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The ESV Preaching Bible Review

The ESV Preaching Bible Review


I’m really excited about the Bible I get to share with you today. Admittedly, it’s not for everyone given the name, but honestly, whether you’re a preacher or not, I think you will really like this Bible. The ESV Preaching Bible from Crossway is what I would almost consider my perfect Bible for preaching. When I was given the opportunity to review it I was incredibly excited. Let’s talk about why you will love this Bible whether you’re a preacher or not.

Crossway interviewed pastors and church leaders and essentially asked them, “What do you want in a Bible for preaching and teaching?” Based on that feedback, this Bible was born. This is considered one of Crossway’s Heirloom Bibles. It’s incredibly nice and built to last a lifetime. From the goatskin cover, to the binding, to the high quality page paper, this is a nice Bible built to be passed down from generation to generation.

From bottom to top: Preaching Bible, Legacy, Omega.

From bottom to top: Preaching Bible, Legacy, Omega.

I am fortunate to own two other Crossway Heirloom Bibles and there were things I loved about each. I have the ESV Heirloom Legacy and the first edition of the ESV Omega. I loved the single column and wide margins of the Legacy and I loved the large font size of the Omega. I always thought that if I could combine my favorite features from those two Bibles then I’d have the perfect Bible—enter the ESV Preaching Bible.

Let’s start with a couple of complaints or features I wish this Bible had. They are minor so we can address them and then move on to all of the good things. My first complaint is with the bookmarks. There are only two and I honestly wish there were at least three and maybe even four. When you’re preaching, multiple bookmarks are nice to have and two sometimes just isn’t enough. I’m not sure why they only decided to go with two, but I’d like to see more.

CSB Pastor’s Bible on bottom ESV Preaching Bible on top

CSB Pastor’s Bible on bottom
ESV Preaching Bible on top

My other bookmark-related complaint is that they are both black. When using multiple bookmarks, I like them to be different colors (as you can see from the pictures of my modified Omega and Heirloom Legacy). Even the CSB Pastor’s Bible (pictured) went with three bookmarks of different color. I’m unsure why they made them both black unless the thinking is that only having two bookmarks doesn’t necessitate different colors to keep them straight. They are minor complaints, but bookmarks can be important when preaching.

My only other complaint about this Bible is that Crossway claims that this Bible includes “enlarged and bolded verse numbers surrounded by extra space to easily locate verses on the page.” That would extremely useful for preaching, but sadly it just isn’t the case. The verse numbers are bolded, but they don’t seem large enough and don’t really seem to have extra space surrounding them. Again, it seems minor, but if you walk away or look up from your Bible when preaching, being to easily locate the verse number your looking for is very important.

Now, let’s move on to all of the great things about this Bible. But let me first say that if you are looking for an incredibly nice Bible worthy of passing down to your kids then I think this one is very much worth your consideration. You don’t have to be a preacher to appreciate this Bible. While it is built for preaching, it is constructed of high quality materials and is honestly a beautiful Bible that anyone would be happy to own.

In taking the Bible out of the box upon first receiving it, the first thing I noticed is the cover. It is so soft and feels so nice in the hand. The Bible has a nice bend when you hold it with one hand, which lets you know it’s going to open flat and stay open whether you’re in Genesis, Revelation, or somewhere in between. Like I said, I have two other Heirloom Bibles with goatskin covers from Crossway, but this one is by far the nicest feeling of all three.

This Bible is a little thick, but I didn’t feel it was too thick. It has a good weight and if you look at my pictures, it is pretty comparable in thickness to the CSB Preacher’s Bible. It is a bit thicker than the Legacy, but it is not as thick as the ESV Study Bible. I saw another review where someone complained about weight, but I truly don’t think it’s a problem.

Being a Bible built for preaching, you’re not going to find a lot of extra bells and whistles in this Bible. If you’re looking for pastoral helps like a wedding service or funeral outline then I’d recommend to you the ESV Pastor’s Bible. This Bible doesn’t have cross references on the pages or study notes anywhere; it truly makes the text the main thing.

Speaking of the text being the main thing, you will notice it’s printed on a high quality paper with a generous ten point font size. The Omega used a 10 point font and I loved how easily readable it was for preaching. What I loved about the Legacy was that it was single column with wide margins for notes if you so desired. You will also find those features in this Bible, which for me, makes this a powerhouse of a preaching Bible. The publisher has also implemented line matching, which means a line of text on one side of the page is in the same place as the line on the other side of the page. This helps to eliminate ghosting on thinner paper and makes the text on the opposite side of the page seem less distracting. This is a great feature and well implemented in this Bible. A final feature that I appreciate in this Bible is that words of Christ are in black. I find when Bibles have the words of Christ in red, it is distracting and unnecessary. Every word in the Bible is God’s and we don’t need a separate color to distinguish the words of Jesus. Thank you Crossway.

For me, I think this is about as close as I’m going to come in finding the perfect preaching Bible. Crossway has created a truly beautiful Bible that I think anyone committed to God’s Word would be proud to own. The price tag isn’t cheap, but this Bible has a lifetime guarantee and would be something beautiful and important to pass to your children one day. I can’t recommend this Bible enough. Pick one up and you won’t be disappointed.

Grab yours at Amazon here!

More specs from Crossway:

Format: Goatskin

Page Count: 1,792

ISBN-10: 1-4335-6228-6

ISBN-13: 978-1-4335-6228-0

Trim Size: 6.25 in x 9.125 in

Weight: 57.93 ounces

Published: February 28, 2019

Type Size: 10

Page Layout: Single Column

Additional Features: Sewn Binding
Lifetime Guarantee
Gilded edges 
Words of Christ Black

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this Bible from Crossway in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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