHEREAS, Biblica and Zondervan Publishing House are publishing an updated version of the New International Version (NIV) which incorporates gender neutral methods of translation; and

WHEREAS, Southern Baptists repeatedly have affirmed our commitment to the full inspiration and authority of Scripture (2 Timothy 3:15-16) and, in 1997, urged every Bible publisher and translation group to resist “gender-neutral” translation of Scripture; and

WHEREAS, This translation alters the meaning of hundreds of verses, most significantly by erasing gender-specific details which appear in the original language; and

WHEREAS, Although it is possible for Bible scholars to disagree about translation methods or which English words best translate the original languages, the 2011 NIV has gone beyond acceptable translation standards; and

WHEREAS, Seventy-five percent of the inaccurate gender language found in the TNIV is retained in the 2011 NIV; and

WHEREAS, The Southern Baptist Convention has passed a similar resolution concerning the TNIV in 2002; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the messengers of the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, June 14-15, 2011 express profound disappointment with Biblica and Zondervan Publishing House for this inaccurate translation of God’s inspired Scripture; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we encourage pastors to make their congregations aware of the translation errors found in the 2011 NIV; and be it further

RESOLVED, That we respectfully request that LifeWay not make this inaccurate translation available for sale in their bookstores; and be it finally

RESOLVED, That we cannot commend the 2011 NIV to Southern Baptists or the larger Christian community.

Since the only Christian bookstores in our metro area are LifeWay, it looks like yet another reason NOT to give them any business if this is the attitude they choose to take. But really… a resolution like this? Come on, folks!

The running blog from this event is here.

13 thoughts on “NIV 2011 Banned by Southern Baptists?

  1. This is just a reminder… if you want some thing to pass quickly with as little thought or debate possible, do it at the end of the day when everyone’s stomach is growling!

    At the SBC seminary I attended, my Greek professor talked about the people who burned the RSV as a heretical version without ever reading it. Now that version has been revived and promoted as the ESV… except with alot more of the same “gender inclusive” language the NIV 2011 uses (except for the translation of adelphoi as “brothers and sisters”).

    I could go on about how the Southern Baptists’ new HCSB has much more gender inclusive language than the ESV or the old NIV, but obviously facts have little to do with this debate!

    1. It’s hard to believe a resolution like that can come from the floor and so quickly. In my group, the AOG, I don’t think they’d allow it. Maybe… (And on this topic they probably would… LOL)

  2. The Southern Baptist Convention’s resolution doesn’t surprise me one bit.
    It shows how intrusive human tradition is, and secondarily it shows the
    anti-biblical nature of human arrangements like the Southern Baptist
    Convention. There is not a single hint of any such monstrosity in the New
    Testament. Autonomous and Independent local congregations simply followed
    the teaching and example of the apostles by proclaiming and defending
    the word of God. 1 Tim. 3:15.

    Furthermore, the NIV 2011 is not based on a gender neutral philosophy.
    The translators strive for “gender accuracy.” There is a difference.

  3. This is really sad. I find the new NIV to be an exceptionally fine translation, and I think the SBC are just showing their own immaturity and lack of knowledge concerning Bible translation by passing such a resolution.

    Chuck is right, about passing things at the end of the day when everybody wants to go home. They do it in the UMC all the time. Fortunately the more orthodox UM delegates are well aware of this and have been able to keep the “wolves in sheep’s clothing” at bay.

    1. I really do love the NIV 2011. Coming from a guy who did NOT like the NIV 1984, it’s saying something. I think the SBC may just be pushing to keep the KJV and the HCSB. This is sad because it will only solidify the perception that the HCSB is a “Southern Baptist Bible.”

  4. It is my understanding that resolutions submitted by delegates of districts to be considered at the A/G General Council bi-annual meeting have to be submitted and published to the delegates a certain amount of time before the GC meets, to give everyone time to thoroughly acquaint themselves with the issues. Resolutions coming from the Executive Presbytery (which has its last pre-Council meeting after the publication deadline) or the General Presbytery (which has a meeting immediately prior to General Council) are exempt from the prior notice requirements. Yet even those resolutions are given to the delegates in written form in an updated resolutions pack received at the registration check-in.

    Delegates can debate the resolutions and propose ammendments from the floor, but I don’t think a new resolution can come from the floor during Council if I am understanding the rules correctly.

    (Parts of this I got from watching a video from Dr. Wood today, at http://ag.org/top/agschoolconsolidation/ )

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