Trying to find a Bible that may not exist. Any suggestions?

Discussion in 'Sacred Scripture' started by Melkite, May 17, 2023.

  1. Melkite

    Melkite Member

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    When I was still a nominal Episcopalian, I read the Bible for the first time. It was my mother's that she got at her confirmation I think. I think it was an RSV with Apocrypha, but it may have been KJV. I was 15 and 16 at the time, and didn't have any problems with comprehension, so I'm thinking it was probably RSV. Maybe it was just cause it was my first time reading the Bible, but I enjoyed reading that Bible more than any other Bible I've read since.

    I have recently been looking at KJV Bibles with the Apocrypha. My one qualm with Catholic Bibles is that they don't include the Appendix books that the Vulgate did, but the English Bibles with Apocrypha usually do. These were also in the Apocrypha of my mother's Bible.

    Add to that, I am a Melkite Catholic, so we use the Orthodox canon of the Old Testament, which includes 3 Maccabees, 1 Esdras and Psalm 151. So I can't find a Catholic Bible that has those three, and the only English Bibles that have all of those are RSV and NRSV with the expanded Apocrypha. I like the idea of having the expanded Apocrypha, so I can read 4 Maccabees and 2 Esdras. I want it all! ;) I have the Orthodox Study Bible, and it is nice enough, since it is based on the NKJV for the New Testament. But it doesn't have the same reading feel as the RSV that I read first. I've read the NRSV before and am not fond of that translation at all, but most English Bibles that I can find that have the expanded Apocrypha are NRSV.

    So RSV with expanded Apocrypha would seem to be the right thing for me, right? But, while looking at KJV Bibles, I discovered the New Cambridge Paragraph Bible. I love the font and the paragraph format, but have read a lot of negative reviews of the thin pages. I remember my mother's Bible having thin pages as well, but the reviews of the NCPB sound as if the pages are even thinner.

    I've also found on eBay a limited edition Defender Bible KJV with expanded Apocrypha. But there are no pictures of the table of contents or the style of paper and font. I also have no idea what a Defender Bible is. If anyone knows, please fill me in!

    So, ideally, I would love to find an RSV with expanded Apocrypha with thicker pages, in paragraph format like the NCPB, or the KJV with the same. If I could find all that as a KJV/RSV parallel Bible, I'd be in hog's heaven! Does anyone have any recommendations? I'd also be open to an NKJV if something exists.

    Also, I don't know much about the ESV, but reading about it, it sounds like it is a more traditional translation from the RSV, compared to the NRSV. But from the samples I've read, it doesn't have that same hieratic feel to it that the KJV and, imo, the RSV have. What are your thoughts there?
     
  2. Invictus

    Invictus Well-Known Member

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    If you want a solid English translation of the Greek OT, there’s really no substitute today for the NETS edition of the Septuagint. It includes versions of the deuterocanonicals not found in the RSV editions, and unlike the NRSV, and the NKJV-based Orthodox Study Bible, the books of the protocanon were translated from the LXX, not the Hebrew. With that in mind, I’d pair the NETS LXX with the NRSV (or the RSV), and that’s probably the closest you’ll get to a true Eastern Rite Bible in English. There is an edition of the 1904 Patriarchal Text out there, but it’s clunky and I wouldn’t recommend it for regular reading. The RSV and NRSV aren’t strictly based on the Byzantine text, but in most important respects (e.g., exclusion of the Story of the Woman Caught in Adultery in John 8, and the Johannine Comma), they are arguably closer to the traditional Orthodox text that the Greek Fathers knew and used than the NKJV, on which the OSB is based. If you can find a Catholic edition of the RSV (like the Ignatius edition), that might be even better. I was EO for many years and that is the solution that worked for me: NETS OT + RSV/NRSV NT. Hope this helps.
     
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  3. Shane R

    Shane R Well-Known Member

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    I bought one a while back and the paper is nearly comparable to the tissue paper that is sometimes stuffed in new shoes.