When it comes to Bible study I have a few translations I typically go to. My first choice is the ESV, followed by the NASB, and when I want something different I reach for the HCSB (and the KJV from time to time). I really like the HCSB and was drawn to it for the main reason that the translate the Greek word “doulos” as slave as opposed to bond-servant like so many other translations.
The church my family and I attend uses the ESV during services, so I was excited to see how the CSB would read along with the ESV. I was pleasantly surprised to see that while there are some differences (sentence structure and such), the CSB and the ESV read smoothly together. I also found that for general reading, such as Bible reading plans, the CSB is a very smooth and straight forward translation, I never really found myself having to reread Scripture to see what the translation was saying. I liked this as when I’m using the NASB sometimes I find that the sentences are chopped up very strangely and can be hard for reading (although a great translation for study purposes!). Needless to say, when it comes to the literal nature of the translation and it’s readability, I give this one 5 out of 5 stars.
I won’t say to much more about the translation itself, if you’re interested in checking it out before purchasing the CSB is available on the YouVersion Bible app for free.
Now, the craftsmanship of the this Bible. While I will probably still stick to my trusty ESV this CSB UltraThin is amazing as far as how it has been manufactured. I thought this thing was real leather when I opened it up! It has that smell and feel of real leather. The cover and back are flexible but firm, with the binding feeling very durable. The pages are fairly standard, I haven’t written in this Bible yet so I can’t speak to how well they respond to ink or highlighters but the pages feel and respond well to a quick rough flip through. As far as a negative about the pages, they seemed to stick together around the edges the first few times I opened it, which was kind of annoying but has already significantly gone away. As a art guy I also love the font style and size. The sans-serif font of the titles and headings is a nice feature I haven’t seen any of my other Bibles, with a standard serif font for the text itself.
In conclusion, it won’t be fully replacing my ESV just yet, but I would highly recommend this Bible to anyone searching for another translation to add to their studies.