Pocket New Testaments are one of the top choices for carry and witnessing on the go. They come in many sizes with various features. One thing that practically all KJV New Testaments have in common is small print and the archaic verse-by-verse format. Trinitarian Bible Society’s Paragraphed New Testament (ISBN: 9781862283855, model 55A/R (Burgundy)) presents a different design. It presents the King James text in large print single column paragraph format. This edition was produced by Cambridge for TBS, and printed and bound in Belarus.
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TBS provided this New Testament free for review. I was not required to give a positive review.
The cover is vinyl-covered paperback. It’s burgundy with the text printed in gold. The burgundy has a rich texture of color which gives it a look of having a grain. I like the look of the color. Of course the text-block is Smyth sewn (like all Bibles from TBS). Being a paperback it doesn’t want to lie open on its own. It’s not difficult to hold open but you’ll have to open it wide to keep the text from bending too far into the gutter. It will open wide though.
The paper is thick for a Bible and feels like quality thin paper in a paperback. It’s highly opaque and has an off-white color. I haven’t written in it but I think this would be good paper for highlighting. The overall size is 7.1 x 4.3 x 0.5″. This isn’t a pocket edition but I do find it easy to carry and hold for reading.
The King James text (1769 like all TBS editions) is presented in single column paragraph format with bold in-text section headings. The header shows the book name and chapter in the center and the page number in the outer corner.
The font is 10.5 black letter. It’s a dark font that’s sharp and easy to read. It doesn’t include self-pronouncing marks. I like this as it keeps the text readable. It does have italics for supplied words, which I prefer because I like identifying which words are supplied for readability. The print quality is highly consistent throughout.
Old Testament quotes are marked with a letter. The reference where the quote is from is given at the bottom of the page. These are helpful for study. I’d like to see this as a standard in KJV’s.
It averages around 56-58 characters per line and 10-12 words per line. It has 42 lines per page. The text always have enough room between words and there’s enough room between the lines to improve readability and for underlining if you choose.
Books start on a new page. Several books have enough blank space at the end for notes.
I love the paragraph format for readability. Verses that continue a sentence start with a lower-case letter. This is my preference as it improves readability. Verses are spaced apart which makes them easy to find. Lots of paragraphs have a space between them. At first I thought this was indicating a major break in the setting, like moving to a new location, but sometimes they just seem to be random. I like them though as they give your eye a rest and gives the text some breathing room.
Bible Word List
This is a 12-page glossary of words that have gone out of use or have changed meaning. It includes words found in the Old Testament, making it helpful to use with any Bible. It provides the word, definition, and references where the word is used. If the word has more than one definition it indicates which reference uses which definition. I like that this word-list is included. I highly recommend all KJV readers look through this list often as there are words I wouldn’t know to look up because I assume I know what they mean. I think this glossary should be standard in all KJV’s.
Daily Bible Reading Plan
The M’Cheyne reading plan is included in the back. It covers the entire Bible rather than just the New Testament. It takes you through the Old Testament once and Psalms and the New Testament twice. This is a two-year reading plan, giving you two readings per day, but it can also be used as a one-year plan if you want to read four readings per day. This is how my family used it and we enjoyed it. The purpose of including a reading plan that covers the entire Bible is to encourage readers to also read the Old Testament and not just the New Testament.
Paragraph New Testament vs Slimline Pocket New Testament
Both editions use the same text but with different pagination. They have the same words across, same section headings, and the same reference keys in the text. However, the Slimline doesn’t include the references at the bottom of the page. Here’s a look at how they compare.
Ending Thoughts on the TBS Paragraph New Testament KJV
The TBS Paragraph New Testament is a nice edition for carry and reading. I love that it’s a single column paragraph edition in large print as this is much better for readability and comprehension. I also like that it includes a word list and reading plan. I prefer to carry a complete Bible but a New Testament is sometimes all you have room for and might be all you need for your specific purpose. This isn’t meant to be your only Bible. This is for the purpose of carry and evangelism.
Even though it only includes the New Testament this isn’t a pocket edition. It would fit into a large coat pocket or a purse (of so my wife tells me). Its current price is $6.50. It’s a great choice for carry and witnessing. I’d love to have this as a complete Bible. I highly recommend the TBS Paragraph New Testament to anyone wanting a low-cost KJV New Testament.
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Photography by hannah C brown
Trinitarian Bible Society provided this New Testament free for review. I was not required to give a positive review. My opinions are my own.