I have to admit it, I’m partial to the New King James translation. It’s my favorite version of the Bible by far, so when I saw that Ignite: The Bible for Teens was in that translation that was a big plus right our of the gates.
But the rest of Ignite is pretty awesome too. Here are some things that I like:
- The alphabetical index of Bible books on the inside of the front cover to help find Bible books fast and easy. Anything we can do to help teens get access to God’s Word is a great idea and this simple index is very helpful.
- Soul Fuel: verses that are highlighted throughout the Bible that are great to memorize. Memorizing Scripture is so important and I love that this Bible stimulates this discipline.
- The short intros at the beginning of each book, giving some background info, key facts on the author and time and important events etc. I especially applaud the ‘Live it’ one-sentence-lesson from that Bible book that’s included. It really helps teens see how the Bible still matters today.
- In the same way the Flashpoints are highlighted topics that help teens make the Bible practical in their lives. Think of topics like perseverance, doubt, hope, and community. These are especially well written and geared towards teens with concrete examples that will speak to them and their day-to-day situations.
- A fairly brilliant feature is ‘Spotlight’, a selection of 100 readings that will help teens see God’s story from Genesis to Revelation. A great idea to do with your small group as well and discuss these!
I also love the Bible’s theme verse:
“His word was in my heart like a burning fire shut up in my bones; I was weary of holding it back and I could not.” (Jeremiah 20:9b)
What a wonderful verse to put front and center, to inspire a love for God’s Word in teens!
There’s also the expected Key words index in the back, a sort of mini concordance, as well as a number of well done maps. All in all this Bible pretty much offers everything you’d expect from a Bible aimed at teens.
Was there anything I didn’t like? Well, the ‘Preface to the New King James Translation’ at the beginning threw me off. This is obviously a standard preface, not aimed at teens (it has words like etymology, obsolete, divine revelation, intrinsic beauty and such – not the standard lexicon of a teen) and I can understand why it had to be included, but putting it at the back may have been wiser. In which case it wouldn’t have been a preface anymore, but that’s beside the point. Teens starting out at the start may get cold feet after trying to read that scholarly piece.
Aside from that small detail, I love this Bible and I’m sure teens will to. Mark Oestreicher did a fine job as general editor of Ignite and I totally recommend it. Check it out on Amazon.