"If you could see my Bible, you would not be particularly impressed. What—that’s the Pope’s Bible? Such an old, worn-out book! You could buy me a new one for $1,000, but I would not want it. I love my old Bible, which has accompanied me half my life. It has been with me in my times of joy and times of tears. It is my most precious treasure. I live out of it, and I wouldn’t give anything in the world for it."
When I read these words from the Holy Father, my mind immediately went back to the whole One Bible, One Year (OBOY) challenge. It reminded me that I hadn't posted about how I was doing recently, so, now seems to be a good time to give you an update. I also felt confirmed in partaking in this experiment.
Back when I started, I made a commitment to sticking with the NRSV translation. Although there have been times during the past year when I have "flirted", a tad, with my beloved Knox bible, I can honestly say that I have stuck to the NRSV throughout this year. (In a perfect world my Knox Bible would be "the one" but there are too many situations where it is simply not practical. But oh how I do love that Bible!). What has it been like? Well, after having spent 3/4 of the year with it, I am even more certain that the NRSV does a remarkable job of being useful in almost every situation. It is literary, accurate, well-annotated, ecumenical, and just plain feels right to me when I read from it. (If you would like to read more about why I prefer the NRSV, here is a link to a prior post.) This does not mean, just to be clear, that I refrain from looking at other translations for study and work purposes. I, of course, need to as part of my job. Yes, there are many good translations out there, but the NRSV is the one I choose.
I also decided to use two editions of the NRSV: 1) NOAB NRSV '91, for use with study and teaching; 2) The Harper NRSV compact, for daily reading. Throughout this year, I have been faithful to the NOAB for studying and teaching. I still think it is an amazing edition, with concise and useful annotations and references, along with a generous print and margin. I like this edition so much that it will likely be the next candidate for a rebind, since the cover is wearing out a tad. (Remember, I purchased it used a couple years back.) In regards to my daily reading Bible, some of you will remember that I had the Harper compact NRSV rebound. One might think that means it has remained my daily reading bible this year, but it hasn't. Another NRSV has come in (and out, and back in) to my life that I simply can't put down. I first received it back in February from my friend Jason. It is the Oxford NRSV (anglicized) Pocket Edition with Apocrypha in blue calfskin leather. I cannot really explain to you why I have taken to this Bible, but I simply enjoy the feel and look of it. it lays open flat, comes with three ribbons (which were added by Jason), and just has a remarkable feel to it. It is simply a reading bible, with no annotations or maps. Yet, like my Knox Bible, I have just grown to really love reading from it. I have recently started a 90 Day New Testament reading plan, which I am doing with this Bible. It has been great.
So, there is where I am at. How about you? I know there are at least a couple of you still out there! The comments by Pope Francis above have only solidified my desire to have one of those 50 year old Bibles that I wouldn't trade anything for. This bible would serve as a companion, one which has been read and loved over a long period of time, accompanying me on my journey to the Lord. Yet, this journey has to start somewhere. For me, I am feeling ever so confident that my journey began in 2015. How about you?