Friday, January 31, 2014

Book Sneeze The Compass Bible, The Voice Translation

A few years ago, in my textual criticism class, quite a stir was created when the Voice New Testament was released. Another modern translation. Sigh. And the list grew from there of all the knowledgeable arguments, translation styles, etc...

Let me start with: I LOVE THIS BIBLE! This is a lengthy post, just to warn you.

Compass is packed full of notes that reach out to the soul struggling through the questions of life and trying to  trust the Spirit of God to bring peace and direction, remaining open to hearing The Voice.

 The language used in this Study Bible cuts through the "christianese" of terms that the church goer is familiar with and breaks through the theologically defined terms in order to speak to the heart.

Readers will read scene after scene where God speaks to the heart and not just the head. This is a bible for reflection and devotional quiet time. I would probably not read it in a serious study group, debating issues. But then again, I may. Just to cut through the overly familiar.

From The Voice: "One of the byproducts of the information age in the church has been its focus on biblical knowledge. Many Bibles reflect this, packed with informative notes, charts, and graphs. While there's nothing wrong with having a deep knowledge; a personal connection and deep relationship are far better. This is exemplified by Jesus' comment to Martha, "Oh Martha, Martha, you are so ... concerned about a million details, but really, only one thing matters. Mary has chosen that one thing, and I won't take it away from her." (Luke 10:41-42 The Voice)
The "one thing" is a deeper, personal relationship with God. And The Voice is focused on helping readers find (or rediscover) this connection with Him. Scripture is presented not as an academic document, but as an engaging story. The intention of the scholars and authors who collaborated on The Voice is to enable readers to hear God speaking, to experience His presence in their lives
." has numerous resources and videos regarding this translation.

Many cultures, specifically the Jewish culture have a difficult time with certain words, words that were used to persecute. Christ and Cross for example. You might think that those things are in the past with concentration camps. Even today we have friends who as Jewish children have been called Christ Killers. With some translations feeling emboldened to use the YHWH liberally through out scriptures (some times inconsistently) this adds another stumbling block. The Compass Bible also uses the term "Anointed One" in place of "Christ" and the terms "Eternal" or "Eternal One" for the tetragrammaton. AND they point out the fallacies of the mistranslated words Jehovah and Yahweh. (YES!!!!)
and also: 

By removing things that could hinder, the translation team has made a Bible that those who are not familiar with G-d, the Church, Christianity, etc... would be more apt to not only pick up but actually read.
The translation team did not just slough off translation skills in order to gain the emotional/heart aspect.
“The heart of the project is retelling the story of the Bible in a form as fluid as modern literary works, while remaining painstakingly true to the original Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic texts,” says the preface.

Seriously, read the preface! (I geek out on Bible prefaces!)

Look inside the Voice NT here:

Get the Gospel of John here free:

The Bible itself is bound well, the cover of the hardcover is lovely under the dust jacket, not just a plain text title. Thomas Nelson has their quality guarantee when you register your Bible. The price point on this Bible reflects its all around desire for accessibility. Good quality and affordable prices.
The Compass includes:
--A 365-day reading plan through the whole Bible
--A 40-day retreat with Jesus (provides daily New Testament passages and a simple 7-step format for your devotional time)
--The Road Map to God’s Promises  Twelve pages of scripture references for topics ranging from “What The Bible Has To Say About God’s Faithfulness” to “What To Do When You Feel Discouraged.” These are easy to find helps when in great need.
--A user-friendly topical guide

Italic type in this Bible indicates words not directly tied to the translation of the original language, but words that highlight the nuances of the original, and provide readers with cultural context  that would have been obvious to the original audience.
--Delineated material expands on themes in the text which includes cultural, historical, theological, or devotional observations.
--Screenplay format identifies dialogue and avoids the repetition of conjunctions, articles, and certain verbs. It helps in identifying just who is speaking.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

praying for the Bride

Walking in to an established church has pros and cons.
One of ours is over 100 yrs. The other is a new work that we established 7 yrs ago.

There was a time when we lived in Colorado Springs that a new church opened and another closed, just about every week. So many new churches are started out of offense and hurt feelings, church splits and doctrines of men out weighing the doctrines of G-d. It seems this goes double for home churches.

While we have more freedom to do what we feel lead to at the newer one, the other gives us elders and congregants who have been in fellowship through conflicts for over 50 years! The wisdom we are gleaning from both places is so rich.

I wonder how much has been lost from trying to do things our own newer ways instead of being humble and submitting to those over us, praying for the pastors to hear G-d's voice.

Pastors, like most humans are human and fallible. Pride, busyness, and exhaustion can take hold. Not having accountability and a friend leave most of those who "minister" empty. Sadly, pastors are often a reason why people leave a church. sometimes they are the only reason some one stays at a church.

A friend of ours, and a local pastor, spends most of his week praying at other churches, usually in their parking lots. Praying for the pastor, for the church, for revival. I am so blessed by his servant heart. Too often we view another church as competition or with critical/judgmental eyes, thinking we know the truth and true doctrine/theology , and they have missed something.

Do you pray for the other churches in your town? What about the church "across the street"?

If not? Why?

Each Thursday we have a time of prayer walking, where w pray for requests, the attendees, the church we attend, even the town. I think I need to start praying for other churches, not just the persecuted.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Wednesday Dinners

For a couple years now, we have been having family style dinners.
We have 35-60 people any given nite.

They have all come to reaize that when my family cooks, some thing will be unusual, weird, outside their comfort zone.... They are now over the oddity of hummus, matzo ball soup and other cultural specialties.
I tease them that I have to find the craziest recipes online to feed them.
This month:
ChickPea and Cashew Chili
Which I must say it totally rocked! And the skeptics even came back for seconds.
To be fair, I did cook 2 pots, one with and the other without cashews.

The recipe can be found over at the Shiksa's site:

also try her Matbucha!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Book Sneeze The Modern Life Study Bible - God's Word for Our World

The Modern Life Study Bible-NKJV has been well worth the wait. This Bible will be available January 21, 2014. It is a full colour Study Bible. Each book overview has a basic "what was going on and who wrote it" but also has key verses to help you find familiar references.
This is an excellent resource for your daily life. A great balance between "deep knowledge" and application.
I was pleasantly surprised at the hebraic background/cultural notes. So often in the past as a jewish family we have read other study notes and found them to be inaccurate. These however have been spot on. There are notes. prompts really, to encourage application in community, social justice issues, every day life "to illustrate our potential to make a difference."
The whole book is beautiful. The Word of G-d  presented well  in a way to encourage you to take chances, get your hands dirty in service and live a life in His strength.

With all these notes and helps, this has quite some heft to it! Although the edition I have is a hardcover, the binding is flexible and there is no gluing anamolies, showing care in the construction. As long as you don't stuff bulletins and notes pages to bursting -cringe- (don't do it! preserve the binding!), this looks like it will last a long time.

"Our world summons us to act, give, and connect. God's Word empowers us to answer the call."

"Thinking Independently- The Modern Life Study Bible challenges us to develop our own thinking. The articles are designed to guide the reader without forcing an answer for every theological issue. Some times several possible answers are suggested; at other times the focus is on the broad significance of the text rather than specific details. At all times The Modern Life Study Bible encourages thoughtful faith."


Read Sample HERE

As members of the modern age, we sometimes feel disconnected from the world of the Bible. But if we look closely, we can see that although cultures change, our basic challenges stay the same. We still struggle with issues like community, justice, economic stress, political tensions, and cultural and ethnic differences. We still wonder who God is, how to discern His will, and how we fit into His plan.

Using historical context and fresh insights backed by biblical scholars, The Modern Life Study Bible explores the timeless truths that connect the people and stories of the Bible to the opportunities and demands we face today. God is at work in our world, inviting us to experience His presence.

With innovative, full-color illustrations, maps, and diagrams, along with special information on occupations of the Bible, profiles of people and places, theme indexes, and inspirational biographies of believers who put their faith to work, The Modern Life Study Bible will draw you in, helping you to know and embrace what it means to follow Christ in today’s world.

Features include:
  • More than 2,400 concise articles and book introductions
  • More than 220 full-color maps
  • Hundreds of diagrams, tables, and illustrations
  • 66 inspirational biographies
  • Indexes to aid navigation and study