Another interesting project involving the TNIV is an edition released only a couple weeks ago, The Books of the Bible. This obviates all chapter and verse numbers and typesets the text as literature, according to genre. Revolutionary, now isn’t it? (View samples, which include the books of Micah, Ecclesiastes, Philippians and James in full, here.) Another feature that I celebrate is that whole books and multi-book sequences which have been unnaturally and arbitrarily split in the history of Bible translation, transmission and printing (Luke-Acts, Samuel-Kings, Chronicles-Ezra-Nehemiah) are here printed together as literary units. I am less sure about the order in which the Biblical books are printed, although a certain logic is evident in the arrangement. But I do appreciate the creativity it exhibits: for instance, while it is certainly a bit of a shock for my inner Neo-Griesbachian to see the Gospel of St. Matthew thus displaced, it never occurred to me to read it in conjunction with another “Hebraic” book such as James until I saw the order of books in this edition. I do not find the grouping of Hebrews with Matthew and James acceptable, however, in view of its literary style (a central concern of this edition). It could have been better placed as a lone-standing book immediately after the Luke-Paul grouping. Matthew-James then could have been placed at the very beginning as a witness of the Hebraic character of earliest Palestinian Christian communities, followed by Luke-Paul, Hebrews as just suggested, Mark-Peter, the Gospel and Epistles of John, and the Revelation. (And I swear that any resemblance between this proposed arrangement and my above-named preferred solution to the Synoptic Problem is merely coincidental―though I’m sure that Dom Orchard would be proud.) The icing on the cake is that the International Bible Society is making this little jewel available for a mere $8.99 plus shipping.
Also, you may remember my recent discovery of the NIV Archaelogical Study Bible at local Wal-Mart, of all places. While browsing Rick Mansfield’s very interesting blog This Lamp, I came across his helpful review of this Bible, which he later revisited. Both posts are very informative (which seems to be a trend in that blog.).
So you see, it may be a long time since I had the Spring Arbor Bible catalog virtually memorized, and Borders may have utterly forsaken us all, but with a little help from the bibliobloggers it won’t be hard to catch up!