ESV Journaling Bible
The last time we announced a new ESV Bible it was a joke meant to be a late April fools trick (and it worked). But today’s post is no joke.
Because so many readers of the Blank Bible series simply don’t have the equipment or time to make their own, I’ve received a lot of emails about my thoughts on the ESV Journaling Bible. So I finally decided to get a copy and try it out myself (this one came safely to my home in cardboard through FedEx).
Here are more notes after further reflection (and some field-testing).
1. Size. The font size is small but (as you can see in the picture) slightly larger than the ESV Compact TruTone edition. The marginal note areas are lined for a note taker with small handwriting. The top margin can also be used for notes.
2. Paper color. Also in this comparison you can see that the Journaling Bible features an off-white paper color compared to other ESV Bibles. This may not be a big deal but it does seem to make the already small font a bit tougher to read (by decreasing the contrast of the paper/text).
3. Pen bleed. The biggest factor in determining which Bibles can or cannot be written in comes down to how likely the pages are to bleed (pencils are not my thing). We put our safety goggles on, unlocked the door to our underground TSS testing laboratory and — with my poor handwriting skills and five different pens — we put this new ESV Bible to the test.
From top-to-bottom we used the following pens: a black Pilot Vball extra fine roller, a black Pigma Micron 005, an everyday black ballpoint, a red uni-ball micro roller and one big black uni-ball Deluxe roller (an ink pouring pen I wouldn’t consider for a Bible).
The results were fairly surprising because none (not even the uni-ball Delux roller) bled through the paper. No surprise, the best pen for this Bible was the Pigma Micron 005 available at scrapbook and craft stores. The regular ballpoint pen comes in second. But the bigger point is that these pages successfully absorbed all five inks without bleeding.
Join us tomorrow when we run the Journaling Bible through several more tests: The “Flame Retardant?” test, the “Ran Over By Car” test and (my personal favorite) the “Will It Float?” test. Actually, if I were serious this sturdy Bible would probably fare better than expected.
Unlike the blank Bibles I’ve created in the past, the Journaling Bible is compact and portable. It’s a good substitute if making a Blank Bible is out of the question. If you don’t mind the small font and the paper color, it is a very durable ESV with excellent margins and paper for note taking. You can get the black Journaling Bible for about $18 and the fancy calfskin version for about $41. A small price considering it enables you to carry your Bible and your reflections in one compact volume.
[NOTE: For our review we used the Terra Cotta/Sage edition of the Journaling Bible – ISBN: 1581348959]