Best christian bibles according to redditors

We found 2,255 Reddit comments discussing the best christian bibles. We ranked the 702 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about Christian Bibles:

u/TooManyInLitter · 81 pointsr/DebateReligion

How about the evolution of Yahweh/Allah as a second-tier God in a large henotheistic polytheism into a straight monotheism where there is only one God, where that God is Yahweh/Allah?

Here are some references on the growth of monotheistic Yahwehism from a historical polytheistic foundation to the development of the henotheism/monolatry, and then monotheism of early Biblical Israelites:

u/VermeersHat · 75 pointsr/AskHistorians

There's a staggering amount of material on this. The biblical scholars I know generally prefer the New Revised Standard Version translation. The New Oxford Annotated Bible is a good, solid annotated version. The Harper Collins Study Bible is good as well. It's often assigned in courses -- I believe because it's sometimes a bit cheaper.

The problem is that neither book is able to give you a comprehensive picture of biblical scholarship. If they tried, the books would be too heavy to lift. For that, I like the Anchor Bible Dictionary. It's huge -- and in fact Anchor has put out much more than just the dictionary -- but it has everything you need to know.

The best strategy would probably be to use the Anchor books as a reference to look up intriguing passages from the original text. Plenty of scholars -- like Bart Ehrman -- also publish survey texts that introduce the practice of biblical analysis and give an overview of the bible as a whole.

u/DaJia · 52 pointsr/Christianity

My suggestion for a first Bible. The ESV study Bible is loaded with commentary and theologically balanced information for almost every verse. It has a well made binding and comes with color photos and clear print.

u/SunAtEight · 39 pointsr/atheism

Get yourself an annotated New Revised Standard Version. It includes alternative translations and copious footnotes from an academic source-critical perspective, along with very informative essays and maps at the back.

Note: I have the Oxford Augmented Third Edition. Looking at the reviews, make sure you get the version you want. I think I might have linked the paperback edition lacking the concordance ("College Edition"). A concordance is useful, but you also probably don't want something this big in paperback, especially since the price isn't that different.

u/solucid · 33 pointsr/Foodforthought

An article about gimmick bibles and they don't even mention the coolest one of all?

u/d0nutz_ · 32 pointsr/dankchristianmemes

God this just might be worse than the "Minecraft Bible"

Edit: The cringe is butt-clenching.

u/The_New_34 · 31 pointsr/Christianity

As a Catholic, I can assure you Catholics ARE Christians. Mel Gibson is a Catholic... sort of. He's a Sedevacantist.

Man, call yourself a Christian! I would also recommend looking into the Roman Catholic faith or the Eastern Orthdox faith (we're the OG Christians, lol).

Yes, get a Bible, but DON'T read it cover-to-cover. Once you get to Leviticus, you'll be like, "What the actual f--- is going ON here?" Start with the New Testament, specifically one of the Gospels. I personally love the Gospel of Luke because of how it portrays Mary, but the Gospel of John is quite good, too. It's very symbolic and is perhaps the one you could study the deepest.

if you're finding it hard to understand some of the New Testament of the Bible (the part with Jesus, the letters of Paul, and the Book of Revelation,) I would recommend buying the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible. It's an actual, readable Bible that contains commentary throughout. The version I linked is only for the New Testament. The Old Testament analysis is still being compiled, but it's almost done.

Also, listen to Scott Hahn's podcast where he breaks down various sections of the Bible.

As for reading materials outside the Bible, I can highly recommend Mere Christianity, by C. S. Lewis, Orthodoxy by G. K. Chesterton, and Chesterton's other work The Everlasting Man.

Oh yeah, PRAY! Just have a conversation with God! Talk to him about anything you want! Pray to God, ask the Blessed Mother for intercession, or any of the saints

If you're confused about the various denominations of Christianity, Here's a basic flow chart.

Here's the Nicene Creed, which is a mash-up of what (most) Christians believe

Also, I highly recommend the Podcast Pints with Aquians! It's an analysis of the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas, who's life mission was to combine faith with human reason and prove that it was not unreasonable to believe in God, but perhaps it is unreasonable to not believe in God.

I, along with everyone on this sub, will be praying for you! Good luck on your faith journey!

u/cormac596 · 26 pointsr/standupshots

This bone is called the baculum. Interestingly, some people use it as an argument about translations of one of the sources of the Bible (The j source. wrote most of genesis, exodus, and numbers).

The argument is that Eve wasn't made from a rib. When most translations say "rib", some people argue that this is a mistranslation of "baculum."

To see their evidence, look at your scrotum (If you don't have one, I'm sure someone will be eager to help). For most men, the scrotum has a line that runs down the center from the base of the penis to the perineum. This is a product of sexual differentiation of the fetus. In males, the proto-labia fuse together and the generic gonads descend into it, forming the scrotum and testicles.

The argument is that God took the baculum out of Adam to make Eve. Hence the "scar", and why humans don't have a baculum when most placental mammals do.

tl;dr: scrotums have lines from where god removed man's penis bone to make eve.

EDIT: I should probably say that I'm not an expert about this. My knowledge is not really from a religious perspective. What I know about the bible is primarily from 2 classes I took 2 years ago in freshman year out of personal interest, which were more about secular biblical scholarship (i.e., study about the book itself. sources, authorship, its history, dynamic vs static translations, etc) than religious study. You can't truly separate studying a religious text from studying its meanings and interpretations, but the class as a whole was from a secular and objective perspective.

Needless to say I'm not an expert about this type of stuff. This theory wasn't mentioned in the class; I saw it somewhere online (wikipedia maybe) and thought it was interesting. I don't think that it's a very well known argument, but it does explain some things that a direct, literal interpretation can't. For example, if you have a finger, ribs, a willing member of the opposite sex, and the ability to count, you may notice that men and women have the same number of ribs.

Ultimately, interpretations of the bible are probably as numerous as the people who read it (and those who clearly haven't). The earliest source (the J source), was written somewhere around the 10th century bce. That's 3000 years ago, twice as distant from the modern day as from the last of the mammoths. The whole thing was written over a span of centuries. It's full of contradictions, unclear references, and obvious falsehoods. The oldest version we have is the septuagint, which is in ancient greek. What few sources we have in biblical hebrew are, as one might expect, in biblical hebrew, which is dead and massively distant from modern hebrew, so translations are entirely subject to interpretation.

There's a lot we don't (and much we probably can't) know about the bible. There are tons of theories and interpretations to explain things that don't make sense. I thought the one about the baculum was interesting.

If you want to know more about this kind of stuff, read a bible designed for scholarship. For the old testament/hebrew bible, I recommend the JPS translation and the NRSV translation for the new testament (nrsv is good for both, but jps is better for the hebrew bible b/c it's from a jewish perspective). The links are for the versions I have, which are really good.

u/MrTimscampi · 20 pointsr/SzechuanSauceSeekers

Let's at least link to a well translated version of the book, shall we ?

Here's the New American Standard Bible

Note: I'm atheist, but I've been doing some research about bible translations out of an interest to read the thing at least once and pretty much everybody says the New American Standard Bible is the best translation available in English. It's translated from the oldest versions of the texts available, has translation notes and removes some passages added by the King James version.

Some of the conversations that resulted from this post pushed me to research a bit more. In the end, for my reading of the Bible, I ended up going with The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha. It features a more neutral translation and is generally the standard for academic studies of the Bible. It uses the NRSV translation, which you can read here.

It has been brought to my attention that, while it features a more than correct translation, the NASB is a bit more geared towards Protestants. As my main goal for researching the various Bible translations was finding a good, neutral Bible to read as an atheist, I decided to further my research a bit and found out about the NRSV (New Revised Standard Version), which is approved by pretty much everybody but the most conservative sub-branches. The specific version I used mentioned above contains commentary from Catholics, Protestants, Jews and Atheists, so I feel that it represents as wide of a belief spectrum as possible and satisfies my objective better. It is also the de facto bible used for academic studies and research.
End of edit

u/samreay · 17 pointsr/DebateReligion

Sure, so apart from a lack of reason to accept those extraordinary claims I listed before, I would also defend the statement that we have firm evidence that Christianity is a human invention, a simple product of human culture.

This should not be too outlandish a claim, as even Christians can probably agree that most of the worlds religions are creations of our changing society (after all, Christians probably would disagree that Hinduism, paganism, Nordic, Hellenistic, aboriginal religions were divinely inspired/authored).

By looking back into the origins of Christianity, and the origins of the Judaic system from which it is derived, we can very clearly see changes in religious deities and stories, as the religion began incorporating myths from surrounding areas and as general patterns of beliefs changed. From what we can currently understand, it appears the the origin of Christianity started as a polytheistic pantheon with at least Yahweh, El, Baal and Asherah. It then moved slowly from polytheism to henotheism to monaltry to monotheism, as was relatively common in the Axial Age.

All of this points to the religion not representative of singular divine inspiration, and instead being representative of being a product of human culture, changing along with society.

This is a rather large topic of course, and if you want further reading, I recommend:

u/John_Kesler · 17 pointsr/AcademicBiblical
  1. Video lectures by Richard Elliott Friedman. (There is a fee, but they are worth every penny if you want to learn more about the Hebrew Bible.)

  2. Video lectures by Shaye J.D. Cohen. (These are free and include class notes.)

  3. The Jewish Study Bible.

  4. The New Oxford Annotated Bible.

  5. NIV Study Bible (This may seem like an outlier, but some of the notes are actually pretty good, and you see what the inerrantist view of certain passages is. I also give the caveat that the NIV is definitely biased toward Bible inerrancy and will fudge its translation accordingly.)

  6. The Anchor Bible Dictionary. "Dictionary" is somewhat misleading due to the thoroughness of the entries.

  7. A good commentary series or commentary about a specific Bible book.

    There are numerous resources that I could suggest, but these are a good start.

u/Kai_Daigoji · 16 pointsr/TrueAtheism

The New Oxford Annotated Bible is a great place to start if you really want to dig in academically.

u/snivelsadbits · 16 pointsr/dankchristianmemes

Imo, NIV cuts out a lot of rather inconvenient language that doesn't jive with modern Christianity and King James uses overly grand language for the sake of majestic effect. While there's nothing inherently wrong with either one, I prefer a translation that aims to have the most historically accurate reading. I use NRSV because it's the most academically focused translation but uses standard English and notates whenever important words have debated meanings or when names have important connotations (e.g. the roots of Elohim or YHWH) or there's notable shifts in narrative, contradictory messages, etc. My copy also has accessible scholarly essays giving historical context and extensive footnotes focusing on how readers contemporaneous to the books' writing would have interpreted the material. Here's an amazon link for 14 dollars :)

u/davidjricardo · 14 pointsr/Reformed

To expound a bit on /u/tbown's excellent response to /u/RomanticScorpio, the books in the Catholic Bible Reformed Christians do not consider to be part of the canon of scripture are as follows (all in the Old Testament):

  • Tobit
  • Judith
  • Esther 10:4 – 16:24
  • Wisdom
  • Ben Sira
  • Baruch
  • Daniel 3:24–90, 13, and 14
  • 1 Maccabees
  • 2 Maccabees

    Again, there's nothing wrong with reading these books, just don't use them to form your beliefs. For many years they were included in Calvinist Bibles in a separate section labeled "Apocrypha" with a note saying they should be used to establish scripture. All three branches of the Reformation considered them to be useful and good to read, just not inspired scripture.

    You also might want to be careful with any explanatory notes (I don't know if your Bible has these or not). These will understandably be from a Catholic perspective. Reformed believers will likely agree with many of them, but others we might disagree.

    Other than those two issues, the NAB is a perfectly fine translation. I know several Reformed Christians who use the revised edition as their primary Bible.

    If you decide to get a new Bible, the ESV is probably the most popular among Reformed Christians, but there are plenty of good translations out there, such as the NIV, RSV, HCSB, NASB, etc. If you want a Bible with study notes, the Reformation Study Bible and ESV Study Bible are both good choices.

    Most importantly, the best Bible is the one you read.
u/Bdazz · 13 pointsr/The_Donald

Here's a free Bible on Amazon (Kindle) for anybody who would like one:


u/Ducessa · 12 pointsr/Christianity

The Oxford Annotated Bible! Linkie.

"The premier study Bible used by scholars, pastors, undergraduate and graduate students, The New Oxford Annotated Bible offers a vast range of information, including extensive notes by experts in their fields; in-text maps, charts, and diagrams; supplementary essays on translation, biblical interpretation, cultural and historical background, and other general topics."

$32.99, 2416 pages.


  • Michael Coogan is Professor of Religious Studies at Stonehill College and Director of Publications for the Harvard Semitic Museum. He has also taught at Harvard University, Boston College, Wellesley College, Fordham University, and the University of Waterloo (Ontario), and has participated in and directed archaeological excavations in Israel, Jordan, Cyprus, and Egypt. He is the author of Old Testament text books and The Old Testament VSI.

  • Marc Z. Brettler is Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Studies and chair of the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies, Brandeis University.

  • Carol Newsom is Charles Howard Candler Professor of Old Testament, Candler School of Theology, Emory University.

  • Pheme Perkins is Professor of Theology at Boston College.

    Edit: Downvotes, nice. :)
u/LogiWan · 12 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

Biblical Studies major here.

The consensus I have gathered from my B.S. professors is that the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) is a relatively accurate English translation backed by a lot of scholarship. In my classes (at Azusa Pacific University) we always use the New Oxford Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha, which uses the NRSV translation and is full of relevant scholarly annotations, introductions, and brief commentaries. I consider it indispensable. You can check it out here.

I've heard critiques that the NRSV can be biased toward "liberal/progressive" scholarship and translation. The ESV is also considered accurate, but has a more "conservative" bias, if that helps. Neither the KJV or the NIV are usually thought to be accurate, as both are dynamic equivalent translations (KJV is meant to sound pretty, and also has dogmatic translator's bias, and the NIV is meant to be relevant and easy to read for contemporary Christians. Neither is foremost striving for accuracy, which would be more of a direct equivalent translation approach).

TL;DR: The New Oxford Annotated Bible and New Revised Standard Version in general are relatively trustworthy and accurate the original texts. If you are looking for precise translation, NIV and KJV are not the best.

u/bb1432 · 12 pointsr/Catholicism

The Revised Standard Version-2nd Catholic Edition is the only current English-language translation that meets the Vatican's translation norms.

This is not to be confused with the NRSV (New Revised Standard Version), which is...not nearly as good.

For prayer purposes, you can't get more beautiful than the Douay (Challoner)-Rheims:

u/Ibrey · 11 pointsr/ReasonableFaith

No translation can be perfect, and scholarly works dealing with biblical texts will often adapt their chosen translation as needed, if not translate everything afresh. That said, most experts consider the New Revised Standard Version to be the most accurate translation overall. The New Oxford Annotated Bible and the HarperCollins Study Bible augment this translation with excellent notes and introductions based on the latest scholarship.

Another translation of similar high quality, though often overlooked, is the New American Bible, Revised Edition. All editions of this translation include the same notes (which the copyright holder will not allow to be omitted), including online versions.

If the meaning of a particular verse is in question, it may be helpful to consult the New English Translation (NET) Bible, which features extensive, detailed notes explaining the translators' choices, with references to relevant scholarly literature.

A word of caution about one highly popular translation: the New International Version contains numerous highly questionable translation choices with no basis in the text in order to smooth over difficulties for Evangelical doctrine. My favourite example, until it was taken out in a recent revision, was the verse where Jesus calls the mustard grain "the smallest of all seeds," which the NIV rendered "the smallest of all your seeds" to make Jesus imply that he knows better due to divine knowledge of botany. Others would include the softening of a comparison between man and other animals in Ecclesiastes 3:18, presumably to exorcise the spectre of Darwinism; 2 Samuel 21:19 and 1 Kings 4:26 are quietly made to match up with other parts of the Bible; and the terrible prospect of salvation after death is eliminated from 1 Peter 4:6 with language that makes clear that when the author wrote that the gospel was preached "even to the dead," he really meant that even some people who are now dead heard the gospel while they were alive. There's a lot of subtle monkey business with the vocabulary to preempt non-Evangelical interpretations. The same Greek word is correctly translated "tradition" wherever it appears in a negative context, but "teaching" wherever it appears in a positive context. Similarly, the doctrine of justification by faith alone is shored up by translating the same word "works" wherever it appears in a negative context and "deeds" wherever it appears in a positive context. Many more examples could be cited.

u/markevens · 11 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

Mark Smith has some good texts on the topic.

This is a book of his written more for the layman

And this is a book of his written more for the serious student.

I would highly recommend watching the semester of Yale videos on Intro to the Hebrew Bible with Christine Hayes

u/Jestersage · 11 pointsr/Christianity

NOAB. Pretty Academic, and contain the deuterocanon that Catholic and Orthodox use too.

u/Your_Wasted_Life · 11 pointsr/everymanshouldknow

I would add to that list, the Bible, God's brilliant construction of everything.

/devil's advocate

u/Crotalus9 · 10 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

Harper Collins Study Bible. NRSV translation with lots of explanatory notes. It's the Bible many college students buy for classes on the Bible as literature, or for gen ed courses on the Bible.

u/ungroundedearth · 9 pointsr/RadicalChristianity

I would get a good academic study bible that goes into depth about the authorship of each book as well as the socio-historical context of the whole thing. I have the New Oxford Annotated edition and it's fantastic. Putting it in context and breaking away from the idea that Moses wrote the Pentateuch or that Paul wrote some of the Epistles helped me break away from incorrect reductive fundamentalist understandings of the bible.

u/eggplnt · 9 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Not exactly a reinterpretation, so much as a completely new take on the idea, A.C. Geryling wrote a humanist bible called "The Good Book."

There is also The Jefferson Bible, which is basically the story of Jesus without all the woo.

Neither of these are exactly what you are looking for, but I think both are interesting.

u/TraditionalMan · 9 pointsr/Catholicism

The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament was recommended to me, and although I've only started reading it I'd have to agree that it is an excellent resource.

I know you were asking for a web resource and I gave you a book. Sorry, but this really is a great resource for what you're seeking.

u/themsc190 · 8 pointsr/GayChristians

Welcome! We’re glad you’re here as well. It’s a great community, and I’ve grown so much from it. And I’m so glad folks in your new church are so friendly!

In terms of resources, I’d definitely encourage you to check out the Resources page over in /r/OpenChristian. Reading the Bible is tough, but there are ways to make it a little easier. I’d recommend an academic study Bible, like the Harper Collins Study Bible or the Oxford Annotated Study Bible, which have notes to contextualize and explain confusing concepts. (Be wary of some study bibles, because lots of them just promote fundamentalism under the guise of scholarship.) My suggestion on where is start is the Gospel of Mark, which is the oldest story of Jesus that we have in the Bible, and it is short, just about the length of a short story. If you try to read from front to back, it’s easy to get bored or lose track. Most Bible reading plans actually recommend jumping around!

I’ll highlight a couple resources from that list that you might like. If you’re interested in queer readings of the Bible, has a weekly podcast that’s just like 7 minutes long, which is a good place to get introduced to some techniques for reading the Bible as an LGBTQ person.

Two books that might interest you are Jennifer Knapp’s Facing the Music and Vicky Beeching’s Undivided, which are memoirs from lesbian Christians who were in the Christian music scene and subsequently came out.

If you have any more questions or want any more recommendations, feel free to ask or PM me! Peace!

u/appleciders · 8 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

No. The New Revised Standard Version is the most common translation used in academic formats that prohibit working in the original language (e.g. undergraduate students who do not speak Greek or Hebrew). I'd recommend this version, which has excellent annotations and introductory essays about each book.

"Most literal" isn't necessarily useful in understanding the texts. Translating a saying or phrase too literally can result in mangling a euphemism, metaphor, or other non-literal saying. We speak and write non-literally in our everyday lives; it's a major part of language to understand which phrases are to be taken literally and which aren't. The New Oxford, which I recommended above, will note when the original text is using metaphorical language and give you a scholar's opinion of how to understand it as well as the actual words in question. It also give variant readings, which is hugely important in NT studies because we have many variant wordings in the manuscripts that have come down to us and sometimes those readings have significantly different meanings.

u/bobo_brizinski · 8 pointsr/TrueChristian

So the ESV and the ESV Study Bible are getting tons of recommendations so I want to put a spotlight on excellent material that isn't as well known. I really like:

  • The Access Bible (NRSV) - scholarly and designed for beginners, very underrated in my opinion

  • The English Bible (KJV): Norton Critical Edition - scholarly, literary, superb footnotes and annotations, two volumes for the Old Testament and New Testament/Apocrypha. What I LOVE about this study Bible is how it contains a large appendix of Biblical interpretation spanning multiple centuries.

  • The New Oxford Annotated Bible (NRSV) - scholarly, very popular in seminaries and colleges, designed for more advanced students

  • The New Collegeville Bible Commentary (NRSV; Old and New Testaments in separate volumes) - scholarly, written by Roman Catholics but follows mainstream scholarship and good for non-Catholic students

  • The Life With God Bible (NRSV) - aka "the Renovare Spiritual Formation Bible", this is a devotional study Bible edited by many great evangelical writers like Dallas Willard and Richard Foster. It focuses on spiritual disciplines.

u/totallynotshilling · 8 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

>I'm also open to other suggestions if I have possibly missed other options that fit my needs.

The following two books are often recommended:

The Jewish Study Bible

Jewish Annotated New Testament

Both of these are academic in nature. You will find stuff about source criticism and they have scholarly articles about various things in there too. The Jewish Study Bible is also used in the Yale Online Course on the Hebrew Bible by Christine Hayes(you can find the lecture series on YouTube).

u/godzillaguy9870 · 8 pointsr/Christianity

They literally use the "Orthodox Bible". This is an Orthodox study Bible that I really like. All New Testament books are the same. They differ only in Old Testament books. Here is a table comparing the Biblical canons of the Protestant, Roman Catholic, 3 of the Eastern Orthodox Churches, 4 of the Oriental Orthodox Churches, and the Assyrian Church of the east.

u/[deleted] · 8 pointsr/Reformed

If all you do is read the Bible consistently and participate in the life of your church, you'll be far better off than even many seminarians, in terms of knowing Bible and theology. I mean that sincerely.

If you really want to go above and beyond, you might consider purchasing a "study Bible." These are Bibles that have explanatory footnotes to help you understand the text better. I read the ESV Study Bible as a new convert several years ago and found it helpful. I think the NIV Zondervan Study Bible is perhaps even better.

u/dan121 · 7 pointsr/Christianity

I'd recommend a good study Bible, something like or
The notes, introductions and explanations will go a long way towards helping you understand what you're reading, especially the Old Testament, which can be quite daunting!

I like John as the first gospel to read. It's the most theological of the gospels, but gives a good overview Christianity. Each of the gospels tell the story of Jesus from a different perspective and with a difference emphasis.

Don't feel overwhelmed or like you have to absorb it all at once. It's a long journey and the joys are often found on the way rather than in reaching an end.

u/DronedAgain · 7 pointsr/Christianity

Oxford Annotated NRSV.. The supporting info is spectacular.

u/Dr-Wonderful · 7 pointsr/Reformed

Any standard work on the subject, whether literary or archeological, would point away from the basic framework of your interpretation. (The best evidence, of course, is always the Bible, properly interpreted in its context, itself).

The Origins of Biblical Monotheism: Israel's Polytheistic Background and the Ugaritic Texts

The Early History of God: Yahweh and the Other Deities in Ancient Israel (The Biblical Resource Series)

Stories from Ancient Canaan, Second Edition

The Old Testament: A Historical and Literary Introduction to the Hebrew Scriptures

The Oxford Handbook of the Abrahamic Religions (Oxford Handbooks)

History of Religious Ideas, Volume 1: From the Stone Age to the Eleusinian Mysteries

Religions of the Ancient World: A Guide (Harvard University Press Reference Library)

None of these propose an exact duplicate of this simplistic model, but they triangulate to something very similar.

u/EACCES · 7 pointsr/Christianity

Book of Common Prayer, New Oxford Annotated Bible (the standard academic bible), New Revised Standard Version, The Episcopal Church (the Anglicans in the USA) aka ECUSA, Roman Catholic Church Royal Crown Cola, Roman Catholic

u/beatle42 · 7 pointsr/atheism

I've used the oxford annotated bible and think it does a pretty good job of matching your criteria (I actually have a slightly earlier edition to the one I linked to).

u/greym84 · 7 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

Here is more info on the King James Version (KJV) compared to other translations.

On the KJV Today

Due to archaeological discoveries (e.g. Qumran), improvements in linguistics, and other things we have better translations. It's not uncommon for Christians to believe that the Bible is divinely inspired and inerrant, but some fundamentalists believe that the King James is the only divinely inspired translation (note, even the KJV has undergone updates and revision).

Why are there different translations?

While all translators have some bias, most are very deliberately objective. The variance in translation usually comes in style: Accuracy vs. readability.

How are they different?

BibleGateway is handy for comparing translations. Here's a familiar passage in several translations. The first translation is the KJV (revised from the original 1611, but not the most recent New King James). The second is the New American Standard Bible (NASB), which is the most literal and accurate English translation. It's modern English, but wordy. The third is the New Living Translation (NLT), designed to be easier to read.

Which translation should I use?

There is no best translation. There are solid modern translations that try to combine the accuracy of the NASB and ease of the NLT. The New International Version (NIV, 2011 update preferred) is the most popular translation, with the English Standard Version (ESV) probably being the best (I recommend the ESV as the go-to translation).

However, if you were going to own one Bible for academic study, I'd seek out a cheap used copy of the New Oxford Annotated Bible (the translation is a kin of the ESV). If you want to just read it, I recommend The Books of the Bible which is in a pleasant single column format, uncluttered by footnotes, verse numbers, etc.

u/aletheia · 7 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

Regarding the eternal state of those outside the Church: We can say nothing about the eternal state of anyone, except that we believe the saints are in heaven praying for us. We must ask for mercy on all people: Orthodox, Catholic, Protestant, heretic, Muslim, atheist, etc. alike.

>'Tell me, supposing you went to paradise, and there looked down and saw somebody

>burning in hell-fire — would you feel happy?'

>'It can’t be helped. It would be their own fault,' said the hermit.

>The Staretz answered him with a sorrowful countenance:

>'Love could not bear that,' St. Silouan said. 'We must pray for all.'

We also don't think God is trapped in our altars. He can certainly worth other places, and even in other faiths if he so chooses. We believe ourselves to be the full expression of the Christian faith, but we acknowledge that other Christians have 'this or that' things correct as well. For example, most Christians can faithfully say they believe the Creed, with perhaps (what we regard as) a faulty understanding of what the 'One, Holy, Catholic and apostolic Church', or the addition of the filioque which regard as an improper insertion.

>The only way I can see to confirm any existing denomination is via the Bible, which seems kind of a backwards approach if we're not supposed to interpret the Bible and the Bible itself originates from these traditions. The Bible has earned my trust, but it has done so through reading and interpretation, which is apparently something I wasn't supposed to do.

This might be apropos to your thoughts here:

>how would one distinguish if someone in the Church is going against the Church if the Church itself is, in the first place, what they're supposed to listen to.

The teaching of the Church is not simply what is taught in this moment in history: We can look back on the census of the Church through the ages. That consensus is what we are to learn from.

>Specifically, the hierarchical clergy, as if someone is better than someone else.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but this system has existed even from the New Testament where Paul lays out the qualifications for an elder. Even most protestant groups have a similar structure.

No clergyman should think of himself as better than you. It does happen, but then, we are all sinful. The struggle for humility is one of the great battles of being a Christian. Even with the things that can go wrong though, we need these people to help guide us in our faith and growth so that we do not stumble off back into darkness.

>I dislike the whole "if you do X, we excommunicate you" approach

Excommunication is fixable through repentance. The reason excommunication exists is twofold. One is to distinguish who is 'not us' (although, properly, that's being declared anathema -- reserved for those teaching things contrary to the faith of the Church). The other is that it is a pastoral tool to help us. We believe communion to be the real body and blood of Christ, and to take communion with certain rots and attitudes in our hearts is harmful to us. Certain things need to be taken to confession and worked on so that we do not hurt ourselves. The desire for communion, since we regard it as the greatest expression of our faith, when it is denied to us can be a powerful incentive to mend our ways.

>Then, the icons, which I find difficult to reconcile with the commandment of "do not make any graven image of anything above or below".

I will be posting a lecture video in this sub on icons that was given at a university. In the mean time: |

>I feel like we should be humble instead of showing off with pretty things, before we start worshiping said pretty things.

We're not showing anything off. We have simply included beauty in our worship to remind us of the beauty we will encounter in heaven. If we worship the things then we are Doing It Wrong. I have seen plenty of Orthodox Churches that are decidedly ugly on the exterior, but still functioning and containing beautiful icons of Christ in the form of their people.

>Is there anything I need to know before going to an EO church as a non-baptized Christian who knows approximately nothing?

>Is there such a thing as an EO Bible?

In English we have a study bible. I don't know much about the Russian bible market. The only difference is the inclusion of the deuterocanon, and we base our OT off the Septuagint instead of the Masoretic text.

u/SlaughterMeister · 7 pointsr/TrueAtheism
u/centurion88 · 7 pointsr/Reformed

> Asking r/Reformed if you should be Reformed

Seriously though, I will echo what others have said here.

Your first priority should be finding a solid church that teaches the Bible, preaches the gospel, and loves people well. Being a Christian in this world is hard, and you can't do it by yourself. Denomination wise, in my experience, PCA is good, Acts 29 is good, and SBC churches are sometimes good and sometimes bad (I haven't been to a whole lot of churches. There are people here that could give you a lot more suggestions on this end). If you feel comfortable giving your general location, I'm sure someone here could give a good recommendation.

Study the Bible. You should only be Reformed if you believe it is biblical. I would start with the book of John.

A good practice I learned is that as you are reading a passage in the Bible pay attention to and write down:

-what it says about God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit: their character, their attributes, and their actions in the world and their actions between each other.

-the audience, the time period: context, context, context is crucial when studying the Bible. The ESV Study Bible really helps in this as it gives all the historical and contextual information about each book in a couple of pages before each book

-direct commands that are given and just as importantly, to whom they are given.

There are many great commentaries that are online that you can reference to help you. John Calvin has a commentary. Matthew Henry's commentary is really good. Charles Spurgeon has a sermon on every passage in the Bible. John Piper's website Desiring God probably has a sermon on every passage in the Bible. There is an endless supply of solid material that can help you in this, but I would caution you to keep the focus on the Bible itself.

Joining a solid, local church, however, would help you the most in learning about the Bible.

Edit: Also, begin to pray regularly. Pray about these things and any thing that worries you or anything that you are thankful for. Praying can be hard, I still struggle with it myself even after being a Christian for ten years, but reading the Bible and getting involved in a church will help you in this as you learn more about who God is.

u/Aristox · 6 pointsr/Christianity

I would thoroughly and enthusiastically recommend the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) translation of the Bible; specifically The New Oxford Annotated Bible. It is a bible with excellent study notes and important and interesting contextual information included alongside the actual text of the Bible. I did a good amount of research when I wanted to buy a new Bible and I am confident that this is the best Bible that exists in English today. (I mean, Oxford University is a pretty well respected university, right?) If you get this Bible, you'll be sorted for any kind of Bible study. 10/10.

If you don't wish to get this one, i'd definitely still recommend the NRSV as the best English translation, unless you are under about 15 years of age, in which case you might benefit from the New Living Translation (NLT) or The Message: Remix, which is a paraphrase of the whole Bible by a guy called Eugene Peterson.

Do not trust anyone who recommends you to use the King James Version. The King James Version was created in 1611! It is over 400 years old and therefore does not benefit from the advances in scholarship over the past 4 centuries that modern translations do. On top of that, it is written in very hard to understand English comparable to Shakespearean English. Even if it were a trustworthy translation (which it most definitely is not) it would not be worth bothering with simply because of how hard it is to read.

Concerning which church to join, I can't really help you there by directing you to a specific place, but make sure that wherever you go does not prioritise adherence to specific doctrines over the value of community. Make sure it is always a place that allows you to ask whatever questions you like and find your own faith- not be forced to conform to someone else's conception of what it should be. Also, every Christian church needs to be active in their local community helping with the physical and emotional needs of people, not just 'preaching the gospel' as if that were all Christians are meant to. A faithful church should be making sure to provide for the needs of the poorest in its community and offer protection and acceptance for the outcasts in it's society. If a church is more focussed on telling you what you shouldn't do rather than what you should do, it probably isn't a great church.


If you are just new to Christianity (or even if you're not) please feel free to private message me and we can chat about any questions or whatever you might have and I can share with you whatever wisdom I might have. :D

Peace :)

u/BrotherGA2 · 6 pointsr/Christianity

These two are probably the most respected in academia. If you want to get just one, I'd go with the NRSV for both Jewish Bible and New Testament.

Just the TANAKH (Old Testament): The Jewish Study Bible: Featuring The Jewish Publication Society TANAKH Translation

TANAKH and New Testament (The Christian Bible): The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version

u/uncovered-history · 6 pointsr/Christianity

Not a Christian, but I own a New Revised Standard edition that I bought during undergrad since I was studying the New Testament and it’s regarded as the best translation by pretty much every historian I had read.

Edit: this precise one to be exact. Super helpful for anyone wanting to take more of a historical rather than theological approach to the Bible.

u/philiptyre · 6 pointsr/Catholicism

I like this one. It's easy to ready without dumbing things down.

u/crepusculi · 6 pointsr/Catholicism

I just got this RSE-2CE. I love it!

u/paul_brown · 6 pointsr/Catholicism

Mr. Syme has offered a good list to begin. I would like to follow that list up with a number of other good works:

  • The Everlasting Man by G.K. Chesterton

  • Theology and Sanity by F.J. Sheed

  • Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic by David Currie

    The NAB you have is an approved translation, but I highly recommend using the RSVCE.

    It is certainly a good idea to buy Sacred Scriptures and the Catechism right now. These two pieces of literature are essential to any Catholic's library. The Missal is very good for your devotional life, especially if you are converting and have no prior experience with our Church.

    Be sure to balance your reading of non-fiction works with some good, rousing fiction as well. The brain needs to find itself in fantasy every now and then. Chesterton, Tolkien, Lewis, and Waugh are all good authors.
u/Alphanos · 6 pointsr/bestof

As a great starting point, I'd recommend the ESV Study Bible. It's very popular and can be found in many stores that sell Bibles, or you can order it from someplace like Amazon. (no affiliate code ;-)

There's been an incredible amount of scholarship done on the Bible. The ESV is one of the most recent translations done from the oldest original language sources by a team of many dozens of historical and linguistic experts over the course of a number of years. It was even updated twice since originally published when other Biblical scholars offered suggestions for minor changes. Similarly, the ESV study Bible includes very detailed notes by various scholars to explain things from the context that would have been known already to the original readers. The general term for Bible editions which include this type of information is "study Bible", but the ESV study Bible includes more detailed notes than any other I've seen. If you actually wanted even more detail than that, you'd want to move into separate commentary volumes, which can range from one to dozens of books going into the most ridiculous level of detail for any given verse.

As an aside, as others have already pointed out, OP was writing with great information on the historical background of the Greek-speaking world, but probably not the same perspective that Paul, a Greek-educated Jew, would have held.

u/KellyBachand · 6 pointsr/IAmA
u/Pope-Urban-III · 6 pointsr/Catholicism

It depends on what they don't have - if they don't have a Bible, there are some good ones; and even if they do something like the Ignatius Study Bible or the Didache Bible which have wonderful study notes.

And if worse comes to worse, there are always icons.

u/digifork · 6 pointsr/Catholicism

I have two recommendations. Neither are going to be perfect:

  • Ignatius Catholic Study Bible New Testament

    The commentary is pretty easy to read. It was edited by Scott Hahn and his writing is pretty accessible. The only problem is it is NT only. They have individual books you can purchase for some of the OT, but not the entire Bible as of yet.

  • Catholic Bible, Personal Study Edition

    This is the less academic version of the Oxford Catholic Study Bible. Even though it is less academic, it will be harder to comprehend than the Ignatius.

    However, if he wants to step up his game, he really should get the Didache Bible. The commentary is based on the CCC, so it can be dense at times, but he will learn a lot more.

    Edit: Another one to check out is the Fireside Bible. They make a teen version of that Bible as well.
u/otiac1 · 6 pointsr/Catholicism

Start with your interests. You may find that certain topics pique your curiosity more than others. A lot of what I've learned about Catholicism resulted from having a question, and wanting that question answered. Sometimes these questions are the results of selfish desire (ie, "Why can't I just have sex whenever I want?" or "Why do I have to give money to the poor?"), sometimes they're the result of professional interest ("What my employer is asking me to do seems immoral. Am I cooperating in evil?"), and sometimes they've just sounded interesting as I browse an FAQ box on various Catholic websites. Typically these questions will have a simple answer, with as deep an understanding that can be pursued as far as we want to take it (such as the relationship between man and woman being reflective of the Trinity, or the universal destination of goods being such that it isn't wrong for us to want nice things as long as recognize the source and ultimate orientation of those goods). Catholics Come Home may be just the thing for you, whether or not you consider yourself a 'returning Catholic' or a non-Catholic looking for the Truth. They've got some great spots airing on television and radio, one or two of which you may recognize (my personal favorite is Epic - I wish they offered it in high definition).

If you're looking for a video (or series of videos) to watch, Catholicism by Fr Robert Barron is amazing. He also offers a series of short videos on youtube via his Word on Fire ministry.

If you're looking for a Bible or companion thereto, Dr. Scott Hahn has a lot of great resources with links for ordering on his website. The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible is one that I own and recommend. It's got a lot of great footnotes and embedded resources for really giving you a better understanding of the literal interpretation of Scripture.

If you're looking for simple audio commentary suitable for listen on the way to work, on a plane, or in a train, check out Lighthouse Catholic Media. Lots of very affordable CDs that offer talks in chunks of about an hour from popular Catholic speakers.

Last but not least, you can't go wrong with some primary sources. The Catechism of the Catholic Church is a great place for answers, though they may be a bit deeper than someone starting out may feel comfortable with. The latter is especially true of the Code of Canon Law.

And, of course, you're always free to use the search function on /r/Catholicism or post general queries on the sub itself.

Welcome home.

u/someguy_someplace · 6 pointsr/ofcoursethatsathing

Psch that's nothing compared to the minecraft bible. As you can tell, we've really evolved as a species.

u/doofgeek401 · 5 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

That depends on what you are academically studying.

If you are studying the text, the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) holds close to the original Greek New Testament.

The standard English translation used for academic study is the NRSV, in particular, the Oxford Annotated Bible and Harper Collins is widely used in major universities. It has the great advantage of being ecumenical, translated by people with a wide variety of theological viewpoints, rather than sectarian translations like the New World or NIV Bibles; and of being modern and thus based on a pretty up-to-date set of manuscript traditions, where the KJV (for example) suffers simply because the translators had less to go on.

Also, check out:

The Jewish Study Bible

Jewish Annotated New Testament

I would recommend, however, that if you want to academically study the Bible, you need a Greek New Testament and a Hebrew Old Testament, a Greek Lexicon and Grammar, a Hebrew Lexicon and Grammar, and several years of study.

subreddit posts on Bible versions/ translations:

List of essential commentaries for each book of the Hebrew Bible:

approachable resources for lay people on biblical scholarship and reading Recommendations for newbies:

u/ErrantThought · 5 pointsr/Christianity

I recommend the NRSV. It’s the translation that most bible scholars use and I think it’s relatively theologically unbiased.

I ask recommend you use a study bible, i.e. a bible with explanatory footnotes. This gives a much needed context to what you’re reading. You get a lot lore out of the experience.

I recommend the HarperCollins Study Bible. The explanatory footnotes were compiled by the Society of Biblical Literature, a first rate academic society of bible scholars. This bible uses the NRSV translation.

u/Dramatic_Cranberry · 5 pointsr/cruciformity

I like the Harpercollins Study Bible. The translation is the NRSV, which I like, and the commentary and notes run the gamut of Christian tradition.

u/christmasvampire · 5 pointsr/exjw

I like NRSV (NOAB), NJPS (JSB), and NABRE. I recommend getting all three. In addition to being good translations, they contain lots of scholarly notes.

I just saw there's a new fifth edition of NOAB.

u/malki-tsedek · 5 pointsr/Bible

I recommend you check out /r/exjw. Many there are atheists, but its also for everyone in your situation. (but be careful: you REALLY DON'T want your aunt or mum to learn you visit that place) Many on that subreddit have personal experience of living with Jehovah's Witnesses and not being able to reveal that they think differently about things.

Another advice I would give is similar to what shotokando gave you: they can't really argue against you reading the Bible in another translation than NWT.

The reason is this: many JWs, at least those who have been JWs for a long time, have different translations already in their homes, and many Kingdom Halls have multiple translations in the library (though I have heard a rumour that they have been throwing away the content in the KH library, I don't know if that rumour is true). In addition to this, an argument they use when people accuse them for having their own translation is "any translation will do" or "we use all translations". This is something you could use.

So you could argue that you will simply read the Bible in both NWT and some other translation side by side to understand it better.

A study Bible I recommend is The New Oxford Annotated Bible. It contains a lot of scholarly notes, and the translation is NRSV, which is really good. Because those notes are part of the study Bible, you might get away with them. But be careful about how you get this volume: if your aunt or mum discovers it being delivered, they might still overreact.

u/BoboBrizinski · 5 pointsr/Christianity

I dislike the ESV Study Bible - it obscures or dismisses the scholarly consensus on many books, which is academically dishonest.

I highly recommend the Access Bible. Its notes represent mainstream biblical scholarship. It uses the NRSV, which is a cousin of the ESV and is actually easier to read in my opinion (you can compare them on - the NRSV and the ESV are both revisions of the RSV.)

I would also recommend the New Oxford Annotated Bible.. It's a little more technical and meaty than the Access Bible. It also uses the NRSV. More importantly, its notes are excellent and represent mainstream biblical scholarship. It comes in an older edition (with shorter, more conservative notes) using the RSV (which is the basis for the ESV and very similar to it.)

Another study Bible I like is the Oxford Study Bible. This uses the REB (Revised English Bible) - this is a British translation that is not related to the RSV/NRSV/ESV family. It's a fresh, creative and easy to read translation that nicely complements the formal translations.

Finally, there is the Norton Critical Edition of the English Bible, KJV. It's very unique for a study Bible, because it focuses on how the KJV influenced English literature. Although the KJV is hard to read, the notes clarify some of the obscure English language.

So... I guess the lesson is that there are a lot of choices out there. But since you're a beginner, I'd highly recommend the Access Bible before you explore the other stuff.

u/Withalacrity · 5 pointsr/Christianity

I prefer the NRSV, but I also have an ESV study bible and and ESV pocket bible and KJV. I thought about getting this one for a study bible, but I held off.

u/moootPoint · 5 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

In regards to understanding the psychological impetus driving the mythic themes/archetypes of the early Levant cultures I found the work of Joseph Campbell to be an excellent starting point.

The Oxford Annotated Bible is another book i've found useful for its addition of supplementary historical context.

u/10thPlanet · 5 pointsr/TrueAtheism

The Oxford Annotated Bible is the standard "scholarly" study Bible, I believe.

u/ThaneToblerone · 5 pointsr/Christianity

Given that English was still in its infancy during the life of Muhammad I don't think you'll be able to find an English translation from before Islam came around.

If you want to get at Scripture from a solidly academic perspective I'd advise you to pick up a New Oxford Annotated Bible. It has very good, scholarly footnotes and continues to be widely used throughout major seminaries and universities as the gold standard for scholastic study.

u/TheMainEvant · 5 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

Many academic institutions standardly use the the New Oxford Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha--containing scholarly annotations, introductions, and commentaries, it is an excellent option.

u/captainhaddock · 5 pointsr/TrueAtheism

I highly recommend the New Oxford Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha. The translation used is the New Revised Standard Version, which is the standard in academic settings and lacking in denominational bias. It includes all the books used by Catholics and most branches of Eastern Orthodoxy. It has scholarly notes and introductions to each book. It is not a typical Evangelical Bible that pretends all the books were written by the traditional authors.

u/pedanticnerd · 5 pointsr/booksuggestions

The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha is the gold standard scholarly version of the book. It is widely read in non-religious universities as well as in seminaries and by interested autodidacts. The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) translation was done by an editorial board including the world's foremost biblical scholars, and is widely considered the most accurate translation you can find without relying on being able to read Hebrew and Greek. The maps, notes, and annotations in this text are extensive and interesting.

American Evangelicals mostly reject the NRSV (and mainstream academic study of the bible in general), which is one reason why the older version of the translation (NIV) is the most common translation around. The really hardcore conservative Protestants rely on the KJV (or occasionally the NKJV), and consider even the NIV to be untrustworthy.

Also, if you are interested in the Jewish or Catholic versions of the bible, I can recommend some of those.

u/king_mustard · 5 pointsr/Christianity
u/SovietChef · 5 pointsr/Catholicism

Now that's a hard question to answer, mainly because there isn't one answer to it. Some part are allegory, some are literal, and others heavily dependent on the cultural context. The best way to view the Bible is not as one book, but rather as a library. In terms of how to view specific parts, a great way to examine this is to look at how the Church Fathers viewed the passage.

A great Bible for this purpose is the New American Bible which includes many helpful footnotes that can shed a lot of light on passages.

u/HastyDecisions · 5 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

Try this combination of books. The first is fantastic in terms of notes, references, etc., and is complete for Eastern Orthodoxy but not for Ethiopian, and has some material that the Ethiopians don't consider. The second should fill in the gaps with Ethiopian material - I don't know how good this version is and would have to rely on the reviews.

There is one single version in English but it is expensive and gets poor reviews.

You might try following some of the links here to see if they can help, perhaps even contacting one of the Churches near you.

Directory - not sure how good it is.

u/MEAT_PLOW · 5 pointsr/Christianity this is the one I use. Out of all the Bibles I have had experience with this is my favorite. You may fond another Bible to be more helpful if you are not Orthodox however.

u/arachnophilia · 5 pointsr/Bible

> Christian bookstore

if you want a different take, try a jewish bible.

this is my favorite translation of the old testament:

you can read any or all of it online here:

it adheres to the masoretic a bit more strongly than christian bibles (some important passages won't say what you expect them to). it's not purely formal equivalent, but sticks pretty close to the wording where possible, while maintaining a very easy to read and comprehend style.

u/rainer511 · 5 pointsr/Christianity

My favorite version and why here. It's not that I don't want to put forth effort for you, just that I already have (the comment I've linked too is very thorough). Long story short I've found NASB and ESV to be most literal of the ones I've used.

You might want to consider the ESV Study Bible as it would give you plenty of commentary to go off of. It was awarded 2009 Bible of the Year and Book of the Year by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association.

I heard someone say not to trust someone if they are too adamant about one version or another. In my case I push NASB or ESV 'cause I've done a good bit of translating for school and in my opinion, they are the most literal.

On The Message and other Paraphrases: This sort of thing would be detestable for any other book. Imagine if someone told you they were reading The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn except all the cultural references were "updated" to modern ones and anything hard to understand was rewritten so 21st century readers could understand it better? In a way, that might be neat, but that person still hasn't read the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. They're reading something altogether different.

u/ITBG · 5 pointsr/Christianity

Short answer:
Buy one of the new ESV study bibles. It's very readable and has copious notes and references. If you ever want to use external references, a "King James Version", or "KJV" is very handy to have because so many reference works use it.

Less-short answer:
I am not an expert or a professional, but I am an interested amateur. I asked that same question myself a long time ago, and still years later learn more about the issues surrounding "bible versions" every month.

Different translations have different goals. Some are more literal and focus on translation of the words themselves. Some others are called dynamic and translate the intent of the words into modern equivalents. A common example would be the phrase "not one jot or tittle shall pass from the law", which really doesn't have experiential meaning to us today. A literal translation would keep "jot and tittle" (or iota and keraia in Greek, Yod and kots in Hebrew), whereas a dynamic translation might say "dot of an i, or cross of a t", which would have more meaning for us while keeping the spirit of the original and being close in the actual wording as well. Then you have the paraphrase bibles that just reword it into very readable form, but not necessarily keeping the words or structure of the original. In the same example, a paraphrase might say "not even the tinest part". Rather than giving specific examples of each version type, just know that the search phrases would be "dynamic", "literal", and "paraphrase".

Also, if we had a clear "original", there would be far fewer versions. Everything we have is a copy, and there are so many manuscripts and fragments with slightly different readings, and what weight the translators place on the different manuscripts and or manuscript heritage determines what they're translating from, much less how they choose to translate it to the target language. The existence of so many manuscripts with slightly different portions in them has made more than one christian lose his faith. However, once you remove obvious copying errors, like the easy-to-make error of dropping of the end of a sentence and continuing from that same word in a later sentence, the similarities in the manuscripts is far larger than the differences. I have heard 99% is the same, but I don't know for sure.

One thing I'd like to mention is that when asking this question, eventually a KJV-onlyist person will answer, and try to scare you away from any non-KJV versions. Since you're not christian, it probably won't matter to you, but should you ever become a believer, I want to say that many of their arguments for the superiority of the KJV are not good arguments, though I won't go into a big list here. While most (including me) think the KJV is a good translation, KJV-onlyists have the opinion that any versions other than the KJV are designed to fill your head with lies.

There are many books on this subject, and probably hundreds of Web sites.

u/blotchma · 5 pointsr/AskTrollX

The Crossway ESV Study Bible is lovely.

u/augustv123 · 5 pointsr/Catholicism

Consider buying this one instead:

Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament

u/amertune · 4 pointsr/latterdaysaints

Good study bibles: The New Oxford Annotated Study Bible or The HarperCollins Study Bible.

Another good one for great insights into the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament): Jewish Study Bible

u/frankev · 4 pointsr/OpenChristian

Here are some progressive, critical sources that cover African-American and feminist perspectives:

  • The Africana Bible: Reading Israel's Scriptures from Africa and the African Diaspora, ed. Page (Hebrew Bible + Deuterocanonicals)
  • True to Our Native Land, ed. Blount (NT)
  • Women's Bible Commentary, ed. Newsom, et al. (Hebrew Bible + Deuterocanonicals + NT)

    For individual book commentaries, you might consider selections from these series:

  • The Anchor Bible (Doubleday)
  • Belief: A Theological Commentary on the Bible (Westminster John Knox Press)
  • Hermeneia (Fortress Press)
  • International Critical Commentary (T&T Clark)
  • Interpretation (Westminster John Knox Press)
  • Old/New Testament Library (Westminster John Knox Press)

    Note that commentaries in the Hermeneia and ICC series are fairly technical (e.g., Hebrew and Greek words are not transliterated), and some books in the Hermeneia and OTL/NTL series are English translations of older German works that are now beginning to show their age. For example, the Hermeneia volume for the Johannine Epistles is a classic (1973 ET of Bultmann's Die drei Johannesbriefe [2nd ed., 1967]), but it's older than me (and I'm no spring chicken)! In contrast, the Hermeneia volume for Mark is a comprehensive, recent treatment by Adela Yarbro Collins, published just 11 years ago.

    I also agree with earlier comments regarding NOAB, now in its fifth edition, which is just slightly changed from the fourth edition. Note that a major revision in terms of page formatting, paper stock, etc., occurred between the third (2001) and fourth (2010) editions (cf. comments on Amazon for details). You can find used copies of these prior editions for reasonable prices both online and at places such as Half-Price Books.

    Two other Bibles to consider, in addition to the HarperCollins Study Bible:

  • The Access Bible, ed. O'Day and Petersen (ecumenical study Bible geared for mainline audiences)
  • The Peoples' Bible, ed. DeYoung, et al. (study Bible incorporating multicultural, liberationist, and post-colonial interpretive methods)

    Best wishes concerning your continued studies!
u/ngunn86 · 4 pointsr/occult

I see you have a couple Bibles in your picture.

May I suggest the best bible for study and reflection: The New Oxford Annotated Bible. This is widely regarded as the most scholarly translation (NRSV) combined with ecumenical scholarly commentary. This will help you place the teaching in context of the time and audience for which it was written.

Also, for the teaching of Jesus the Christ without the dogma and theology of the Apostle Paul, try the Gospel of Thomas.

u/MegasBasilius · 4 pointsr/AskLiteraryStudies

I discovered Fadiman and Major's book when I was 20 y/r and did this very thing. It was the best decision I ever made. A few notes:

1.) The Durant's "Story of Civ" is excellent, but is so antiquated that it's approaching literature more than history at this point. It's also so long that only segments of it are brilliant, and quite a lot is tedious for the non-historian. I suggest only browsing through it as meets your fancy.

For a good, condense, and reasonably up to date history the world, the best I'm aware of is by the late J.M. Roberts, found on Amazon for $25.

2.) I started chronologically, and had mixed results. If you take that route, take periodic breaks with newer material to keep things interesting.

3.) Don't worry about them being "too complicated to comprehend." These books will always offer you treasures no matter the age. Read and reread them as you see fit over your life time.

4.) The 4th ed of Fadiman's book is the best, but the third edition has a superior introduction. See if you can find a cheap paperpack of it somewhere.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

Edit: If you want to add the bible to your collection, this is the best edition out there. (A new ed is coming out April 1st!)

u/AngelOfLight · 4 pointsr/exjw

There are a number of Sumerian and Babylonian sacred texts here. In particular, the enuma elish has some interesting parallels to Genesis. One in particular - the creation of the world was the work of one god (marduk), but the creation of man was a joint effort between all the gods (the Sumerian creation myth is similar). Have a look at Genesis 1, and note where the text switches from singular to plural. Also - according to Mesopotamian mythology, humans were created to do the work that the gods were tired of doing. Thus they were expected to work the fields and engage in general labor. Have a look at Genesis 2:15 for a parallel.

I recommend these books for a deeper study:

Stories from Ancient Canaan

The Early History of God

The Origins of Biblical Monotheism

The Evolution of God

u/CostanzaChronicles · 4 pointsr/TrueChristian

The New Oxford Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha, Revised Standard Version is one I like. It's a bit more conservative than the later New Revised Standard Version Oxford Annotated Bible, but still includes modern scholarship.

Edit: Amazon lies. This Bible is not made by Nintendo.

u/GregoryNonDiologist · 4 pointsr/Christianity

We do not have any complete manuscripts of the "original" Hebrew. The vast majority of English translations of the "Hebrew" Old Testament are not translations of the original Hebrew, but rather a translation of a form of Hebrew that was invented in the Middle Ages by a sect (largely anti-Christian) of Jews called the Masoretes.

So for the Old Testament your choices are to defer to translations of a post-Christian Hebrew text or to translations of the Old Testament in another language. The oldest complete version of the Old Testament in any language is the Greek Septuagint, which dates to the 2nd century BC.

In my opinion, the best place to go for a translation of the medieval Masoretic Hebrew text is probably the Oxford Jewish Study Bible, translated by and commented on by Jewish scholars.

The best place to go for a translation of the Greek Septuagint is probably the Orthodox Study Bible.

The advantage of a translation of the Septuagint is that it includes the entire Old Testament. Modern Jewish and Protestant translations omit a number of books.

In my opinion, the best English translation of the New Testament is the 2-volume Orthodox New Testament, but it's not terribly readable.

I agree with another suggestion that the RSV is perhaps the best overall version. If you opt for this, be sure to purchase a version with the so-called "Apocrypha" (actually called the Deuterocanon by the Church Fathers). The New Oxford Annotated Bible is a good choice. Definitely AVOID the NRSV - Get the RSV.

u/Bilbo_Fraggins · 4 pointsr/atheism

Without question The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version.

The NRSV doesn't try to "harmonize" the passages like most evangelical bible translation, they just translate what the words say.

The book intros and study notes are scholarly, and give a good background on who we think wrote the book and why.

It's been one of the most common bibles used in non-fundy seminaries for quite some time.

u/HarryHeine · 4 pointsr/Christianity

Our Bibles today are far better than the Bibles of Constantine.

You want one that has the Deuterocanon (or Apocrypha) in it. Like the original King James did. :)

This should be a fine choice for the Catholic 73 book version:

If you want some of the other Orthodox canons with >73 books you'll need to look for them more specifically.

u/GabeThomas22 · 4 pointsr/ChristianOccultism

The NOAB is the definitive bible for in depth study IMO.

u/SabaziosZagreus · 4 pointsr/Jewish

What you currently have is an NIV Study Bible. I have one as well. The NIV translation is a popular, Protestant translation. It has some biases and inaccuracies, so it isn’t a translation used in scholarly circles. The NIV translation of the Old Testament is a translation of the Hebrew Masoretic Text, but it at times instead translates according to the Greek Septuagint, according to the Christian New Testament, or according to Protestant theology.

The central text in Judaism is the Tanakh. Tanakh is an acronym, it stands for Torah (Law), Neviim (Prophets), and Ketuvim (Writings); these are the three divisions of texts contained in the Tanakh. The Torah is the first five books of the Tanakh; Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. Our source for our Tanakh is the Hebrew Masoretic Text. As such, the NIV Old Testament translation and a Jewish Tanakh translation are both translations of the same book: the Masoretic Text. The differences being that a Jewish Tanakh translation will be organized a little differently, some verse numbering will be different, and the translation will not be affected by Christian biases.

The most widely used Tanakh translation is the New JPS Tanakh (NJPS or 1985 JPS). You can read the NJPS Tanakh here. If you want a study bible version, I’d recommend Oxford University Press’ Jewish Study Bible which uses the NJPS translation.

My primary Qur’an is MAS Abdel Haleem’s translation.

u/not_irish_patrick · 4 pointsr/Christianity
u/readercuthbert · 4 pointsr/Christianity

Check out the Orthodox Study Bible

u/bbenja4 · 4 pointsr/Judaism

The Jewish Publication Society version is very good English translation. The foot notes are very helpful. They also have a bilingUAL edition.

u/IAmBCDeathOwnerOfCat · 4 pointsr/Catholicism
u/Sir_Erdrick · 4 pointsr/Catholicism

If thou lookest for an Early Modern English translation, especially of the Latin Vulgate, then the Douay-Rheims Bible is what you are looking for. There are editions out there that have both the Latin and the English. Here's one I found on Amazon.

Personally, I use the RSV-2CE which is a great (in my opinion) modern English translation. The Didache Bible uses this translation and features commentary from the Catechism. Also available without the commentary.

u/HotBedForHobos · 4 pointsr/Catholicism

The Ignatius Bible. It's only the New Testament, but the notes are fantastic. The individual OT books are available, and eventually they'll bind them all together in one big volume. Still, the NT alone is so well done that it's worth it to get it now.

For the whole shebang, The Didache Bible. Commentary is tied to the Catechism.

u/DomiHo777 · 4 pointsr/Catholicism

The best option is Amazon; other sites will have the same price around it but they won’t include the shipping price until you check out. As for Amazon, if you have prime it’s free shipping.

u/CatholicGuy · 4 pointsr/Christianity

Hello TheEvilAlex! Search google and find a local Catholic Church! Call them and ask to speak with a priest or the parish youth minister! Explain your situation and they will help you!

The best bible out there right now is the RSV:SCE from Ignatius! You can get the hardcover for under $20 here on amazon. You can download the bible for free on your iPhone/iPod/iPad here.

You don't have to sing the Psalms. Most people read them as poetry.

If you have questions, feel free to ask here or you can even text questions to 'Catholic Facts" a small ministry I run that answers questions about the Catholic faith. Our text line number is 810-37-FACTS.


u/riskmgmt · 4 pointsr/Christianity

I recommend the ESV Study Bible. The ESV strives to take as few translation liberties (similar to the NRSV) while remaining accessible to readers. The notes are detailed and robust. I use one for most of my work in Seminary.

u/plong42 · 4 pointsr/AskBibleScholars

In my opinion, single volume commentaries are always going to be frustratingly brief. I usually advise people to study one biblical book and buy one or two good commentaries on that book. Buying a whole series is more expensive and will put books on your shelf you may not use for a while (like that Obadiah commentary....)

Sometimes you are better off with a serious Study Bible, and there are plenty of those. I often recommend the ESV Study Bible, which is mostly conservative. There are many essays in the appendices which are with the price of the book. If you are interested in background material, try the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible. Also on the conservative side of the spectrum, but it has good notes from John Walton and Craig Keener.

If you insist on a one voume commentary, the venerable Jerome Bible Commentary edited by Raymond Brown (and others) is very good, with a Catholic perspective. It is one of the larger one volume commentaries and can be found used inexpensively.

Hopefully someone else can add their voice to the conversation.

u/thelukinat0r · 4 pointsr/AskBibleScholars

The Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels says this:

> Across the Synoptic tradition there is evidence of an interest in angels in Gethsemane. In some manuscripts of Luke 22:43–44 Jesus is strengthened by an angel as he sweats like drops of blood; in Matthew 26:53 Jesus claims that he can call on the help of twelve legions of angels; and in Mark 14:51–52 the “young man” (neaniskos) fleeing naked may be an angel. The first two, and perhaps the third, of these texts reflect the tradition of angelic help offered to righteous heroes in battle.

The Ignatius Catholic Study NT has this to say:

> 14:51 a young man: An unnamed witness that many scholars identify as Mark. If this is the case, the evangelist chose to remain anonymous in light of the episode’s embarrassing details. Ultimately, how we identify this individual has little bearing on the tradition that Mark wrote the second Gospel as a summary of Peter’s preaching, since he could have witnessed the arrest of Jesus without being an eyewitness to his three-year ministry.

As a side note, the Lexham Bible Dictionary uses these verses as evidence of Markan Priority:

> Marcan Priority is generally held to be the stronger theory because it is easier to make sense of the differences between the Synoptics on the assumption that Mark wrote first. The small amount of material unique to Mark—like the blind man of Bethesda in Mark 8:22–26 or the youth fleeing naked in Mark 14:51–2—makes more sense as material mutually omitted by Matthew and Luke than as material specially added by Mark, especially as Mark lacks a lot of apparently congenial material found in Matthew and Luke (like the Beatitudes and the Lord’s Prayer).

Edit: I just realized that your username totally checks out.

u/amslucy · 4 pointsr/Catholicism

> Should I recite prayers or make up my own or do a combination?

Combination. I'm currently reading Spe Salvi, and Pope Benedict explains it like this (paragraph 34):

> For prayer to develop this power of purification [to open us up to God], it must on the one hand be something very personal, an encounter between my intimate self and God, the living God. On the other hand it must be constantly guided and enlightened by the great prayers of the Church and of the saints, by liturgical prayer, in which the Lord teaches us again and again how to pray properly. [...] Praying must always involve this intermingling of public and personal prayer. This is how we can speak to God and how God speaks to us.

The "formulaic" prayers that we memorize are important, in part because they teach us how to pray. Most likely, you'll go through times in your life where you'll feel "dry", and you'll struggle to know what to say to God, struggle to feel his presence. Especially during these times - but during other times as well - these prayers are a real treasure. We can also pray together with the whole Church when we pray these prayers, because many of them are prayers that the whole Church has in common.

But you need to make up your own personal prayers, too. Ultimately, prayer is talking with God, and prayer is about building up a relationship with God. And just like in any relationship, you need to communicate your own personal (unique to you) hopes, fears, sorrows, longings. So you really do need both types of prayer.

> What are the most common or popular prayers for you guys (other than the prayers involved in the rosary, of course)?

There are so many out there. A morning offering is a good idea (that can be recited or in your own words). There's the Angelus, which is often prayed at noon each day (and sometimes at 6 am and 6 pm as well). It's also good to get in the habit of doing a brief examination of conscience before bed, followed by an Act of Contrition (again, either recited or in your own words).

> How do I achieve meditative prayer?

The rosary is a meditative prayer, so there's that. Personally, I really struggle with the rosary (I tend to get overwhelmed by trying to do so many things all at once: counting with the beads, praying aloud, meditating on the mysteries), but you can also do meditative prayer in other ways: the Divine Mercy Chaplet and Lectio Divina are both meditative prayers, and prayer before icons or before the crucifix can also be meditative.

The Catechism has a good section on expressions of prayer which discusses meditative and contemplative prayer.

> How can I study the bible correctly and be able to recall passages as some of you do in the comments?

I can't speak to recollection (I think some of that just comes with time), but a couple of suggestions for Bible study: Probably the easiest way to start is to find a Bible Study at a local parish. It's also a good practice to read from the Bible regularly, ideally with the help of a good study Bible. The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible is good, but it's New Testament only. Other resources might be a Navarre Bible or the Didache Bible (also from Ignatius press).

> And finally, how does one properly do the process of Lectio Divina by oneself?

For Lectio Divina, check out this explanation.

u/BillDaCatt · 4 pointsr/TrueAtheism

I find the books written by Bart D. Ehrman to be both informative and interesting. I have read three of them: Forged: Writing in the Name of God - Why the Bible's Authors Are Not Who We Think They Are

Misquoting Jesus

Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don't Know About Them)
All three of them are solid reads.

Online Bible Links: (over 100 versions and 50 translations of the bible, including audio.)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (with Cross-References) [Kindle Edition] [free]

(edit:formatting to make it easier to read)

u/gamegyro56 · 3 pointsr/Christianity

Definitely NRSV. You might want a Study Bible, which has annotations that explain most passages, as well as intros that explain each book/group of books. I'd go with the New Oxford Annotated Bible or the HarperCollins Study Bible (the non-Student one has a concordance, but you have to get it through one of those Amazon third parties).

u/swords-to-plowshares · 3 pointsr/RadicalChristianity

I actually have two other study bibles: the Harper-Collins Study NRSV Bible and Oxford Study Bible: Revised English Bible with the Apocrypha -- think those would be okay?

I'm not sure if I need anything more than that, but I wanted to make sure I was getting everything I needed to get out of reading it. I'm kind of afraid of trying to interpret everything myself without expert advice backing me up.

u/Isz82 · 3 pointsr/Christianity

Specifically, I would recommend the New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version. Alternatively, the Harpy Collins Study Bible, which is also NRSV.

u/IBlameTheMormons · 3 pointsr/AskBibleScholars

I got it for about 30 bucks on Amazon. So it’s more expensive than your standard pocket bible but it’s not bad as far as study bibles go. Considering the use I’ve gotten out of it and how much it’s helped me with both my studies and my faith, I would’ve gladly paid twice that. As a brother in Christ (sorry mods, I know that kind of language is kinda frowned upon here), I’d encourage you to splurge on it.

That doesn’t sound like a bad price for the ESV student bible if that’s the kind of thing you’re looking for, but I wouldn’t consider that and the New Oxford as alternatives to each other. They’re really trying to accomplish two different things. If you already have a decent grasp on fundamental Christian theology, I don’t think you’ll gain a lot from the ESV student bible, unless you just want to keep it around to compare certain passages, which I do still use it for occasionally.

Link on amazon: The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version

u/ziddina · 3 pointsr/exjw

I'm very sorry to hear this, but it is natural for people to waver & wobble a bit.

When one looks at the behavior of natural systems, it's never a straight line from being (say) a desert to a green plain - or vice versa. There are always upticks and down-dips in the graph.

>He asked me again if I was going to stop going to meetings. I said "I wish I could tbh, but I'm gonna have to......................" (I paused just to make sure how he would react). He replied with "Good. As long you keep going", and he also says "if we don't have this then what do we have? Being out there in the world??"

If there was a tactful way to ask him whether your attendance made him look or feel better, I would have asked him about that.

I'm NOT tactful.

I would suggest several avenues of approach, but you'll have to consider very carefully what the effects of these suggestions might be, before you do anything:

The lack of affection in the congregation makes you feel like you're attending due to obligation, not because of any love amongst the brothers. If you can come close to stating his feelings about being "[made to] feel guilty for not being at meetings and he reluctantly goes because he feels pressured" without obviously mimicking his comments, you might be able to get a kindred feeling about how both of you really view the constant demands to attend the meetings.

What if he'd been born somewhere else? Afghanistan? Amish country? Mennonites? He wouldn't know about the Jehovah's Witnesses - but would STILL have the same attitude about being "no part of this world".

>He also said he doesn't like to talk about not going to meetings and I said if I can't talk to him about it then who would I talk to?

DON'T talk about it. Let it slide. True apathy is one of the biggest enemies the Watchtower Society has. Whenever you talk about attending the meetings, you are reinforcing the guilt he's feeling, even (especially!!!) if you're talking about the meetings in a negative way.

On the other hand, real apathy just ignores things, wishing they'd go away. Real apathy seeks out excuses to avoid attending meetings. If he's having a spurt of spirituality right now, but his past behaviors show that he really doesn't want to do it, then your best response would be to show up at some meetings with him, but fake a headache for others. When you do go to meetings with him, keep your responses flat. No response afterwards. Just so bored with it, you can't even be bothered to react negatively. If you've got an electronic tablet, then read something else while you're at the meetings.

Have you ever done a first-aid class where they teach the students how to pick up a fully-relaxed, unconscious person? That lesson amazed me; if a person goes completely limp it is VERY difficult to pick them up. A small person of around 100 pounds is harder to lift if they're as limp as a cooked noodle.

If you feel you need to attend any more meetings with him, then just go completely limp [so to speak]. NO negative resistance, but also absolutely no interest whatsoever.

Personally I'd pull up some of the books written by authentic bible scholars & read them during meetings, like "The Early History of God - Yahweh and the Other Deities in Ancient Israel" or "Did God Have a Wife?", or

Whether or not Jesus existed:

There's a whole world of research out there, that the Watchtower Society absolutely doesn't want their members to have a clue about. You could gain far more knowledge about the real (man-made) origins of the bible while you're sitting there in the meetings. You could be sitting there, cool as a cucumber, learning more about the bible than any male leader of the Watchtower Society knows, even the 7 men on the Governing Body.

That would keep your mind occupied while your husband struggles with the guilt & obligation of an unloving, manipulative cult.

For that matter, you could also read about how cults manipulate people, while you're at the meetings. Anything to feed your mind while he loses his - er, while he gets a belly-full of the banality, hypocrisy & idiocy of the WT meetings & literature.

u/nicktachy · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

The Orthodox Study Bible is popular as is the Oxford Annotated RSV w/ Apocrypha.

u/greyandlate · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

> that the devil basically wrote the Deuterocanonicals/Apocrypha

That is a bit extreme, I never heard that in my years in fundamentalist churches.

The importance is that the (Greek) Bible of the early church included them. Early Fathers frequently quoted them, especially Sirach and Wisdom. There are many narratives that are profitable to read, and give context to practices that are common among Orthodox, but neglected by Protestants, such as the idea of a guardian angel, praying for the dead. Just this morning I read an inspiring story of the seven brothers martyred for their faithfulness to the Jewish law from IV Maccabees.

The consensus that I have heard among Orthodox teachers is that the RSV is better because the NRSV was translated with an agenda to prefer gender sensitive terms. There is an edition of the RSV with the extra books from the LXX that is widely available, I found mine used. It would serve you well until you get an orthodox study bible, if you so choose later.

u/anathemas · 3 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

Since you've already gotten some good answers on methods of studying the Bible, I thought I'd recommend the Intro to the OT and NT classes from Yale, as well as the Religions of the Ancient Mediterranean podcast (adapted from a series of 8 classes). They really helped me in understanding the Bible in its historical/cultural context. Here are the links, as well as some other podcasts/classes you might enjoy. I'm adding some new classes, so excuse the construction. ;)

As far as Bibles, the Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha (RSV) is commonly recommended. You can find some cheaper editions, but I would personally avoid the NRSV — it uses more inclusive language which is great for spiritual reading but is a departure from the traditional language.

Check out the rest of the r/askbiblescholars wiki for some other resources and, and feel free to drop by if you have any questions regarding Biblical history or theology.

u/mleeeeeee · 3 pointsr/atheism

FYI: This is probably the best scholarly Bible for your average educated person.

u/halemuri · 3 pointsr/exjw

Two translations that seem popular at /r/academicbiblical and that are also used by the Open Yale Bible courses, are NRSV (as NOAB) and NJPS (as the Jewish Study Bible). I use them as my primary two English translations. Before I got them I did some research about what translations were probably the most accurate and those were the winners.

u/mistiklest · 3 pointsr/Christianity

Then I suppose I'd recommend something like the Oxford Study Bible. It's got basically everything you'd want, and includes the entirety of the Roman, Slavic, and Greek Canons

u/Loknik · 3 pointsr/DebateAChristian

> They should make an annotated Bible that includes the genre and writing style you're reading in, and how it should be interpreted.

It exists!

u/extispicy · 3 pointsr/Christianity

I recommend the New Oxford Annotated study bible. It uses the New Revised Standard Version translation and has useful commentaries and annotations. It is considered among least biased sources and is the one I see assigned most often in academic circles.

Another useful gift idea might be the HarperCollins Bible Commentary and the companion dictionary.

u/i_make_song · 3 pointsr/TrueAtheism

The Bible is a collection of small works written by many people from a select variety of cultures over a period spanning many (many, many, many) years. Each separate work was frequently changed intentionally and unintentionally (in insignificant and significant ways), and as I understand it we actually don't have any of the original manuscripts. There is a ton of physical evidence for the frequent changes to various manuscripts because we have so many copies. The Biblical manuscript page of Wikipedia does a much better job of explaining this.

So even if we had perfect translations of the existing bajillion manuscripts (we don't) it wouldn't matter because they aren't the original manuscripts. I don't think it's very likely that they had any sort of otherworldly knowledge on them, but hey anything is possible right? It's just not very likely. I think a better exercise when debating is pointing out clearly immoral passages that cannot be interpreted in multiple ways (try 2 Kings 2:23).

Any serious historians (including Christian historians) do not believe we have an inerrant Bible. Although that sure seems to be the rhetoric coming from the religious right.

Some translations are also much more academically rigorous than others. Rupurt Murdoch literally owns the NIV translation and the NIV translation is overseen by only 15 people. You can interpret that however you would like.

I personally recommend the The New Oxford Annotated Bible. I have it in Kindle format (basically a DRM protected PDF) as it's a fantastic translation. As I understand it is the translation most often used by biblical scholars.

The Bible is actually fairly complicated compilation of writings with all of the different sources and languages that are complied together, but it's a fairly interesting story.

I'm by no means an expert on this stuff, but I've tried my best to be as accurate as possible. Someone let me know if I've slipped up somewhere.

Honestly, the topic is extremely deep, and my interest in the bible has become almost nonexistent over the past few years.

I've debated with countless "the Bible is the inerrant word of God" people with pretty solid evidence and points and it all seems to be that these people use circular logic. I'm not saying they're unintelligent (they're actually quite intelligent) they seem to be clinging on to an improbable belief or in some sort of delusion/denial state.

I think a better question is who decided these people literally talked to "god", and how did they determine what was canonical? Why couldn't I just write a new chapter of the Bible today?

Sorry if my rambling is incoherent.

u/Xoipos · 3 pointsr/nederlands

Zeker amusant. Vooral omdat deze persoon de king james bijbel gebruikt, waarvan bekend is dat deze grove fouten bevat. De NRSV is tegenwoordig de beste vertaling gebaseerd op nieuwere vondsten zoals de codex vaticanus en de codex sinaiticus. Dit en andere verschillen wordt zeer duidelijk in de Oxford Annotated Bible uitgelegd. Mocht je een Nederlandse editie willen, zou ik de Nieuwe Bijbelvertaling aanraden.

Om nog maar niet te beginnen over dat wat niet met feiten onderbouwd kan worden...

u/Mstp1982 · 3 pointsr/exjw

For accuracy online, there is the NRSV - For a physical copy, The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version This one is used in college courses.

u/skinny_reminder · 3 pointsr/Christianity

I think for your purposes the New Oxford Annotated Bible would be a good selection. It includes the apocrypha and gives a little background on the history and circumstances each chapter was written. That really helped me understand what I was reading by placing it in historical context. This bible is widely used by scholars and people studying the bible.

u/Rockfiend · 3 pointsr/TrueAtheism

Thanks for the recommendation! I have thought about that but it seems too biased to me (even though it's biased in my favor). The bible I have is academic and it seems to be unbiased for the most part. I love it--it has great intros and footnotes and the translation itself seems reliable.

u/christiankool · 3 pointsr/DebateReligion

>See the issue with that is that if you believe the Bible is supposed to be "God's word" then why did God let it become so misinterpreted?

The Bible is not God's Word, Jesus is ( John 1 for an example). The Bible is a library/collections of different types of literature (i.e. poems, myths, histories, fictional accounts [ex. Jonah], letters, apocalyptic texts, etc.

So, why do Christians revere the texts found within and how did the texts get chosen anyway? Well, that's a long story do we're going to have to go general.

The Old Testament books were chosen on what Judaism was using around 1 CE, the Septuagint (Greek). In fact, it's thought the Jewish canon was chosen in reaction to Christianity and only had what is known as the Hebrew Bible. For some reason, Protestants kicked the extra texts found in the Septuagint to a different location in the bible and called it "Apocrypha". It was still on there until "recently" when they wanted to save printing costs. For instance, Lutherans, Anglicans, etc. still have readings from the Deutrocannon.

The New Testament is different. In the West, there was no "set canon" until the Reformation and Council of Trent. In fact, Luther wanted to kick out James (because he thought it was contrary to "faith alone) and Revelation. Though he kept Revelation because he could use it against Rome.

The New Testament canon was formed before they were set, however. (I believe the earliest canon was Marcion and then the earliest that resembles the current one was Augustine?) The letters of Paul were being circulated throughout the area. The Gospels were written as "remembered history" as well as interpreting Jesus through the Septuagint. With this in mind, the church chose the texts based on the author of the text (Apostles), how common they were found throughout all the churches, how "catholic"/"orthodox" they were, etc. And the Church is thought to have been guided by the Spirit in these matters.

Now the nature of scripture is that it's both human and divine. Humans wrote the scriptures in historical contexts by certain literary means. So, of course you're going to get contradictions on the surface level of reading. There's 4 different gospels telling the story of Jesus in at least 4 different ways! (But that's why you have to know they're written as "remembered history" and interpretations.) That doesn't diminish the "authorship"/inspiration of God. That is only found in the proper context: liturgy and prayer. As Robert Sokolowski wrote:

>The role of the church as the speaker of the scriptures is brought out when she presents the scriptures as the word of God, but this role is even more vividly performed when the church reads the biblical passages in her liturgy and when she incorporates parts of the scriptures in her teachings and prayers and makes it possible for us to think and to pray in the same manner. We take fragments from the scriptures and compose our prayers and thoughts from them. The church’s use of scripture in her teaching and actions makes possible for us a way of life that is coherent because reconciled with God. It is in such situations of prayerful reading, whether in the church’s liturgy and teaching or in the private prayer of believers, that the scriptures most fully come to life. It is there that they serve, not as an object of our curiosity, but as the words through which God speaks to us and we to God. At this point the primary author of the scriptures, God himself, comes to the fore and acts as author, as the one who authorizes and speaks. At this point the human authors, who have finished their work, recede into the background. - Phenomenologies of Scripture (God's Word and Human Speech)

I don't agree with him on everything (I take a more Eastern view of Holy Tradition), but it's a start.

>The lake of fire.... English King James Version... but there are other reference through the Bible to the furnace and such.

Firstly, the KJV is outdated on scholarship. If you want a universally accepted translation, used in both Secular and Religious schools, I'd suggest the NRSV. I'd also suggest getting a New Oxford Study Annotated Bible or HarperCollins Study Bible. Just get away from the KJV.

I'm pretty sure I covered the gauntlet with my previous post. I didn't realize you wanted me to go super specific. But, just in case, Jesus speaks in parables a lot.

>I don't really know what you're asking by rejecting God and rejecting idea of God, sounds like one and the same if you're only talking about abrahamic religion.

I'll provide an analogy to point you in the right direction. It is not meant as a literal 1-to-1 comparison. Say that I met your mother. I noticed she was yelling at the cashier at the grocery store. She tried stealing a lighter while the cashier was grabbing her cigarettes. He noticed that. She kept denying it and denying until she left cursing out the cashier.

To you, your mom doesn't even smoke and is as calm as Snoop with a doobie. Why would she ever be so mean?

We meet up and start talking about your mom. You bring up how wonderful she is and I start to get freaked out. I say, "That is not your mom. Your mom is rude. You must be talking about another lady. Because if that's the case, then your mom doesn't exist or was replaced." I'm not actually denying that your mom exists, only your idea of mom.

>As for getting to hell God sends you there, I was raised Baptist and the interpretation I was taught was about believing in Jesus, if you believed in Jesus you went to heaven and if not you go to hell.

I grew up an Evangelical (Assemblies of God) where Genesis was to be taken literally. I remember in 9th grade (!) trying to argue with the science teacher about evolution (God, thinking back I cringe hard). Then I learned Genesis 1 is written as a poem and that Genesis 2 is not a scientific creation account, rather it's a mythic story outlining our relationship with God, the earth, and everything else. What I'm saying is, once you learn something new it will be incorporated into your "worldview" and you'll need to react.

A different example with a similar point: as a child I was taught that the USA Revolution happened because of the Tea Tax being too high. "The taxes are too damn high!" They said and fought off the Brits. Then, as I got older I learned that there was way more to it than I knew. Was I initially wrong? Well, no... But there was more to the story than I thought.

>But the fun part is that our interpretations don't really matter anyway...

Literally everything is interpretation or at least affected by your biases and such. We've moved past positivism.

I'm going to skip over the hell bits because I'm obviously not your target audience. Everything your saying, I don't accept. Read the last post again and talk to me on my view, not this strawman you've created. Christianity is not monolithic. There are certain things that must be agreed upon (like the early church councils and creeds - whether or not you "accept" them, all Christians articulate their views) to be considered Christian - orthodox not heterodox. But, outside those, honestly few, points, you're good to disagree.

>And if you want my real opinion and there is a God as described in the Bible he isn't worthy of worship, he's a psychopath who is just toying with us.

I'd like to remind you that humans wrote the texts in this library called the bible and that they had certain viewpoints and could have easily interpreted things as God's doing when it wasn't. Or that it's actually known that the YHWH is a step up from other gods. For instance, you know when God commands Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac then says, "lol jk here's a ram."? Well, that story is not about God demanding Abraham to kill his only son (!), rather it's a story to show that God doesn't need human sacrifice! Unlike those gods over there...

>The way that religion works...

You're not even close. Religions are the Forms in which the Divine/God is being experienced by human beings. They are the bones of a structure of experience. Religions are that which describe God as understood by the people.

Once again, I'm on my phone - though at home now.

u/irl_lurker · 3 pointsr/rpg

This is the version that I'd use. Read the essays before the books--they and the annotations at the bottom make some good clarifications and give a lot of cultural context you probably wouldn't be aware of.

u/lizard412 · 3 pointsr/dankchristianmemes

Holy Bible: Stock Car Racing

It's real, I want one!

u/geardownlandings · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

The Orthodox Study Bible has extensive footnotes full of great explanation placing Scripture within the context of Holy Tradition, often citing and quoting from the Church Fathers. There are color prints of icons interspersed throughout the text!

u/durdyg · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

I'm fairly sure the Orthodox Study Bible is the Septuagint translation of the OT and Psalms.

u/Jademists · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

Here’s the link the above poster recommended Orthodox Study Bible

u/ryanrfrederick · 3 pointsr/freemasonry

You might go with The Orthodox Study Bible

u/LewisTolkien · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

I find study bibles to be the most helpful because they have very detailed notes at the bottom of each page as well as thorough introductions. That way, if you get hung up on something, there are references. Also, Bible Gateway allows you to type in a verse or book and see what other translations have for that verse. Very nice for comparison

Maybe Orthodox posters can provide a better opttion but on Amazon, this is the top Orthodox study bible

ESV study Bible is a favorite among a lot of r/Christianity posters

Good luck with your journey, brother

u/Im_just_saying · 3 pointsr/Christianity

OK. Well, first, I'm not Orthodox, I'm Anglican. But the ancient Anglican doctrine lines up with Orthodoxy. Having said that, are you aware of The Orthodox Study Bible? A good, basic, simple resource to follow along with your reading.

As far as a single or double volume commentary from an Orthodox perspective, I don't know of any - maybe someone else can chime in.

u/Theo-philus · 3 pointsr/Christianity
u/cuebasiscool · 3 pointsr/simpleliving

The Good Book by A.C. Grayling is one of my favorites. It's a bible of wisdom and humanism written in the style of the Christian bible.

u/gikatilla · 3 pointsr/Judaism

as flawed as it is, the most accessible translation out there of the Hebrew Bible is the JPS: this one is the newest.

for a fascinating, sometimes awkward, but totally totally literal translation of the Torah (only the first give), check out Everett Fox's translation

lastly, got to put a plug in for a Jewish translation of the NT recently published called The Jewish Annotated New Testament - it may help clarify Jewish readings of Christian scripture and vice versa.

u/NothingAndNobody · 3 pointsr/Christianity
u/st_stephen_strange · 3 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

In that price range, you could pick up the NRSV with Apocrypha (some may find issue with that translation, but I like it for personal use)

Or if you want a more reverent translation, the RSV2CE is quite good, keeping in mind it won't have the full Orthodox deuterocanon

Edit: Also, it's my understanding that one can find a KJV with Apocrypha for a decent price

u/lutheranian · 3 pointsr/Christianity

I've put shameless plugs of this Bible on r/Christianity before, because it's just amazing. Every translation is flawed and biased, since ancient hebrew and greek had very limited vocabularies, which included words that have multiple translations to English.

If you want to keep to the KJV, I'd still recommend a more modern translation just for comparison sake. That Bible I linked to contains extensive commentary in the footnotes of each page (here's an example, it's a very large picture).

If you'd rather not go out and spend the money on another Bible, then research commentaries. Look for the least bias, as some denominations or organizations will put out their own commentaries that reflect their personal translational beliefs.

I'd also recommend looking into different plans on how to read the Bible. Obviously you should read Genesis - Deuteronomy together, as well as the Kings, Samuels, and Chronicles. Different sections of the Bible correspond to different events and situations, but it's really up to you.

u/fingurdar · 3 pointsr/Christian

Very happy to hear this, my friend!

As a few others have already stated, reading the Bible with an inquisitive mind is a good start. You may need some advice on translation and what books to check out first, so I've provided my opinion below:

  • Regarding translation, there are two types: "word for word" and "thought for thought." The former is more accurate to the original Hebrew/Greek, while the latter is meant to be more comprehensible to a modern audience. If you want "word for word," then I and many others -- including Bible scholars -- enjoy the ESV (English Standard Version). It's a modern translation that's both precise and clear. The NKJV (New King James Version) is also a good "word for word" translation, and it comes on free YouTube audiobook. If instead you want "thought for thought," I'd suggest the NLT (New Living Translation). It's the only "thought for thought" translation I'm familiar with that doesn't seem to regularly distort the text on the finer points. You can access nearly every translation for free on the website Biblegateway.

  • Next, once you have your translation, you need a reading plan. I strongly recommend starting with the Gospels. There are three "synoptic Gospels" (the word synoptic comes from the Greek synoptikos, meaning "able to be seen together"). These three are Matthew, Mark, and Luke. The synoptic Gospels each tell the story of Jesus from a relatively similar perspective, but differ in various details (like writing style, emphasis of themes, the recording of Jesus' parables, etc.). Then there is the fourth Gospel, John, which takes a totally different and unique perspective from the synoptics. Therefore, you should start by reading one of the synoptics (Mark is a good choice) and then read John, to familiarize yourself with the heart and soul of Christianity: the story of Jesus Christ.

  • After this, I suggest you read some of the "Epistles," found in the NT after the Gospels. These are letters -- sometimes addressed to a specific person, other times addressed to an entire church or community -- that Jesus' Apostles wrote after His death. They give greater depth, detail, and clarity into the teachings of Christ and Christianity. Most of them are quick reads, but at the same time, packed full of meaning. In no particular order, I suggest you check out, especially, the following Epistles: 1 John (pronounced "First John", different from the Gospel of John but same author); Romans; Ephesians; 2 Corinthians ("Second Corinthians"); 1 Peter ("First Peter"); and James.

  • You can also choose to read Acts, which is the historical account of what the Apostles did after Jesus' death and resurrection (and offers insight into how Christianity went from a tiny community of Jews living in first century Judea, to more than 2 billion believers worldwide).

  • At any time during this process, you can "take a break" from the NT and go to the OT. The OT is further removed from modern-day and thus, naturally, will sometimes be more difficult to decipher -- but it gets easier the more you go at it! In the OT, I would suggest first checking out the Psalms (absolutely beautiful Divine poetry), Genesis (the account of creation, Eden, the fall, the flood, Abraham, etc.), and Proverbs (a collection of short statements of powerful wisdom).

  • When you feel comfortable, consider finding a church nearby to attend, so as to surround yourself with a community who can help you on your path. Also -- again, when comfortable -- consider praying. Prayer need not be complicated; it can be as simple as talking to God about how you're feeling.

    This should be enough to keep you occupied for a little while. :)

    There is also an excellent YouTube series called "Read Scripture" by the channel The Bible Project. It's a collection of 8-12 minute illustrated summaries of each book of the Bible. I find them incredibly well-done, easy to watch, and insightful. I'd recommend using this as a tool. Here is a link to their NT playlist and here is a link to their OT playlist. (You can also consider purchasing a Study Bible, which has footnotes from Bible scholars helping to clarify the text -- I personally own and enjoy the ESV Study Bible from Crossway.)





    Translation: ESV or NKJV for precision, NLT for clarity.

    Reading List: (1) Pick one of Matthew, Mark, or Luke. (2) John. (3) Epistles [I recommend 1 John, Romans, Ephesians, 2 Corinthians, 1 Peter, James, in any order]. (4) Acts. (5) At any time, take a break from the NT and check out the OT book of Psalms, Genesis, and/or Proverbs.

    Helpful Study Tools: The Bible Project on YouTube, the ESV Study Bible, and

    Next Steps: When comfortable, consider finding a church community to become a member of. Also when comfortable, consider simple prayer.




    The Bible is the best-selling book (technically, library of books) in the history of the world, and for good reason. If you subscribe to the Christian religion, as I do, then it represents nothing less than the all-powerful God of the universe's personal revelation to mankind. "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness." (2 Timothy 3:16). God loves you without limit, in your best of times and worst of times, and desires deeply to have a relationship with you through Christ. "[Jesus said,] 'Abide in Me, and I in you. . . . As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Abide in My love.'" (John 15:4,9). This relationship of love can utterly transform your life, as it has my own.

    And frankly, even if you're not a Christian, the Bible is still packed with wisdom, value, comfort, and even entertainment (I would love the stories regardless of whether I was a Christian).




    That's all I can think to say for now. Please feel free to reach out to me by PM if you ever have any questions (even if you need to 'save' this comment for future reference just in case)!

    "[Jesus said,] 'Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you.'" (Matthew 7:7)

    Thanks for reading and God bless you.
u/MephistosLament · 3 pointsr/Catholicism


To continue with your second point (I was at work, so could only answer the first point):

2) I can't take the Bible literally.

We have to understand what the Bible is. It is first and foremost a collection of books, not a single literary work. Every word is the inspired word of God, however its human authors are spread out over centuries, and contain multiple genres including history, allegory, psalms, gospels, epistles (letters), prophecy, etc. Before we look at a particular book, we have to ask a few questions: Who is the (human) author? What genre is it? What is its intention? Without knowing that, we can't come to a realization of what we are reading. For example, Genesis is not intended as literal history, but as historical allegory. For example, to God, time is meaningless. Time, properly understood, is the breaking up of existence into pieces. A person's existence is never fully grasped, but is known in a succession of moments. God is infinite and eternal, thus he contains the totality of his existence in one single action. Thus to say that creation of this or that thing took place in a "day" is meaningless to God because God is the very action of being and cannot be delineated into measurement of time. But it is sufficient for human readers to grasp the theological points of the text, which is the point. Similarly, Leviticus is written largely as a manual outlining ritual, legal and moral practices to help the Jews grow closer to God, and specifically in the setting of Jewish temple worship. Many of the practices are no longer followed by Christians, such as animal sacrifices, because Christ is the one sufficient burnt offering offered once for all. The books of the bible also have to be looked at in context with the rest of the books. The early church fathers looked at the Old Testament as containing the New Testament in hidden form, for example. The bible is difficult, as you say, which is partly why the church has teaching authority, to help us to understand the bible in its proper contexts. I would recommend a study bible such as The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible.

u/DKowalsky2 · 3 pointsr/Catholicism

For study Bibles (if that's what you're referring to) I would recommend the Didache Bible (+ Catechism of the Catholic Church), the Great Adventure Bible (Ascension Press's supplemental material is worth it, too) and the Ignatius New Testament Study Bible. There's also the Douay-Rheims Version with Fr. George Leo Haydock's excellent commentary, or the Navarre Bible series, but good luck finding them without taking out a second mortgage. :)

If you're talking strictly about Biblical background and history from a Catholic perspective, Scott Hahn's Catholic Bible Dictionary should fit the bill.

u/FlameUniverse · 3 pointsr/pyrocynical
u/PeacePig · 2 pointsr/bestof

That's an interesting point. I shouldn't have said he was always in heaven. But he was always welcome there, for he was a divine being among God's council. Also, you have to be careful when trying to read translations written recently/written by believers (by which I mean a lot of scribes, over the years, have "cleaned" stuff up or altered stuff slightly to suit their needs (a good example is when they changed "sons of El [Canaanite God]" to "sons of Israel" in order to erase the memory of Israelites' polytheistic/henotheistic origins. I can't remember which passage they specifically changed.) They can often stray from the source text. I just googled the passage you mentioned to quickly see and was surprised to see it straight up call him Satan. In my translations, which are for scholarly purposes, he is called ha'Satan.

Check these out if you're curious.

Tanakh as translated by the Jewish Publication Society. Quite good. I believe translated directly from the oldest manuscripts available of each text.

Harper Collins Study Bible. This is a great one. Not a typical "study bible" that you may be used to seeing. This is for academic studies. It also has some great essays and explanations of stuff. Very, very nice text.

u/barbecuedporkribs · 2 pointsr/Anglicanism

If you can, find someone else's copy of this to borrow, and see how you feel about it.

u/farcebook · 2 pointsr/AskLiteraryStudies

You might also be interested in reading through the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV), as well. While the King James (KJ) has merit as a milestone in English literature, the NRSV will give you many more notes on translation, original meaning, and the history of interpretation from scholars at the top of the field of Biblical Criticism.

u/fakejello · 2 pointsr/exmormon

Get yourself a study bible, like the HarperCollins Study Bible or a Bible commentary like Eerdmans and find the Isaiah chapters in those. Isaiah makes a lot more sense when you put him in his proper context and stop trying to read prophesies of our day into it. Also, be sure to familiarize yourself with the Deutero-Isaiah therory.

u/ledhead0501 · 2 pointsr/exmormon

It's hard to say what most Christians think of the passage. What Isaiah meant with this whole thing is probably entirely local, small, and broadly insignificant. The chapter starts with Yahweh talking about how he is going to let Israel be ravaged by its enemies, but then, later, Israel will rise again like a voice from the dust. And then the LORD (Yahweh) will come and help Israel, and confound those Prophets and Seers (who are probably the ones saying that Israel is completely doomed). They will not be able to understand this here prophecy, the one that the author is writing, because they will call it like a "sealed book" and they "won't be able to read"... but Yahweh will have the upper hand. He will confound the wise, and their "wisdom shall perish," because Israel, despite the odds, will survive the onslaught. And then Lebanon (which is like the whole area in which the Israelites lived) will be like a forest again, and the blind shall see, and everything will be right again. And all will glorify the God of Israel (Yahweh), because he, despite what the wise ones were saying (those that thought Israel was doomed), saved Israel.

This is what it is saying, by almost all standard readings of it. The LDS reading makes no sense, and it certainly doesn't make sense with any more accurate translations. It only works with the outdated KJV, and only if you squint really hard. I would recommend picking up a NRSV Study Bible, if you'd like further explantation. Here is a fantastic choice, with some of the most up-to-date Biblical scholarship

edit: More on this "sealed book" thing. The NRSV, which is one of the most accurate translations out there, says exactly this: "The vision of all this has become for you like the words of a sealed document. If it is given to those who can read, with the command 'Read this,' they say 'We cannot, for it is sealed.' And if it is given to those who cannot read, saying 'Read this,' they say, 'We cannot read' "

The author is using a simile. It is not literally a sealed book, it will just be like a sealed book, because the other "wise" people in Ancient Israel will refuse to heed the words. If you think that this writing had anything to do with 19th century America, trust me, Isaiah is rolling in his grave over that.

u/gasinek · 2 pointsr/Bible

When I read the Bible, longer passages or more serious study, I use physical Bibles. My primary Bible is this: NOAB (NRSV), I also use this: Jewish Study Bible (NJPS), and then a third translation in my native language (which is not English).

For note-taking I use text files on my computer, which I edit in Notepad.

For reading shorter passages or just quick look ups or if I need to search for things, I primarily use

u/BachRodham · 2 pointsr/Christianity

New Oxford Annotated Bible 5th Edition just came out.

I’ve purchased each Edition since the 2nd. Great translation, great scholarship.

u/majkui · 2 pointsr/exjw

I will give my response to your post. I read the other comments, thinking that I would just add to what they said without repeating what had already been said, but realized that then my own comment would become fragmented if I took that into account, so I will ignore what others have said.


> I lied to the elders by saying I read it when I got baptised after they asked if I read the bible everyday.

I think this is a very common lie. I don't think many elders have read the Bible either.

In fact, every single time some Jehovah's Witness say "I know this is the truth, because I have investigated the evidence myself" they are lying.

Another very common lie: "I don't masturbate"

The truth is, almost everyone masturbates, most people have not read the Bible, and every single one that has actually investigated the evidence for themself has left the religion, at least mentally.


> I’m a slow reader (I think I might have adhd. Should I see a doctor?) and I’m up to Genesis 3.

Going to a doctor could be a good idea, perhaps. I don't know the extent of your problem.

Personally, when I haven't been reading anything for a long time, in the way I read the Bible, then it will be slower. But then if I keep at it for a few days or a week I will speed up. Sometimes if I read two hours straight, the first hour I will read with difficulty, but the second hour I read much better. Another thing that could speed up your reading is if you don't speak the words, neither out loud nor in your head, because it takes time to "pronounce" the words. But reading text without even pronouncing it mentally is not something everyone knows how to do, and I don't know how to teach it.

Though, even if you only read the text in the same speed as you speak normally, you will still easily read through the Bible in a year, unless your life is busy.


> I’m very very confused about Genesis 1 and 2 so far as it seems like it contradicts itself so much.

My understanding of the scientific explanation is that Genesis 2 was written first by one author, and later Genesis 1 was written by another author and added to the beginning of Genesis, and the theologies of those authors are different.

The first author, who wrote Genesis 2 about Adam and Eve, thought, according to my own understanding of the text, that humans were first created as mere animals, and then they gained "knowledge of good and bad" and became more than animals. This was why they were naked without feeling any shame, because they were just as any other animals. The author was a child of his time and culture, and thought it was uncivilized to be naked, unaware that it is a cultural idea not universal to humans.

This might also explain why the snake could speak: the author might have thought that as Adam and Eve were just mere animals, they could speak the same language as animals. Though there are other possible explanations.

Christians usually describe the events in Eden as "the Fall", but this is not supported by the text. Instead, it is "the Ascension". The two trees represent two qualities of gods that set gods apart from animals. The "knowledge of good and bad" represents the author's understanding of the mental difference between humans and animals, which he believed originally only belonged to the gods.

Jehovah lied to Adam and Eve about the tree, essentially saying that it was poisonous, to keep them from eating and ascending to the level of the gods. The snake revealed the truth, and they ate and became as gods. Jehovah felt threatened by this, and expelled them from Eden to prevent them from gaining the second quality of gods: eternal life, by eating from the tree of life.

This was the author's explanation why humans are partly divine, by having knowledge as gods, and partly animal, by being mortal as animals.

The second author, who wrote Genesis 1, disagreed. He thought God created the humans in the image of God from the outset. There was never any time when humans were only mere animals, and no "Ascension". There was never a "tree of knowledge".

The second author plagiarized a pre-existing creation myth, and made some changes. One of the changes was that he removed a battle between God and the cosmic waters, because according to the second author, God is omnipotent. The original audience knew the pre-existing myth, and could notice the difference, but most modern readers don't know about the pre-existing story.

Genesis 1:1-3 should read something like

> When God began to create sky and land—the land being unformed and void, with darkness over the surface of Tehom and a wind from God sweeping over the water—God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

In the original story, there was a battle between the gods and Tehom. In Hebrew, "Tehom" is a proper noun, a name, even though most translations hide this.

The Watchtower Society brags about not hiding the fact that "YHWH" is a name, and transcribes it as "Jehovah", but they are still guilty of hiding the name "Tehom" and other names in the Bible such as "El". (Also, as others have stated, the Watchtower inserts the name "Jehovah" into the Bible where "YHWH" is not found, like in the New Testament.)

This is just how I understand it, though it is also based on what I have heard from scholars. I may have gotten details wrong.

When I was PIMI and read it not too carefully, I thought that the story about Adam and Eve "zoomed in" on the sixth day of creation. Thus, Genesis 1 described the creation of heaven and earth and humans, while Genesis 2 took a closer look at the creation of humans. Now I don't believe this is correct.

If one tries to read Genesis as a single coherent story, to the limited degree it is possible, then this is probably how I would read it today: First God created sky, land (a flat earth in an earth-sized snow globe), and humans in six (literal) days, then he rested on the seventh day, then after an unspecified time, Jehovah created Adam, that started out as a mere animal, but then ascended. Thus Adam and Eve were not the first humans, though it seems the first humans were gone, because there were no one to tilt the ground.


> Anyway, what translation should I use? ... Of course, there’s the King Lebron James Version, the American standard version and a bunch of others too. I want an actual physical copy of the bible too, I’m a young person but I’m so sick of looking at technology all the time so I’d prefer an actual bible. I also don’t want a biased translation or one that may have just added or removed things from the bible where they see fit. I want a bible as close to the original texts as possible.

I like the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) (specifically as The New Oxford Annotated Bible, 5th ed.) and the New Jewish Publication Society's Tanakh (NJPS) (as The Jewish Study Bible, 2nd ed.).

However, there is no translation without bias, or even without mistranslations. At least not one of the whole Bible in a single volume.

But there are definitively better ones and worse ones.

Some things that speak in favour of NRSV:

  • NRSV is an Ecumenical translation, involving Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox, and the Old Testament involves a Jewish translator as well. This means that when they disagree about the interpretation, they tend to stick to the more literal reading that they all agree on. It still has bias, but not as much as translations made by a single denomination.

  • NRSV is created by non-fundamentalists, which means a higher acceptance of a scientific understanding of the text.

  • NRSV is on the spectrum towards a formal translation, which means it is closer to a word-for-word translation. This means it has less smooth English, but also less room for bias.

  • NRSV is recommended by academics, both by secular scholars and non-fundamentalist Christian scholars.

    When I first started researching different translations to decide which ones I should get, I thought "Using 'Jehovah' or 'Yahweh' is superior to using 'the LORD', so I will start looking at translations that use 'Jehovah' and 'Yahweh'", but I soon realized that the winner was NRSV despite not using 'Jehovah/Yahweh'.

    The Watchtower brags about getting "YHWH" right, but the name "YHWH" is only about 1% of the total number of words. Getting 1% of the words right, while being dodgy about the remaining 99% isn't that impressive.

    Sometimes the gender neutral language of NRSV is criticized. An example of the gender neutral language is that in the New Testament the phrase "brothers and sisters" is used where many mainstream translations use "brothers". This isn't necessarily wrong, because the Greek word could refer to an all-male group or a mixed gender group. But some have said that NRSV occasionally use gender neutral language where the intended meaning is not gender neutral.
u/GoodGuyAgain · 2 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

/u/mike_bevel is this the version you purchased?

u/Philo_of_Arnor · 2 pointsr/Christianity /s

If you are interested in seriously tackling the text from scholarly perspective I would suggest The New Oxford Annotated Bible (which uses the New Revised Standard Version). You can get it online here or here.

Also since you are starting from Genesis and will be spending lot of the time with Old Testament I would suggest The Jewish Study Bible both for commentary and comparison of The Jewish Publication Society translation with ESV / NSRV. You can get the 1st edition online here.

u/otakuman · 2 pointsr/AskHistorians

I believe I answered this question in an earlier thread one year ago.

How did polytheism transition into monotheism?

EDIT: Just FYI, I'd recommend reading "The origins of Biblical Monotheism: Israel's Polytheistic Background and the Ugaritic Text" by Mark S. Smith. Perhaps you should also read the prequel, "The Early History of God: Yahweh and the Other Deities in Ancient Israel (Biblical Resource Series)".

u/bukvich · 2 pointsr/slatestarcodex

It is this one. Amazon has been kind enough to tell me I purchased it in February 2013. When I bought it I did google search on (oxford study bible and it was the first result and I clicked twice more and naively proceeded onward like that is now taken care of forever.

I did this at the encouragement of Dale Martin's New Testament Yale U. videos. I have this weird memory that he said something about the NRSV being a more politically correct translation; maybe like in this example the Proverb we began with NRSV has "person" and the RSV has "man". I have a clear memory of him reading from his version in front of the class in at least one instance and his oxford study bible is materially different from his students' oxford study bibles.

In retrospect I am not happy that I paid Amazon their retail and I could have gotten a good second hand copy for five bucks. :(

u/01000001_sauce · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Is it the RSV or the Orthodox Study Bible? The New Oxford Annotated RSV has all the books most major Christian groups accept as canonical. It's tough for the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church but scholarship on those books is picking up due to their great historical value, and someday there may be an English translation of the Tewahedo Church's canon.

u/pancake-breakfast · 2 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

I just finished listening to a Fr. Thomas Hopko podcast about reading the bible. He mentioned the OSB, but recommend getting ahold of an old revised standard edition study bible, like this one.

u/a645657 · 2 pointsr/atheism

I'd definitely go with the New Oxford Annotated Bible. It's fantastic. Apparently there's a new edition out.

Also worth checking out for more detail is the Oxford Bible Commentary.

u/Blyd · 2 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

Pick up an annotated scholarly copy of the bible, try to avoid 'christian' ones if you are trying to learn from an objectively neutral point of view.

This is a good start:

u/navyjeff · 2 pointsr/bookexchange

I recommend the Oxford Annotated Bible, if you can get your hands on it. I'd send it to you, but I don't have one myself at the moment.

u/Shibboleths · 2 pointsr/AskMen

For people who want a more complete experience that teaches you to respect the historical/cultural context of many of the writings and why they were written, Oxford has got you covered.

Wasn't ever interested until I got to read the intro pages for each "book" as well as the footnotes in that thing.

u/bks33691 · 2 pointsr/booksuggestions

If you want some background on the Hebrew bible, The Pentateuch is a good starting place.

What I would recommend though, rather than trying to understand the theology is to just start with a good annotated translation. I particularly like the New Oxford Annotated Bible.

There are a million different theologies; almost every theologian has a different perspective on what "God" is and what the scriptures mean. You may have better luck approaching the book from a literary or historical point of view.

I also second the idea of not reading it straight through. You really won't get anything out of it that way. I would recommend reading Genesis, Exodus, Kings, Samuel and maybe Judges. In the New Testament, Mark, Matthew, Luke and the Epistles are great. I'm not as familiar with the rest of the NT, so I can't really offer much advice there.

There are other supplemental materials that are good if you are familiar with the stories in the Bible - "God: A Biography" by Jack Miles is great, for example.

u/Earthtone_Coalition · 2 pointsr/atheism

A lot of people here have claimed that "there are no unbiased books." This is simply not so, unless it's meant in some facile sense--presenting evidence to support a thesis ought not be interpreted as a bias for that thesis (though the thesis, on its own, may be biased).

Mind you, finding an unbiased book on religion is not so easy. Practically all the New Atheist books are right out, so no Harris, Hitchens, or Dawkins. That's not to say that these aren't fantastic writers, but they obviously wouldn't fall into the category you describe elsewhere of "an agnostic that states all of the beliefs of both sides and arguments for it without pushing towards a particular side."

My recommendations would be as follows:

God is Not One by Stephen Prothero -- This is a book on comparative religion in which the author seeks to demonstrate that the major religions of the world are not all "different paths up the same mountain," as is sometimes expressed to infer that all theists worship the same god. He gives a pretty balanced, if brief, account of the major underlying differences between the world's religions. Informative and interesting, but not particularly profound.

The Case for God by Karen Armstrong -- Here Armstrong examines how religions have changed over time. There's a focus on Christianity and she does a good job of demonstrating the immense changes that the religion has undergone since its inception. Arguing that today's systems of beliefs and views of God are starkly different from those our ancestors, Armstrong makes a strong argument for a return to the Gnostic tradition for those seeking to understand the supernatural. Sadly, she does devote a chapter at the very end of her book (needlessly, I think) to criticizing the New Atheist movement.

The Shadow of a Great Rock by Harold Bloom -- This is simply a literary examination of the King James Bible. No position is taken on the merits of the claims made in the Bible or of individuals who believe these claims. It can be very slow at times, as Bloom painstakingly demonstrates the careful literary decisions made by the authors of the KJV and compares it against contemporary examples like the Geneva and Tyndale Bibles. Obviously, this book is only tangentially related to the topic of religion since it focuses so intently on only one book--having said this, I never really understood or appreciated how people could consider the Bible such a beautiful literary masterpiece until I read this book. Bloom conveys his love of the work (in a purely literary sense--he's Jewish) on every page.

HONORABLE MENTION: The New Oxford Annotated Bible -- It's a study Bible with lots and lots of footnotes and maps and cross-references. Very thorough. It makes everything generally clearer and easier to understand. I can't vouch for a lack bias, since I'm not knowledgeable enough on the topic to discern what parts of the footnotes and introductions are questionable bias on the part of the authors and what's just the straight dope. Further, as with any translation of the Bible, bias may be inherent within the very text itself--though this version does a good job of mitigating that by indicating where and how other translations differ.

u/megaparsecs · 2 pointsr/booksuggestions

Hmm, well you got a couple of options here translation-wise.

The NIV has been sort of the standard English translation for a while, since the 70s, but the accuracy/scholarly rigor of the translation is more questionable than some of the others, I think? It's got modern English, and is pretty readable. I don't know of any great study Bibles for that, though.

The New Revised Standard Version is basically a revision of a revision, but it's also in modern English and is used a lot more in academic circles than the NIV is. Consequently, there's also a lot more Bibles with that translation that have background info/cross referencing/etc built in.

The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha is possibly a good one. It all depends on what you're looking for, but that has a ton of footnotes, and I think intro material for each book.

u/SpaceYeti · 2 pointsr/exmormon

On 1 Corinithians 14:33b-36 specifically:

The best commentary I have found on this is in a book by Gordon Fee, but I doubt that will suit your immediate practical purposes. This article is the best I could find on short notice. Also, the wikipedia entry for 1 Corinithians talks about this issue.

Other sources I haven't read but have seen cited:

  • F. X. Cleary (1980), Women in the New Testament: St. Paul and the Early Pauline Tradition
  • G. W. Trompf (1980), On Attitudes Towards Women in Paul and Paulinist Literature: 1 Corinthians 11:3-26 and Its Context
  • E. H. Pagels (1974), Paul and Women: A Response to Recent Discussion

    More broadly, about Deutero-Pauline pseudepigrapha in general:

  • Wikipedia has a great entry on the authorship of the Pauline epistles. Additionally, the wikipedia articles specific to each specific epistle have sections that address their authenticity pretty well (Titus, for example).
  • has a number of sources.

    A great read that covers these issues as a whole is Marcus Borg's Reading the Bible Again for the First Time. Borg is a great writer in general, and it is through his writings that I first learned about the authorship issues in the New Testament. I have not yet read it, but I imagine this book covers the authorship issues in great detail.

    Finally, this is what I have in my NRSV translation of the bible:
u/peppermintHemlock · 2 pointsr/milliondollarextreme

I'm working through the Oxford annotated New Revised Standard Version. This version has tons of footnotes that explain the historical and literary context of the Bible. Each book has an introduction, too.

This translation is based on the KJV, but collated with ancient Hebrew and Greek editions of the Bible, so it's truer to the original sources in that respect.

Only negative to the translation is that they made generic third person pronouns (((gender neutral))) in the 1980s, but it's not too distracting.

u/ThomasMaxwell1 · 2 pointsr/bahai

One thing I'd like to add. When reading the gospels and acts, firstly keep in mind that Acts is the part two of the Gospel of Luke. I don't know if this is common knowledge or not, but I think it's important. Secondly, if you can, find an annotated Bible that is used for critical, historical study of the Bible. The annotations and commentary on these Bibles may or may not be written by Christians, but they do a good job of looking into the original, spiritual and/or metaphorical interpretations of the text by putting it into it's historical context and comparing it with common motifs and metaphors of the time. I personally like this Bible. It's the one we use for my Intro to the Bible class at University

u/Roxasnraziel · 2 pointsr/TrueAtheism

I prefer the NRSV, but the NIV is pretty good too. This is the bible that my college classes used. It's a very good study bible, since it has tons of translational and historical notes. The editor, Michael Coogan, also wrote the textbook for my Survey of the Old Testament class. He really knows his stuff and presents it well.

u/all-up-in-yo-dirt · 2 pointsr/DebateReligion

A little historical context goes so far.
If you ever need to get a present for a Christian loved one or someone interested in Religious Studies, get them one of these:
The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version

It really helps break the cycle of dogma and actually gets people thinking about things for themselves.

u/SkepticalOfTruth · 2 pointsr/atheism

I was raised without religion in the US. I was mostly clueless about Christianity. When I decided to fix that defect, this was the bible bought. It's ecumenical, even to the point of having Jewish scholars working on the "Hebrew bible".

u/mouka · 2 pointsr/Christianity

I also have to throw in my recommendation for the NRSV, specifically the Oxford Annotated. The notes are really informative and very secular (they don't try to come off sounding preachy or anything) A lot of other comments are saying it's rather expensive, but you can get a paperback version of it here for $20ish

u/ElderButts · 2 pointsr/latterdaysaints

I highly recommend the online Yale courses on the [Old](
) and New Testaments. They really frame the scriptures within their historical context and how they would have been interpreted by contemporary Jews and Christians. You can also look at stuff by David Bokovoy; he's an LDS Biblical scholar and has a lot of great things to say about the relationship between historical study of the bible and LDS theology.

As a side note, also grab yourself a copy of the Jewish Study Bible. It's a superb Jewish translation of the Tanakh (Old Testament), and has absolutely amazing commentary and annotations. It's my go-to guide for anything Old Testament, and for $30, you just can't say no. (In the same vein, you might also want to check out the Jewish Annotated New Testament).

u/iamthegodemperor · 2 pointsr/Judaism

Oh. Well in that case there's really a lot he could read.

  • Natan Slifkin might interest him. He's a rabbi & a biologist. He also has a blog called Rationalist Judaism, which I really like. (He's written a few books too)

  • Marc Shapiro is also very interesting. He is Orthodox, but approaches religious subjects academically and is widely admired. He might like his writing or his video lectures. This subreddit is actually going to discuss one of his books, "The Limits of Orthodox Theology" in a couple months.

  • Mordechai Kaplan, founder of the Reconstructionist movement, was fairly prolific. It's not science related and it's super-old, but I think "Judaism as a Civilization" is still relevant.

  • While I'm at it, I don't think it hurts to have something like How to Read the Jewish Bible or The Jewish Study Bible around.

  • A final note, if he's into biblical criticism, I'd recommend Christine Hayes of Yale University. She has a YouTube playlist of her classes. Her presentation is exceedingly accessible. She works very hard to discuss the Hebrew Bible respectfully.

    Note: I decided to put biblical criticism here because it's something Jewish atheists (whatever we mean by atheist) eventually have to deal with. If an atheist is really is attached to their Jewish identity, they will somehow have to explain why they care about a library of texts that their friends on message boards etc. will routinely mock.

    Good luck!
u/FatFingerHelperBot · 2 pointsr/exjw

It seems that your comment contains 1 or more links that are hard to tap for mobile users.
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u/sacrilegist · 2 pointsr/Christianity

That's the way I've read it explains when I was researching Biblical stuff in the past.

Lessie, I have bought this awesome thing called The Jewish Study Bible and according to it apparently part of the Babylonian Talmund addresses this here.

Right now I see:

>R. Levi said: Both Satan and Peninah had a pious purpose [in acting as adversaries].

That seems to back up that Satan's still part of the angelic court or at least doing God's work in some way.

Here's Peninah.

u/NotADialogist · 2 pointsr/Christianity

The NRSV is riddled with distortions and inaccuracies. You can find one egregious example - John 1:14 - here. The GNT is not really a proper translation, but rather closer to a paraphrase.

My preferences are:

New Testament

[Orthodox New Testament]
(, translated from the Greek and published by the Holy Apostles (Orthodox) Convent. They publish a 2-volume set with extensive patristic commentary as well.

Old Testament - Masoretic Text

The vast majority of English-language Bibles are do NOT translate the Old Testament from the original Hebrew, but rather from a text that was synthesized sometime in the Middle Ages by a sect of Jews - some say with anti-Christian bias - known as the Masoretes. Written Hebrew originally contained no vowels, so the Masoretes made special notations up and inserted the vowels they thought should appear. Still, though, it is the closest thing we probably have to the original Hebrew. If you want to consult the Masoretic Text, I would suggest you discard all Christian translations and get a copy of the Oxford Jewish Study Bible. The commentary is excellent and the editors are very frank about which verses contain Hebrew that is "uncertain", where the original meaning must be guessed at (there are thousands such verses).

Old Testament - Septuagint

The oldest complete manuscripts we have of the Old Testament are in Greek, not Hebrew - from a translation that dates back to the second century BC. Greek does not have the ambiguity that the earlier written Hebrew did, so there is not nearly the uncertainty of meanings that one finds in the Masoretic Text. Furthermore, the vast majority of New Testament translations match what is found in the Septuagint rather than the Masoretic Text, when the two disagree. Here I would recommend the Orthodox Study Bible for the Septuagint (but not necessarily for the New Testament, which is NKJV). The Septuagint also contains all of the deuterocanonical books of the Old Testament, which were included by Church councils that set the Bible canon.

As a back up to all of the above, I would recommend Cambridge King James Bible with Apocrypha (which I think may be out of print), followed by the Oxford Annotated RSV with Apocrypha

u/brontobyte · 2 pointsr/Christianity

I've heard good things about the Jewish Annotated New Testament if you're interested in Bible commentary from a Jewish perspective (or the Jewish Study Bible for the Tanakh/OT).

Additionally, Brad Young has written a number of more popular press style books. He's an evangelical professor who earned his Ph.D. at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, mentored by Jewish scholars, so he writes as a Christian with a thorough knowledge of Judaism. A good starting point would be Jesus the Jewish Theologian.

u/jaywalkker · 2 pointsr/atheism

This is not shopped.

Never more has it been more appropriate to quote the paraphrased, "What Would Jesus Buy?"

u/PhoenixRite · 2 pointsr/Catholicism is $7. If that's too tight, pm me your address and I'll have one sent to you.

u/philliplennon · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

I would recommend watching masses on a Catholic TV Network such as EWTN and Catholictv so that you understand what the liturgy of The Church is , then go to a service in person.

I would also get a copy of the NABRE (New American Bible Revised Edition) and a copy of The Catechism Of The Catholic Church.

You can read The Catechism online however

u/AviusQuovis · 2 pointsr/AcademicBiblical

As a formerly religious person who now only approaches the bible from an historical and literary perspective, I like the New American Bible a lot. It's a well-done modern English translation that still does a great job of bringing through the poetry of the original texts. It also has extensive historical and cultural footnotes to put the strange ancient customs in perspective. As a bonus, it's put out by a group of Catholics, so it includes the Apocrypha as well, though this means the books are in a slightly different order than protestant translations.

edit: see the reviews at the above linked Amazon page; they give a pretty good overview of the features!

u/echosa · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

The Catholic Bible is the New American Bible (NAB).

info here

amazon link

Edit: capitalization

u/devnull5475 · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

The answer is no (as many people have already said). However, the question is interesting.

  • Reading or hearing the whole Bible is a good goal. I read it through myself some years ago, and it was satisfying.
  • But, it's not really edifying. The Bible just can't be absorbed that way. It's a huge, sprawling collection of ancient texts. Too strange to absorb like a beach novel.
  • By the same token, hearing 80% or 90% (whatever %) read at Mass, out of order, isn't going to be a very effective Bible Study.
  • On the other hand, Mass isn't Bible Study. That's an idea we should guard against.
  • I realize that many people praise the new post-conciliar Lectionary because it includes a big percentage of Bible. My response is: What makes that a good thing? Is it because now Catholics know the Bible better? ~SNORT~ Is it because now Catholics understand Christianity better? ~SNORT~
  • In fact, the old Missale Romanum, with its Top 50 approach, probably did a much better job of teaching Catholics what they need to know. Kinda like the stained glass and the statues: The Basics. What You Need.
  • Anyway, Bible Study is good clean fun and I recommend it to anyone. FYI, NAB and NIB are very good resources.
u/Frankfusion · 2 pointsr/Christianity
u/seeing_the_light · 2 pointsr/Christianity

As far as I know, this is the newest English translation of the Septuagint.

u/outsider · 2 pointsr/Christianity

It's called the Orthodox Study Bible. For the NT it uses, or used anyways, the NKJV but the OT is a fresh translation. The Old Testament is translated from Greek sources (hence the LXX) which are around 1000 years older than the Hebraic texts most Old Testaments are translated from.

u/herman_the_vermin · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Orthodox Study Bible it has great commentary, with only like one spot I can remember where I was like "ehhh"

But it does explain the use of the Septuagint, and explain some theology, and a glossary to different commentary. It may be a little pricey, but I really enjoy the commentary and am on my 2nd read through. It also includes the lectionary, or rather what the Church has every one reading on the same day of through the year =) hope that helps!
Met. Kallistos Ware has a few books "The Orthodox Church" and "The Orthodox Way" which are good primers of theology, life in the church, and differences between East and West

u/holaguapisimos · 2 pointsr/NoFapChristians

Orthodox Study bible includes teachings from the church father's in the footnotes and explains the significance behind many biblical events (in particular does a great job of explaining and connecting OT and NT) .
Also has exactly what your looking for before each book explains author and context of the book.

u/rommelsjackson · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

I like this one and this one and find that comparing the footnotes in the two as well as the differences between the text makes for a pretty enjoyable experience.

u/thephotoman · 2 pointsr/Christianity

I am a consensus reader across text traditions. Therefore, one Bible doesn't cut it for me.

  • My own Church publishes the Orthodox Study Bible ($50), but Amazon has it for cheaper. What's unique about it is that it is a mostly Septuagint translation. The psalms follow our numbering instead of Vulgate numbering (and you get Psalm 151).
  • I would recommend a more purely Vulgate translation--New Jerusalem ($30, typically available from Catholic bookstores, as it is their translation) is actually pretty solid in that regard.
  • And then, I'd recommend something out of the Masoretic Text tradition: This one, specifically. While I have problems with the NRSV (and its psalter in particular), this particular publication of it is quite fair. The price has come down since I bought my copy, too.
  • Get yourself a King James (not NKJV, just KJV) for the purposes of literary study. There are places that distribute them for free. Ask at church. (This is perhaps the best Bible for your phone or e-reader: it can be had in digital format for less than $1.)
  • A paraphrase can be helpful when you need a fresh look at the Scriptures, or if you're new to them. My mom really liked The Message (depending on the publication, it runs in the $15-$30 range) as a paraphrase, but I'll be frank: I've not used paraphrases for my own purposes. I tend to be good with written languages.

    If you're really apathetic about which version you get, as long as you get a Bible, ask at church. They will have Bibles for the asking.

    No, there are no referrer tags in my Amazon links. I do not do that.
u/remembertosmilebot · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Did you know Amazon will donate a portion of every purchase if you shop by going to instead? Over $50,000,000 has been raised for charity - all you need to do is change the URL!

Here are your smile-ified links:


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u/OnceAndFutureMustang · 2 pointsr/Christianity

The only Bible to have all the books Orthodox Christians generally consider Scripture is the Orthodox Study Bible, unless you're Georgian Orthodox, in which case it is missing 4 Maccabees.

But the Prayer of Manasseh isn't a separate book in Orthodox Bibles - it's appended right at the end of 2 Chronicles (after chapter 36).

Here's what I find ironic: there is no Georgian Orthodox Church in Georgia (state), not even in Atlanta. Wrong Georgia I know but it's weird to say "There's no Georgian Church in Georgia."

u/JavidanOfTheWest · 2 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

> The OSB's Old Testament is either based on the NKJV text with corrections from the Septuagint or a fresh translation from the Septuagint, depending on who you ask or perhaps on which book.

Every septuagint I've seen uses the combination of 167, 969, 188, 600, and I'm actually looking for a Septuagint that has an other combination. Many Biblical names translate to something that defines their life. Methuselah translates to the idea that the flood will come when he dies. In the Masoretic Text, Methuselah dies the exact year of the flood. The problem with the numbers of every Septuagint I've come across so far is that Methuselah doesn't just not die in the year of the flood, but he actually lives 14 years past the flood even though he wasn't on the Ark and should have drowned, which makes me believe that it was a translation error or a sign of from God that the septuagint has been corrupted.

> The numbers there are: 187, 969, 188, 600.

> I suspect they might have missed updating the first one (187), as the Septuagint says 167.

I've never seen the combination of numbers that you mentioned, and that makes me very curious. I don't think they missed it if that is true, because it means that Methuselah dies 6 years before the flood instead of surviving it. I read that the Eastern Bibles rely on different manuscripts than the West; that was the reason I started this discussion.

Is this the Orthodox Study Bible that you use?

u/planeray · 2 pointsr/exmormon

Not my bag really, but Alain de Botton has published a book which sounds like it might be right up your alley - Religion for Atheists.

The other option that comes to mind is AC Grayling's The Good Book. (In my opinion, a little better)

Hope they help!

u/joedbag · 2 pointsr/atheism

check out The Good Book: A Humanist Bible. You might also try taking some introductory physics courses. I personally felt rather spiritual as I was learning the extent of the profound vastness of the universe.

u/William_1 · 2 pointsr/atheism

I haven't read either of these, but they seem to be the kind of thing you're looking for.

The Little Book of Atheist Spirituality by Andre Comte-Sponville

The Good Book by A. C. Grayling

u/VividLotus · 2 pointsr/DebateReligion

Obviously the first place to start with any religion is with its sacred text(s). For a good and (IMO) unbiased translation, try the JPS Tanakh.

One of my main specific positions is the fact that the extreme misogyny present within many denominations of Judaism is a relatively recent development. We are fortunate to know a ton about the early days of the Jewish religion, and of pre-Jewish religion in that area of the world. I wish more people would read books such as Sarah the Priestess to know more about this fact.

u/peonymoss · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

1- Bible: Any Bible with the word "Catholic" on the front (and without words like "Story", "Picture", "For Little Ones", etc) will suit your purposes. Your best bet is either the NRSV-CE or the New American Bible. Beyond that, it's completely up to you - different editions have different features. Just go to a Catholic bookstore and see which one you like best. This blog has some information on the different editions.

For the NRSV-CE, take a look at the Ignatius Bible

For New American, take a look at a St Joseph edition. I've also heard a recommendation for the Fireside editions.

Either one of those might fit the bill for "quintessential"

2 - For learning the prayers of the Mass, get a St Joseph Sunday Missal. Any edition will have the basic prayers. If you get the inexpensive paperback "2015" book, it will have the prayers of the Mass, but the Bible readings won't pick up until the new Church year starts in late November.

For learning more about the whys and wherefores of the Mass, the Catechism has a good start on this information. You might also like to check out Scott Hahn's The Lamb's Supper

3- printed Catechism - Get this one. If it looks intimidating, get one of its little sisters, the Compendium or even the YouCat

4 - Philosophy - The Catechism itself will have references. I like Theology and Sanity by Frank Sheed

Hope this is helpful! Welcome aboard!

u/mamismile · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

Ok, thanks. So something like [this](Catholic Bible: Revised Standard Version [or this](Revised Standard Version Catholic Bible: Compact Edition ?

Theres also [this](Catholic Bible: New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) Anglicised edition with the Grail Psalms (Bible Nrsv) . Whats the difference between NRSV and RSV?

Sorry if I'm being a pest with all these questions.

u/hobojoe9127 · 2 pointsr/OrthodoxChristianity

The Ancient Commentary on Scripture Series (published by InterVarsity) has in-depth patristic commentary on individual books of the Bible. It goes verse-by-verse, so it sounds like what you're looking for. If you want patristic/medieval commentary for free, this site is quite good: .

As for Bible translations, Fr. Thomas Hopko once recommended the RSV (plus the apocrypha) for balancing readability and literalness. I myself like the KJV, but the RSV is quite good: Ignatius press publishes a good edition.

Fr. Laurent Cleenewerck, an OCA (?) priest, is working on translating the Bible from the official Greek of the Orthodox Church. He has only finished the New Testament. But you can pair it with Lancelot Brenton's (old) translation of the Septuagint.

For what its worth, Richard Hays has recently published a book explaining figural exegesis (the method for interpreting the bible that the Fathers use), called [Reading Backward] (

u/LeonceDeByzance · 2 pointsr/Christianity

This is rather popular. You can also just read it at Bible Gateway.

u/X019 · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Get a study Bible. The bottom third of the page is explanations of the text above and it gives you a lot of background information on the book before you read it. I have the ESV study Bible. It's pretty sweet.

u/lexnaturalis · 2 pointsr/Christianity

A lot depends upon the resources that you have at your disposal. If you don't have any physical resources (books, commentaries, etc) then you can find most of what you need online. So let's start with resources and then go on to techniques. I'm going to assume that you don't know things, so please don't be offended if I explain something that you already know.

There's a great program available for PC called e-Sword and it allows you to have access to a ton of different Bible translations, commentaries, word studies, and other resources all for free. You also have the option of purchasing additional study material from within the program, but I've found that the free options are quite extensive.

I highly recommend buying at least one study Bible if you don't already have one. The one that I currently use is the ESV Study Bible. There's a Kindle version if you don't want a physical copy, but I prefer a physical copy.

I used to have a hard-copy concordance, but I actually got rid of it because I found myself using electronic versions more. If you don't already know, a concordance is just a giant index. It lets you look up a word (baptism, salvation, propitiation, whatever...) and it gives you a list of all the verses in the Bible that use that word. It can be very useful if you're doing a word study (more on that later). You can find them online or download them (like e-Sword or any other similar tool), so a physical copy isn't necessary.

Once you have those, you're ready to start. So now what?

Well, there are several different ways to study the Bible. If you don't already have a copy, I highly recommend Rick Warren's Bible Study Methods. Regardless of what you think about Rick Warren, that book is a very practical hands-on discussion of different methods of studying the Bible. If memory serves, he covers most (if not all) of the methods I'll talk about.

Now, onward!

  • Word study - This is basically taking a word and seeing how it's used in the Bible. Suppose you're studying baptism. You get a concordance (as discussed above) and look up "Baptism" and it'll give you a giant list of verses. Then you'll probably want "Baptize", "Baptizing", etc. Take all of the verses and start going. If you want to take it a step further, start to look at the underlying Greek/Hebrew words. That's where tools like e-Sword come in handy. You can find a Bible that lets you click the English word and it'll tell you the Greek word. So then you can search the Bible for all other times that the same Greek word is used. That can be useful because the same Greek word can be translated several different ways.
  • Personal Application - This is a quasi-study method. It's basically what the Life Journal uses. You do a series of readings and, using the SOAP acronym, find personal application. I say quasi-study because you're not really using tools to "study", per se. It's extremely useful, though, because if you're journaling every day you'll start to see themes emerge. That's where the study comes from. You can see how God has been guiding you and how God is speaking. At any rate, SOAP stands for Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer. So you find a scripture and write about it (i.e. provide context, what it's saying, etc) and then how you can personally apply it to your life (not "I believe it means X" but "I ought to do X as a result of this") and then a prayer (obviously related to the scripture/application). It's also nice because you end up reading a lot of Scripture and the Bible is its own best commentary.
  • Book study - This is where you read an entire book and then study that book. Let's choose Ephesians. You read the entire book in one sitting. You then outline the book. It's an epistle (fancy word for letter) so who wrote it? Who was it written to? What are the themes? After you do that, then you read it again and start to pull out verses/passages that apply directly to your life. If you have access to commentaries/tools then you'd also use them to read about the history of Ephesus, the context of the letter, and other background information.
  • Theme study - This requires a bit more work because you need access to a lot of tools. You'll be studying something like "reconciliation" or "salvation" and then doing A LOT of reading. Unless you have the entire Bible memorized you'll need to find tools that will give you passages to read based upon that theme. A lot of study Bibles will have a theme index that will help you. At this point you'll also find commentaries useful because they'll frequently reference other passages and then you'll find yourself bouncing all over the Bible. Taking good notes is required for this, because otherwise you can forgot where you were or why you ended up in Ecclesiastes.

    There are other methods, of course, but that should give you a good start. Hopefully this is helpful.
u/WalkingHumble · 2 pointsr/Christianity

I carry Crossway's ESV study bible around on my Kindle and the YouTrack Bible app on my phone.

My main physical bible is a leather bound copy of the New Oxford Annotated Bible (NRSV study bible). I also have The Source New Testament which is a secular translation.

u/_RennuR_ · 2 pointsr/Bible

Agreed I 100% reccommend the ESV

This Study Bible is absolutely amazing for such a great price! It has so much study content to better understand the bible, and is great for people new to english as well

However KJV and NIV are prefectly fine, KJV is quite hard to understand, because it uses much older slang I guess is the word. NIV is great as well, I just find ESV more useful. I do see many teenagers and grade schoolers utilizing NIV as it is found in bibles like the message and a popular teenage bible that I forget the name of.

In conclusion I reccomend ESV :)

u/KKori · 2 pointsr/Christianity

The ESV study bible is a great one

u/RoboNinjaPirate · 2 pointsr/Christianity
u/dianthe · 2 pointsr/Christianity

I would highly recommend the ESV Study Bible, it's a pretty big Bible so not exactly a pocket version but it is packed full of great information to help in your Bible study!

u/SonOfShem · 2 pointsr/Christianity

I apologize in advance if this seems preachy or me trying to influence you, that's not my intention. I just want to help you understand what Christianity really is. There's lots of confusion.


First, you don't have to be baptized to get saved, or go to heaven (Jesus told one of the criminals on the cross that "today you will be with me in paradise.", and he didn't get baptized). Baptism is a demonstration of your faith, but not a prerequisite to salvation.

Second, be careful any time you start adding/removing parts of the Bible, that you aren't doing so just because you don't like it. Because if that's the case, you will end up worshiping a god of your own creation, rather than the God of all Creation. (not saying that there are no transcription/translation errors in the Bible, but just be careful, and make sure you have substantial evidence [not just the opinions of random guys on the internet] supporting your decision).


But to address your worry about not being a "true Christian" for a while: Christianity is not about following rules, going to church, or trying to do good. These are all byproducts of Christianity, but if you try to just go after these, you WILL fail (1). Being a Christian is just about making a decision that you will give the creator of the universe complete and total control of your life (2).

The benefits of this, is that when we seek after God (try to get to know him better through prayer and reading the Bible), all those things people think are Christianity will start to show up in your life. You don't have to stop drinking, but you'll want to at some point once you have spent time with God.


And as far as finding a denomination, I'd suggest a careful, methodical approach: be incredibly suspicious of anything the pastor says, and do your own research. Pastor says healing is not for today? Go up to him after service and ask him (politely) where you can find more reading about how he came to that opinion. Pastor says healing is for today, but not for everyone? Same thing. Pastor says healing is for today, but and is for everyone? Ditto.

Combine that with constant prayer asking God to show you the right church for you, and you should find the right one in God's time. (I personally had to do this, since I grew up non-denominational, and then moved out of state to a small-ish city for work, and had to find a new church to go to). You may not find a church you 100% agree with, but before leaving after a small disagreement, ask yourself how important your disagreement is. Is the pastor saying Jesus wasn't actually the Christ? Probably time to find a new church (is that even a church at that point?). Does the pastor say God's favorite color is red? Maybe not a big deal.

Another thing to look at is the results of the ministry. (3) If the church is changing peoples lives for the better, then it's probably a good church (maybe not your church, but a good church none the less).

Make sure you take time observing any church you go to though. You can't tell how good or bad a car is in a glance. Sure you can notice if something's really bad, but some problems don't show up unless you take your time to really examine the car, and/or give them time to exasperate.


Bottom line is, think analytically about scripture, compare that to what's being preached, and judge (examine) the ministry by the effects they have on those around them.


P.S. Strong's Concordance, and a good study Bible (4) are essential tools to study and understand the original text, to check for translation errors. I prefer physical copies, but you can find Strong's and plenty of free study bibles here. The Strong's is like a Dictionary for Greek and Hebrew words, so if aren't sure of the meaning of a word, you can look it up there. Study Bibles are great resources for looking up if a verse or group of verses mean what you think they mean (obviously this one is more subject to the author's opinion).



(1) "all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God", Rom 3:23. The Greek word translated sin means continuous, habitual, intentional disobedience to God.

(2) The Greek word translated "Lord" in Romans 10:9 is the same word used to describe slave-masters. So we should consider God in this way. We submit our lives to him, not on a case-by-case basis, but overall, in every area. Note that this does not become a reality immediately, but is instead a continuous process of change.

(3) "You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. [...] A good tree produces good fruit, and a bad tree produces bad fruit." Matt 7:16-17.

(4) the link is to my favorite (and a theologically neutral) study bible. It puts things into context, giving you insight into the culture of the time, and scholar's notes on events and their significance. Obviously remember that the study texts are the opinions of a man, or group of men, and are not infallible.

u/cmanthony · 2 pointsr/Christianity

It depends on how you want to read it. Most (if not all) Christians read the old testament through the lens of Jesus, so it may be beneficial to read the new testament first. On the other hand Christianity comes out of Jewish tradition so it would also be good to read O.T. first.

Some people find bible study plans where you read a book of the O.T. then switch to a book of the N.T.

Any way you choose, I suggest getting a study bible. They are great for giving cultural context and background to what you are reading. Try the ESV (English Standard Version) Study bible.

u/mhumpher · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

Mark Shea's Making Sense of Scripture was a good start for me. Also a good study Bible with commentary is helpful.

u/tom-dickson · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

There are many. The Haydock Bible and the Didache Bible are good, and the Ignatius Study Bible is amazing.

And if you've not heard of Aquinas's commentaries and the Catena Aurea you're in for a treat. You can find copies online on the right hand side.

u/OcioliMicca · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

My favorites Scripture Scholars are:

  1. Brant Pitre
  2. Scott Hahn
  3. John Bergsma


    They all have Bible Studies in specific topics (Eucharist, Priesthood, Covenants, specific Books) or more general. For Old Testament, I'd check out Brant Pitre and John Bergsma's somewhat recently released A Catholic Introduction to the Bible: The Old Testament. They have a New Testament one coming, but not sure on the date. But you do have Scott Hahn's Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament to cover your bases there! You can also look into Navarre Study Bibles, it's best to get them used on sites like Ebay or Amazon as they're pricey but worth it in commentary. Brant Pitre and John Bergsma has a lot of their work available at Catholic Productions. Scott Hahn has the St. Paul Center, which even has some online study course available free like The Lamb's Supper: The Bible and the Mass.
u/PetiePal · 2 pointsr/Catholicism
  • The YouVersion Bible App. (
    I used to use Glo but it kinda sucks and they didn't update or keep up with new features. I can bookmark/highlight passages, create quotes and media, read and participate with my wife and friends in Bible plans not just readings but media built in. It's great and 100% free.

  • I own a St. Joseph's New American Edition of the Bible which I really like
  • I also own a St. Ignatius Catholic Study Bible which is amazing

u/mamboguy2012 · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

Its an NAB Bible, comes with a bookmark and is pretty small, so it's convenient to carry around. Text is small (I don't mind small text, so depends on how you feel) but all the standard footnotes are pushed to the end of the chapters, making reading easier because they aren't distracting. Also has prayers, the rosary mysteries (with relevant readings), stations of the cross, and the daily readings calendar. No maps or essays though.

I also have a bunch of the Ignatius Study Bible books (the single book versions like this and those I really like as well. If anyone else has the Ignatius New Testament Bible ( and could confirm its all those wrapped up, I'd definitely get that too. New Testament only though

u/RunForWord · 2 pointsr/Catholicism

Nice. I use this because I like the extensive footnotes. I hope they plan on doing the Old Testament.

u/lalijosh · 2 pointsr/Christianity

Like other's have suggested, a study bible would be good. I recommend this one for the New Testament:

Also, I recommend the following free bible study programs:

St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology: Online Bible Study Courses

St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology: Audio Courses

u/1-800-INTERNET · 2 pointsr/funny
u/c3rbutt · 2 pointsr/Reformed

It's not free, but the best audio Bible is the one read by James Earl Jones, of course:

u/Exen · 2 pointsr/atheism

Definitely go ESV. The ESV has a nice readability while also being very accurate. I've checked the Greek several times (went to school for Theology/Greek), and I've so often been pleased with the results.

My recommendation for something fun/different has to go to Lattimore's translation of the NT.

u/Righteous_Dude · 2 pointsr/AskAChristian

You could also choose one of the free ESV versions in Kindle format:

u/a_p_carter_year_b · 1 pointr/Christianity

I have gotten a lot out of this kind of information from the HarperCollins Study Bible. If you follow its footnotes throughout Esther, for example, the editors constantly point out to you why the story probably isn't an actual historical account. The footnotes in Genesis explain all the different text sources (Priestly, Yahwist, Elohist). I haven't perused Exodus yet, but I'd put my money on a good honest historical contextualization.

This is the book I'm talking about. I can't recommend it highly enough.

u/dandylion84 · 1 pointr/Christianity

Let's say you would like to buy a new bible. Would you go with the NOAB:NRSV or the Harper Collins Study Bible and why?

u/Pastordan23 · 1 pointr/Christianity

I used this Bible for most of my seminary classes. I suppose I would recommend it, but it kind of depends on what type of study you're looking to do. Is this your own personal thing? For classes? Two others I would look at are The Harper Collins Study Bible and, for personal devotional use, Zondervan's NIV Study Bible.

u/samisbond · 1 pointr/AtheistBibleStudy

I recommend the Oxford Study Bible as a study bible. I use the The HarperCollins Study Bible but after using the OSB at the library I much prefer the former. The bid difference may be that HarperCollins uses the NRSV (Oxford uses the REB)--if I recall correctly the NRSV is the preferred translation for theologians.

u/nanabean · 1 pointr/exmormon
  • Re-read the Bible without the LDS-lens, as you said. Get a good translation: NASB, ESV, NRSV. Not the Deseret Book KJV. Get a Study Bible if you can; I've heard great things about the HarperCollins Study Bible. One of the biggest catalysts leading me out of the Church was translating the New Testament from the original Greek and taking some New Testament Criticism classes. There's so much to learn from the Bible that gets missed through the LDS-lens as you said, as well as through the evangelical Christian "Literal Word of God" lens.

  • I go to church on Sundays with my never-mormon fiance, who works as a church musician. It might not be our first choice if he wasn't being paid to be there, but the pastor is very knowledgeable and his sermons are very insightful and inclusive. No fire-and-brimstone, no persecution complex, no berrating sinners. And the church is completely financially transparent, and raises a lot of money for charity. FH and I can go home and discuss what we liked or didn't like about the message and end up getting a lot out of the service.

  • On Wednesdays I'll sometimes go to student ministry worship service on campus that has some really incredible music. It's a very spiritual, meditative experience that helps break up the week.

  • As a religion that is centered on the Abrahamic God and Jesus's atonement, yes, the LDS Church is technically Christian. But in attending several mainline Christian services, I've discovered that the LDS Church is lacking a lot of the tradition and complexity of Christianity.

  • There is a bit of a cultural shock transitioning from LDS doctrine culture to mainline Christianity, which will vary in nature from church to church.
u/themochen · 1 pointr/exjw

I bought three translations, two in English:

The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha (NRSV) (I bought the 4th ed, but I linked the 5th ed)

The Jewish Study Bible, 2nd ed. (NJPS)

Then I have two different editions of the Masoretic text, based on the Leningrad Codex.

Then I have The Kingdom Interlinear, which despite being published by the Watchtower is kept together with the non-WT Bibles due to it containing the Greek text.

These I will probably keep for a long time, as the Bible is historically a very important work, unless they are replaced with better alternatives.

Then I keep a small reference library of WT stuff, which includes a few versions of NWT, the Reasoning book, Insight, Daniel's Prophecy, etc. All of it I got from WT while PIMI/PIMO, which means that no JW can question the authenticity of the information in it.

When I want to know what the Bible says, I look it up in my three non-WT Bibles and compare them, and tentatively accept whatever they all agree on while remaining agnostic about whatever they don't agree on.

I am also in the process of reading through the Bible, to learn what it says without bias.

u/Derbedeu · 1 pointr/atheism

>Well, have you actually read War and Peace in Russian? Then your argument just fell fell apart. The nuance in good literature can have vastly different meanings, depending on the reader.

Whether someone reads it in English or Russian, the story is the same and so are the themes. They don't change just because the language is different.

>Let’s review a few reasons why that’s ridiculous! At least 194 Jews and people of half- or three-quarters-Jewish ancestry have been awarded the Nobel Prize,1 accounting for 22% of all individual recipients worldwide between 1901 and 2015.

How many grew up in a shtetl? How many were religious? Why don't you have any Jewish Nobel Prize winners coming out of the pale of settlement?

Religion literally has nothing to do with intelligence, unless it is to retard it. You also seem to have an obsession with race/ethnicity, two concepts that literally don't make any sense biologically. We're all homo sapiens sapiens As Richard Feynman put it, "To select, for approbation the peculiar elements that come from some supposedly Jewish heredity is to open the door to all kinds of nonsense on racial theory."

>Shabbat, a day of rest – origin – yes, the Jews.


People today get the weekend off (i.e. two days off), weekend being a British concept. Even that has been found to be insufficient though, as 50 hour work weeks are deemed to be too much by many psychologists and sociologists and lead to a decrease in productivity.

But what does that have to do with anything though? Also, where do you see a culture that hasn't had some sort of impact one way or another? All cultures do, because that's how cultures work, they're effusive.

>Washing hands to avoid disease – a practice started a long, long time ago.

The Celts practiced the same thing, using soap. Again though, what does hygiene have to do with anything? Especially as hygiene practices varied worldwide back then.

>Biblehub is a Christian site, btw.

With translations from numerous publications that are translated by numerous philologists in turn. Besides, the other two aren't and lo and behold, their translations are the same.

>And to liken Judaism to a cult? I have no problem with what you think about Scientology and the Mormons, but you have some huge problem in your cerebral connections to associate Judaism with a cult.

How is Judaism NOT a cult? It literally started off as a cult of Yahweh. Here are some books and papers you can read on the matter:

This isn't even mentioning that Judaism today exhibits many cult characteristics. There are elitist tendencies (chosen ones); proscribed and identifiable clothing; barring of intermarriages with those outside of the group; kashrut laws encouraging members to only mingle with other in-group members; an elite class charged with authority and leadership within the group (rabbis); demands of immoral actions such as genital mutilation; a closed social system that frowns upon any deviation; end-time revelation; concept of mesirah; etc.

Judaism is a cult just as every other religion is.

>Oh, by the way, don’t bother to reply, I tire of your weak,
wandering responses,


u/teawar · 1 pointr/books

If you have access to an academic library and are interested in the opinions of the Church Fathers of the 1st millenium, I highly recommend the Ancient Christian Commentary On Scripture series. If you're looking for something less overwhelming, I would go with the New Oxford Annotated Bible, which is very commonly used in academic courses.

u/yibanghwa · 1 pointr/Christianity

The New Testament manuscript tradition the KJV was based off of is from the same manuscript tradition that Eastern Orthodox New Testaments have been based off of, which is, as far as I've seen, one of the big reasons why the Eastern Orthodox prefer the KJV and the NKJV for English translations.

It's just easy to fall into the trap of dismissing the KJV altogether because of the weird way some modern North American Protestants worship the translation, along with hearing that the KJV supposedly is a bad translation (it's not, nor are its manuscripts necessarily worse). The way KJV-onlyists regard it is obviously absurd, but it doesn't change the fact that the KJV is a solid and beautiful translation that does deserve our continuing respect.

That being said, the KJV is a very archaic translation for our times, and it's not something that anyone should recommend for an initial read or for usage as a "main" bible. If you want to read a respectable translation that is used by both the Catholics and the Orthodox, then I would recommend to you the [NOAB RSV] ( or the RSV-CE. The RSV-2CE is also an option, and I have a personal copy myself, but it has some dodgy typesetting errors among other things, and I wouldn't wholly recommend it as it is now. I would recommend the RSV-CE over the RSV-2CE. I currently use the NOAB RSV as my main Bible. The NOAB RSV includes the Eastern Deuterocanonical texts, if you are interested in them. The only main flaw of the NOAB RSV for me is that it omits certain passages that are regarded by modern scholars as being late additions into the text, such as the story of the woman caught in adultery in John, which I think was a mistake by the RSV editors. It should have been kept in with footnotes noting its contested nature.

u/HannasAnarion · 1 pointr/Christianity

Pick up a decent study bible, I've seen a couple that have pretty detailed discussions of what's going on in each book. It's been a while, and my library is on the other side of the country, but I recall this one being good.

u/internetiseverywhere · 1 pointr/OrthodoxChristianity

Fr. Hopko specifically mentions the The New Oxford Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha

I use this + the Orthodox Study Bible, as well as some commentaries such as Fr. Lawrence Farley's. I also use (critically) Tyndale commentaries, but this is mostly because they are accessible to me. OH, and NT Wright's New Testament for Everyone

I really, REALLY want the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture but I do not have easy access to this series and it is quite expensive.

u/palaeologos · 1 pointr/Christianity
u/PartTimeSarah · 1 pointr/Christianity

I'm a big fan of the New Oxford Annotated NRSV Study Bible. It's the Bible I had to get when doing my Bachelor's in Religion, and now I use it for personal study. Here's a link to the one I have (sorry it's the U.K. Amazon link, but that's where I am)

u/klcams144 · 1 pointr/Christianity

If you're academically inclined (e.g., footnotes are right up your alley), try the New Oxford Annotated Bible (NRSV with a lot of explanatory text/background):

u/r271answers · 1 pointr/religion

By the way you may also like the NRSV Oxford Annotated Study Bible it's pretty much the standard Bible used in academia and contains tons of information about translation choices, maps, information about cultural references, etc. I study religion at a secular state run university and this is the standard Bible that all the religion professors recommend.

You might also find The Book of Moses from The Pearl of Great Price an interesting read if you are into creation story stuff. It's from the Mormon canon:

My favorite Christianity-related creation story though is On the Origin of the World

u/ThatAngloCatholic · 1 pointr/Bible

For personal use: NRSV (NRSV Catholic Edition

Or for personal study: New Oxford (The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha: New Revised Standard Version

Edit: Remember that translation is itself an act of interpretation.

u/LocalAmazonBot · 1 pointr/Christianity

Here are some links for the product in the above comment for different countries:

Amazon Smile Link: I like this one


This bot is currently in testing so let me know what you think by voting (or commenting). The thread for feature requests can be found here.

u/Zemrude · 1 pointr/Christianity

I've actually found The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha ( to be reasonably helpful in that manner. It's based on the New Revised Standard Version, which is certainly not a fresh translation from all original sources, but they footnote every time that different sources have possible alternate meanings, including Aramaic sources, Greek sources, and Hebrew sources, so you can compare for yourself.

u/GavinMcG · 1 pointr/Christianity

I second the NRSV, if only because it didn't intentionally try to satisfy conservative protestants by doing things like "updating" the RSV in reverting to "virgin" rather than keeping the (arguably known to be more accurate) "young woman" in Isaiah 7:14.

And I'd highly recommend the New Oxford Annotated Bible.

u/excel958 · 1 pointr/RadicalChristianity

The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha is the standard.

I also highly recommend the Jewish Annotated New Testament.

Edit: My bad I thought you were asking for study bible recommendations.

What is it you’re wanting? Are you wanting to study biblical criticism and history? Or is this for spiritual practice and fulfillment?

u/AgentSmithRadio · 1 pointr/Christianity

I think you're referring to the Apochrypha. These books have complicated and often dubious histories and aren't taken very seriously by nearly all denominations.

It is worth noting that the KJV originally did contain these books. In fact, the translations still exist. From my understanding, these books were frequently not included in commoner's bibles mostly to save on printing costs and because they were seen as non-essential. The tradition has passed on to this day. It wasn't a deliberate theological decision by those who worked on the KJV.

You can find versions of the Apochrypha in English in nearly every translation. You'll have to buy a Bible which specifically contains them however. Most Catholic Bibles contain these books but only some Protestant versions do. Check the description of the Bible you are purchasing in order to confirm.

Pick whichever translation you want. Here's a version I happened to find.

u/mashiku · 1 pointr/Bible

The Jewish Study Bible and NJPS and the New Oxford Bible with Apocrypha and NRSV have good reputation among scholars. I have seen them frequently recommended over at /r/academicbiblical, and I've heard they are used at universities and seminaries. (E.g. the Open Yale Bible courses use them.)

u/mfkswisher · 1 pointr/latterdaysaints

Congrats on your mission call, and double congrats on going to Central America.

As far as understanding and following the New Testament, you really can't do better than getting a good study bible. In addition to the text of the scripture, you also get scholarly essays that introduce each book, as well as notes running parallel to the text that help clarify and contextualize the tricky parts, written by academics from a variety of faiths. Either of the following two are great:

The New Oxford Annotated Bible

The HarperCollins Study Bible

You might also check out the next book, which is a standard text in divinity schools.

The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings

I don't know how much any of these are going to help you in 87 days, but I respect your ambition in trying to tackle the scriptures in such a short span.

u/motchmaster · 1 pointr/atheism

If you're going with that angle, get The New Oxford Annotated Bible

u/yamamushi · 1 pointr/Bible

You can't go wrong with the Oxford Annotated Bible,

Personally I like the leather version, but it doesn't really matter:

u/trexinanf14 · 1 pointr/Christianity

I would absolutely agree on the NIV as a good general purpose bible, however there are some alternatives out there depending on what you are looking for. I would highly recommend either The Book of God by Walter Wangerin or The Message by Eugene Peterson, both of which are a re-imagining (read: they should not be used as a reference!) of the biblical stories, the former as a novel and the latter as a bible where the stories are told using language you or I would.

I also greatly support using a study bible, the good ones will give helpful context or reference to the stories you read, or you can just go all the way academic and grab a copy of the Oxford Annotated Bible (but from the sounds of it you wouldn't want that).

Although workingmouse, I would disagree that the KJV is the go-to bible these days for protestants, largely for the reasons you gave. Speaking of definitely not kosher, has anyone read the book Lamb? It's a pretty humorous read, but you really need to be ready to hold nothing sacred for a few hundred pages. =)

Good luck in your search OP!

u/redsparks2025 · 1 pointr/religion

For your Bible studies I suggest the following.

  1. The New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha

  2. Yale College free video lectures: Introduction to the Old Testament (Hebrew Bible).

  3. Yale College free video lectures: Introduction to the New Testament History and Literature.

  4. The Complete Gospels
u/rainbowcannon · 1 pointr/TrueAtheism

I would recommend the New Oxford Annotated Bible (

It has copious footnotes about what different versions say and possible interpretations of the text. It also has fantastic essays on translations, exegesis (interpretations) and original texts as well as maps of Ancient Israel and it's surroundings. I don't think it's worth reading the bible without a study edition. It uses the NRSV (New Revised Standard Version) translation which I feel is a nice balance between accuracy and readability. Many universities use this as the textbook.

The King James Version (KVJ) is probably the most famous english translation and the best written. It's also somewhat less accurate then modern versions and harder to read (think Shakespeare). I also don't know of a non religious KJV study bible. Even if you choose a different bible, you should consider reading Genesis and Exodus to get a sample of the language. Another major reason to read to bible is to get a greater appreciation of literature because of all the biblical references (think Dante, Shakespeare, Faulkner, etc.) If this is your biggest reason for reading the bible then you should read the KVJ.

In America, the most popular bible is the NIV (New International Version) which was written for people with an elementary school vocabulary and comprehension and it shows. I don't recommend this version.

You can find sample texts of all of these versions and more online and you should compare them yourself. Try the beginning of Genesis for a start.

tl:dr KJV for English Majors, New Oxford Annotated Bible otherwise.

u/MapleLeafEagle · 1 pointr/DebateReligion

Well for starters, it should be obvious to anyone who reads the first two chapters of Genesis. Genesis 1 and 2 present contradictory creation accounts. The only way to reconcile them is to assume at least one (or both) were not meant literally.

I'd check out the New Oxford Annotated Bible as I understand that is the "go to" in secular circles. I'll see what I can dig up on JSTOR in the next couple days and send to you if you really want some in-depth textual analysis.

u/Influenz-A · 1 pointr/worldnews

I have studied this fine example quite a bit and I recommend that version for interesting historic context to the bible. We have studied a lot of different sources on this, don't go accusing me of cherry picking, obviously the bible is not a source we ignored, but it is not 100% trustworthy either. Again, there is no archeological or historical evidence for the exodus and no archeological evidence for the Israelites conquering Canaan.

u/bottleofink · 1 pointr/Christianity

NRSV with apocrypha is the best all around.

You may want to pick up a study bible to at least help explain some of the cultural things going on in the text. I like the New Oxford Annotated Bible (which uses the NRSV) for that.

Note, the Christian Old Testament includes the Torah, but if you want to study it from a Jewish perspective, a Jewish translation might be better. I quite like the nJPS for that. Though I do think the NRSV is very faithful to the Hebrew text.

I've heard M. A. Abdel Haleem's translation of the Quran is the way to go, but I don't have a lot of experience there.

u/Tetragramatron · 1 pointr/todayilearned

The NIV in general and the Zondervan study bible in particular skew towards a distinctly "evangelical" interpretation.

If you want a study bible that takes a more scholarly approach and let's the text speak for itself then I cannot recommend highly enough the New Oxford Study Bible with apocrypha. I got mine a few years ago and I absolutely love it.

u/MoreOfMe · 1 pointr/atheism

This is the version I have. The benefit to it is that it includes the Apocrypha, which is additional stories in the bible that most new versions leave out. It's some of the more out-there stories... one even involves a dragon. They're really interesting to read.

u/sabata00 · 1 pointr/ReformJews

JPS's Jewish Study Bible is a great choice.


u/Weemz · 1 pointr/AskAChristian

Others have stated that you shouldn't start with the OT, opting to go for the gospels/NT books instead. While that's fine, just know that much of what is in those books draws on or is pulling symbolism/reference from OT books.

If you would like an easier experience with the OT, I would highly recommend reading them in the Jewish Study Bible. It has fantastic commentary made up of scholars, rabbinic essays, archeological data, etc. It really brings the text to life in a way that is not possible with just a casual reading of the text.

u/saucemoney · 1 pointr/funny

Was really hoping this was a joke. According to Amazon it's not...

u/ThePoose · 1 pointr/news

whichever ones I want since it's all open to interpretation.

This is my specific bible though. Best one out there!

u/walksintoabar · 1 pointr/politics

Yeah, I thought the Nascar Bible took care of this demographic.

u/osfn8 · 1 pointr/NASCAR

NASCAR version of the bible?

u/MSGinSC · 1 pointr/news

Nope, y'all part of 'Murica now brother. You should receive your welcome package within 3 weeks, in it you will find the following. 1 one size fits all trucker cap with naked lady silhouette print, 1 Smith & Wesson model 29, 1 50 round box of .44 Magnum ammunition, 1 pair of Truck Nutz, 1 1.75L bottle of Jack Daniel's (Kinda weird how we don't do metric unless we're trying to get f'd up), 1 case of Budweiser, 1 Holy Bible: Stock Car Racing Edition yes it's actually a real thing, 1 cd copy of American Patriot by Lee Greenwood, 1 terrorist hunting permit bumper sticker, and 1 booklet of handy American phrases and slang. Welcome to the greatest country in the goddamned universe.

u/emprags · 1 pointr/Christianity

This version or bust. Just kidding. I mean, I do recommend that version, but there are ones that are good too.

Gospels are good. Luke/Acts, then the other 3 Gospels.

For OT, Genesis, Exodus, Job are good ones to start with.

All this is my opinion.

u/CoyoteGriffin · 1 pointr/Christianity

>so if there are versions with extra books, I'd like to know

Then your best bet may be a Catholic Tranlation such as the Jerusalem Bible or the New American Bible.

u/PhilthePenguin · 1 pointr/Christianity

You can try this one out.

u/edric_o · 1 pointr/OrthodoxChristianity

There are several Orthodox English translations, although only one that covers the entire Bible - this one:

Several other (arguably better) Orthodox translations also exist, but only covering parts of the Bible - usually the New Testament. Here is a good one for example:

u/SpecificTale · 1 pointr/Bible

Orthodox Study Bible.

"Apocrypha" is a Greek word that means something like "hidden". Early Greek Christians never referred to these books as "apocrypha", but rather as the "deuterocanon" (2nd canon).

The original KJV contained the deuterocanon, as did even the Geneva Bible. Cambridge publishes the complete KJV (i.e. without the deuterocanon taken out). Someone else has suggested the RSV, but you need to purchase one with the "Apocrypha" (Oxford publishes one).

u/infinityball · 1 pointr/mormon

The two best things:

  1. Read the NT with an excellent commentary. My favorite is the Orthodox Study Bible, and it will give you a much more traditional perspective on NT passages.
  2. Read The Apostolic Fathers. These are the writings of the earliest Christians right after the NT: so something like 70 CE - 150 CE. These are the people who would have known the apostles. It's fascinating what Christianity looks like from their perspective. (Hint: at least to my mind, not Mormonism.) What I see is a sort of proto-Orthodoxy or proto-Catholicism. And some of the letters are just lovely. (Some are strange.)

    I"m planning to read some other history book soon, happy to update when I decide on which ones.
u/socrates155 · 1 pointr/Christianity

Jesus established only one Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. If you're serious about getting saved, I'd recommend reading [this.] (

u/thechivster · 1 pointr/Christianity

I read both these side by side. The translations are similar and the commentaries complement each other. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Orthodox Study Bible with Ancient Christian Commentary:

Catholic Study Bible by Catholic Author and Apologist Scott Hahn:

u/ThreeEyedGoat · 1 pointr/OrthodoxChristianity

Here is some information about bible versions:




I recently bought a new bible myself, because I was unsure which would be the best version to use. However, I don't think anyone can go wrong by reading The Orthodox Study Bible

Having grown up in the faith, throughout Sunday School and other various learning opportunities, we never talked about the Apocrypha. It wasn't until later on in life (via a college classmate that asked me about it) that I found out about it.
Giziti says some good stuff. Although I haven't finished Tobit, what I have read is quite interesting!

I also believe that some of the traditions taught in church comes from the Apocrypha. Such as: When Christ descends into Hades, he raises up Adam and all the prophets from their graves. I chatted to one of my protestant friends and they never heard of this, I think it is because it is in the Apocrypha and they do not include that in their bibles.

u/blue_illusion · 1 pointr/ExChristianWomen

I don't have children yet, but I'm trying to anticipate these same situations you've shared. One book that I might use in place of a christian bible to teach morals and life lessons is The Good Book: A Humanist Bible.

u/1984stardust · 1 pointr/atheism
u/nowxisxforever · 1 pointr/MMFB

Yes, actually. A. C. Grayling wrote The Good Book, which is a 'humanist bible' and something I find very comforting. This site has some quotes from it. I recommend taking a look at Consolations, specifically, which is centered around grief/death. Lamentations is pretty cool too. It takes the form of the Bible but is secular.

Accept the mortality of ourselves and those we love, and see that to give life is to prepare to lose it, to love is to prepare to grieve, and yet: love, and give life, and be full of courage and honour, for this is our human lot, and we must make it as fine as our powers allow. Consolations 13:18-19

u/JoeFarmer · 1 pointr/Judaism

Thank you! Im looking for the nJPS and I am a little confused. Is nJPS a different publisher than JPS, or is it just JPS's new translation? Is this the one you're referencing?

u/JoanOfArk77 · 1 pointr/The_Donald

> If this was important this would be in the Bible

My point above is that it IS in the Bible.

Before Christ was born, we read in the Bible that Israel had a civil war.

In that war, Israel was divided into TWO nations.

The northern nation then, in the Bible, is called Israel.

This nation consisted of 10 northern tribes.

The Southern nation was then called Judah.. a completely different nation after the war and before Christ. All of this is actually in the Bible.

Then, also in the Bible we read that the Northern ten tribes were abducted by the Assyrians north of them. God also warns the lower two tribes that they will be abducted to Babylon for seventy years soon. Later we read about how Judah was taken captive, and then brought back after seventy years by King Cyrus, but, everyone pretends we never hear about the northern nation of Israel again.

Simply not true.

Jesus actually says he came for the LOST SHEEP of Israel.

Now, lets deal with that Talmud.

The Talmud is not the Jewish Bible.

Jesus was a Jew, as were the Apostles.

They lived in Judah.

Jesus is prophesied to be the "Lion of the Tribe of Judah"

You will never see any of them quoting from the Talmud, and there is good reason for that.

The Jewish Bible is called the Tanakh, and this, is identical to the Christian old Testament... only difference being the reversal of the order of two books in the Torah (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, and Numbers,in one, and in the other the order of the last two books is switched)

You WILL see the Tanakh being quoted by Jesus, and the Apostles, because these are what Christ called "the scriptures". They are still called the Scriptures today, as you can see here at Amazon: If you did not know this, don't feel bad. I did not either until I studied it. And most of my Jewish friends are quite surprised to find out that Christians are running around with their Jewish bible, word for word, in the Christian Old Testament. It looks like the truth of it is... all of us have had the truth hidden from us, by those in history who would benefit from it... Jews, and Christians alike.

Since I'm the scientist/lawyer... everything is about the evidence type, I happened to go digging. I hold NO judgement over anyone who has been misled about any of this, because I was also. It takes digging to get to the truth. Here is the Jewish bible today. Order one. I did. Look at it. It's evidence.

Here is where I am digging now, and the situation looks quite interesting, but have not made my mind up about it.

When the Jews in Judah, including Christ and the Apostles were running around in Israel, as we think of it today, they were actually reading from the Tanakh, AKA the Christian Old Testament, AKA the Septuagint that was canonized 200 years earlier, by submission to the great library of Alexandria.
So... what is the Talmud?

VERY BRIEFLY, because there is a lot to know about it, and I am not an expert,.

The Talmud, is a series of Jewish Commentaries on the Tanakh. So, calling the Talmud a Jewish Bible, is a lot like calling the Book of Enoch, or one of our Commentary books "The Bible"

After Christ, in 70 AD the temple was destroyed by the Romans, and the Jews could no longer abide by their religious rules in the Tanakh, because they had no temple to do the animal sacrifices.

This led to a necessary change in Jewish laws and customs, and the Commentaries that created those changes in addition to some oral histories became the Talmud.

But, if you go to a synagogue today, you will find the Torah standing in front of the altar, not the Talmud. And if you want to buy the Jewish Scriptures on Amazon, you have to order the Tanakh, not the Talmud.

The Talmud came much later in history. Here is more about the two versions that were created and when

Jews are not a waste of our time. Jewish people are our brothers. I am going to cut this here, and bring in a quote from the Bible itself when the Apostle Paul was asked if God had abandoned the Jews in favor of Christians. This is currently called "Replacement Theology" and I have studied it enough to know that it is flawed. Still, you can't afford to believe me, so, I am going to actually show you how the Apostle Paul answered this very question. Let the Bible interpret the Bible... as they say.

u/namer98 · 1 pointr/Christianity

My wife said she recommends this book for the most literal translation she can think of.

u/Numb3r_6 · 1 pointr/todayilearned

Ah, but according to my biblical studies professor at university, the english versions of the bible were translated from Greek and Latin. As I understand it, nobody in the world even knew enough old Hebrew to translate the old texts. Therefore, the bibles used in western culture are bad translations of Greek and Latin, and that there is a newer translation based on old Hebrew that reads a lot differently. I will try to find it.

Here it is for sale:

u/thehodapp · 1 pointr/Catholicism

Spiritual reading: Introduction to the Devout Life

  • this book is 500 years old and it's still an incredible spiritual guide. It's not complex theologically, but it's extraordinarily profound. St. Francis de Sales, pray for us!

    Quality Catholic translation of the Bible: RSV
  • Ignatius version is pretty. I personally own and really enjoy this version. However they have only the New Testament study Bible if you want annotations.
u/Cred01nUnumDeum · 1 pointr/Catholicism

I have this bible, and I like it a lot. Mine is hard cover.

If you want a good bible that's got explanations in it (good if you've never read the bible), try this one.

u/mafupoo · 1 pointr/Christianity

A good segway into commentaries that I've been recommended is the ESV Study Bible.

Although I've always been wary of it because if it's more contemporary translation, so far I've heard nothing but praise. It contains lots of resources like maps, timelines, explanations, etc. I'm still waiting for the price to drop before grabbing one!

u/Sheffield178 · 1 pointr/Catacombs

I use this ESV Study Bible and I love it. It has provided really great commentary and insight during my studying.

u/roonerspize · 1 pointr/Bible

to help get more information, i suggest reading the notes in a study bible that correspond with your reading (ESV Study Bible) or get a book like "Talk Thru the Bible" by Wilkinson & Boa.

These will help with understanding key concepts, date, setting, author, themes, purposes, and provide outlines and maps to really understand why certain books/passages are in the Bible and what they mean.

And, ask questions of trusted individuals about stuff that doesn't make sense.

u/1337Lulz · 1 pointr/books

The Bible is a very important book in human history. Even if you don't believe in it's religion, reading it can make you more aware and enlightened.

I wouldn't try to skip over parts, just read it from beginning to end. I would also recommend one of the modern translations, such as ESV (English Standard Version) instead KJV (King James Version), unless you like reading ole english. If you really want to get the most out of it, you might want to get a study bible. Something like this

u/MyLlamaIsSam · 1 pointr/Christianity

Awesome. There are several different study bibles out there (one of the first ESV ones, for example, was the Reformation Study Bible); the one I have in mind is just their study bible, no theme.

Edit: I'd say start with the Study Bible, and if you decide to camp in a book for a month or two, then go for a commentary. But first you'll want to read more of the Bible. I get as much if not more out of just a slow, slow walk through a book of the Bible (like, a verse a day sometimes) carefully connecting it to other parts of Scripture I'm aware of.

u/IntrovertIdentity · 1 pointr/Christianity

I cannot imagine that a publisher would intentionally omit chapters 1-13 of Isaiah just because…pocket size Bibles have been around for a long time, and they’ve been complete.

Based on the product description from Amazon, it reads like all the notes are present. To get the size of the book down, I’d expect smaller print and thinner pages.

u/notreallyhereforthis · 1 pointr/Christianity

This is an excellent idea! find a church community you like and join a bible study. This will provide both a loving, encouraging christian community and a place to ask questions, search, and seek answers.

But as that doesn't strictly answer your question, online there is biblestudytools, which provides many many commentaries. On paper, the ESV study bible provides some of the more thorough discussion of passages I think. If you want a bit more advanced there is the The IVP Introduction to the Bible.

u/arandorion · 1 pointr/Catholicism

I too have been asking these questions. You will find most if not all of them answered at Catholic Answers. For example, here is one of the answers regarding infant baptism. There is also an article regarding infant baptism in the early church.

Here is an article on why Catholics ask for intercession from the Saints.

They also have a great You Tube channel that will answer just about any question you have.

You may be interested in the Ignatius Study Bible New Testament. It contains an Index of Doctrines in the appendix. For any given doctrine, they provide Biblical references and commentary regarding that doctrine. That alone should make this a must read for Protestants. It uses the Revised Standard Version.

There are many great resources that can answer your questions. I started with a video series called What Catholics Really Believe. There's an unrelated book by the same name as well.

Any book by Scott Hahn may be of interest. He was an ordained Presbyterian minister before he became Catholic.

Send me a message if you want any more info.

Another good book is Born Fundamentalist, Born Again Catholic. It explains Catholic theology from the perspective of a fundamentalist Protestant convert.

Any book by Peter Kreeft would be good, but you may especially like his Handbook of Catholic Apologetics since it specifically answers the questions you are asking. Kreeft is a Catholic convert from Calvinism.

Bp. Barron provides a load of resources on his site Word on Fire. He has a You Tube channel as well.

There are many, many more resources, but this should get you started. I have been a Protestant all my life, but I've been studying Catholicism heavily for a few years. So far, all of my questions have been answered from resources available online.

u/skarface6 · 1 pointr/DebateAChristian

First off, their names- they're all Gospel of X, or, in the earliest versions, "Gospel according to X" (or at least Luke is).

Secondly, the early Christians unanimously ascribe these Gospels to the authors that they're traditionally known for. So, in other words, the people closest to the time of the writing of each Gospel say that the author is who tradition says it is.


u/ProtoApostoli · 1 pointr/Catholicism

Here at seminary we commonly use:

Great for study.

For more intense exegetical purposes I tend to use the Haydock commentary as a supplement to this bible. You can find Haydock's commentary free online.

Travel bible, I tend to use my phone; so I don't particularly have any recommendations.

u/mycourage · 1 pointr/Christianity
u/danbuter · 1 pointr/Bible

New Testament only right now. I think later this year or sometime next year, the whole Bible will be complete and published.

I've heard good things about this, but haven't gotten it, yet.

u/Whiskey_Savage · 1 pointr/Christianity

Most bible studies are for those with a basic understanding if the bible, it's hard to find a more advanced study that's not lead by a priest. I recently picked up this and it's the best resource I've found for bible study

u/OmegaPraetor · 1 pointr/Catholicism

Sorry for spamming you with questions but how is the Didache Bible different from this one?

u/sc0ttt · 1 pointr/atheism

Here you go - get Darth Vader to read it to you.

u/mphair · 1 pointr/geek

If you're pining for some JEJ, this exists.

I randomly saw it at Frys one day for 5 bucks. Regret not grabbing it.

u/blsimpson · 1 pointr/gaming
u/Reverend_Ickabod · 1 pointr/RotMG
u/IrishB_Cubed · 1 pointr/atheism

The one that makes me the most curious is the Minecraft Bible.

u/SquirrelJerky13 · 1 pointr/dankmemes
u/philclarke0 · 1 pointr/atheism
u/enthalpy3 · 1 pointr/UTSA

The Bible used by the US conference of Catholic Bishops is the New American Bible. You could probably borrow one from the library or a church, if they're nice they'll let you keep it. You can find it online as well LINK or if you have a kindle (not the same version but free).

u/Lovelyfleur86 · 0 pointsr/Christianity

Hmmm, there aren't many non devotional bible study books. I don't know if you know who Bart Ehrman is but he's one of the leading Biblical scholars so I'd check out some of his books. He also recommends reading the Gospels "horizantally" ie reading the same story in each gospel (the Crucifixion, the Nativity story) to compare the differences and similarities. I would also recommend getting a study Bible. I have the Harpercollins NRSV ( which is about half biblical text and half notes (historical context, translation notes, etc). I love it.

Good luck and I hope you are able to find a good study plan.

u/universl · 0 pointsr/Documentaries

>Archaeological record suggests nothing. People, in this case Archaeologists, study what's been buried in the ground and try to construct stories that explain what they've found.

So looking at clues in the ground is less trustworthy than a book that talks about a burning bush, a guy living in a giant fish and someone being born from a virgin mother? Archeology is a science. It's not a bunch of random people making random assertions, or quoting a mythological document from the bronze age, its people making arguments which are then discussed and refuted. Archeology isn't perfect, but like all science, the fact that it admits is imperfection makes it infinitely more trustworthy than interpreting the bible.

>Citation?! What are the objective, reliable historical documents that tell this story and why should we believe them?

The citation is the archeological evidence and the religious books from canaan. The fact that you are so surprised by it shows how little you've really looked into this. Really I could list a bunch of scientific papers, but are you honestly going to read them if this is the first time you have even heard of the actual history of Canaan?[Canaanite/Ugaritic Mythology FAQ, ver. 1.2

u/maymaytheist · 0 pointsr/DebateReligion

Check out the Annotated Oxford NRSV. It has lots of notes, good historic and contextual intros to each book, and doesn't shy away from highlighting controversies in interpretation or inclusion/exclusion.

u/containsmilkandsoy · 0 pointsr/Christianity


Hailed as the greatest spoken-word bible version ever, and with almost half a million copies sold, this exquisite audio treasury is certain to enthuse and inspire.

u/noplojarekep · 0 pointsr/dankmemes
u/rahkshi_hunter · -2 pointsr/Christianity

When creating the Protestant canon, Martin Luther removed 7 books (Tobit, Judith, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Wisdom, Sirach, Baruch) from the Biblical Canon. They can be found in the KJV as "Apocrypha", which means that the compilers of the KJV thought that they were worth reading, but not scriptural.

The Catholic Canon contains 73 books. A good Catholic edition with more literal translation is the RSV-CE or RSV-2CE, which is commonly known as the Ignatius Bible