A passion for the Word of God led to the founding of The Lockman Foundation in 1942, and the same passion drives the nonprofit today. Known for producing the bestselling Amplified Version and New American Standard Bible along with multiple international language translations and updates, Lockman remains a world leader in Bible translation.
Lockman has now launched a 2020 version of the NASB which, Executive Vice President Pike Lambeth said, retains the version’s longtime value of remaining true to the original languages while meeting readers’ needs for an accessible, easily understandable English translation. That’s important, he said, to allow the Holy Spirit to speak in the most personal way possible.
Lambeth said while the update to Lockman’s best-known Bible uses more contemporary language, translators also worked to preserve the integrity of the original texts. “It’s one of the real reasons to read the NASB, because it strives to be so close to the original language,” he told Dr. Steve Greene on a recent episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network. “It helps the reader really see what the original word was so it can speak to them as personally as possible. So our goal is to provide an accurate text and let it speak to the reader directly. … The goal in NASB is to be accurate, to let the Bible speak to the person.”
The update came because of two factors, Lambeth said: the original languages and also the English language. “It’s the scholarship,” he said. “The research can change as far as how they think certain Greek words, or certain Hebrew words, should be translated. But more than anything, it’s the English language that changes. It’s easy to see over the years, how it just changes, and people’s standard vocabularies change. Some words take on totally different meanings. … So that’s really the driving factor: the English language.”
And the Lockman Foundation remains sensitive to NASB devotees who prefer a more traditional read. “We decided early on, OK, we’re going to keep the NASB 1995 in print and in software and available everywhere, just like it is now,” Lambeth said. “We don’t want to force people to change into something that they’re not familiar or comfortable with. So we’re leaving both, so people can have a choice. If they want the more contemporary English, they can read the NASB 2020. If they like the traditional language, the NASB 1995 is still there.”