The Difference a Translation Makes

The Lord gouerneth me, and no thing schal faile to me;

in the place of pasture there he hath set me.

He nurshide me on the watir of refreischyng;

he conuertide my soule.

He ledde me forth on the pathis of rightfulnesse; for his name.

For whi though Y schal go in the myddis of schadewe of deeth;

Y schal not drede yuels, for thou art with me.

Thi yerde and thi staf; tho han coumfortid me.

Thou hast maad redi a boord in my sight;

agens hem that troblen me.

Thou hast made fat myn heed with oyle;

and my cuppe, fillinge greetli, is ful cleer.

And thi merci schal sue me; in alle the daies of my lijf.

And that Y dwelle in the hows of the Lord; in to the lengthe of daies.

Coverdale Bible (1535)

The Lorde is my shepherde, I can wante nothinge.

He fedeth me in a grene pasture,

and ledeth me to a fresh water.

He quickeneth my soule,

& bringeth me forth in the waye of rightuousnes for his names sake.

Though I shulde walke now in the valley of the shadowe of death,

yet I feare no euell,

for thou art with me:

thy staffe & thy shepehoke comforte me.

Thou preparest a table before me agaynst mine enemies:

thou anoyntest my heade with oyle,

& fyllest my cuppe full.

Oh let thy louynge kyndnes & mercy folowe me all the dayes off my life,

that I maye dwell in the house off the Lorde for euer.

Bishop’s Bible (1568)

God is my sheephearde, therfore I can lacke nothyng:

he wyll cause me to repose my selfe in pasture full of grasse,

and he wyll leade me vnto calme waters.

He wyll conuert my soule:

he wyll bring me foorth into the pathes of righteousnesse for his name sake.

Yea though I walke through the valley of the shadowe of death,

I wyll feare no euyll:

for thou art with me, thy rodde and thy staffe be the thynges that do comfort me.

Thou wylt prepare a table before me in the presence of myne aduersaries:

thou hast annoynted my head with oyle,

and my cup shalbe brymme full. Truely felicitie and mercie shal folowe me all the dayes of my lyfe:

and I wyll dwell in the house of God for a long tyme.

King James Bible (1611)

The LORD is my shepheard, I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie downe in greene pastures:

he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soule:

he leadeth me in the pathes of righteousnes, for his names sake.

Yea though I walke through the valley of the shadowe of death,

I will feare no euill:

for thou art with me, thy rod and thy staffe, they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me, in the presence of mine enemies:

thou anointest my head with oyle,

my cuppe runneth ouer.

Surely goodnes and mercie shall followe me all the daies of my life:

and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for euer.

By Wycliffe Bible (Purvey Edition, 1388)

[Christian History originally published this article in Christian History Issue #43 in 1994]

Next articles

How We Got Our Bible: A Gallery of Mavericks & Misfits

The key players in the history of the Bible haven’t necessarily been popular—or orthodox.

Stephen M. Miller

Christian History Timeline: How We Got Our Bible

Chronology of important events relating to the creation of the English-language Bible.

Philip W. Comfort

A Testament Is Born

Could Matthew take shorthand?—and other intriguing reasons the New Testament may have emerged surprisingly early.

Carsten Peter Thiede

What Writings Must Christians Obey?

Four definitions of the New Testament.

the Editors
Show more

Subscribe to magazine

Subscription to Christian History magazine is on a donation basis


Support us

Christian History Institute (CHI) is a non-profit Pennsylvania corporation founded in 1982. Your donations support the continuation of this ministry


Subscribe to daily emails

Containing today’s events, devotional, quote and stories