The iShine bible is a good bible for young teens 10-13 years old with the caveat that it does not promote oneness doctrinal beliefs. It has several full color glossy inserts designed to help young adults connect to God. For example, one such insert states “you are valued by God”, followed by the subtitle “What difference does it make that God values you?” It then proceeds with a bulleted list describing what makes you special in God’s eyes. There are also stylized pics of youth doing various activities such as playing guitar. There is also commentary and subject articles such as articles on “Is there really a hell?” and Humility: “Why should I admit it when I make a mistake?” All of these are written on normal paper, black and white text with the exception of the three full color glossy inserts. The bible is bound in imitation leather and feels durable enough for the use of Tweens, which again, is the target demographic for this bible.
While I don’t agree with some of the theological underpinnings of the book’s commentary / articles (too emergentesque for my tastes), the articles are easy to read and have obviously been written to cater to the target audience. A lot of what is said in the commentary is that bland general vanilla flavor of Christianity which promotes such novelty items such as WWJD trinkets and fish sign bumper stickers. Obviously this bible was not geared towards theologians, but do we really have to dumb Christianity down that much for our youth to consider it palatable? And if so, what has Christianity become other than a fraternity or sorority house to pass the time.
There is a boy and a girl edition of the bible, blue and pink respectively. For a better feel of what to look forward to from the inserts, check out ishinelive.com and you’ll see pretty quickly the general style and flavor of the book.
The NLT is the English translation this book comes with. While I am a fan of the KJV, I can see the need for these simpler translations. If your looking for a good textually accurate and literal translation, go with a NKJV or KJV bible. I am also somewhat of a fan of the ESV as well, but I prefer the Stefanus Greek edition over NA27 or JPS critical versions of the Greek that are the basis of most modern bibles.
I received a complimentary copy of the book for review purposes from Tyndale House.