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  • Submitted: Feb 18 2014 11:00 PM
  • Last Updated: Apr 12 2021 04:25 PM
  • File Size: 12.62MB
  • Views: 53449
  • Downloads: 13,355
  • Author: MLV Translation Team
  • e-Sword Version: 9.x - 10.x
  • Tab Name: Modern Literal Version (MLV)

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e-Sword 9+ Module Download:
Download Modern Literal Version (2021 Update - OT & NT) 04.12.2021

* * * * - 14 Votes
New Testament Literal Old Testament Whole Bible

MLV Translation Team

e-Sword Version:
9.x - 10.x

Tab Name:
Modern Literal Version (MLV)

Modern Literal Version

(2021 update)

4-12-2020 update

The Modern Literal Version (MLV) aims to be exactly what the title suggests: A modern-language translation of the New Testament which is as close to word-for-word as possible while still being understandable/readable. While some translations use several words to translate a single Greek word (many times in the same paragraph), the MLV has sought to only use one English word for each Greek word. This, of course, doesn't include when one Greek word clearly has different meanings in different contexts.

The MLV strives to be 'error-free' by being "Open Source" so anyone can submit any "Thus saith NOT the Greek". The MLV was not made for profit; this and the Open Source concept has keep it free from doctrinal biases and agendas with a far superior check and balances system. The MLV started like all other 'committee translations' and failed to obtain the accuracy proposed by 'leaps and bounds' and was revised to a more computer generated based translation with over 400 editors, 10 computer techs, 10,000+ emails of corrections, and possibly millions of proofreaders all who could have submitted a "Thus saith NOT the Greek" recommendation.

Quick Overview:
The “Modern Literal Version” uses the Majority Text (‘The New Testament in the Original Greek Byzantine Textform 2018 Compiled and Arranged by Maurice A. Robinson and William Pierpont’).

Two distinct and opposite techniques are used in translating the New Testament from the Greek. The “Modern Literal Version” is the first type, a ‘literal’ translation sometimes called ‘word for word’ translation. The second and most common in the past 30 years is to paraphrase the Greek into English (dynamic equivalence, free style, better than a word for word, or some other fancy wording), all of which are just lame excuses for sloppy translation principles. Any form of paraphrasing would make the opinions of the translators your ‘Word of God.’ They read like the newspaper and contain less wording than a ‘word for word’ translation. The goal of everyone who worked on the “Modern Literal Version” was to keep any form of commentary or paraphrase out of this translation as is humanly possible. Since there is no denomination or publishing company behind the MLV and it was never made for profit, the only uninspired traditions kept in the MLV are: punctuation and capitalization; chapter and verse numbers; and book order (very much to our distaste). How many other translations can claim that especially in book form?

Asterisks (*) are placed after certain words to alert the reader to various information from the original language. For example, when you see you*, this means that in Greek, this is plural. It is extremely important to read the non-bible pages found in the Dictionary module or from the PDF available on the website: www.ModernLiteralVersion.org or .com (shorter redirected mirrors: mlvbible.org, .com .net ) to fully understand the Modern Literal Version and its purpose.

If you, the reader, have some questions, corrections, or suggestions about the translation itself, please email the translation team at mlvbible@gmail.com with subject line MLV or gmail may put your email in SPAM (the reason we don't use the official email address provided by the ISP of the MLV website).

Originally release in e-Sword format in fall of 2011 with over 4000 downloads (add to current download for stats). In Oct. 2013 the "Modern Literal Version" was made available in printed format. The official Modern Literal Version website under 'bulk pricing' gives rough pricing in bulk orders of 18 per case and links to the Amazon listings in paperback, 8.5” x 11” and 7" x 10" versions. Congregations which use the MLV as their primary translation grow, you should consider the same for yours.

The Dictionary Module has been updated to current 2020 Official Update. The Dictionary contains: English concordance with links to each underlying Greek word, Greek Lexicon with Greek Concordance. Updated RMAC to reflex all variations found in the N.T. Voice Tense Mood dictionary updated and included with links for various Synonyms in the Lexicon or this section.

Contents of this module:

The 2019 Update of the Modern Literal Version - both Old and New Testaments.

Dictionary File contains: English Concordance, words linked to underlying Greek (Ctrl + Left Mouse Click) to Greek Lexicon with corrected etymology, supplement section to show additional information, other related Greek words from base word, pronunciation, part of speech, and then a Greek Concordance based off of "The New Testament in the Original Greek, Byzantine Textform 2018, Compiled and Arranged by Maurice A. Robinson and William Pierpont." What words the KJV used for the same Greek word. If you wish to see accuracy of the MLV please check out G1096 & G2596 to compare the worse verb and the worse preposition used in God's Greek Bible when it comes to accuracy and uniformity in English to the old KJV or others should you have a source to use. RMAC and/or the TVM codes have been currently redone to reflect all know e-Sword Greek interlinears. Links also to synonyms sections are in the MLVDC+G module. (Currently 4200 pages according to MS Word.)

Copyright Notice:
The Modern Literal Version is copyright 1999, 2017, G. Allen Walker, co-editor of the MLV.

Permission is granted to use the MLV in any articles, commentaries, or other books, so long as the MLV does not comprise 80% of the total work. However, as a courtesy, we would appreciate being informed of it ahead of time if it will be in a published work (book/commentary). An attempt to create the same functionality of the e-Sword program is also available at www.modernliteralversion.org website. The only official version of the MLV for e-Sword is available at BibleSupport.com. Please report if you discover it elsewhere.

The MLV is royalty free to foreigners to print locally in their own country in their own print shops as long as printed without alterations or changes in A4 & 7"x10" versions, request from mlvbible@gmail.com.

To God is the glory, forevermore.

What's New in Version 04.12.2021 (See full changelog)

  • 02.29.2020
  • The Dictionary has been updated to match the Modern Literal Version Official Release.
  • 01.22.2020b
  • An update to previously flawed compile. Song of Solomon was missing.
  • Quality checks comparing every word in the MLV verse back to the Greek Interlinear are almost at an end. The idea here is 'no word is left behind'. The end result is a 99.7% accuracy in this version. Over 500 words from Sept. 2019 version have been marked with italics as supplied. As of yet the dictionary is still August version on the concordance section.
  • The 2017 MLV update and the other 'master files' which create the dictionary module was ran thru various computerized quality checks in the summer of 2018 and with over 3000 human mistakes being fixed, we felt the 2019 update should be made.
  • This is a further 'computerized quality checks' to find further 'human mistakes' and thus about 1.5% of the N.T. has become more accurate to the Greek than previous 11-25-18 update.
  • Old Testament updated to better reflect the original language.
  • The current upload brought the English Concordance & Greek Lexicon to a closer match to the MLV 2020 Beta.
  • The major improvement was to do away with the UK like punctuation for a more American type punctuation.

This is a very good New Concept of a Bible Translation. It is highly recommended, you can give your suggestions and it is a work in progress and will always be a work in progress in the foreseeable future.  

the premise of this translation is false!  It is ok to be literal, But words do have context sensitive range of meanings, we need translators!  there is skill and art involved in translation and a purely "literal" translation IS a mistranslation

Have you even looked at the translation? 

Well spoken....Bradley......it is a translation that requires examination.....as does every translation of God's written word ! Then allow the Holy Spirit to perform His wonderful work in the Reader's heart and mind.



Hi Brad,

Just downloaded the MLV, and had a really good look at it, and thought to make a comment on it.


As to really how good it is, well, to be honest it compares pretty well against other translations I have. I don't think I'd mark it as my favorite translation, but I would definitely use it  as a comparison, and may even quote from it or reference to it. So it will prove itself to be useful.


As to the claim of it "being the most accurate," well others can judge the merits of that claim far better than I ever can. That said, I would never claim one translation as more accurate over another with the exceptions of the NWT and the Mormon edition of the KJV. Every translation has its strengths and its weaknesses, and as to how much it is is usually a biased opinion of which I won't go down that road.


The readability of this translation is very good, but quite distracting with the asterisks  and the "{F}" thingy. With regard to the footnotes being just labelled as "{F}" when there are multiple footnotes at the bottom, its really difficult to know which footnote belongs to which verse. Usually there are footnotes marked in the main body of the text, normally its numerically marked in superscript, and so outlined as such in the text of the footnote, and this indicates where the footnote is referenced to. So, with that as being about the only minus of this translation, I would mark it a 6 out of 10 points or 3 out of 5 stars as I consider this as a major factor in the formatting of the text. This really needs to be tidied up. Where there are the asterisks, I think they can be changed to superscript alphabetical letters, e.g., a, b, c, etc, and placed as a footnote at the end of the chapter, or as an endnote at the end of the the book.


So, that's about all I can really say about this translation, but leaving you with a big thanks for having it up one here for us. Also I'd like to thank the Editor of this work for making it available for e-Sword.




APsit, the asterisks are there to inform, not to show footnotes.  For example, you* means the "you" is plural, whereas just "you" is singular.  The same is true with the for* vs for.  The dictionary/concordance file has the specific explanations of each asterisked word, or I think that information is also in the "information" part of the Bible module.


I don't think this is a "new" way of translating, but is just a mislabeled concordant version. There have been several concordant versions over the years I appreciate them and use them for reference. 

Thank you for making it available without charge.




isn't" this really a "church of Christ" translation from mostly church of Christ preachers?

isn't" this really a "church of Christ" translation from mostly church of Christ preachers?


Thanks for asking, and the answer to the question is "no."  The Modern Literal Version was originally the work of two men, one of whom was a Baptist preacher, the other not being a preacher at all.  The present translation committee includes people from different religious backgrounds.  Literally thousands of people have presented translation suggestions and English corrections/improvements, and there is no way to know the religious affiliation of them.


As the MLV folks constantly say, if you've got a place where the translation can be improved, send them an email with your suggestion   MLVBible@gmail.com.

Does anyone know how to install this version? All I get are 2 weird files - .bblx & .dctx - that do not seem to be able to run on an install wizard. What do I do with these?

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