Leonard's Book Restoration for a bit of a makeover. For a long time I have been looking for an everyday reading Bible that would meet a number of my personal preferences. As we all know, for just as there is no perfect translation out there, neither is there a perfect Bible edition. However, the Knox Bible, published by Baronius Press, comes really close. The hardbound leather cover is really nice, but possibility to have this Bible bound in premium leather is just too great!
In the end, there are three main reasons why I am having my Knox Bible rebound. First, I really enjoy reading from the single-column page format, including the absence of paragraph headings found in most Bibles. As mentioned on the Baronius Press website, the Knox Bible is "set in a single-column format with verse references placed at the side of the text in order to provide a clear and easily readable Bible." I can't think of any other Bible that I own that I have enjoyed actually reading large portions of Scripture from more than this edition of the Knox Bible.
Secondly, the notes and cross-references provided by Msgr. Knox are helpful, well-placed, and not overbearing. They provide just enough information, relating both to textual and theological issues, thus making them simply an aid, not a distraction, from reading the Sacred Text. There are also cross-references which, as you know, are necessary for any Bible I am going to use daily.
Finally, a note about the translation itself. I mentioned a few posts ago that the Big Three (NAB, RSV, and NRSV) are more similar than different. I still stand by that statement. Clearly the Knox Bible is more dynamic than literal, but I have increasingly become more comfortable with it for everyday reading. I have enjoyed many of his fresh renderings, which depart from the standard construction found in the Big Three. The biggest issue is the archaic English that pops up from time to time, however, I haven't been as distracted by it as I might have thought. The New Testament reads really well and some of Knox's renderings I have used in the CBSM classes that I teach. I sort of understand now why there is an attraction to translations like the (New) Jerusalem Bible or New Living Translation.
So, what am I having done with my Knox Bible? Well, I am going to have it bound in soft-tanned flexible goatskin. The color of the leather will be a dark brown. I am going to have three places where there will be blind imprinting: On the spine there will be "Holy Bible" and "Knox Version", while on the bottom right of the cover will be placed my full name. In addition, I will have three brown ribbons added while the original (red and yellow) ones will be removed.
As the project moves forward, I will continue to blog about my experiences with Leonard's. I look forward to sharing with you the finished product in the coming weeks.
I would like to thank Margie at Leonard's for putting up with a flurry of emails from me over the past week, as well as Corey, our Catholic Bibles Blog rebinding expert, for consulting with me on this project. I also would like to really thank my wife for allowing me to do this as well! :)