July 27, 2006
July 29-30, 2006, weekend

July 28, 2006


Over the last 60 or so years, dozens and dozens of new translations and paraphrases of the Bible have appeared in print. Among the more intriguing paraphrases have been the Living Bible, the Cotton Patch version and the Message. But now Australians have fallen in love with a slang version, The Aussie Bible. Some of you know that I collect Bible translations. But this is one I don't yet own. Getting one would be a good excuse to visit Australia, however, which I've never done. If you have a favorite translation or paraphrase of the Bible, what is it?

* * *


I'll be quite brief today because I know many of you are busy today mourning the death on this date in 1750 of Johann Sebastian Bach, undoubtedly the greatest composer of organ music ever.

Keyboard_1I always mark his death date by remembering a quote from famed media critic Ben Bagdikian, who once said that trying to be a first-rate reporter and writer on an American newspaper is like trying to play Bach's "St. Matthew Passion" on a ukelele.

At any rate, from time to time here in this space I like to point you to other blogs I find interesting and worth my time. I hope you will find them worth yours, but not spend so much time on them that you forget mine.

One is written by Andy Bryan, a United Methodist minister in North Kansas City, Mo. It's called Enter the Rainbow, and I commend it to you. It's a good way of getting inside both the head and heart of a member of the clergy.

Another blog I recommend is written by Jim Jordan, an Episcopal layman from North Carolina. His blog is called, simply, Idle Thoughts: God, Christianity and Religion. Jim is a retired American history teacher who regularly looks at things in ways I hadn't thought about.

There are a hundredyskillion blogs out in the blogosphere, and I keep waiting to read about a multiblog pile-up on the information superhighway. If, among all those choices, you have one you particilarly like that's somehow faith related, let me know.

To read my latest Kansas City Star work, click here. (My column, tomorrow, by the way, is about how children learn about religion, and is written from a recent trip I took to Quincy, Mass., to visit the birthplace of John Adams.)

AND a P.S.:

Speaking of writing, I'll be teaching a weekend writing class Oct. 6-8 at the Kirkridge Retreat and Study Center in Bangor, Pa. Think about joining us. For a description of the class, click here. It's called "From Pain to Hope through Writing." In it, we'll spend some time thinking about what Christianity means by hope and then we'll go to those places of personal or collective pain in our lives and write about them, remembering what it means to have hope. We'll also share some of that writing with each other. Writing about pain can be a healing process as we write toward the light. The weekend begins with a Friday evening dinner and session and ends with lunch on Sunday. An Autumn weekend in the Poconos spent with words. What could be better? Hope to see you there.


Kansas Bob

Ditto your recommendation for Andy's blog ... it is heartfelt, thoughtful and interesting.

SC in KC

Regarding Bible versions...

I love the poetry of the KJV, Darby, and ESV. I love the word-for-word literal NASB for study. I love the idea-for-idea NIV, and this is the version I most often teach and preach from. All the paraphrases are interesting, almost like mini-commentaries.

I guess I'm most in love with the interlinears. There's just something about reading the Bible in its original languages that speaks to my heart.

It's hard to pick one favorite version, but my family has a wonderful study habit that I would like to share. We will, on occasion, all get a different version and take turns reading the same passage, then talk about the differences. The nuances that are revealed are edifying.

Joe Barone

Here's a blog I've always liked. I don't know that it has been mentioned here before:


Joe Barone

Also, you might want to try this one:


Andy B.

Thank you, Bill. However, I feel I need to share with you and your readers that there is absolutely no letter "t" in my last name anywhere! ;)

Dolores Lear

As you know, I can not wait until there is a High Tech translation of the Bible. It is the Code Book of Life from the creation/high tech colonization, to the fall to body birth, the Original Sin of Pure-bred Adam and Eve, to the Noah/Atlantis Planetary Flood, to Jesus going up into Space Alive in a physical body, to the Final Arm'ageddon nuclear war, the Planetary Judgement Day Fire of Man polluting their Eco system with nuclear waste, oil spills, trash dumps, etc. Colonization of Earth was done by High Tech Intelligent Design by our High Tech Ancestors called Lord, God, Father, etc. Our HTA will rescue people at Judgement Day and take them to a new planet they are colonizing after Fallen Man ruins Earth. High Tech is 'supernatural. Religion and Myth are both about High Tech on Planet Earth.

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