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Recommended Reading

The Bible

There are many Bible translations out there to choose from, here are a few we recommend.

How to read your Bible - by George Sinclair

English Standard Version (ESV)

This is an essentially literal translation that attempts to capture, as far as possible, the precise wording of the original text and the personal style of each Bible writer. As such, the emphasis is on "word-for-word" correspondence, at the same time taking into account differences of grammar, syntax, and idiom between current literary English and the original languages. This translation seeks to be transparent to the original text, letting the reader see as directly as possible the structure and meaning of the original. This, for all its academic worth, is a very readable translation of the Bible, clearly worded and making every attempt to convey the nuances of the original text to us as readers today.

New International Version (NIV)

The NIV carries many of the same benefits of the ESV, being essentially its predecessor. The NIV New Testament was first published in 1973, and was translated with a concern for clear and natural English - idiomatic, but not idiosyncratic; contemporary but not dated; avoiding Americanisms and Anglicisms. This is a great translation, again, very readable, and is often more widely available than the ESV.

The Message

This is unlike the above two translations. Whereas the ESV and NIV aim for "word-for-word" translations, the Message is essentially "dynamic", that is, it aims for a "thought-for-thought" translation. This is a version of the New Testament in contemporary idiom, written by Eugene Peterson, who aimed "not to render a word-for-word conversion of Greek into English, but rather to convert the tone, the rhythm, the events, the ideas, into the way we actually think and speak." With no formal language and no verse numbers, this Bible reads like a letter from an old friend. Because it's easier to understand, it's easier to make the connection between what you're reading and what it means for your everyday life.

Ultimately, we recommend that you get a Bible you will read. The real truth is that the Bible is the Word of God, and in the midst of many translations, these are a few we recommend. The Bible has the power to change your life - it is the very, living and active Word of God. We pray that you will read it and be changed.

Parish Resources

George has written a little information about enriching your prayer life.

Great Christian Books to get your hands on

In general, we recommend any books by the authors listed - these are just a tasty sampling. These books are available through most Christian bookstores, such as Salem Storehouse in Ottawa, or through Amazon Canada

  • Knowing God by J. I. Packer
  • Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis
  • Basic Christianity by John Stott
  • A Call to Spiritual Reformation by D. A. Carson
  • The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel, and check out his latest, The Case for a Creator
  • More than a Carpenter by Josh Mc Dowell
  • Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster
  • Future Grace by John Piper
  • Telling the Truth edited by D.A. Carson
  • Guidance and the Voice of God by Tony Payne and Philip Jensen