I remember purchasing Logos Bible software well over a decade ago while in college. It was so robust and innovative. Their software helped me accumulate resources, study, and complete assignments all from the comfort of my dorm (helping me keep my distance from the school library). Logos was powerful but not as portable as it is now. A few years later I remember paying $25 for NIV Bible software for my Palm Pilot. Innovation has prevailed once again. No one would have thought a Bible could be this portable! My Palm Pilot was smaller than a Gideon Bible. Then the internet landed and we had BibleGatway.com, BlueLetterBible.com, YouVersion.com, etc. And innovation struck once again with the new world of apps. Lifechurch.tv’s Bible app has been installed nearly 200 million times, that’s innovation reaching around the world.
Since my smartphone is on me almost all the time my Bible is easily accessible but that does not mean that my paper Bible is not portable. As a tech junkie I will be the first to admit that the convenience of any eBible is fantastic but there is something about holding and reading my paper Bible. In fact, while I teach from my iPad, I read from a Bible. A professor encouraged me to alway read the Bible from a Bible. He said (this was in the 90’s before iPads), “When you are writing a lesson, copying and pasting Bible verses in that lesson, and reading that lesson off a single sheet of paper, students may not easily realize the difference between your words and God’s word.” If I am teaching or preaching I almost always have my message with verses on my iPad and a hard copy of the Bible right there with me. Notice I did not say I had a real copy of “God’s Word.” I do not think less of Bible apps, I just want those I am teaching to see a difference.
In my adventure to be a more tactile reader. I recently purchased a new Bible that brings a fresh approach to the Old Testament. While I read from a paper so students recognize God’s word separate from my words. I love how the Jesus-Centered Bible highlights verses and passages that point to Jesus. The past five years (still a new practice) I have been looking for Jesus in the Old Testament as I read. Maybe I see something He quoted (Deuteronomy 6:4-9), or I see His presence (Genesis 1:1), or a passage pointing to Him (Isaiah 53:6). The Jesus-Centered Bible does an amazing job of showing me more of these references. Not only are passages pointing to Jesus highlighted in blue, there are also other helps in seeing Jesus. Tools and tips like Jesus Answers Life’s Biggest Questions segments, Jesus in Every Book introductions, Jesus Questions, Jesus’ spoken words, and so much more.
I am reminded of this quote when I think of the Jesus-Centered Bible…
but do you not know that from every little town and village and tiny hamlet in England there is a road leading to London? Whenever I get hold of a text, I say to myself, ‘There is a road from here to Jesus Christ, and I mean to keep on His track till I get to Him.’ -CH Spurgeon, The Soul Winner.
This is a great resource in my personal time with God!
• Blue letters in the OT pointing to Jesus (this is such a great idea, how has this never been done before?)
• Comments and micro commentary (study notes)
• Nice size and feel
• Gilded edges are fantastic
• Page feel A+++
• Not large print but not too small, it is easy to read
• I was going to give the Jesus-Centered Bible one star because of one huge oversight, this Bible only has ONE BUILT-IN BOOKMARK! There is so much amazing content here. How am I expected to get by with only one bookmark?
• If I seriously had to pick it apart I guess I would like for more options…Sizes, covers (leather, cheaper paperback), NIV or ESV.