Thursday, October 20, 2016

Common English Women's Bible

I am so excited that the publishers of the Common English Women's contacted RevGalBlogPals and asked several of us if we would review this new offering. I am even more excited that I know some of the women who wrote and edited this Bible: the Rev Dr Jaime Clark-Soles, the Rev Sharon Alexander, and Dr Jodie Lyon were all part of my formation and education in some way at Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist University.

I have been using this version for the last three weeks as I do my daily prayers and devotions, and also for sermon preparation. I was already familiar with the Common English Bible format and language. I am truly appreciating what biographical information can be gleaned about all of the different women in the Bible. I appreciate the frank non-judgmental discussions included about sex and sexual norms I have been reading. Even when my daily studies have not led me to a woman's story, the women's stories are easily identified by the formatting and I find myself wandering a bit further afield in the text daily than I would ordinarily wander. The discussion starters have already provided at least one sermon point over these last weeks.

This Common English Women's Bible has already become a staple for me in the tetris-like stack of Bibles I use to contrast and compare ideas and words. I know I will continue to enjoy the perspectives of the women who contributed and edited as I use it in my own daily devotional reading and study. It is so refreshing to "hear" these discussion starters and biographies from a woman's point of view.

Here are the specifics on the CEB Women's Bible:
  • All 80 contributors are women
  • Each book of the Bible has its own introduction.
  • Reflections—writings that can be used in personal devotions or as conversation starters—accompany nearly every chapter of the Bible.
  • Sidebar articles explore more than two hundred themes of particular relevance to women’s experiences in relationship with scripture.
  • Character sketches of more than one hundred named and unnamed women in the Bible are scattered throughout the text.
  • Every woman in the Bible—named and unnamed—is indexed.


  1. "tetris-like stack of bibles" is the best line I've read today. :D Can't tell you how glad I am this is not a pink book. Still giving it the side eye because in your photo the cover could be considered pink-ish. I would never pick up a 'women's bible' on my own, mainly because I would assume the reflection type bits would center on whether or not we can 'have it all', even with God's help. You make this one sound a lot better than what I would have expected. I am intrigued.

  2. Yes! This is a serious academic Bible, not just a Bible dressed in sequins and frosty blue eyeshadow :)


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