This is a very quick review of the ESV with Apocrypha, which I received in the mail earlier today (note: this was not a review copy; I purchased it for my own use!).
After all the recent hype over hipster bibles, more pleasing aesthetic bibles and various reader’s bibles, I find the ESV with Apocrypha to be a refreshing, and affordable (!), alternative. In fact, in my opinion it is superior on almost every count.
The volume is published by Oxford University Press, which is a positive for a number of reasons:
(1) the standard text found in all of the ESV versions published by Crossway has been replaced by a type that is much kinder to the eyes;
(2) there are little to no cross-references (which I don’t like, but it makes for a better reading experience), thus all those little numbers and letters peppering the text are gone;
(3) the binding is superb, tightly sewn and obviously durable, and the book lies completely flat when in use. love this!
The size is actually quite compact; this is a Bible easily carried to church, bible study, whatever. I have many bibles in my library, but this is one which I will probably grab from the shelf first as I run off to teach a class or head out the door to our home group (although there will be the constant temptation to flip to the back and read the Apocrypha!).
This final point is, well, the selling point for me. I now have an English Bible with the full Apocrypha included. One negative is that the books are all placed behind the NT, but at least they are there. Plus, the translators of this edition of the Apocrypha are all stellar folks, and they followed the translation principles of the original ESV translators, which I like. Literal without being static, dynamic enough to be readable. The list of books included is below:
I highly recommend purchasing this Bible if you want a version that is affordable, highly readable, very portable, a trustworthy translation and includes the books which were included in printed Bibles for most of the church’s history. They may not be considered ‘inspired’ Scripture today, but they will broaden your understanding of Scripture in many ways. Plus, they are actually really enjoyable to read!
The ESV with Apocrypha can be purchased here for about $20 (less than the ESV Readers edition!):