What Bible does the Amish use?

Key Takeaways:

  • The Amish community consists of conservative Christians who highly regard the Bible in their daily lives.
  • There is a complexity in the use of the Bible among different Amish orders, including variations in preferred languages and versions.
  • Some Amish communities strictly adhere to the German-language Bible as the only true version, while others secretly read the Bible in English.


The Amish community, known for their conservative Christian beliefs, has a deep-rooted connection to the Bible. In this article, we will provide a brief overview of the Amish and explore their reputation and commitment to living by the words of the Bible. Delving into their unique lifestyle and religious practices, we will discover how the Amish community’s choice of Bible aligns with their deeply held values.

Brief overview of the Amish community and their reputation as conservative Christians who live by the words of the Bible

The Amish community is famous for their traditional Christian beliefs and their loyalty to the teachings of the Bible. These principles form the basis of their faith and lifestyle.

Variations exist in how they use the Bible. Some prefer an English-language Bible, while others swear by a German/English parallel Bible. The belief in the German version rests on a lack of support for other translations from the original Biblical languages. But, some Amish secretly read the Bible in English.

Plus, they strongly believe the King James version of the Bible is the only true version. This is because of criticisms of other translations as changes in word meanings occur. These complexities show that there is no single approach to Bible use within the Amish community.

Religious practices also shape Amish life. Worship services follow a set pattern. This includes scripture reading, sermons, hymn singing, and prayer. Ministers and deacons are chosen with lot casting and serve for life without training.

The Amish religiously observe Sundays, banning work and certain activities. They have worship services in private homes instead of churches, which reflects their desire for simplicity and emphasizes humility, submission to God, and group norms.

When problems arise inside or outside the Amish community, they look for a peaceful solution via forgiveness, instead of lawsuits. They also strive to stay separate from worldly influences by working at home.

Discipline within the Amish is maintained by shunning. Serious offenders are excommunicated and avoided. However, efforts are made to help those who have been shunned.

Rituals and rites of passage are important to the Amish. These include communion, separate services for men and women, foot washing, baptismal ceremonies, and funeral practices. These practices mirror their beliefs in simplicity, humility, submission to God, and separation from the world.

The Complexity of Bible Use among the Amish

The complexity of Bible use among the Amish unravels a fascinating tapestry of different practices, beliefs, and variations within this religious community. From different practices within different orders to the belief in German-language or English Bible translations, and even specific versions like the King James, the Amish approach to the Bible is diverse. Join us as we explore this intricate landscape of Bible use among the Amish, revealing the nuances and layers of their faith.

Different practices within different orders

The Amish community practices vary among orders, in particular, the choice between English-language or German/English parallel Bible. While some orders believe the German-language Bible is the true version, this is not supported by the original Biblical languages.

Additionally, some Amish individuals secretly read the English Bible. This reveals discrepancies between Amish customs and the words of the Bible. Despite this, many still prioritize Amish customs over biblical commands.

Moreover, within the Amish community, there is a strong belief in the King James version as the only true translation. Other translations are criticised, as word meanings may be changed. This preference for a specific translation adds complexity to Bible use among the Amish.

In conclusion, with language choices, hidden readings and translations, it is clear that different orders within the Amish community have different practices when it comes to utilising and interpreting the Bible. These differences provide an insight into how faith and heritage influence Amish life. Exploring these intricacies allows for a greater understanding and appreciation of their commitment to their beliefs and modern challenges.

Belief in the German-language Bible as the only true Bible

The Amish community has a strong belief in the German-language Bible. They think this version is the most accurate and closest to their interpretation of the Bible’s teachings. This belief comes from their desire to keep traditional Amish ways and beliefs, which they think are based on the Bible. The German-language Bible is seen as essential for keeping these customs and practices alive in the community.

This belief is complex because the original Biblical languages do not support it. The Amish know the German-language Bible is a translation. However, they still think it is accurate and valid. In secret, they read the Bible in English and found differences between passages and Amish teachings. Even so, they prioritize adhering to their customs over interpreting the Bible strictly.

The Amish also only accept the King James version as true. They criticize other translations because they think they change the words’ meaning, which alters God’s message. They say any translation changes can lead to misunderstandings or misinterpretations, which could ruin their traditional values and way of life.

Secret reading of the Bible in English

The Amish community uses the German-language Bible, but also secretly reads an English version. This is because of differences between the Bible and Amish traditions. They keep this reading private, as it could conflict with their traditional beliefs. The complexities and variations in Amish Bible use show the difficulties of combining conservative living with modern influences.

Within the Amish, there is a belief that only the German Bible is true. This is unsupported by original Biblical languages or scholarly opinion. Nonetheless, many Amish stick to this belief and reject any translations that are not in German.

Some Amish criticize other Bible translations for changing the true meaning of the scriptures. Therefore, many prefer the King James version, as they see it as the only accurate translation. This demonstrates how strongly they hold onto their interpretations of scripture.

The belief in the King James version as the only true version

The Amish have a strong faith in the King James version of the Bible. This is due to their disapproval of other translations changing word meanings. They regard the King James as the most precise and trusty translation, believing it is a faithful portrayal of God’s word. Deviations from this version may cause confusion or misinterpretation of scripture. This deepens their dedication to traditional values and strengthens their conservative Christian identity.

Moreover, the Amish prioritize their customs over biblical commands. This can be seen when discrepancies between the Bible and Amish teachings are discovered during English Bible readings. When this occurs, Amish individuals often adhere to Amish customs instead of following the Bible. This shows how religion and culture affect scripture interpretation and implementation within the Amish community.

Unique details about this topic include: criticism of other translations due to changes in word meaning; preference for upholding Amish customs over potentially conflicting Bible commands; and how cultural and theological aspects influence Bible use. To discuss these complexities, conversations about different translations could be beneficial. Resources exploring varied perspectives on translations can help expand knowledge and appreciation for different interpretations. Also, an inclusive approach that values both tradition and personal convictions can create a safe space for people to engage critically with scripture while remaining bound to their faith traditions.

Conclusion on the complexity and variations in Bible use among the Amish

The Amish prioritize their customs over Bible commands. They read the Bible in English and German, although they believe only the King James version is accurate. Their worship services consist of scripture reading, sermons, hymn singing, and prayer. They have no church buildings, but rather worship in private homes.

Ministers and deacons are chosen by lot and serve for life. Congregations are based on shared beliefs and values. Conflict resolution is centered on forgiveness and peaceful resolutions, not lawsuits.

The Amish keep to themselves and avoid conformity. They work at home to minimize contact with outsiders and preserve their distinct way of life. Discipline is important and shunning is a practice used. Rituals are also important and include communion, separate services for men and women, foot washing, baptism, and funeral practices.

In conclusion, the Amish have a unique approach to the Bible and faith. They are committed to conservative Christian values and demonstrate humility, submission, simplicity, and separation.

Amish Religious Practices

Amish Religious Practices offer a glimpse into their unique way of worship and living. From the format of worship services to the selection of ministers and deacons, each aspect reflects their strong adherence to tradition and separation from the world. Discover how their observance of Sundays, lack of church buildings, and worship in private homes foster a deep sense of community. The Amish’s emphasis on conflict resolution, rejection of lawsuits, and discipline through shunning also sets them apart. Join us as we explore the important rituals and rites of passage that shape their religious practices.

Worship services and their format

The Amish community’s worship services follow a specific format that reflects their conservative Christian beliefs. This includes scripture reading, a sermon, hymn singing, and prayer – in the same order across all congregations. Worship is central to the Amish faith, providing a space for spiritual growth and fellowship.

Ministers and deacons are chosen by lot to serve in these roles for life. This practice is based on the belief in divine guidance and trusting God’s will. It also reflects the emphasis on humility and submission to His authority.

Sundays are special for the Amish. Work and certain activities are restricted, allowing more time for worship, prayer, and family. This follows Biblical teachings regarding Sabbath rest and emphasizes spiritual renewal in daily life.

Rather than dedicated church buildings, the Amish prefer to worship in private homes. This is to keep to their values of modesty, simplicity, and communal connections. They form congregations based on geographic proximity, creating long-term relationships with shared values.

The Amish prioritize forgiveness over legal action when resolving disputes. This is to maintain harmony within the community, as well as to follow the non-violent and peaceful resolution of conflicts.

The Amish practice intentional separation from worldly influences and conformity. This is done by working at home rather than engaging in outside employment, to minimize contact with outsiders and preserve their distinct religious identity.

Shunning is used to maintain discipline within the Amish community. It is used to socially exclude those who violate community norms and teachings. This practice reinforces group norms and upholds the values of simplicity, humility, submission, and separation.

Important rituals and rites of passage are part of the Amish faith, such as communion, separate services for men and women, foot washing, baptism, and funeral practices. These ceremonies have deep significance, and mark important milestones in an individual’s spiritual journey. They reflect the commitment to biblical teachings and a sense of collective identity among the Amish.

Selection of ministers and deacons

The Amish Way of Choosing Ministers and Deacons

The Amish employ a distinct process for selecting their ministers and deacons. It is unlike the practice of other Christian denominations, as it is called “chosen by lot.” This means they are chosen randomly, through a method believed to be guided by God’s will.

Once chosen, these individuals serve in their roles for life. Unlike many other Christian communities, the Amish do not require formal education or theological training for this role. Instead, they focus on spirituality, character, and a profound understanding of their faith.

This practice emphasizes humility and submission to God, which is at the heart of the Amish way of life. It also sets them apart from mainstream Christianity with its emphasis on qualifications and formal education for religious leadership.

This distinctive approach to selecting ministers and deacons underscores the Amish commitment to simplicity, humility, and reliance on divine guidance.

Observance of Sundays

The Amish community show a deep respect for Sundays. They stick to strict guidelines and practices that show their commitment to living simply and apart from the world. This day is marked by a ban on work and certain activities, which is a visible expression of their devotion to honoring the Sabbath. The origins of Sunday observance in the Amish arise from their religious beliefs of humility, submission to God, and following group standards.

On Sundays, Amish people come together for worship services. These services include reading scripture, preaching, singing hymns, and praying. Through these services, they find peace and connect spiritually, joining in communal worship that creates unity and commitment.

Uniquely, the Amish don’t gather in church buildings like many other Christian denominations. They choose to worship in their own homes instead. This purposeful practice creates an atmosphere of closeness, reinforcing the Amish value of simplicity. By avoiding big churches, they prioritize meaningful relationships with each other and with God.

In addition to worship services, Sundays among the Amish have various rituals and rites of passage that are significant. Communion, in particular, is important to the Amish as they view it as a sacred act that strengthens their relationships with both God and fellow believers. Men and women also have separate services on Sundays, which allows the distinct groups to focus on specific spiritual matters.

To sum up, the Amish way of observing Sundays involves multiple practices that are in line with their core values and religious beliefs. Through structured worship services, home gatherings, and meaningful rituals, they prove their unwavering commitment to living in accordance with biblical principles, while adhering to their dedication to simplicity and separation from worldly influences.

Lack of church buildings and worship in private homes

The Amish community has an unusual religious custom of not having church buildings, but rather worshipping in private homes. This is an essential part of their beliefs and values such as simplicity, humility, submission to God and separation from the world.

During their worship services they read scripture, give sermons, sing hymns and pray. They think it is important to form congregations with surrounding farm families, so they can have strong relationships based on their shared faith. Worshipping in private homes helps them to create a tight-knit community that will follow their religious customs.

Interesting, the Amish do not have special training for ministers and deacons. Instead, they choose them by lot and they serve for life. This further shows their belief in humility and being obedient to God’s will.

Sundays are very important to the Amish. They forbid work and certain activities as part of their dedication to honor the Sabbath.

Although they lack formal church buildings, the Amish value discipline within their community. They try to solve conflicts through forgiveness and peace instead of going to court. An important part of discipline is shunning – confessing before the congregation and possibly being cut off from the community. Despite this, they still make an effort to interact with and help the people who have been shunned.

Formation of congregations and long-term relationships

The Amish community prizes congregations and relationships lasting for years, based on their shared beliefs and values. Local farms come together to make a congregation, focusing on humility, obedience to God, and following the group’s rules. They prefer worshipping in family homes instead of separate churches, which helps them stay close and assist each other in living by their religious principles.

The Amish value long-term connections and depend on the stability and support from strong bonds in the community. Their devotion to humility and submission leads to close relationships based on shared values. These ties create a base for helping each other during tough times.

In the Amish congregation, ministers and deacons are chosen by lot and serve for life. This selection further strengthens the long-term commitment. In addition, they handle conflict with forgiveness and peace, rather than suing or taking legal action.

To sum up, the Amish form congregations to live by their faith while creating strong, lasting relationships with like-minded people. This helps them keep a sense of community, aid one another, solve conflicts peacefully, and stay true to their unique lifestyle of simplicity and distancing from the world.

Conflict resolution and rejection of lawsuits

Conflict resolution among the Amish is characterized by a strong emphasis on forgiveness and peaceful resolution. Suing is not an option; instead, they prioritize resolving disputes within their community. Individuals must confess before the congregation and seek forgiveness. This allows for personal growth and accountability, and stops issues from escalating. When not possible to solve internally, mediators from the church or community are sought.

The Amish reject lawsuits due to their values of simplicity and separation from the outside world. This helps them maintain their distinct way of life, and stops them from becoming entangled in lengthy disputes.

In addition to promoting forgiveness and rejecting litigation, the Amish also support those who have been “shunned” – temporarily or permanently expelled from the congregation due to violations of Amish norms and customs. Despite the shunning, the community still offers guidance and assistance.

Conflict resolution among the Amish reflects their core values: simplicity, humility, submission to God’s will, and separation from worldly influences. Forgiveness, avoiding lawsuits, and maintaining harmonious relationships are key.

Separation from the world and avoidance of conformity

The Amish are known for their strict adherence to simplicity and humility. They prioritize a life that rejects worldly things and celebrates what matters most. To distance themselves from worldly influences, they deliberately stay away from societal expectations.

Also, they follow their own religious customs and practices, disregarding cultural norms that don’t fit their beliefs. This allows them to keep their identity and live by their conservative Christian principles.

Moreover, the Amish understand the importance of connecting with those who have been shunned or excommunicated. They choose reconciliation over holding onto resentment. This helps build genuine connections within their own community and stays true to their religious values.

Connecting with neighbors and attending shared activities, worship services, and communal meals can help the Amish further emphasize their separation from the world. It can also reinforce their commitment to their way of life while encouraging fellowship and unity.

Educational programs that promote theological studies among the Amish can also deepen individuals’ understanding of their religious beliefs and values. This encourages thoughtful scripture interpretations while sustaining the community’s theological integrity.

These suggestions help the Amish maintain their separation from the world, avoid conformity, and foster a strong sense of community and spiritual growth.

Discipline through shunning

Shunning is seen as an important way to keep the Amish community pure and together. It highlights the need for uniformity and keeping their special way of life. Through shunning, they want to stay away from the outside world and stick to humility, simplicity, and following God.

Individuals who are shunned can feel lonely in the community. But, help is still given in certain cases, like when they are sick or in trouble. This shows that even though shunning is strict, there is still care for those left out.

So that this practice works, people need to know why it is done. Teaching about why shunning is needed can help them to understand its importance in keeping the Amish identity. Chatting openly within families and congregations can also help acceptance.

Leaders should also give support and counseling to those who have been shunned and those doing the shunning. This can help deal with the hard feelings and bring healing, forgiveness, and peace.

All in all, discipline by shunning is very important for the Amish. Even though it looks harsh to outsiders, it keeps the Amish unique.

Important rituals and rites of passage

Amish rituals are key in their religious practices. Milestones like communion, separate services for men and women, and foot washing are all very important.

Communion symbolizes the sharing of Christ’s body and blood with believers.

Separate services for men and women allow for focused worship and reflection on gender roles in their faith.

Foot washing is seen as an act of humility and service.

Baptism is highly valued in the Amish community. It signifies commitment to Christ’s teachings and joining the church congregation. It is typically done through immersion in water.

Funerals have specific customs, emphasizing mourning, remembrance, and comforting the family.

These rituals have great meaning and uphold the values of simplicity, humility, submission to God’s will, and separation from worldly influences. They create a sense of belonging within the Amish community.

Conclusion on the religious practices of the Amish

The religious practices of the Amish are based in their beliefs. They demonstrate commitment to simplicity, humility, submission, and separation from the outside world. Worship services are central, and are chosen by lot and serve for life, without formal training.

Sundays are a day of worship and rest. No work or certain activities. The Amish do not go to church buildings, they gather in homes to emphasize intimacy and relationships.

Conflict resolution is highly valued. Lawsuits are not accepted. The Amish strive for separation, working from home.

Shunning is done if someone violates community norms. Confessing before the congregation and excommunication may follow.

Rituals and rites of passage are part of Amish practices. Communal communion services, separate services for men and women, foot washing, baptism, and funeral practices. All hold significant importance.

The Bible has a complex role in Amish practices, causing variation between orders. The themes of simplicity, humility, and submission are common.

When interfaith events or learning about Amish practices occur, respect and understanding are key. Dialogue and cultural exchange should be offered. Inclusivity and understanding should be fostered to promote respect and appreciation for different religious practices.


Thus, the Amish show commitment to their traditional and conservative lifestyle through their choice of Bible. They opt for plain translations and prioritize personal study of the scriptures. This distinct approach to spiritual practices helps keep the Amish community unique and strong.

FAQs about What Bible Does The Amish Use

What Bible does the Amish use?

The Amish use different versions of the Bible based on their individual orders and beliefs. Some higher orders read an English-language Bible, while some moderate orders allow a German/English parallel Bible. The Swartzentruber order holds the belief that the German-language Bible is the only true Bible, but this belief is not supported by the original Biblical languages of Hebrew and Greek.

Do the Amish believe in the King James version of the Bible?

Yes, most Amish adhere to the belief that the King James version of the Bible is the only true version. They argue against other translations. However, it’s important to note that the King James translation was ordered by King James VI of Scotland in 1611, and since then, word meanings have changed and some words in the translation have opposite meanings to today’s understanding.

What languages are used to read the Bible among the Amish?

The Amish use a variety of languages to read the Bible. Some higher orders read the Bible in English, while some moderate orders allow a German/English parallel Bible. The German language is also commonly used among certain orders. However, the original Biblical languages of Hebrew and Greek are not commonly used among the Amish.

Do the Amish prioritize their customs over what the Bible says?

Some Amish individuals have discovered discrepancies between the Bible and Amish teachings. They have found that there are things commanded by Jesus in the Bible that the Amish do not do, and that the Bishop and Ministers often prioritize Amish customs over what the Bible says. This has led to new understanding and questioning of the Amish practices for individuals like Harvey Z. and Lester, an Old Order Amish preacher.

What are the beliefs and practices of the Amish based on?

The religious beliefs and practices of the Amish are based on traditional Anabaptist Christian theology. They emphasize simplicity, humility, submission to God’s will, and separation from the world. The Amish value long-term relationships, neighbor relationships, and they reject pride and arrogance. They also emphasize forgiveness and peaceful conflict resolution. Their practices are rooted in their beliefs and are reflected in their worship services, church leaders, baptism, funerals, and community values.

Do the Amish have church buildings?

Most Old Order Amish congregations do not have church buildings. They instead hold worship services in private homes. This practice is based on the belief that God does not dwell in temples made with hands and the historical persecution of the early Anabaptists. The physical location of their residence forms the basis for the congregation, with neighboring farm families coming together for worship services and community gatherings.

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