The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod church that I attend has been working its way through this book over the course of the last year. It is a further simplification of the Bible, trying to tell more narratively some of the denser or less readable sections, particularly of the Old Testament, and making the history of Israel into a set of narratives or stories focusing on different parts of history. Zondervan, the big Bible publishing company, put it out, and it includes excerpts from the New International Version of the Bible.
So every week for the last year, church service focused on a chapter of this book, so the readings might be related to the period covered in the chapter. A brief video preceded the sermon, but it was just clip art Flash with intense cellos or violas, a quote, and the trademarked logo displaying with a dramatic chord. Then the pastor would preach a sermon perhaps touching on the themes in the chapter, but often not. The single Bible study class that restarted after the 2020 empausening and the Sunday School classes used supporting materials to keep the whole church focused on the chapter for the week.
You know, the whole Protestant and especially Lutheran thing is Sola deo, sola scriptura, and so on, which makes me often wonder how that’s squared with the Lutheran catechisms and teaching from this book. But once you’re not reading the Bible in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, I guess it’s all a matter of the liberties and interpretations made in translation.
If you’re looking for a 500-page-long Cliff’s Notes version of the Bible, you could do worse, I suppose. It didn’t do much for me, but it did only tell the history of Israel once, which was nice. When I’m reading early in the Old Testament, I often get bogged down in the repeats.