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  3. I want to read the Bible.

User Info: enigma777

enigma777
1 month ago#11
PumpkinBelmont posted...
Thanks for the advice, I didn't realize it was going to be this difficult to dive in. One that I tried to read was King James and I found it exceptionally difficult to read.

Another concern I have, which you actually mentioned, is that I don't want to read someone else's interpretation. I'd like it as unfiltered as possible, that being said anything like that would probably be way out of my grasp for understanding.


New King James and NIV are my favorite translations and are a lot easier to read than King James. It's nice when you don't have to mentally translate Olde English while studying. I know some who prefer the Amplified Bible as it's easier to read, but can't comment personally.
Proverbs 26:4

User Info: Shablagoo

Shablagoo
1 month ago#12
New American Bible is a good translation with copious footnotes.

SSj4Wingzero posted...
If you grew up familiar with the Bible, then you should know it's "Revelation", not "Revelations".

I kid, I kid.

xD
Sigful user.
(edited 1 month ago)

User Info: YHWH_Saves

YHWH_Saves
1 month ago#13
I would wholeheartedly advise AGAINST jumping in. I would recommend becoming familiar with the structure of the bible, and the grouping of its books.

The most important thing to reading the bible is to "know" the story of God's history before jumping in and doing a cover-to-cover read.

=========================

I hate to be corny, but I actually developed an easy method for doing this, a few years back. It's called the Seven C's (get it?).

C - Creation
C - Corruption
C - Covenant
C - Conquest
-----
C - Christ
C - Church
C - Consummation

=================

If you can memorize this, understanding what each means, and where the various books of the Bible fall into this sequence, then you will be able to fully appreciate the bible; you will be able to do so without necessarily having to feel pressured to memorize verses/chapters and authors. I actually don't read the bible as much as I used to, because this has helped me to be constantly aware of how/where God's history fits in with our own. The scriptures have subsequently becoming something that is quite living, infinitely relevant to our own time.

Let me know if you have any questions.

=================

As far as translations, you really cannot go wrong with any of the mainstream ones. If/when you ever become interested in the original languages, you will see that while there are always better ways to approximate the original author intent, that we have some good works available to us.
"Man will not live off of bread alone, but by every word proceeding through the mouth of God." "You are not able to serve God and wealth.".
(edited 1 month ago)

User Info: dhalsimrocks

dhalsimrocks
1 month ago#14
I would recommend the New Oxford Annotated Bible with Apocrypha, NRSV. It has introductions for most individual books or some collections/groups of books that discuss authorship, dating, language, style, target audience, etc. It also has quite a bit of commentary on almost every page, going into more detail. It also shows where there manuscript traditions are different and what those differences are. So for example, if the Dead Sea Scrolls or the Greek Septuagint (Old Testament) say something different from the Hebrew Masoretic Text, it will point this out. It brackets passages that aren't found in the earliest and best manuscripts, such as the longer ending of Mark, and the woman taken in adultery in John.

Overall it's a pretty academic work written by a large variety of scholars, both Christian and Jewish. It's still fairly conservative in some respects but definitely a good starting point.

If you're not opposed to a completely secular, far less conservative approach to the Bible, yet one that has a mountain of academic research involved, I would also recommend Robert M. Price's "Holy Fable" series. It's absolutely fascinating. But again, probably not what you'd want to read if you're exploring your faith or spirituality. Then again, maybe it is.
May all your disgraces be private

User Info: AcFan87

AcFan87
1 month ago#15
PumpkinBelmont posted...
But I find it very difficult and hard to read. I wasn't raised religious but I'm very interested. Any advice?

Read the NIV version. Its in modern day English and easier to digest in my opinion. Good on you for wanting to read it, you're in for quite a journey☺

User Info: kozlo100

kozlo100
1 month ago#16
This topic is an interesting counterpoint to the one we had a few weeks ago regarding the bible becoming increasingly difficult to read as time marches on.
Time flies like the wind,
and fruit flies like a banana.

User Info: CoyoteTheGreat

CoyoteTheGreat
1 month ago#17
I remember trying to read Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and I found it impossible. Then I found a version with copious footnotes explaining the historical context, and I absolutely fell in love with it. It is now my favorite novel.

I think that's the key to being able to actually enjoy a book like the bible. There needs to be interruptions where a real voice from our time period takes you aside and lays out the contexts.

The problem with the Bible over Romance of the Three Kingdoms though is that while footnotes for the latter can be pretty objective, generally anyone trying to deliver the bible to you has an agenda beyond just educating you on the historical context, and they aren't going to wax on about how this group or that interprets controversial passages.

To me, a readable bible would do things like explain why the Jehova's Witnesses might interpret a certain passage one way, while a Roman Catholic might interpret another. It would point out areas where scholars might disagree on who wrote something. It would include all the apocrypha and explain what groups hold it as being a legitimate part of the bible and why. It would reference controversies in Christianity like the debates about Arianism and which passages might be cited as support or against it.

That's a lot for a translation to do though. That's part of what makes Christianity such a hard religion to get into if you are a fair-minded person who doesn't have any personal attachment to any denomination because you weren't raised religious.
Disobedience is the stamp of the hero. -Ragnar Redbeard
Also, this is Kagata..

User Info: SSj4Wingzero

SSj4Wingzero
1 month ago#18
CoyoteTheGreat posted...
The problem with the Bible over Romance of the Three Kingdoms though is that while footnotes for the latter can be pretty objective, generally anyone trying to deliver the bible to you has an agenda beyond just educating you on the historical context, and they aren't going to wax on about how this group or that interprets controversial passages.


There are too many groups for that to happen. The commentaries would likely be longer than the Bible itself. Same with your idea of including the views of Biblical scholars. Furthermore, scholarship about the Bible is so dense and convoluted that you'd likely need footnotes to understand *THAT*, and before you know it, you're asking for a Bible that could only exist if it were 30,000 pages long, which is why it doesn't exist. What you're essentially asking for is a Bible which contains in its footnotes every single Biblical studies article ever written, and that's just not realistic.

The Oxford Annotated Bible contains the New Revised Standard Version, which is still considered the go-to for most academics, and the Bible has copious amounts of footnotes written by Biblical scholars (mind you, most Bible scholars do not hold conventional ideas on theology), but even that doesn't come anywhere close to what you're asking for, which is why it doesn't exist.
Not changing this sig until the Knicks win the NBA Championship! Started...4/23/2011? Or was it 2010?
(edited 1 month ago)

User Info: CesarFaison

CesarFaison
1 month ago#19
You can go on Bible Gateway and look at various translations to see which is easiest for you to read. I think they may even have a feature where you can put two translations up side by side and compare them in one tab.

https://www.biblegateway.com/

In my opinion the NIV is a very easy translation to read and it would probably be my first choice. My favorite edition of it is The Life Application Study Bible. The notes and articles in it are pretty good:

ISBN-10: 1414359810

Another one of my favorite Bibles is The Apologetics Study Bible. The older version uses the HCSB translation and the newer version uses the CSB translation. There are some differences in the two translations, but overall are pretty similar and easy to read. The notes and articles are also very informative. The student edition was said to be very informative and have articles and notes different from the regular version, so if you're just starting out the student edition may be worth considering. I'd put this as a tie with the NIV version at best or a very close second at worst. Here is the ISBN for the regular edition:

ISBN-10: 9781433644092

And for an extremely easy version to read there's The Message translation which is a paraphrase. This particular edition places things in chronological and even features a forward from Bono, so if the other versions are too hard for you to understand then this is a good one if you still haven't found what you're looking for.

ISBN-10: 1631464469

Or if you want multiple translations in one you could get something like this, but keep in mind it probably won't have any notes and may not be as convenient to carry around.

ISBN-10: 0310436923

Keep in mind there are many different editions for the many different translations of The Bible. I provided the ISBN numbers for what I would say are the best editions for people new to The Bible as far as how easy it is to understand and how helpful the articles ares. You can always get a more stripped down version without any notes/articles/commentary for probably in the $5-$10 range, and I have seen Bibles at Dollar Tree too for $1 though not these translations from what I remember. You can also read it for free on Bible Gateway or apps on your phone.

And lastly, a good website if you're still having trouble/questions is https://www.gotquestions.org/

User Info: CoyoteTheGreat

CoyoteTheGreat
1 month ago#20
SSj4Wingzero posted...
CoyoteTheGreat posted...
The problem with the Bible over Romance of the Three Kingdoms though is that while footnotes for the latter can be pretty objective, generally anyone trying to deliver the bible to you has an agenda beyond just educating you on the historical context, and they aren't going to wax on about how this group or that interprets controversial passages.


There are too many groups for that to happen. The commentaries would likely be longer than the Bible itself. Same with your idea of including the views of Biblical scholars. Furthermore, scholarship about the Bible is so dense and convoluted that you'd likely need footnotes to understand *THAT*, and before you know it, you're asking for a Bible that could only exist if it were 30,000 pages long, which is why it doesn't exist. What you're essentially asking for is a Bible which contains in its footnotes every single Biblical studies article ever written, and that's just not realistic.

The Oxford Annotated Bible contains the New Revised Standard Version, which is still considered the go-to for most academics, and the Bible has copious amounts of footnotes written by Biblical scholars (mind you, most Bible scholars do not hold conventional ideas on theology), but even that doesn't come anywhere close to what you're asking for, which is why it doesn't exist.


I don't think it needs to be comprehensive though, just representative. People should come away from a bible reading understanding that there are different interpretations of the text and different perspectives on it. Maybe we don't need to know what the Fundamentalist Church of Latter Day Saints thinks about every single passage, but we should know some of the key passages in which the Mormons think point to the legitimacy of their own Book of Latter Day Saints, for instance, as it is a major denomination.
Disobedience is the stamp of the hero. -Ragnar Redbeard
Also, this is Kagata..
(edited 1 month ago)
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