As the title suggests, this review is going to be about the Common English Bible. Its an example of a bible that gets alot right - especially in the Old Testament. Of course it gets some things wrong, as do all bibles, and I should add that I am wholly inadequate to call any bible "wrong", but in my humble opinion it has some flaws. But less than most!
God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him won’t perish but will have eternal life. John 3:16
Ezekiel has always been a hard one for me, He's my favourite prophet, but the beginning of the book is extremely hard reading, especially to comprehend. I found it much easier in the CEB.
The voice said to me: Human one, stand on your feet, and I’ll speak to you. As he spoke to me, a wind came to me and stood me on my feet, and I heard someone addressing me. He said to me: Human one, I’m sending you to the Israelites, a traitorous and rebellious people. They and their ancestors have been rebelling against me to this very day. I’m sending you to their hardheaded and hard-hearted descendants, and you will say to them: The Lord God proclaims. Whether they listen or whether they refuse, since they are a household of rebels, they will know that a prophet has been among them. Ezekiel 2:1-5 CEB
And he said to me, “Son of man, stand on your feet, and I will speak with you.” And as he spoke to me, the Spirit entered into me and set me on my feet, and I heard him speaking to me. And he said to me, “Son of man, I send you to the people of Israel, to nations of rebels, who have rebelled against me. They and their fathers have transgressed against me to this very day. The descendants also are impudent and stubborn: I send you to them, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ And whether they hear or refuse to hear (for they are a rebellious house) they will know that a prophet has been among them. ESV
The english in the ESV is evidently for a higher reading level:" transgressed" , "impudent", "stubborn". Read through both and see which one you prefer. I would say that both are equally valid in my opinion. Although I prefer the easier read of the CEB, simply because it is readable.
The NEB/REB is my favourite translation, and it's a higher reading level than the ESV in some ways. So its not just a matter of vocabulary. Its stated that the CEB is made to be read, just like the KJV was. Thats also why there is a lack of theological terminology, the last thing you want is for a person to be listening to a passage and wondering what words mean, thus being distracted. This is a plus for the CEB, it means that rather than using a word like propitiation, it has to define propitiation:
Through his faithfulness, God displayed Jesus as the place of sacrifice where mercy is found by means of his blood. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness in passing over sins that happened before, Romans 3:25 CEB
[Christ Jesus] whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. ESV
So you see the benefit here, instead of hefty theology terms, we have terms defined for us. Its a good idea, they even passed over terms like "atonement, because it was felt that an invented theological term was no way going to surpass an actual explanation. Respect to the translators. I purchased this from Amazon, Common English Bible .
|Nice size comparison. HCSB Ultrathin.|
(Above) This Bible isnt leather, its a kind of imitation leather, Decotone, its high quality, and is nothing like the sort of thin, brittle stuff you get on a gift and award bible, its warm, soft and pliable. Its as good as leather, perhaps wont last as long, but it will take alot of damage. Its similar material to my HCSB ultrathin [on the left]. The text is smaller, as you will see. but if you have reasonably good vision you should be okay.
Theres something about this title page [Above]. That splash! It denotes high quality, how many bibles have a printed photograph?
Apologies for the tip of my finger at the bottom. This presentation page is a different sort of paper, and needed assistance. Its glossy, very nice. I like the verse at the bottom, again, classy.
[CEB left, HCSB right]. I love the HCSB, but the font is ghastly and gives me a headache. In purchasing bibles I am going to read, I pray for decent font. Its something I have to give kudos to the CEB printers, and something I rebuke the printers of the NCV and HCSB for. If you notice on the HCSB, OT quotes are bolded, CEB they are italicised. Either way, the quotes are denoted, although it looks a bit prettier in the HCSB despite the font. differences shown below.
|Common English Bible 1 Corinthians 1:18-21 [ABOVE]|
|Holman Christian Standard Bible 1 Corinthians 1:18-21|
I wanted to compare the CEB with the HCSB because both endeavour to make the Bible as accessible to the reader, whilst the HCSB tows the line between formality and dynamism, the CEB tends towards the latter. I hope this may help you to make a choice for a bible that suits your reading level and concentration. I won't really go over the CEB's use of "Human One" instead of "Son of Man", or anything else that certain christian sects would rant and rave about, although I have mentioned it. The CEB is not yet my number one, but as an up to date translation it may just get there. I for one cannot think of those flaws I mentioned earlier. I love it! I hope you enjoyed the extra addition of lots of photos. I had to make the effort to do this wonderful translation justice.
God bless you all!