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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thomas Nelson Review: The Voice, a new Bible translation by Ecclesia Bible Society

Product Image for The Voice Bible by Ecclesia Bible SocietyYou would think a person would learn after awhile, wouldn't you? I volunteered for something once again, this time to review Bibles and Bible study materials from Thomas Nelson Publishing Company. But--getting free Bibles and studies? How good is that?

Pretty good, if you're asking me. The first Bible that I picked up to read is one called The Voice, a new translation by Ecclesia Bible Society. I love it.

One of the things I've always loved about the King James translation is the lyrical quality and the ease with which the passages became a part of my memory without really trying. This translation has much the same quality, maybe because the translators included not only several language, history, and Biblical scholars. No, the Ecclesia folks went on to hire poets, musicians, and artists.

They call it "The Voice" because they want you to clearly hear The Voice of God in the passages. New readers of the Bible might find themselves actually understanding what they read. The writers made very few additions to what was written, but when they did place clarifying phrases in italics into the passages, they did so only to put information that first-century readers would have heard without being said. For instance, when we see "up tight," we think someone is anxious--not said in those precise words, but we understand it.

Give a listen to this very familiar passage from the Parable of the Prodigal Son, Luke 15:17 through 20:

(17) So he had this moment of sel-reflection: "What am I doing here? Back home, my father's hired servants have plenty of food. Why am I here starving to death? (18) I'll get up and return to my father, and I'll say, 'Father, I have done wrong--wrong against God and against you. (19) I have forfeited any right to be treated like your son, but I'm wondering if you'd treat me as one of your hired servants.'" (20 So he got up and returned to his father. The father looked off in the distance and saw the young man returning. He felt compassion for his son and ran out to him, enfolded him in an embrace, and kissed him.

What do you think? Is this translation worth a read?
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