This blog post originally appeared here.
OK, I'll admit it. I have found a verse which at first blush is translated better in the NIV than in the NET Bible. (Did I really just say this publicly? Yes, and I'll explain why in a moment.)
Matthew 10:41 in the NET Bible reads as follows: "Whoever receives a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet's reward. Whoever receives a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive a righteous person's reward." (There's a similar phrasing in v. 42, but we'll keep our focus just on this one verse for now. Plus I don't think I could bear to say that there are two verses which are better in the NIV!) Compare this to the NIV translation: "Anyone who receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet's reward, and anyone who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man will receive a righteous man's reward." You can see the difference pretty quickly. Our translation in the NET Bible is a fairly literal translation, while the NIV is a more dynamic translation. From an English standpoint, the latter communicates more clearly the meaning of the phrase "in the name of," which essentially focused on the status of the one under consideration.
Why is this important? Because no translation is perfect, and we admit that about the NET Bible. Because every translation could stand to be improved, and we are actively working to improve our original work. In short, I don't think the NET Bible should be your only Bible, but I do hope it is your primary one.