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Friday, July 15, 2005

ESV Bible reading contest: the winner says ...

Greg Williams, winner of our ESV Bible reading contest shares this about his Bible reading experiences:
I first started reading all the way through the Bible in college after a retreat with Campus Crusade for Christ (c. 1992) where the speaker (Tommy Nelson) challenged us to read the entire Bible. I like that it gives a structure to my quiet times & a goal to work towards. I also like that it gives me a good sense of the overall unity of scripture and where to find things.

My first several times through the Bible I read the NIV. The first couple of times I read all of it in about a year & a half to two years, and since then have tried to stick to various plans (either straight through or alternating between old & new testament) where I finish all of it in a year. I started with the NIV Study Bible, which was really helpful for background information, but after a couple of times I found the notes to be a distraction on a daily basis, so I switched to a Thinline (which is still my format of choice & what I use in the ESV) and just reference a study Bible when I want to dig deeper into something. My other study Bible that I sometimes reference is the New Geneva Bible (the predecessor to the Reformation Bible) in NKJV. I've read through most of it and appreciate that it is a more literal translation, but was not satisfied with how the English read and eventually went back to the NIV.

I read about the ESV online about a year after it was published and decided to get a copy when I saw who was involved in the translation (specifically, J.I. Packer, John Piper, & R.C. Sproul). I really like knowing that it's fairly literal, but is still easier to read than the NKJV or NASB. I think it's valuable to reference several different translations when digging deeper into a passage, including more dynamic equivalent translations, but overall I've been pleased with the ESV for my day-to-day reading.
Thanks, Greg, for sharing this with us. I hope your dedication to Bible reading will be an inspiration to others who visit this blog.

BTW, Greg chose an extra copy of the Good News Bible in my collection for his prize. So I now have two extra Bibles remaining:
1. Large print paperback Holman Christian Standard Bible, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs
2. Hardback New Living Translation
Both are in like-new condition. Now I need to think of some other contest where the winners can take these extra Bibles to help lighten our load when we move. If any of you have ideas for an interesting contest, why not send them to me as a comment to this post or to my email address (given in my Profile in the right margin). If I get more ideas than Bibles remaining as prizes, I can give copies of Morning Song, my latest collection of poetry, as prizes.

Have a good weekend, everyone. It's very hot here in Montana.



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