It can be completely overwhelming.
You walk into the store, and the shelves are lined with thousands and thousands of options.
Or, you go to your favorite online store, and the choices are endless.
Where do you start?
Choosing a new Bible.
There was a day when choosing a new Bible was pretty simple.
You would go to the local Baptist Book Store (or something similar) and purchase your Bible in person.
You had only one real choice to make: “How much do you want to spend?”
Now… you will need to plan ahead in order to make a wise purchase. There are so many options, that you will need to do some research before you buy a new Bible.
In order to save you some time and to assist you in your planning, I’d like to suggest 4 Great Questions to Consider When Buying a New Bible:
Question One – What translation would you like to read/study?
As you consider purchasing a new Bible, you will need to decide which translation you would like to read and study. There are so many to choose from.
I’ve created a Bible Translation Printable to assist you in this process. Click on the link. Then, save and print the printable.
In addition, I’ve linked to a few articles that may give you further insight into choosing a translation:
The first is from Crosswalk.com. This post actually offers a quiz you can take to find the perfect translation for you. Link HERE.
The second is an article from The American Bible Society. You can link to this article about choosing a Bible translation HERE.
Bottom line… choose a translation that is easy for you to understand and read.
This is YOUR Bible.
If you don’t understand the wording, you won’t read it and use it.
~ Once you have chosen your translation, you are ready to move to question two.
Question Two – What is the purpose of this Bible?
In other words, how do you want to use it?
What is the main reason for this new Bible?
When you look online or walk around a bookstore, you will notice that there are Bibles for every purpose under the sun.
Here are few of the Bible Types:
Study Bibles –
These Bibles are filled with all sorts of tips, quotes, references, notes, charts, maps, graphs, and a large concordance in the back.
Reference Bibles –
These are compact Bibles that offer the just the basics. Often these Bibles are used for carrying to church.
Audio/Electronic Bibles –
You can buy your Bible in a media or electronic format. These Bibles can be on MP3’s, CD’s, or through an electronic device.
Children’s Bibles –
Many Bibles are created just for kids, full of pictures and written in such a way that little children can understand.
Men’s or Women’s Bibles –
These Bibles are written with either men or women in mind. Many share quotes, devotionals, and other male/female related material.
Large Print Bibles –
For those individuals that need larger print, many of the mainstream companies are formatting Bibles in larger lettering.
Student Bibles –
For the teenager or young adult, there are numerous choices of Bibles. Some even look like magazines. If shopping for a student, look around. There are some excellent choices in this genre.
Special Occasion Bibles –
If you are choosing a Bible for a new bride, a new parent, or a friend in the military, you might want to buy a specialty Bible. You can find both entire Bibles and New Testaments to celebrate all sorts of events.
Devotional Bibles –
Many Bibles offer reading plans and weekly devotions in the Bible. These are sort of an “all-in-one” type of Bible that many people enjoy. You can find devotional Bibles for men, for women, for students, and more.
Journaling Bibles –
These are some of the newest and most popular Bibles on the market. I will talk about these Bibles more in a future post.
Basically, you need to decide what you will use this new Bible for…
- For church services?
- For a Bible study, you are taking part in?
- For personal study, reading, and reflection?
- For family devotions?
- As a gift for someone?
- For some other purpose?
~ Once you know your purpose, you are ready to move to question three.
Question Three – What size Bible do you want to carry and use?
You will need to decide two things to answer this question:
~ How heavy is too heavy/big?
~ How good are your eyes?
Size and Weight of Bibles
Bibles can range from about 2-10 pounds. This may not seem like much, but if you are carrying other books and things with you, a 10 pound Bible can get heavy.
And, if you attend a large church, you may be toting that Bible a long way around that church.
Some people choose to have a light-weight Bible to take with them and a larger Bible to keep at home.
Lettering of the Bible
Bible font sizes can range from “get out your magnifying glass” to “I can read that clearly.”
Most Bibles are labeled “small print,” “regular print,” or “large print.”
You will want to really look at the font size of the Bible before you buy it. If you are buying online, be sure to enlarge an image to “full screen” so that you can see the actual size of the lettering.
There was a time when I wanted to carry a light weight Bible to church, but I didn’t want little bitty words. So, I chose a compact Bible with large print. I loved that Bible!
~ Once you know your Bible size and print, you are ready to move to the final question.
Question Four – How much do you want to spend on this Bible?
However, I noticed that not all Bibles are created equally.
You can find Bibles in all sorts of colors, styles, and price ranges. Most stores offer three types of Bibles: basic, deluxe, and premium.
However, I didn’t think those descriptions were quite descriptive enough.
For the sake of ease, I’ve come up with my own categories. Maybe my summaries will give you a little more info:
Bible Type One – “Just Cheap!”
These are those little gift Bibles or very poorly made Bibles that you can get for around $5-10. Usually, the print is itty bitty, and the quality is awful.
Bible Type Two – “The Hymnal Bible.”
This is that Bible that looks like a hymnal. It’s made out of hard cardboard. They call it a “hardback” Bible. Most of these cost about $10-20. I think they are excellent choices for children and students. They are durable and easy to handle.
Bible Type Three – “A Good Bible.”
This is that Bible that we all love. It’s not too shabby, but it’s not too expensive. It comes in lots of styles and colors and can take a lot of wear and tear. These Bibles can range from about $15-50, depending on the type and binding. Likely, you own at least one of these “Good Bibles.”
Bible Type Four – “Fancy Bible.”
These are the Bibles that either have the amazing leather and premium binding. Or, they serve some special purpose. Some “Fancy Bibles” are filled with references, notes, helps maps, and charts. Many of the study Bibles fit into this category. They are just fancier than the other Bibles. You can expect to pay more for these Bibles – likely between $50-100.
~ Once you know how much you are willing to spend, you are almost ready to purchase a Bible.
You’ve now considered the four most important questions about Bible buying:
- Which Translation?
- What’s the main Purpose?
- What Size Bible and What Font Size?
- What will it Cost?
Now, that you have determined these four answers, you will want to do a little shopping around for the best price.
Where will you purchase this Bible?
Typically, I like to check three sources when looking for a new Bible:
- Lifeway – they run great sales on Bibles!
- Christian Book Discounters – they offer low prices!
- Amazon.com – they offer free shipping!
So, for my example, I choose the very popular Life Application Bible. I want it in the New Living Translation, in large print, and in the TuTone style.
I looked up the Life Application Study Bible NLT, Large Print, TuTone style at my favorite online stores:
~ At Amazon, it was $50.52 – with tax and free shipping – $55.19
~ At CBD, it was $58.59 plus tax and shipping – around $70.00
~ At Lifeway, it was $58.59 on sale – plus tax and shipping – around $70.00.
Looks like I would buy the Bible at Amazon.com.
Here’s a free printable to help you to remember all of this info. Just right click. Then, save it and print it off.
Be sure and stop by next week… I’m going to share a post called, “14 Awesome Bible Suggestions from 14 Awesome Women.”
I’ve asked several of my friends to share which Bible they use and why. I think you will enjoy reading their suggestions.
So, what do you think?
What questions do you ask when buying a new Bible?
What type of Bible do you use?
**And, would you do me a favor — if this article has encouraged you today — would you share it with someone else?
Maybe you can send it to a friend or family member?
~ My resources for this article:
- Lifeway.com and Lifeway Stores
~ This blog occasionally uses affiliate links and may contain affiliate links. Melanie Redd is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. For more on my disclosure policy, click HERE.
~ I regularly link to these AMAZING SITES~
© Melanie Redd and Ministry of Hope, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner are strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Melanie Redd and Ministry of Hope with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.