New Revised Standard Edition for Journaling
Bible journaling is a wonderful way to reflect on God’s word. In challenging times, it provides a sense of calm and connectedness to something beyond our four walls. Not only does the NRSV, Artisan Collection Bible provide a highly readable typeface, but it also features wide lines for journaling on each page. The artist-created cover designed by Olivia Joy is stunning, modern, and reminds me of the sea and sky. Created with an alcohol ink technique, the beautiful blues and hints of gold combine to create a unique design.
Features for Readability
The typeface is 9-point sized “Comfort Print,” a dark bold ink on cream-colored paper. I was initially skeptical of its readability because of the close line spaces, but I find it surprisingly clear, and I don’t have to strain to read. Because each page leaves about one-third of the space for writing, I think the shorter lines of text help add to the readability. The Bible also has two ribbon bookmarks built in–one blue and one gold, that coordinate nicely and make it easy to keep pages marked.
The New Revised Standard translation is a wonderfully compelling version. I usually gravitate toward the NIV translation, but The Artisan Collection Bible has been a welcome source of inspiration. The style of the language is more informal and understandable. This information from biblegateway.com explains the differences in the NRSV translation:
It draws on newly available sources that increase our understanding of many previously obscure biblical passages. These sources include new-found manuscripts, the Dead Sea Scrolls, other texts, inscriptions, and archaeological finds from the ancient Near East, and new understandings of Greek and Hebrew grammar.
The NRSV differs from the RSV in four primary ways:
updating the language of the RSV, by replacing archaic forms of speech addressed to God (Thee, Thou, wast, dost, etc.), and by replacing words whose meaning has changed significantly since the RSV translation (for example, Paul’s statement in 2 Corinthians 11.25 that he was “stoned” once)
making the translation more accurate,
helping it to be more easily understood, especially when it is read out loud, and
making it clear where the original texts intend to include all humans, male and female, and where they intend to refer only to the male or female gender.
Unique and Inspiring
I am finding myself reading this Bible more as a novel than ‘verse by verse’ and have discovered that I really like this style. As for the journaling aspect of this Bible, I love how I’m finding different ways to use it. The wide lines are printed lightly, so there is ample space to write or draw or do fancy lettering–whatever inspiration hits. The paper is incredibly smooth and not as thin as tissue-paper type pages, but it is still slightly see through. I’ve chosen to use ‘non-bleed’ type pens, and they do nicely. However, color pencils would also work. I would avoid anything watery, because I think the pages would wrinkle.
As I write this review, we are more than thirty days into the COVID-19 quarantine/social distancing. As someone with vulnerabilities due to health issues, I’m virtually on lockdown at home. Even though I own several Bibles, receiving the Artisan Collection Bible truly was a godsend. It has inspired me to spend more time reading God’s word and reflecting on it, as well as branching out to record my thoughts and responses inside. The artistry of the cover is also so pretty that I just like having it nearby in whatever room I happen to be in. Finding hope in God’s word…
The publisher provided a review copy of Artisan Collection Bible.