Friday, September 22, 2017

NLT-CE from Tyndale

I was really excited to receive from Tyndale a review copy of their brand new Catholic Holy Bible Reader's Edition NLT-CE for two main reasons.  First, I know there are a number of you who have desired an approved edition of the NLT.  You now have an edition available for purchase here in the United States.  (For more about the editions that came out last year in India, go here.)  Secondly, it is great to see a Protestant publisher try their hand, once again, at a Catholic edition.  I hope this continues, since it might mean that nicer, more well-made bible editions could be in our future.  So, I encourage all of you to consider getting this edition, so that Tyndale can see that there is an audience for further Catholic editions.  (Plus, it is a really nice edition too!)

The NLT text used is the 2015 revision.  The text for the Deuterocanonical books appear to be the same ones that were originally done for the ill-fated and unapproved NLT Catholic Reference Edition.  I will have to do some more reading to see, but I haven't notced too many differences. The page that lists the translation teams states that Philip Comfort, J. Julius Scott, David Barrett, and James Swanson translated the Deuterocanonicals, which, if I am not mistaken, are the same folks who did the earlier version. My understanding, and I could be wrong, is that the biblical scholars who approved the India edition that was first released last year simply reviewed the text with suggesting a few minor changes. I will be happy to be corrected if I am wrong about this.  Here is a photo of the copyright page:

For a fairly straight-forward readers Bible it is fantastic.  This edition has a very clear double-column page-layout.  (It reminds me a bit of HarperOne's NRSVs to be honest.) Since this is meant to be primarily a readers bible, I believe most of you will find that it succeeds in accomplishing that goal.  Bolded paragraph headings and line-matching makes it a easy to read from in most any setting and light.  The paper is a bright white, not cream colored.   The NLT-CE is sewn and includes a ribbon marker.  The hardcover is sturdy, and combined with the sewn binding, should last a long time.  It might also make a good candidate for a rebinding project.  Overall, a very nice product that is simply, yet beautifully made.

At the bottom of each page you will find textual notes, most often indicating a more literal rendering of the Hebrew or Greek.  In addition, you will find in the New Testament direct cross-references when the Old Testament is cited.  There are a few references found in the Old Testament as well.  All notes are indicated in the text by an asterisk.

Each book comes with an introduction, outline, and a short blurb about themes, purpose, authorship, and date of composition.  These are short, but helpful.  This is not intended to be a study bible, yet the introductions are very good and informative for the relative small size of them.

Finally, and to my surprise, there is found at the back of the Bible a generous set of maps.  And yes, there is a map of the Greek Empire included.  In total, there are 9 maps which cover the entire biblical period.  These are newly produced maps, with a copyright of 2016.

So, once again, I encourage you to got pick this edition up.  My edition is nicely made and a joy to read from.  

*Thank you to Tyndale for providing this review copy for an honest review by this reviewer*


rolf said...

Thanks for the review Timothy! Tyndale has been trying to publish Bibles for Catholics for years, first with The Catholic Living Bible (which received an imprimatur) and later with a NLT Catholic Edition (that never received an imprimatur) and now with a approved Catholic Edition! It is nice to be wanted! Too many Bible publishers don't care to try to publish a Catholic edition of the Bible (Cambridge among the most well known).

Unknown said...


Could you get me the following verses from this edition:
Gen 1:2
Psalm 1:1
Isaiah 7:14
Matt 2:1
Luke 1:28
John 1:51
John 18:5-6


Timothy said...

I don't currently have the book on me, but they will match up to the 2015 edition of the NLT.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the review! I've got a copy on preorder, and now I'm even more excited about getting this!


Evergreen Dissident said...

Timothy, I have to practice a fairly rigorous "culling of the herd" when it comes to buying more Bibles. For every one I get, one has to go. So, that in mind, would it be worth culling out my beloved Catholic edition of The Message to get the Catholic NLT?

Timothy said...


That is kind of a personal decision which would be difficult for me to make a recommendation on. Personally, I prefer The Message because it is so different. The NLT has tried to find a more balance between dynamic and literal with each revision, moving more more towards the middle of the spectrum. I prefer The Message because it is on the far dynamic side. I have plenty of formal bibles to study with if I choose, but if I want something different, shocking, good for lectio, I'll stick with my MSG-CE. But that's just me. Feel free to drop me an email if you want to chat about this more.

RebelWIL said...

I'll more then likely enjoy this version as I did the 2015 with the one exception being I'll get the Kindle version since my library already has way too many Bible's (many duplicate versions, just different printers).

Biblical Catholic said...

"Timothy, I have to practice a fairly rigorous "culling of the herd" when it comes to buying more Bibles. For every one I get, one has to go. So, that in mind, would it be worth culling out my beloved Catholic edition of The Message to get the Catholic NLT?"


I understand concerns about space limitations of books, that is why I now buy e-books almost exclusively, e-books take up absolutely no physical space, and you can have hundreds of books, including dozens of Bibles, in the palm of your hand. I own dozens of e-book Bibles myself, including many study Bibles and commentaries, almost every translation these days is available as an e-book, and many of them are actually free, which is great.

Anonymous said...

Did we ever get a clear idea of what was meant by "modifications required for Catholic orthodoxy" in this video?

Evergreen Dissident said...

I am not opposed to e-books, except in two cases: the Bible, and Shakespeare. I won't read those two collections in e-books. I will hold God's Word in my hands, and I will hold the Bard's words in my hands, when I read them. Call me old fashioned!

Ronny Tadena said...

I'm wondering if Tim or anyone else here has any thoughts about this newly approved NLT vs the Good News Bible? This seems like an obvious comparison to my mind as they're both (now) approved translations that both seem to have as their goal the rendering of Sacred Scripture in as simple language as is defensible by modern translation standards.

As Tim says, these are both formal translations, and not aiming at the same thing that it seems to me that a work like the Message would be, namely creating something of an intentionally loose translation to drive home the larger point of a passage, rather than attempting to formally translate.

Not meant at all as a knock on the Message of course, I respect Petterson's goals, but it seems clear to me that even he would say that formal translation was not his primary concern.

As far as how to compare the NLT and GNB, I'm just wondering if anyone has thoughts as to which is likely the most easy to read and understand. I'd be curious about which is perceived as being more accurate as well, but it seems there's always a degree of subjectivity in a question like that, so I'll just stick to asking about readability for now.

Got a new little one at home, and though its still a few years out, it's fun for me to think about translations that I might try to read to him or have him try to learn to read on. Trying to raise up the next generation of Bible obsessed Catholics after all! ;-)

- Ronny

Thomas said...

Ronny, if you go to the website you can compare up to five bible translations side by side I clouding the NLT, good news and the message as well as the NRSV-CENTER, RSV-CE AND NABRE. Check it out and see which you like best.

Biblical Catholic said...


"I am not opposed to e-books, except in two cases: the Bible, and Shakespeare. I won't read those two collections in e-books. I will hold God's Word in my hands, and I will hold The Bard's words in my hands when I read them. Call me old-fashioned!"

I have to admit that I don't follow this logic at all, how are you not holding an e-reader in your hands? There are some arguments against e-books that I think make sense, like the fact that it is difficult to read a book that has lots of footnotes or an index but this one I don't get.

Unknown said...

Tim upon further inspection it appears that this edition is glued not sewn. Am I seeing it wrong?