B&B Friday: CYOD Bible

As a kid, I really enjoyed the old “Choose Your Own Adventure” books. They were sort of like a game inside a book. You would read to a certain point, then be presented with a choice, something like: “If you choose to explore the old mine, go to page 71. If you choose to go back to the lake, go to page 42.” There were all sorts of stories and lots of imitations, but the books were great fun.

That’s why I was intrigued when Luddite Press asked me to review their new electronic version of the Bible, the Choose Your Own Doctrine Bible. You won’t find them in stores; Luddite Press only publishes e-books. But it’s worth hunting them down and exploring the other cutting-edge titles that they offer.

The Choose Your Own Doctrine Bible is based on the God’s Word Translation of the Bible. It is designed to help the reader avoid confusion when faced with possible interpretations of a text. All you have to do is choose which doctrine you want to believe, and the hyperlinked text will lead you right to the appropriate passage. For example, you find this is Romans 10:

” 9 If you declare that Jesus is Lord, and believe that God brought him back to life, you will be saved. 10 By believing you receive God’s approval, and by declaring your faith you are saved. 11 Scripture says, “Whoever believes in him will not be ashamed.”

If you want to believe in salvation by belief alone, go to John 6:47.

If you want to believe that baptism is necessary for salvation, go to Acts 22:16.”

(I wish I could format the quote in a way that you could appreciate the layout. It’s very elegantly done, with all the advantages of modern typesetting).

I think you can see the usefulness of this system. No more having to think about what others might believe; you can easily lock yourself into one belief system and stay there.

My one complaint, I guess is that this system can still be confusing for those who haven’t yet been told what they are supposed to believe. I’m thinking that it would have been more useful to have the passages coded by denominational group (Catholic, Baptist, etc.) or overarching belief system (Calvinist, Arminian, Neo-Platonic Gnostic, etc.). I can see how that would greatly complicate the system however. Just within the churches of Christ, we would need several different threads. I could see, for example, something at Acts 20:7 that says, “If you walk the old paths, go to 1 Corinthians 16:2. If you are a progressive change agent, go to Acts 2:46.”

I don’t think I’ll be using this Bible for my own personal use, but it’s an intriguing concept. You should take a look at it. If you’d like to see a video demo of the Choose Your Own Doctrine Bible in action, you can see one here.

For other reviews that are participating in this blog tour, follow this link.

I was in no way compensated for this review nor required to offer a positive review.

9 thoughts on “B&B Friday: CYOD Bible

  1. Aron

    Well done, Tim. I was hoping someone would pull a good one today.

    I loved the Choose Your Own Adventure Books as a kid. Sadly, we don’t really need the Luddite Bible version; we do a pretty good job of it by ourselves.

  2. Janice Garrison

    Well, well, well….chalk one up for you!! I bit… hook, line and sinker. Good one Tim!! Also a good way to find out who is really reading.

    Hat’s off for a good laugh.

    Hope you have a great day.

  3. Barry Wiseman

    Artfully done. Love the “God’s Word” translation, though. Bought a small copy when Lifeway was getting rid of them (I guess, they haven’t restocked in 3 years). Hoping to find a more usable copy as my eyes get worse. Here I was thinking, “Hey, on the iPad, that might be large enough print…” LOL

  4. Jennifer Alpers

    Hahahahahaha! I just now read it…..very good! I dare you to put it on a final exam! Maybe to the student who was worried about spaces! (Btw my response cracked ME up, but none of my high school employees go it!)

  5. heavenbound

    Tim: I read this and reread it and have come to the conclusion that each tribe has its own code of Hammurabi. When we look back at the church beginnings evolving away from the Catholics to form protestantism, it just didn’t start with the Church of England.
    It started in Germany, France, and in Scandinavian countires. Each with a leader and a group of individuals…….Coming to America further expanded our horizons, each group claiming to have it right….This is why we have all this confusion in the church arena.
    Plain and simple, church doctrine being establshed by groups looking at it from many different perspectives. Can we say definitively anyone is right?
    There are so many slants on how we read the book, how we interpret what we read and how we explain how we interpret what we read. We can look to others for further interpretation, but usually we are looking for reaffirmation of what we believe to be true. Many who read my posts don’t always agree and some take issue.
    That is why this chat board is so great. It allows for an exchange of ideas that are opposing and at times adversarial. In my opinion it makes for great reading, it is thought provoking and hopefully makes us all look at what we believe and how this belief works in our lives.

  6. Pingback: The Bible: Choose Your Own Adventure

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