Tag Archives: Bible

A New Era in Biblical Studies Has Begun: Highlighters Designed Especially For Thin Bible Paper!

This could be the most important advance in biblical studies since Wellhausen’s Prolegomena. G.T. Luscombe – producer of bible accessories from Frankfort, Illinois –  has developed highlighters designed especially for highlighting Bibles! Using ink developed in Japan for low absorption into paper, the Zebrite highlighter avoids the annoying “bleed through” that you get when you highlight one side of that thin Bible paper and then turn the page and it looks like the next page is highlighted as well but in all the wrong places:

Zebrite: The G.T. Luscombe highlighter designed especially for Bible highlighting.

Zebrite: The G.T. Luscombe highlighter designed especially for Bible highlighting.

Hilary Greenbaum and Dana Rubinstein interview John Luscombe, the president and chief executive of G.T. Luscombe in the New York Times (“Lighting Up the Bible”, 20 January 2012):

Is there a particular color code? There are different types of coding depending on how many colors there are. But for the most common four colors, we recommend that yellow represents blessings, blue represents the Holy Spirit, pink represents salvation and green represents growth and new life.

Is this popular? I don’t have any statistics about how many people use highlighters in their Bibles, but this area of our business has grown consistently over the years.

When did you start doing this? My father started the company in the mid-1970s, but we didn’t start selling highlighters until the early 1980s.

How did people react? Back when it was a new concept, some people would balk a little at the idea of highlighting a Bible. But it’s a common practice now.

This is revolutionary. (Although I prefer pink for marking out passages about the End Times, because that is closest to the colour of blood.)


Filed under Ancient Jewish texts

Baptists call for the Bible to be Banned: The Women-hating Southern Baptist Convention of 2011

The Bible: The book that Southern Baptists have now banned

The Bible: The book that Southern Baptists have now banned

Despite the fact that the 2011 New International Version (NIV) translation of the Bible got rid of more than a quarter of its gender-neutral language, bowing to the reactionary response by ultra-conservative  Christians to the earlier gender-neutral TNIV…

… and despite the fact that the changes to the NIV 2011 typically involve being less inclusive whenever gender inclusivity would risk ‘tainting’ Jesus with feminine bits

… and despite the fact that the NIV 2011 still includes many apologetically-driven translations which attempt to smooth over the errors and contradictions in the Bible (as in 2 Samuel 21.19 on Goliath) …

the 2011 annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention (14-15 June) declared that gender-inclusive language was simply “inaccurate” on the basis that the explicit inclusion of women “changes the meaning” of the original text, recommended that it should not be used by anybody in “the Christian community”, and called for the Bible to be banned from sale in Lifeway Christian Stores, one of the largest Christian bookstore chains in the South.


Filed under 2 Samuel 21 and 23, Ancient Jewish texts

Alan Moore writes his Bible: Jerusalem to be printed on Bible Paper?

Alan Moore’s prose novel Jerusalem, forthcoming 2012, will be approximately 750,000 words long.

I was talking to Professor Steve Jones at one of those evenings that I did, the Uncaged Monkeys at the Hammersmith Apollo. I was telling him that Jerusalem, when I’d passed the two-thirds mark, was already over half a million words. He said: “You know, that is bigger than the Bible.” So I was quite pleased with that. I’m just hoping everybody else will confuse quantity with quality. It’s undoubtedly a very big book.
– Alan Moore

of course, I have doubted that people will even be able to pick it up. This is going to be a very large book. I was talking to some people today who might be involved in the publishing of it. And they were suggesting why don’t we go it to a Bible publisher? Get it printed on Bible paper?
– Alan Moore

Alan Moore: “I’ve disproved the existence of death” New Statesman, 16 June 2011
“When I first heard about virtual reality I thought: is there any other kind?” New Statesman, 17 June 2011

The number of English words in the King James Bible is 773,692. The number of Old Testament words (Hebrew and Aramaic) is approximately 306,375; New Testament words (Greek) is 138,020; the total for Old and New Testaments is 444,395.

In the Bible there are about 773692 words
– Rhona Pipe and Graham Round, The Big Book of Bible Facts

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Filed under Ancient Jewish texts, Comic books, Novels

The Bible makes Tim Bulkeley laugh. Me too.

The Holy Bible - full of laughs!

The Holy Bible – full of laughs!

I don’t know how you get your giggles. But Tim Bulkeley gets his from reading the Bible. He managed to find plenty to guffaw at in the Torah, and has no doubt located some side-splitting episodes in the Former Prophets. But as soon as he hit Ezra, he found that laughs were few and far between. In fact, he’s been struggling to find anything very funny about this book at all.

I agree that Ezra isn’t the most entertaining of Hebrew literature. But this should at least raise a snigger:

There is a quite ironic, and rather funny, fulfillment of the prediction made by the adversaries of the Golah. In Ezra 4, the local rulers of the province Beyond the River write to King Artaxerxes with the intention of stopping the rebuilding of the Jerusalem temple. One of the reasons they put forward is that “if this city is rebuilt and the walls finished, they will not pay tribute, custom, or toll, and the royal revenue will be reduced” (Ezra 4.13). The fear which is being manufactured here by their opponents is that the Judeans will rebel and not pay their tribute to the Persians. However, in Ch 6, we learn from the later correspondence between the local rulers and King Darius that the Persian king has sided with the Judean Golah against the local ruler. The irony lies with the fact that the local ruler’s original prediction still does in fact come to pass, only not in the way they expected. For as a result of the temple-building which goes ahead in Yehud, the royal revenue will indeed be reduced: because the Golah are to be given the tribute. Note the repeated reference to “tribute”, “royal revenue” and the province “Beyond the River” in Ezra 6.8, which ties the verse back to Ezra 4.13. However, quite against the expectations of the local rulers, the loss of Persian revenues is to be the result of the command of the Persian king himself! Hilarious!!  In the end, the story presents Yehud as an exemplary imperial subject giving sacrifices and prayers that benefit the Persian king – in contrast to the Samarians and the Judeans’ other opponents – thus completely turning around the initial accusation that the Judeans are natural rebels against empire.

n.b. Tim seems to have skipped Leviticus. I wonder why?
Update: Tim comments below, and lets us know that he’s done Humour in Leviticus. Extraordinary!


Filed under Ancient Jewish texts

A Basic Introduction to Giants of the Bible… and Zondervan’s Sexism toward Children, and the Zondervan Gender-Prejudiced Bibles

People are always asking me, “Can you recommend a basic introduction to the Giants of the Bible?” Well, yes I can! One of the most basic introductions to biblical Giants is Big Bad Bible Giants, authored by Ed Strauss and illustrated by Anthony Carpenter (published by the Zondervan children’s subdivision, Zonderkidz).

Big Bad Bible Giants - authored by Ed Strauss, illustrations by Anthony Carpenter

Big Bad Bible Giants - authored by Ed Strauss, illustrations by Anthony Carpenter

I’m serious. If you want a basic introduction to the Giants of the Bible, let this be your guide. It covers all the Giants of the Bible, including the Nephilim, the Rephaites, the Zamzummites, the Emites, the Anakites, the Avvites, King Og of Bashan, Goliath, Lahmi, and Ishbi-Benob of Gath, Anak, Ahiman, Sheshai, Talmai, and the multidigit monster – with cartoons.

What’s more, this is a book for boys. Not for girls. Apparently, only young Christian boys should take an interest in the gory occupation of slaying Giants. But wait, you say, hasn’t the author ever heard of Buffy? Alas, even Buffy could not grow to the physical proportions of Our Lord:

Perfect for boys aged 8 to 12, the 2:52 series is based on Luke 2:52: “And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.” Focussing on four primary areas of growth, this guiding verse can help boys become more like Jesus mentally (smarter), physically (stronger), spiritually (deeper), and socially (cooler). From Bibles and devotionals to fiction and nonfiction, with plenty of gross and gory mixed in, there is something for every boy.

The 2:52 series also offers these other boyish (not girly) titles: Bible Heroes and Bad Guys, Bible Angels and Demons, Bible Wars and Weapons, Creepy Creatures and Bizarre Beasts from the Bible, Weird and Gross Bible Stuff, Bible Freaks and Geeks, and Seriously Sick Bible Stuff. That’s the sorts of things that boys just love, but girls do not, according to Zondervan’s 2:52 series.

And in addition to all this, for your rough-and-tumble, O-God-I-pray-every-night-that-he’s-heterosexual, scalliwag of a Christian boy, Zonderkidz publishes the 2:52 Boys Bible: The Ultimate Manual – complete with grey metallic plating on the front cover:

Finally a Bible just for boys! Discover gross and gory Bible stuff. Find out interesting and humorous Bible facts… Learn how to become more like Jesus mentally, physically, spiritually, and socially.

And just before you can say “gender stereotype”, let’s place the metal-plated 2:52 Boys Bible alongside what Zondervan offers for little girls… The Precious Princess Bible:

Zondervan Boy's Bible versus Zondervan "Precious Princess" Girl's Bible

Zondervan Boy's Bible versus Zondervan "Precious Princess" Girl's Bible

Just to top off this survey of systematic sexism at Zondervan, here’s a quote from the Zondervan Blog which proudly affirms that God does not discriminate!

“There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28). God does not discriminate on the basis of gender, or race, or socio-economic status. All are invited, all are included.
– Keri Wyatt Kent, 2 October 2009, Zondervan Blog.

If God does not discriminate, Zondervan seems determined to do it for Him. Whether Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female, Zondervan has a niche market just for you!

h/t: Gillian


Filed under Anakim, Biblical Giants, Books on Giants, Children's lit, Emim, Goliath, King Og, Nephilim, Rephaim