YouVersion in German: Publishers Contribute Bibles, Volunteers Translate

At YouVersion, we’re convinced that experiencing the Bible in your own language is the most powerful way you can engage with what God wants to say to your heart. Translating the Bible into the many languages that people ask for is not something we would be able to do ourselves. Fortunately, partners from Bible publishing societies around the world generously join with YouVersion to make sure that as many people as possible have access to God’s Word. Another thing we could never do on our own is translate the many tools YouVersion provides—interfaces, menus, websites, blogs, tech support, etc.—into every language. And that’s where you come in. The same passionate commitment of an extraordinary, worldwide community of volunteers has already brought YouVersion to you in English, Norwegian, Spanish, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Russian, Korean, and Brazilian Portuguese, and now—in German. We are honored to serve in God’s kingdom with you.

Bible Publishing Societies

Our partners have graciously provided the YouVersion community with several options that allow us to together enjoy the Bible in German:

  • Neue Genfer Übersetzung (NGÜ2011). Offered by the Geneva Bible Society, the New Geneva version of the Bible includes the New Testament and Psalms. This translation is well-regarded both for its accuracy and for its writing style: easy-to-understand, contemporary German.
  • Schlachter 2000 (SCH2000). Franz Eugen Schlachter, the son of Franz Joseph Butcher, was a Protestant theologian and pastor who translated the entire Bible into populist German from the original Hebrew and Greek. First published in 1905, his “Butcher’s Bible” grew in popularity throughout the 20th century, largely because he had managed to keep its concepts accessible through simple language, even as he maintained exceptional accuracy to the original source texts he used. Because of its popularity and historical significance, the Geneva Bible Society republished it as an updated version in 2000.
  • Hoffnung für Alle (HFA). Provided by Biblica, the HFA is a very popular German version of the entire Bible, striving more for smooth and comfortable reading in conversational German than for a strict, literal, word-for-word interpretation.

In addition to these more contemporary translations from publishing partners, YouVersion also offers “classic” versions available in the public domain, including Albrecht New Testament and Psalms (GANTP), Elberfelder 1871 (ELB), and of course the timeless Luther Bible 1912 (DELUT).


While great German translations are absolutely necessary for German readers and speakers to engage in the Scriptures, YouVersion has several other important pieces. The Bible App™ is only useful if its users can actually read its controls, buttons, and menus. Volunteers from all over the world united their ability to translate with their love of God’s Word, to make these tools as easy as possible for German users. And while YouVersion’s German-speaking community is already awesome, certainly we can always use more help. We never stop working on growing and improving the Bible App, not to mention all our other tools. We also now offer assistance and technical support in German, whether requests come in through email, Facebook, or Twitter. If you can help with German translation in any of these areas, please let us know.

So what’s it like to translate for YouVersion? Here’s what just a few amazing German language volunteers recently had to say about their own experiences serving the YouVersion community all around the world:

German Language Volunteer Manuel W.

“It’s my deep desire to read God’s Word. Unfortunately, I’m not always getting down to it very regular. I’m studying Computer Science so I’m naturally using my computer and smartphone a lot. This is how I first stumbled upon YouVersion’s Bible App. It made my daily reading a lot easier. At first, when I used it, the App was kind of unstable, and I thought about joining the dev team to improve it. Then I heard about helping as translator. Immediately I volunteered. During recent months the developers put great work in the App, and I was thankful helping out by translating. May the YouVersion community reach a lot of German people, and may everyone be blessed as I got blessed.”
—Manuel W., Darmstadt, Germany

German Language Volunteer Barbara S.


“I find the YouVersion Bible App very useful, and I like to help make it available to as many people as possible. For several years, I have been doing volunteer work as a translator and proofreader for various Christian projects. I know this is a special task God wants me to fulfill.”
—Barbara S., Stetten am kalten Markt, Germany


German Language Volunteer Steffen B.

“One year ago I first discovered YouVersion while I was looking for Japanese and Korean translations of the Bible. I’m studying these languages and wanted to combine reading the Bible with my study of these two languages. Later that year I read about a need for German volunteers at YouVersion, and I thought about getting more involved. At first I translated into my mother tongue, and now I’m a member of the German support team. It really helps me to improve my translation skills and is a great service for God.”
—Steffen B., Germany


German Language Volunteer Tobias K.

“I always had difficulty getting myself to read the Bible every day. I’m an engineer, and I have a smartphone, and one day I found the Bible App from YouVersion. It took me a little while, but once I had spent some time exploring the Bible App, I actually found myself reading God’s Word more consistently. While I don’t mind using an app that’s in English, I know that deters many other people. Then, when I saw that YouVersion was asking for help translating their interface, I realized that I had the chance not just to be a part of the YouVersion community, but to actually help other people use God’s Word more. Now I’m very excited about what God is bringing to our work at YouVersion.”
—Tobias K., Leipzig, Germany

This post is also available in: German