I say this in my recent essay “Three Reflections on Evangelical Academic Publishing”:
After finishing my PhD at Trinity, I had some options to teach full-time. But instead I spent four years working full-time on the NIV Zondervan Study Bible.
[footnote] Grand Rapids: Zondervan, forthcoming in fall 2015. It has completely fresh content from new contributors. D. A. Carson is general editor; the associate editors are T. Desmond Alexander, Richard S. Hess, and Douglas J. Moo; and as the assistant editor, I’ve managed the project and helped copyedit all of the notes and essays for content and style.
Its audience is as general as the target audience for the NIV itself: the English-speaking world. The main reason I agreed to give four years full-time (and a fifth year part-time) of my life to this project is that my work with the NIV Zondervan Study Bible may influence more people than the rest of my other publications combined. It is a worthy, strategic cause. (p. 452)
Update on 2/17/2015. Some people intensely dislike and disrespect the NIV. I respectfully disagree. I thank God for the NIV. But that doesn’t mean that I’m against other translations. To give just one example, I also love and respect the ESV. That’s the primary translation that my church uses, and I’m currently memorizing the book of 1 Corinthians in the ESV and am under contract to write a Crossway commentary on 1 Corinthians based on the ESV. (And in 2009 I warmly recommended the ESV Study Bible in JETS. And I still enthusiastically commend it!) Good Bible translations are incredibly helpful resources, and English readers should benefit from more than one of them. It’s both-and, not either-or. I thank God for good Bible translators and translations. And since the NIV is the best-selling modern English Bible translation, it seems strategic to produce a high-quality study Bible for it.
Update on 2/26/2015. Don Carson highlights distinctive features of the study Bible in this 4.5-minute video:
Update on 6/15/2015. The NIVZSB’s site is now live.
- Timeline of the NIV
- William W. Combs, “The History of the NIV Translation Controversy,” Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal 17 (2012): 3–34.
- Free PDF of Douglas J. Moo, We Still Don’t Get It: Evangelicals and Bible Translation Fifty Years after James Barr, presentation from the 2014 ETS Annual Meeting (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2014).
- The Best All-Around Book on Bible Translation
- My Second-Favorite All-Around Book on Bible Translation
- How Not to Argue about Which Bible Translation Is Best