It seems that it’s become fashionable for those of us who are into Bible translation to recommend the ESV as a “good” translation.
I’ve done enough of that myself, in the recent past. But no more. I won’t be pointing people in that direction, unless they’re adamant and won’t listen.
I’ve said it before, and I’m sure I’ll have to say it again and again: the ESV is an old translation, (the RSV) simply revised to remove “liberalisms” that are not acceptable to the reformed/evangelical crowd. It’s English in many cases is old and poor, and it contains a lot of “Biblese”, what some people call “Church language”. It may be all right for “scholars”, but I think many of those “scholars” will find other translations are much more accurate and better for study.
For young people, and for the typical biblically-illiterate church-goer, they may be attracted to the neat, cool covers that Crossway is putting on the ESV, but they would be better off going for an NLTse or a TNIV, (or even an NIV!) with a neat, cool cover.
And for us older folks and serious Bible scholars, we’d be better off going for an NLTse or a TNIV, (or even an NIV!) with a nice, conservative, black or burgundy cover. Or if we want to get a little deeper, an NASB or a NET Bible, with a nice, conservative, black or burgundy cover.
The ESV, as far as I’m concerned, has already outlived its usefulness, and should be relegated to the dustbin of time with the KJV, NKJV, ASV, and RSV, and a few others. It was already old when it was new.
(Yeah, sorry, I guess I’m just a grumpy old guy today.)