About the Editor:
Joe Carter is one of the sharpest minds in Evangelicalism today. He is the current Communications Specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and the Senior Editor at the Actions Institute. He serves Evangelicals from all denominations as an editor for The Gospel Coalition, is an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College, and is in the process of helping plant Grace Hills Church in Herndon, VA. He writes extensively on politics, religious liberty issues, how the gospel intersects with culture, and on the topic of public theology. His love for God’s Word, for equipping men, women, and children with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and for practically applying theology to everyday life made him the obvious choice to edit this edition of the most widely-read English version of the Bible.
The New International Version is the most widely read English version of the Bible in the world. It is the result of just over fifty years of steady work from the Committee on Bible Translation while overseeing the efforts of dozens of professors, pastors, and biblical scholars. This version represents a broad swath of Evangelicalism and was brought together by men and women from a wide range of denominations with the sole purpose of getting God’s Word into the hands of God’s People in a modern English translation that did not weaken the original meaning of the biblical text. This makes the NIV one of the most accessible, relevant, and reliable translations for new and seasoned believers alike.
This particular Bible represents one of the most innovative functions of any study Bible I’ve ever come across. This Bible offers 365 articles representing 365 different biblical passages that offer “Lifehacks” of the Christian faith. This Bible was constructed for discipleship and evangelism and walking a new Christian through what it means to live for Christ and die to self.
What Joe has done is remarkable in its own right. He’s carefully applied sound doctrine and biblical theology in a practical way to articles ranging from the topics of “Gratitude” and “Habit Formation” to “Overcoming Sin and Temptation” to “Seeing Jesus in Scripture”. This Bible, when used in a discipleship context, will not only help the new Christian see Jesus more clearly and understand how the Bible is eternally relevant, but it will also allow the mature believer to dive deeper than before and engage with the text in a way that he or she may never have before. I would encourage all churches, ministers, elders, and deacons to give this Bible out to new Christians and members so that they have an anthology of systematic and biblical theological articles to supplement their Bible reading.
In total, there are 30 “Lifehacks” or spiritual habits that Joe is commentating on from the corresponding passages of Scripture that the Bible teaches on a regular basis, and his extensive notes and practical applications make committing to forming spiritual habits easier than ever before. In this Bible, Joe acts as your trainer, your workout partner, and he is constantly encouraging you and pointing you to Christ so that you do not fret when the going gets tough and Satan is tempting you to stray.
Pastor Kevin DeYoung of University Reformed Church in East Lansing, MI writes this in the Foreword:
“Our problem as followers of Jesus is not that we are missing pathological seriousness in the church. It’s rather that we are not nearly serious enough about the stirring call and joyful possibility of being more like the Jesus we claim to follow. When God saved us from our sins, he saved us to holiness. The reason for our rescue is, at least in part, that we might be holy as he is holy(1 Peter 1:13-19). To behold Christ in the Bible-and, in turn, to become more like what we behold-is not an optional add-on for super Christians. It is the divine calling and Spirit-empowered privilege of every born again believer.”
Thankfully Joe has written 365 articles to point us to Jesus Christ, to help us in the process of our sanctification, and to enable us to pursue Christ more joyfully than we ever have before.This Bible will become a favorite discipleship and witnessing tool for pastors and laymen for years to come and will be one of the most treasured Bibles a new Christian will come to possess.
For years I struggled with how to pursue holiness and how to work out my salvation like Scripture commands me to and it wasn’t until I was exposed to Dr. Donald Whitney’s book on the spiritual disciplines that it finally clicked in my head and heart. If I had had this Bible and Joe’s notes as a new believer it would have been a whole lot easier to understand the concepts of pursuing holiness and experiencing sanctification.
I encourage all parents, pastors, leaders in the church to get a copy of this Bible and give it to your children, new members and converts, mentees and read the articles alongside them and help them see that pursuing holiness is not about living a perfect life, but living a life that is pursues Christ and lives out the faith delivered once and for all delivered to the saints.