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Review: The Voice New Testament

From the Publisher:

The Voice™ Bible translation is a faithful dynamic translation of the Scriptures done as a collage of compelling narratives, poetry, song, truth, and wisdom. The Voice calls the reader to step into the whole story of Scripture and experience the joy and wonder of God’s revelation. Created for and by a church in great transition, The Voice uniquely represents collaboration among scholars, pastors, writers, musicians, poets, and other artists, giving great attention to the beauty of the narrative. The heart of The Voice is retelling the story of the Bible in a form as fluid as modern literary works yet remaining painstakingly true to the original manuscripts. This translation promotes the public reading of longer sections of Scripture—followed by thoughtful engagement with the biblical narrative in its richness and fullness and dramatic flow.

This is an updated and revised version of the New Testament edition, now at an even more affordable price.

Features include:

--Italicized information added to help contemporary readers understand what the original readers would have known intuitively

--In-text commentary notes include cultural, historical, theological, or devotional thoughts

--Screenplay format, ideal for public readings and group studies

--Book introductions

My Thoughts:
I have a confession to make- I collect Bibles. This might sound odd to some- how many bibles does a person need? But I love having various translations so I can compare any verses that may be confusing, etc. So I have a couple NIV, NLT, NKJV, The Message, and so on. I thought I was pretty well covered as far as translations go but when I saw this brand new translation, I was excited to check it out. Now naturally because of lack of time, I have not yet been able to read the entire New Testament over again. Instead I have read through some of my favorite chapters and verses to get an idea of the style of The Voice.
Starting out, I expected it to be very much like The Message. The Message, for those who do not know, is more an interpretation than direct translation. It paraphrases and puts things into modern speech to make things more understandable. This is not all what I found, it is as the description states, 'faithful dynamic translation of the Scriptures done as a collage of compelling narratives, poetry, song, truth, and wisdom'. Many of the verses I found to be very similar to the other versions I'd compared them too, but certainly much more poetic. There are also many sections that are written as a screenplay. To be honest, I'm undecided how I feel about those particular sections. There were also forwards for each book explaining what was going at the time/places that these messages were given and giving us a better understanding of the context, this is not something exclusive to The Voice, but something I always find beneficial in any bible. There are also several reading guides such as readings to celebrate Advent, Lent and Easter, daily readings for personal growth and reading the new testament in 24 weeks. There is also a topical guide and explanations on the various titles of Jesus, which I found very interesting myself. Overall, this is a great bible and I'm very happy to have been given the chance to review it. While I cannot see completely replacing my trusted NIV with this, I am happy to have it for a little variety and is great for someone who does not enjoy the traditional translations as much. I also look forward to seeing the Old Testament version also (available April 2012), as I have a difficult time getting through that myself!!
With any bible, I think the actual verses speak for themselves much better than what any review could, so I will leave you with a few verses from The Voice:

'And that's not all. We also celebrate in seasons of suffering because we know that when we suffer we develop endurance, which shapes our characters. When our characters are refined, we learn what it means to hope and anticipate God's goodness.' -Romans 5: 3-4

‎"Surely, no matter what you are doing (speaking, writing, or working), do it all in the name of Jesus our Master, sending thanks through Him to God our Father." Colossians 3:17

You can purchase here.

*I received a copy of The Voice for free from the publisher in exchange for this review. All thoughts are my own.


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