The Wayfinding Bible from Tyndale House Publishers
This new Bible put out by Tyndale House Publishers is a unique contribution to the Bibles that you fin on the market. There are three basic routes that you can take in reading this Bible: flyover, the direct and scenic routes. The flyover route is 54 readings in the Scriptures that give the reader a chronological understanding of the Bible. The direct route comprises 215 readings that give a more robust selection of readings to grasp the meaning of the entire Bible within a year’s time. The last route, the scenic route, is 386 readings in God’s Word that traces the known and not well known passages of the Scriptures to give the reader a fuller and deeper understanding of both chronology and meaning of the text. In my reading, I chose to take the flyover route to see how different types of passages fit together both chronologically and thematically. What you will find in this Bible is a wealth of material that is helpful in observing and exploring various points in history and theology that are often hard to grasp and which need further elaboration.
In my flyover route, the editors included the beginning story of God’s creation, the fall of Adam and Eve into sin and part of Noah’s story as well as Genesis 15. What I thought was very interesting and telling is that this route included Sarah’s denial of laughter (Genesis 18:15) alongside Sarah’s remarks in Genesis 21:6 where she declares, “God has brought me laughter. All who hear about this will laugh with me.” Back in Genesis 18, God reminded Sarah that she did laugh at the prospect of her bearing a son in her old age, but now she declares in Genesis 21 that God has truly brought her laughter in the face of the impossible. The notes include the point that fulfilling the promises through their own sheer effort was folly for Abraham and Sarah, but trusting that God could and would fulfill his promises would inevitably lead to comfort. The wayfinding format helped me see the overall picture of what God was particularly doing to form a people for himself and bless that people and the whole world by way of his covenant faithfulness.
Very illuminating and beneficial were the sections at the beginning of each book labeled ‘Finding Jesus in Exodus’ or the book that was to follow. Why? We often fail to see how Jesus is connected to the OT story or we try to fit him into the story in rather artificial ways. But, as the editors indicate, “He (Jesus) is the ultimate Passover Lamb, whose blood was shed to save us from the consequences of disobedience to God” (79). The covenant ceremonies and Passover celebration was a remembrance of the saving work of God, no less a type of sacrifice that pointed to one who would die for his people and save them to the uttermost. Understanding how Jesus fits into the Old Testament story helps us to read the Bible organically, as a story moving to a climax and with one hero at its foreground, God revealed in three persons. These sections are going to go a long way in helping people read the Bible well and as one story rather than disparate sections mashed together.
I really enjoyed this Bible and hope to share it with others as they read the Scriptures and grow in their knowledge of God and his Word.
Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers for the copy of The Wayfinding Bible in exchange for an honest review.