As a follow up to my post yesterday, I’m showing more pictures of my new Bible plus a few comments on what I like and what I don’t like about it.
First off, apologies to my readers for the poor quality of some of the pictures–the camera I used was having one of its “black moods.” Or should I say “purple moods.”
The picture below shows my new Bible on top of one of my older Bibles. The lower Bible is a Reformation Study ESV. Because the latter is a study Bible, it’s a bit thicker than the new ESV. It also has a denim cover (black of course) made by one of our ninangs. The new ESV, being thinner, is lighter and I noticed, as I practiced a preaching pose with it in front of a mirror, that it was very good as a “hold-as-you-preach” Bible. The leather is really soft and curves beautifully to the sides as you hold the book up.
In my previous post, I mentioned that I like single column formats (and if I haven’t mentioned it, I’m mentioning it now). The picture below shows the Bible opened to 2 Chronicles 24 (page 601) and you can see the single column format. It’s very attractive and a lot more readable than two-column formats.
Another thing which I really like about this Bible is its being non-red letter. For those who are not familiar with the term, in red-letter Bibles, the words of Christ are distinguished with red ink (hence the term). While I have no extremely strong reactions to red-letter Bibles, I don’t find them particularly useful and sometimes can be quite confusing. (John 3:16 is a particular example; are the words “For God so loved the world…” a direct quote from Jesus or is it a sort of commentary on the clear words of Christ to Nicodemus earlier in the chapter?)
I also prefer black (duh) so I find the crisp monochromatic page quite delightful in a utilitarian sort of way. See the picture below for what I mean.
The font too is quite readable. The picture above shows it quite plainly. My Galaxy Guide tells me it’s a size 10. Sadly, I can’t distinguish the font type, but the serif makes it very easy to read.
Two more things that I like, though I’m not sure how much this will resonate with others. Unlike my previous Bibles, which either had one or no tassels at all, this ESV had three (wow!) tassels. Certainly gives a reason to do away with bookmarks, especially when preaching. Also, there’s a gilded line on the inside yapp. Again, not something everybody will look for, but they add plus points as far as I’m concerned. (See pictures below.)
Now for the nitpicks. I find myself very disappointed with two things in my new ESV. Again, if there’s anyone out there thinking of buying this particular edition, please don’t think I’m being dogmatic about the cons. The following are just a couple of items of note which I believe the publishers/printers could have improved.
While I think many people enjoy the presence of reference verses in the margins of their Bibles, I don’t find them particularly useful. My gut reaction upon seeing them for the first time was worry that the use of them could lead to taking verses out of context. After years of being in the ministry, I find that my gut reaction has been justified many times over. Every once in a while, you do get a good reference to a particular passage, but those instances are very rare.
Also, for a Bible that costs as much as this one does, the maps look kind of, well, cheap. Except for the size these maps found at the last few pages of the Bible are the very same maps found in my older and way cheaper ESV. Never liked them. The maps look too plain and simplistic compared to other maps in other Bibles
Looking at the picture above, the reader can see that the India paper is quite thin. You can actually see the words on the other side of the page. This isn’t a big concern for me but it might be for others.
Overall, this is a very good Bible. I would heartily recommend it to anyone.