There is so much to consider when you’re picking out a Bible. And it can be a bit daunting. I know this because I just Bible-shopped. It really is something that you want to take seriously because it is what you’re going ot use to get to know the Lord better. And while I would argue that you can’t really go wrong with a Bible, I do think it’s important that you spend a little time picking out one that will be beneficial for you, easy for you to read, and make you love studying it!
While there is alot to consider, it also doesn’t have to be as hard as you think! So here are three easy steps to picking out the best Bible for you!
1. Pick what kind of Bible you want.
There are many different kinds of Bibles out there, so just think about what specific kind of Bible you’re after. Are you wanting tons of space to write? One with lots of study notes? One that is just for reading? A paraphrased version?
To me, there are three main kinds of Bibles: study Bibles, journaling Bibles, and for lack of a term, I’m going to call them “reading Bibles.”
Study Bibles are going to have tons of notes, maps, charts, graphs, and they’re all a little different. If this is the kind you want, I would suggest going to a Bible bookstore and browsing through the different kinds that they have just for this purpose– see what specific notes, charts, graphs, maps, etc you like best. Some focus more on different things, so it’s important to figure out what best suites what you’re after! For example, some study Bibles have more practical application notes while some have more historical/contextual notes. So just see which one you like best!
Journaling Bibles have tons of room for you to write in which is so great if you are wanting to really take tons of notes or draw in your Bible. I love using mine as an all-in-one place to highlight, cross reference, define words, make connections- it is scribbled all over. Lots of journaling Bibles just have a single column of text and nearly half the page for you to write! I know I have some friends who use this kind of Bible for taking their sermon notes too!
What I am referring to when I say “reading Bibles” are Bibles that are primarily for that- reading! There are tons out there that don’t have tons of notes or tons of room for writing, but normally these are the super fun colors, sizes, etc! I have one like this that I just love that is has a beautiful white cover and is nearly pocket sized, so it is great for throwing in a bag to take to church or studies or to read in a waiting room- whatever! But the notes and room to write is minimal.
2. Pick your translation.
Once you’ve picked a type of Bible, then you can move on to the next biggest task. Picking a translation. The best way that I can tell you to pick a translation is to choose a passage of Scripture. A passage, not just a verse. Maybe even one that you know and love. Then read it in several different transaltions. Once you find one or two that you like, I would then read several chapters or a full story in those different translations. My recommendations would be Ruth, James, or Philemon for this because they are all fairly short books that you could read a time or two in probably about an hour or so! Comparing translations and seeing which version you understand the best is SO important when picking a Bible, so take you time with this.
To find different translations, you could either head to the bookstore or just use an online resource. My favorite way to do this is to use www.biblegateway.com. There are a TON of translations on this website and you can read as much as you need to before picking!
Here is Psalm 23 in the translations that I use and love, but there are wayyyy more than just these!
3. Pick the fun stuff!
Once you have the specific kind of Bible and a translation, it’s on to the fun part! The cover, color, etc. My personal preference is leather because they seem to last the longest. Colors, embossing, and all that kind of stuff just varies Bible to Bible. If you are gifting a Bible, embossing can be a fun way to make it extra special. My hubby gifted me a Bible for Valentine’s Day and got my name and our anniversary embossed on it. It’s a lovely white Bible called “The Bride’s Bible” and that just took it to the next level of specialness for me. While this part might seem trivial, I do think that making your Bible something that you love is important too!
I hope that this helps you out if you are in the market for a new Bible! Like I said, I just Bible shopped at the beginning of the year, so I know it can seem a little daunting! I took about a month to actually make a decision, so don’t feel like you have to do all of this in one day either! Taking the extra time and care to pick out a Bible I really felt would help me in my walk with the Lord makes me love it (or them…I have bought several since! ha!) even more!
What’s your favorite Bible?! I would love to know- I’m always wanting to add to my collection! 🙂
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