Uncategorized

A Review of the Crossway ESV Large Print Thinline Reference Bible in Genuine Black Leather.

P1000687

The Crossway ESV Large Print Thinline Reference Bible in black genuine leather is a great value. The suggested retail on the box is $84.99, but it can be found on Amazon for $55.30 at the time of writing. Christianbook.com has it for $51.99. If you’d rather buy it direct from Crossway you can get it for $59.99 here. It comes in a cardboard clamshell box. The Bible is printed and bound in China. Personally, I’d rather they print them here in the U.S. but I understand why they still print them in China. There is also a good publisher in South Korea. I hope they consider moving to South Korea if not to the states.

P1000692

The leather is not that shiny cheap feeling pig skin leather you might find on Bibles from other publishers. This leather seems to actually be cowhide leather. The leather cover has a pleasant amount of grain to it. It isn’t like Highland goatskin with lots of texture, and it isn’t smooth like some ironed calfskin leather covers. It is case bound. Meaning the text block is connected to the cover via the end pages, and a sheet of vinyl covered paper that spans the front, and one on the rear inner covers as a liner.

P1000697

The spine is smyth-sewn, making it durable, and flexible.

P1000694

If you have purchased Crossway Bibles that were made in China, you won’t be surprised by anything with this one. The paper is on par with what they have used in the past, and the printing is clear, and sharp. The pages are not as opaque as more expensive Bibles, but remember, this one is a great value.

P1000708

I don’t think you can do much better for the money. You get the reliable English Standard Version text laid out in a double column paragraph format with 10.5 pt. font. You also get cross references in the footer of the pages.

P1000709

This is a black letter edition. There is one black ribbon marker. Like most Chinese sourced Bibles, the ribbon marker is kind of weak on this edition. In the rear of the Bible you get a concordance, and maps. This Bible includes a lifetime warranty from Crossway.

P1000688

If you’d like to see the rest of the pictures please visit my Flickr album here.

As I mentioned above, this is a good value. If you are in the market for a large print, but don’t want to carry around a thick, heavy, Bible, this one definitely fits the niche, and budget.

Bible Reviews · Crossway · Uncategorized

The Illuminated Scripture Journal Set from Crossway.

DSCN7070

The Illuminated Scripture Journal is a multi-volume set of New Testament books which have been artistically illuminated by Dana Tanamachi who was commissioned by Crossway for her artistry.

Each page that occurs on the left contains scripture in a single column with drop cap chapter numbers in gold, in a paragraph format, with the verse numbers superscript in black text.  Also in gold are section headings above the text.

DSCN7082

The pages that occur on the right, and opposite of the scriptures, contain blank pages ruled with faintly printed dots to help you keep your lines straight without being too obvious.

DSCN7083

There are also scripture verses, and designs that are artistically rendered in gold on these pages.  Some full page features are dispersed throughout.

DSCN7088

My first impression of the boxed set was mixed.  On the one hand, when I think of illuminated scriptures what comes to mind is an ancient hand copied tome with leather clad wood board covers and a metal hasp, along with ornately decorated pages, multiple colors, and drawings.

illuminated-ancient

This set is much more conservative in its use of illumination.  To me they look like a talented person went along with a gold colored marker and marked up the covers, and pages.

Mind you, it isn’t unpleasant, and most peoples minds wouldn’t go where mine did.  I still found the work to be pleasant to look at, but we are talking about a set that is covered in card paper, and glued together.

DSCN7085

I appreciate the binding being far better than, “perfect bound” books.  It isn’t as good as a sewn binding with a leather cover.  These personal preferences aside, this set is meant to be affordable, and it is also meant to be used.  The idea is for you to engage the word, and for it to be engaging.  These volumes are meant to be read, and then written in.  They aren’t intended to be some priceless, unapproachable work from antiquity, and most likely, if you use them as they are intended to be used, they will never make it antiquity.  You’ll carry them along with you, the corners will get bent, the pages will get marked up, and you’ll learn a lot about the Author, and His intent.  If you’d like to look at more pictures visit my Flickr album.

Book Reviews · Uncategorized

A Snyder’s Soapbox review of, “The Prize-Winning Story” by Ken Yoder Reed

It wasn’t my cup of tea. I imagine you’d have to have given yourself over to panderous obsequity in regards to the Jews, and Israel to appreciate this book. It is one thing to be pro-Israel/Jewish people, it is another to pursue their favor like a beggar with no dignity. Regrettably, this is how the story goes, “Jews=great, Christians=abusers” I had enough of this book after reading the fictional account of a woman being abused by her father, and men in the Church. I mean, come on? Seriously? Like the Jewish people don’t do any of that either? I’m not trying to be mean. It simply wasn’t for me.

If you happen to be a Hebrew Roots movement heretic, or John Hagee fan, you might enjoy this book. For me, it was tedious, boring, and worst, insulting.

Uncategorized

Let’s Stop Calling them Elites!

What You Didn't Know About Halo's Elites

It is high time we stop referring to our elected political representatives, and legislators, as, “elites.” They most definitely are not an elite leadership class among us common plebes. If this is what you think, you are in the wrong country. When they stop serving the people, they need to be held accountable. If the elections are rigged in your state, there is a constitutional recourse. (I’ll leave it up to the reader to figure that one out. My Eph Bee Eye agent is busy enough as it is, and don’t even get me started on my See Eye Eh, and En Es Eh, agents.)

The next time you start to call them, “elites” please stop yourself, and call them what they are supposed to be, elected representatives. Demand that pundits start getting it right as well. Write to their news stations, papers, sites, and so on until they start doing it right.

In the meantime, let’s fire all the r.i.n.o.’s, and communists this upcoming election, and replace them with all of the fine upstarts from among our own numbers.

Uncategorized

Everything belongs to God.

The preachers of the false gospel of health and wealth, otherwise called prosperity preachers misunderstand, or purposefully mislead people to enrich themselves. True Christians have everything their brothers and sisters have, and as they have need, are provided for, in Christ, by the means He has ordained via their brothers and sisters. Peter asked, and Jesus answered him. Look at this passage from Mark 10, and see if you understand how this is to be.
“28 Peter began to say to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You.”29 Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake,30 except one who will receive one hundred times as much now in the present age⁠—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions⁠—and in the age to come, eternal life.31 But many who are first will be last, and the last, first.”” Mark 10:28-31 L.S.B. (Legacy Standard Bible)
Do you see it? Wherever you go as a Christian, you will have homes to stay in, food to eat, and family. Don’t miss the part about persecutions. This is our share as well. If you are in Christ, you will suffer for your faith. The promise of eternal life is for the age to come. So you won’t have you name on property deeds, and titles, but you will have what you need, and you will have life eternal. Thank God, and praise Him, our Creator, Master, and Savior.

Uncategorized

A Trend in Movies, and Television?

It seems there is a trend occurring with movies and television programs. I could be wrong. I would like to read what you think in the comments. I’ve noticed that the individual hero archetype is being exchanged for an intentionally diverse and sometimes perverse collective of people. The last few movies I’ve watched, and some of the new shows made by the streaming platforms seem to feature diverse collectives, or teams, working together to overcome the antagonist. The protagonist is being replaced. One example of this that is fresh in my mind is the new Matrix movie. Not only was Neo not the main hero, but he seemed like a pathetic, week, shadow, of his former machine dominating self. I won’t spoil the film for you. If it weren’t for all the people helping him through the story, he’d have never made it to the end. I know, many of you will say, “But, in the original movie he was helped by the team of people on the Nebuchadnezzar,” and you’d be right. The difference is that the story was obviously about him being, “the one,” and he was. In these newer films and programs the focus is more on the collective team, rather than any one individual hero type protagonist.

It seems to me that the shift is intentional. I don’t think the people paying for these movies and shows to be made want people to view themselves as heroes. I think they want us to value the collective instead of an individual who excels. They sell you on the idea that it is in the name of diversity and inclusion, but when everyone is special, no one is. They might say, “It is more realistic that a team would be needed.” To that I say poppycock! These people are doing things that are all based in fantasy, and you are telling me about realism? No, I think there is a more sinister intent behind the scenes. The message is, men are not the future. Light skinned people are over. The virtues of the past, are offensive. We are your replacements, and you’d better role over and take it.

I hope I’m wrong.

Cults · Jehovah's witnesses · Uncategorized

One Reason Why the Jehovah’s Witnesses are not Christian.

Here is one big reason why the Jehovah’s Witnesses are not Christians. They deny the deity of Jesus, and as a consequence the Trinity. They believe he was the archangel Michael, who was transfigured by God the Father into the man Jesus. They believe he was a created being. They believe he was just a man. This is a quote from their website,

“Jesus’ opposers accused him of making himself equal to God. (John 5:18; 10:30-33) However, Jesus never claimed to be on the same level as Almighty God. He said: “The Father is greater than I am.”—John 14:28.

 Jesus’ early followers did not view him as being equal to Almighty God. For example, the apostle Paul wrote that after Jesus was resurrected, God “exalted him [Jesus] to a superior position.” Obviously, Paul did not believe that Jesus was Almighty God. Otherwise, how could God exalt Jesus to a superior position? —Philippians 2:9.

JW.org

Jesus was accused of making Himself equal to God. Why else would these people want to stone Him to death. The one verse of scripture they quote is ridiculous because it proves the opposite point they are trying to make when you simply read a few verses previous, and prior to it.

“…18 For this reason therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God…” John 5:18

All one must do is read John 1 you say? Well the JW’s have their own version of the, ahem… “bible” called the New Word Translation. It isn’t actually a true translation. It is a hack job done by their scripture twisters to make it say what they want it to say. They change John 1 into saying that, “and the Word was a god.” That quote comes from their website where they have their N.W.T. available to read for free. Here is what the Bible really says in John1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.2 He was in the beginning with God.3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.5 And the Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overtake it.” John 1:1-5

14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.15 John bore witness about Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has been ahead of me, for He existed before me.’”16 For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace.17 For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.18 No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.” John 1:14-18

Let’s not overlook the fact that Jesus accepted worship from people as God. If He was not God, He would have rebuked them for worshipping Him, or else He would have been guilty of sin.

“And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”32 And when they got into the boat, the wind stopped.33 And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are truly God’s Son!”34 And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret.35 And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent word into all that surrounding district and brought to Him all who were sick;36 and they were pleading with Him that they might just touch the fringe of His garment; and as many as touched it were cured.” Matthew 14:31-36

This is where the wise men came to Him, “And when they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.11 And after coming into the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.12 And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, the magi departed for their own country by another way.” Matthew 2:10b-12

“8And they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy and ran to report it to His disciples.9 And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him.” Matthew 28:8-9

“Then He said to Thomas, “Bring your finger here, and see My hands; and bring your hand here and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing.”28 Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”29 Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are those who did not see, and yet believed.”” John 20:27-29

These sections of scripture should be enough to show that either Jesus was actually God, and so worshipping Him was not a sin, and it was not a sin for Him to accept that worship, or He was a liar, and a sinner for portraying Himself as God and accepting worship as God. The entire Biblical context provided from the beginning of the Old Testament, to the end of the New Testament makes it clear that Jesus is God incarnate. To deny the deity of Christ is to prove that you do not know Him.

We haven’t even addressed the ἐγώ εἰμί (ego eimi) statements Jesus made. When Jesus says, “I am” He is declaring that He is YhVh. It is a direct relation to the proper name of God which God revealed to Moses at the burning bush. For a fuller treatment of this information you can read this article from Dr. James White.

“​1 When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the ravine of the Kidron, where there was a garden, in which He entered with His disciples. 2 Now Judas also, who was betraying Him, knew the place, for Jesus had often met there with His disciples. 3  Judas then, having received the Roman cohort and officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, *came there with lanterns and torches and weapons. 4 So Jesus, knowing all the things that were coming upon Him, went forth and *said to them, “Whom do you seek?” 5 They answered Him, “Jesus the Nazarene.” He *said to them, “I am He.” And Judas also, who was betraying Him, was standing with them. 6 So when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground. 7 Therefore He again asked them, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus the Nazarene.” 8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am He; so if you seek Me, let these go their way,” 9 to fulfill the word which He spoke, “Of those whom You have given Me I lost not one.” 10 Simon Peter then, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s slave, and cut off his right ear; and the slave’s name was Malchus. 11 So Jesus said to Peter, “Put the sword into the sheath; the cup which the Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?”” John 18:1-11

This is a quote from the MacArthur Study Bible on this last bit of scripture,

“John 18:4–8 Whom do you seek? By twice asking that question (vv. 4 7), to which they replied, “Jesus of Nazareth” (vv. 5 7), Jesus was forcing them to acknowledge that they had no authority to take his disciples. In fact, he demanded that they let the disciples go (v. 8). The force of his demand was established by the power of his words. When he spoke, “I am he” (v. 6), a designation he had used before to declare himself God (8:28 58; cf. 6:35 8:12 10:7 9 11 14 11:25 14:6 15:1 5), they were jolted backward and to the ground (18:6). This power display and the authoritative demand not to take the disciples were of immense significance, as the next verse indicates. John 18:8”

Bible Reviews · Bibles · Uncategorized

A Soapbox Review of the Legacy Standard Bible, (L.S.B.) Handy Size, Edge-Lined, Shamar Goatskin, in Copper Brown with Full Yapp.

P1000580

As many of you know, we have been waiting for orders of this edition to ship. Some of us had per-ordered it in August of 2020. The one I ordered finally arrived. I knew what to expect from Jongbloed (Youngblood) as I have reviewed several premium editions over the years passed. All of them were printed and bound by Royal Jongbloed in the Netherlands. This edition did not depart from that standard set by Jongbloed in the past.

This edition was shipped in a cardboard shipping box via the U.S.P.S. The hardcover comes in a bubble envelope. The cowhide paste-down came in a smaller box. The goatskin edition arrived undamaged, and in perfect condition. The Bible was packed along with the Bible Armor carrying case. The package was cushioned with brown paper. The Bible Armor was in a plastic bag. The Bible was bubble wrapped. It was also wrapped with two paper bands, as is usual with premium goatskin edge-lined Bibles. These bands keep the supple leather from becoming deformed, and in the case of a semi, or full, yapp they keep them bent in to the text block. In times past, full yapp covers kept the text block protected. Keep in mind, these Bibles should never be stored vertically on a shelf! Never! When can you store them vertically on a shelf? NEVER! Glad we got that straight.

P1000567
P1000568
P1000572
P1000573
P1000575
P1000576
P1000602

The text block is the same one used in the hardcover, and cowhide Bibles. There are two cowhide options. You can purchase the edge-lined, or the case bound edition. The hardcover’s text block does not have rounded corners. It comes with two ribbon markers. The Cowhide Bibles, and the goatskin have rounded corners. They all have rounded spines. The hardcover, and the cowhide paste-down/case bound Bibles have the narrower 1/4” ribbon markers. The two edge-lined editions come with three of the wider 3/8” ribbon markers.

P1000600
IMG_20211119_190633
P1000556
P1000587
P1000586
IMG_20211119_190319
P1000558

The covers are dramatically different in tactile experience as well as smell. The edge-lined goatskin of course is the most supple. The paste-down cowhide is comparable to a Cambridge calfsplit leather. The surface is not as glossy and smooth. The leather editions all smell like… leather. What did you expect?

P1000578
P1000583
IMG_20211119_190333
IMG_20211119_190345
P1000539
P1000537

Each edition comes with head and tail bands that match the covers. The edge-lined ones have five spine hubs. The paste down and hardcover have gold colored foil heat stamped lines where the hubs would have been. All of them have, “Holy Bible, LSB Legacy Standard Bible, Steadfast Bibles,” heat stamped in gold colored foil on their spines. All of them have smyth-sewn spines. They all employ a 9.5 point font, that is line matched. That means that on the page facing you the text is printed directly over the unturned pages text so that the lines of text line up over one another. This helps reduce eye strain while reading, and helps if you are prone to headaches while reading for prolonged periods of time. Since these editions are printed on a cream colored french milled 32 g.s.m. Bible paper as well as having line matching, and modern printing, they are all a pleasure to read regardless of which edition you decide to purchase. From the value of the hardcover to the suppleness of the premium goatskin cover, you’ll enjoy the same text block. This text block is something you have to see. Finding this quality in a $40 Bible is very uncommon.

P1000599

The text is in a single column, verse layout. Paragraphs are denoted by the verse number or a letter being bold. There are section headings in bold print. Page numbers are at the top center in read. Chapter numbers are in drop cap style and printed in red. This is a black letter edition. It is a text edition so there are no cross references or study notes. Italics denote English words that do not appear in the original languages, but are implied by them. An asterisk lets you know that the Greek verb was present tense, but rendered with an English past tense in order to conform with modern usage. Personal pronouns referring to God are capitalized where appropriate. Small caps are used when a passage from the OT is being quoted by someone in the NT, or when they are paraphrasing a citation from the OT. Brackets let you know you are looking at text that does not appear in the oldest collections of text, and probably were not in the original autoscripts.

P1000595

All but the hardcover had art gilt page edges. For those who do not know what this is, it is a red pigment under the gold colored finish on the page edges. Like many book features today, they are decorative. This was not always the sole purpose of these features in the past. Spine hubs were where the signatures were sewn into cords in the spine. Head and tail bands were where the signatures were tied in. Art gilt page edges kept the moisture of a humid room from penetrating deep into the text block. You get the idea. Much of the decorative features were once functional.

If you have ever purchased a Shuyler Bible from evangelicalbibles.com, a premium E.S.V. or a premium Cambridge edition, you are probably already familiar with the quality of Bibles printed and bound by Jongbloed. If you have not seen, or held one of these editions, you should consider the investment. Expensive Bibles may seem like an extravagant expenditure to you, and they may be, depending on your budget. If you can afford one, it is a good investment. These Bibles will last a very long time if properly cared for. You could foreseeably hand this Bible down to your children, or grandchildren. Think about what it would mean for a believer a couple generations away, to be reading the very same Bible you held in your hands all of those years. They could read your notes, look at your underlines, and understand a connection to you, even though you went on to be with Christ years before they were born. I would love to have something like that from my grandparents.

My subjective opinion is that this Bible is of such similar quality to other Bibles produced by Jongbloed, and the price being comparable, there is no reason not to purchase one. Couple those facts with the fact that I believe the LSB will demonstrate that it is the new champ when it comes to communicating accurately the intended meanings of God the author, and you have a winner. I could go on about the paper, and the printing, and the high quality materials and manufacturing processes, but the real star here is the accuracy of the LSB translation itself. The men at Master’s have done a fine job, and I plan on scrapping all of my other daily use Bibles to replace them with LSB editions as they become available. I am looking forward to a thinline for carrying around, a MacArthur study Bible, and a full cross reference large print. In conclusion, visit 316publishers here, and go buy one that fits your budget, and get to reading!

Don’t forget to look at my flickr albums for these editions for more detailed images.

Hardcover

Cowhide paste-down/casebound

Shamar goatskin edge-lined

Bible Reviews · Bibles

The Legacy Standard Bible!

Here is just one interesting translation choice the translators of the Legacy Standard Bible (L.S.B.) made that I think is an improvement. I have found many so far.


1995 New American Standard Bible (N.A.S.B.)2020 New American Standard Bible (N.A.S.B.)English Standard Version (E.S.V.)Legacy Standard Bible (L.S.B.)
Exodus 4:2121 The LORD said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders which I have put in your power; but I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go.And the Lord said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders which I have put in your power; but I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go.And the LORD said to Moses, “When you go back to Egypt, see that you do before Pharaoh all the miracles that I have put in your power. But I will harden his heart, so that he will not let the people go.And Yahweh said to Moses, “When you go to return to Egypt, see to it that all the miraculous wonders which I have put in your hand, that you do them before Pharaoh; but as for Me, I will harden his heart with strength so that he will not let the people go.

If you’d like to view the Hebrew text the LSB utilized in part for the translation you can see it here for free.

The italic formatted text in the LSB is used to denote English words that do not appear in the original language texts, but are implied by them.

The first thing you’ll notice is that the LSB uses Yahweh for the tetragrammaton instead of the conventional, “LORD.” This is a more accurate translation. I understand why it wasn’t changed sooner, but I am glad to see that it has finally happened. This was a bold and encouraging move.

The next thing you’ll see is that the other translations read, “…When you go back to Egypt…” The LSB uses, “…When you return to Egypt…” This may seem like a distinction without difference, but I appreciate the effort to be as accurate as possible. I think we would all infer that the implication of, “to go back” is that Moses is going back to Egypt, and that it was there that he had come from. Even so, “return” removes all doubt that this is what was meant.

The hand and a man’s work, or what he is doing, are related in Hebrew. An open hand can even mean power like יָד yâd earlier on in the verse. So seeing the connection here we can understand why the other translations went with, “…put in your power…” Since the LSB uses, “… put in your hand…” we can see the correlation directly from the text without the necessity of getting the concordance, and Hebrew lexicon out. Again, there is nothing wrong with the other translations.

This is the section that really gets me. I am starting to love the LSB. Instead of, “…but I will harden his heart …” The LSB uses, “… but as for Me, I will harden his heart with strength…” I may be wrong. I’m not a Hebrew expert, but from what I can gather there is an implication of strength or fortification in Hebrew word חָזַק ḥâzaq that is lost in the other English translations. The LSB puts that intended meaning back into the text. To back up just a bit, I also like how the first part of the sentenced is phrased as well. In English we always capitalize, “I.” When you capitalize personal pronouns in a translation to denote deity, and the letter, “I” is always capitalized it can perhaps cause a bit of confusion. By phrasing it the way they did, they kept the meaning, and helped the reader understand that it was God doing the hardening.

I am really enjoying this translation, and hope that you will order yourself an LSB. Here is the link to 316publishing.com where you can order one. They are the sole retailer of this translation.

Repentance · sanctification · Uncategorized

“The Christian in Complete Armour” by William Gurnall.

image of the christian in complete armour 3 volume set

I’ve been reading, “The Christian in Complete Armour” by William Gurnall from The Banner of Truth Trust. I have to say, it is quite different than what I suspected. This edition is a three volume set of paperback books, and is very affordable. If you are looking for some moving devotional material I highly recommend it. Here is a short excerpt from one of the sections.

“For it is God’s Word which teaches us how to put on Christ and His graces so that we are fitly armed. Never flatter yourself into thinking you can do without this priceless book. We have all known those who content themselves with a profession of Christ and a smattering of gifts and works, and do not wish to know if there is more to the Christian life. They are the ones whose graces freeze when winter winds buffet their souls. But the saint whose faith has been insulated from error by the truth of the gospel will be able to withstand all Satan’s icy blasts.” William Gurnall’s The Christian in Complete Armour from The Banner of Truth Trust. WWW.BannerofTruth.org