A couple of weeks ago I referred you to an article by Mark Naylor on two types of Bible translation (here). Mark has followed up that article with another looking at the differences between literal and meaning-based translations in more depth. Better make yourself a coffee before you read the article as it is a long one, but it is very good. If you are in a hurry, here is the conclusion, but make sure you go back to read the whole thing at some point.
Though individually limited, together literal and meaning-based translations provide readers with greater confidence that they have grasped the intended meaning of the original text. Exclusive use of a literal version makes it difficult for the reader to understand the message. Exclusive use of one meaning-based translation will prevent the reader from exposure to other possible nuances of the original text. Excellent scholarship lies behind both literal and meaning-based versions so that we can read them with confidence and compare them in order to obtain a deeper appreciation of the message. Literal translations ensure that we maintain a tie to the original text as the standard for the meaning, while meaning-based translations provide clarity and comprehension. Read More