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ESV Thompson Chain Reference Coming Soon

We’re here at the showroom floor of the International Christian Retail Show in Cincinnati and the first news I wanted to report is the ESV Thompson Chain Reference Bible from Kirkbride that will be releasing soon. I’ll have more detail (and high-res photos) on this tomorrow but in the mean-time here are a few cellphone photos to hold you over.

Also from Kirkbride, the TCR will be available in brown genuine leather.








About The Author

Randy A Brown

WordPress writer by day, Bible reviewer by night, pastor all the time. And there's also that author thing.


  1. Dave Bush

    Very good news. I’ve worried about Kirkbride’s health as a company.

    A couple questions to chase down.

    Will the ESV use the expanded chains that the NKJV has or will it be more like the other translations.

    Is that brown going to be in all translations?

  2. Pastor Chris

    Fantastic! I’d like to know if they’ll have a large or giant print edition in the ESV. I’ll buy the FIRST one of these!

  3. Kurt

    Do you know if Kirkbride will be reformatting and updating the KJV?

    • Randy A Brown

      They don’t have any plans for changes to the KJV. I did discuss some updates that I would like to see. Hopefully they’ll consider this down the road.

  4. Doug m.

    I would love to see an update with more white space on the page for note taking. Perhaps a 3 column format: inside column for chain, middle/wider column for Bible text, and outside column for notes. Can’t wait. I love the ESV.

  5. Prentiss Yeates

    Wonderful news,
    I’ve been concerned as well for their company. I hope this edition does well. Thompson bible could go to internet sales like local church or evangelical bible and do well. Quality has a hard time swimming against the current what with Harper Collins flooding the market.
    Thank you

  6. Brandon

    Any word on how soon we can get our hands on these?

  7. Matthew

    I know this post is a bit old, but… ChristianBook is showing the release date as 2/10/17 and I have one question. I have an older NASB Thompson from ’95. The pages are practically only a micron thin. All the print from the other side bleeds through and makes it hard to read.

    Are the pages on the ESV (or any of the newer Bibles) any better? I do hope you get this.

    • Randy A Brown

      Hi Matthew. I’m not sure yet. I expect to get it soon. As far as old paper compared to the newer, I prefer the old paper because it’s more opaque. I have an older NASB and my late pastor had a 4th edition KJV. Both have much better paper than my newer KJV and NKJV.

  8. Brandon

    Randy, do you have any idea when these will be available? Will you have and advance copy?

  9. brandon

    I saw that. I wonder what’s next? Bonded leather, or genuine leather? Would the paperback be a sewn binding?

    • Randy A Brown

      Genuine, bonded, and hardcover are all scheduled for release in May. I have a softcover on the way, so I’ll have lot’s of details soon. I’ll review the others as they’re available.

  10. Kevin Katzmann

    Did they get rid of red letter on the genuine and bonded leather editions? Christian book says black letter.

    • Randy A Brown

      Hi Kevin. I’m not sure. I’ll ask my contact at Kirkbride.

    • Randy A Brown

      I heard back from Kirkbride. All editions are red letter. The information at Christianbook is incorrect. Kirkbride will contact them to have it corrected.

  11. KEVIN Katzmann

    Thanks Randy. Looking forward to the thompson in ESV

  12. brandon

    Is there a huge difference between bonded and genuine leather? I’m not sure I want to wait for genuine.

    • Randy A Brown

      Hi Brandon. I haven’t had any issues with the genuine leather Thompson’s but I have had a few bonded leather editions to wear out (although I don’t know that it’s the same type of bonded leather the ESV uses – these were older KJV’s). They took a few years to wear out, so if it is the same leather it still should last a year or two. Both covers use paste-down liners, which can come apart over time. One thing you might consider – get the bonded leather edition and if it wears out get it rebound in a better leather. You’d end up with a better Bible than the genuine leather in the long run.

  13. Brandon

    That’s what I was thinking. I saw a review on YouTube of a genuine leather Thompson that was, I believe, 5 years old. At that point the genuine leather didn’t look very impressive. I would love a Thompson in calfskin or cowhide, so maybe I’ll take your suggestion and get the bonded with plans to rebind it in a couple years. Do you have a book binder recommendation?


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