The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Do you prefer to read a Bible with or without notes?


With the exception of my NABRE, none of my Bibles have notes written by the editors and/or translators at the bottom of pages. For these Bibles, on just about every page at the bottom there will be a couple words or phrases and then an alternate translation of them, but they don’t go into detail explaining things and making possible connections. I think I prefer reading the Bible this way. When I read my NABRE sometimes I get so caught up reading the notes at the bottom of the page it completely interrupts my flow reading the scripture! :laughing: That said, if anyone has a suggestion for a good Bible with extensive notes, I’d be willing to check it out.


Like you, qaz, if I’m reading the Bible in order to understand a section within its context, I don’t want any notes to distract me. However, if I am doing a study of some theological thought in which there has been an attempt to back it up by Biblical references, then I might examine various commentaries on the matter. In my opinion, the best way to do this is through the “Online Bible” program which is free and can be downloaded online.

Once you have downloaded it and set it up, you can download extra features, too numerous to mention. My present Online Bible 28 versions including Greek versions. You can have Hebrew, too, but I don’t include it since I haven’t studied Hebrew. It includes a library that contains books by ancient and modern writers, apologetics, archaeology, theology, creeds, music, maps and charts, and much much more—even home school material and the Koran!

If you are interested in this amazing Bible program go to the following site and download the Basic Starter Pack:


Thanks paidion. I know your favorite translation is the ESV. I’m think about ordering a thinline ESV for a low price. But I already have a NASB. Is there any reason the ESV should be considered more accurate?


Sorry qaz, but I didn’t see your question until today. I cannot say that the ESV is my FAVORITE translation; there are many excellent translations. I simply settled on that one for habitual use because it is pretty accurate in most places.

When it comes to a theological matter, I look up the relevant passage in the ESV, and bring up Westcott-Hort’s Greek text right below it. If there are unfamiliar Greek words in the passage I look them up in Strong’s concordance. All of this is part of the Online Bible program that I recommended above.
When the disk is used to install it, there are 75 versions available to me. Some are for only the OT and some are only for the NT, but most contain the whole Bible. A few are in Hebrew, and a few are in Greek.


I like the extensive footnotes, commentary & cross references in this version:


So, if you can read the Greek manuscripts, why do you read English translations? Seems to me that the essence of the original writers are in the original language, This is not a stab, but a question?



Because my first language is English. I took French in High School from grades 9 to 13, but I still can’t read French literature as fluently as English.

So with the New Testament, I read it in a good English translation to get the gist of it, and then I look at the Greek and look up the meanings of unfamiliar words in Greek Lexicons, but lexicons are sometimes wrong or give too many definitions—at times a different one for every use. What I do is look up the unfamiliar Greek word in Westcott-Hort’s Greek edition of the NT, and see how the word is used in many different contexts. That usually helps me more than do lexicons.

I also consider the grammatical construction of the Greek words in the passage under consideration.