I'm not much of a baseball fan but I thought it might be helpful to illustrate some ideas about English Bible translations . From homeplate to firstplate are the unduly free versions like The Message and Living Bible . A number of others are still in the category but not so extreme . From first to second are paraphrases like the Phillips . Somewhat free , but in my opinion on much higher ground than The Mesage and The L.B. From 2nd to 3rd the baseline starts to get really crowded . I would think that the NLT2 would start the process . Then the Norlie , Weymouth , NAB , REB , NJB , and NET . After those would be the NIrV , NIV , and TNIV . The MLB follows and then the ISV , HCS , ESV, NRSV , NASU , and the old NAS ( pre-95) . Just look at that cluster . The territory allows hardly any wiggle-room . The first 8 are more dynamic and then kind of a hybrid-translation starts . The distinct difference between some of the ones leaning toward formal is minimal . You can figure out what ones are on a bee-line to home . Just my opinion . Feel free to disagree . Debate is allowed .