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on August 2, 2005
While one admires the intent behind Zondervan's abridged version of the Bible, i.e., to introduce the Bible and the story of salvation to those who find the complete text too intimidating, they went too far in their editing. For example: Melchizedek is mentioned only as a priest and Abram's exchange with him is not at all explained and their conversation is completely omitted; the account of God's covenant with Abram omits completely Genesis 15.12-20; the account of God's visitation to Abraham and Sarah, Abraham's intercession, and the the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is also completely omitted.

If one is looking for a abridged or condensed version of the Bible a much more excellent choice is Tyndale House's "The Bible In Brief." It is less expensive and follows the same approach using the text of The Living Bible, and lacks the omissions of "The Story." Walter Wangerin's "The Book Of God," while actually a novel, is also useful as a means to introduce someone to God's story of redemption. Though being a novel it is written in the author's own words interspersed with passages of Scripture as opposed to using primarily the actual biblical text as the "The Story" and "The Bible In Brief" do.

Finally, an excellent paraphrase of just the Gospels can be found in Daniel Partner's "The Story Of Jesus: A Portrait of Christ from the Gospels."
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This is Today's New International Version of the Bible organized not by book and verse but as one seamless story from beginning to end. One of the difficulties for many people who study the Bible is the fact that it is not organized chronologically but the historical books often cover the same period (i.e. 2 Samuel and 1 Chronicles) or are organized by the length of the book (major prophets vs. minor prophets) or other ways. This is a unique way of presenting the complete Bible story that brings pattern and structure to all the disconnected stories we tend to learn in church.

Others have taken the Bible and organized it into chronological order before but generally they have produced a paraphrased story and not a translation. What makes this book unique is that they have retained the translation so it is still a good study Bible. I recommend The Story as the best chronological Bible available today because it stays as true as possible to being a translation that has just had the chapters and verses reorganized to make it a single story.
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on August 9, 2007
In hopes of gaining a better understanding of the Bible, I borrowed this book from a friend. Upon reaching page 24, I took a break from reading it through to check its contents against an actual Bible.

I find it a little odd that they left out the disturbing story of Genesis 19 by saying "Lot made some bad decisions"(direct quote). Also, there's none of that interesting bit about Noah's sons seeing him passed out drunk and naked, and Genesis 11 about the tower of Babel isn't in there. These were all omitted within the first 24 pages, and the remaining stories are all about God "offering hope to a messed up world" (as the back of the book states.)

This book blatantly leaves out all the bits that don't promote its cause of telling "a story about God and the remarkable lengths he goes to in order to rescue lost and hurting people" (also from the back of the book.) I understand they can't fit a whole teeny-print Bible into it, but that doesn't justify warping the Bible to make it a satisfying read for people craving stories only of God's love and mercy.

I wouldn't recommend picking this up if you expect a nice, accessible version of the Bible like I did. This book is worth reading solely for those who don't mind a lot of censorship and desire only a very general overview of "the story."
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on March 2, 2006
This is one way to read the Bible from beginning to end without having to go through geneologys, sacrifices and all the dietary laws, etc. It really just skims the stories. The questions in the back are for discussion. They are the best part of the book. We are using this book in two of our Sunday Bible studies. We get into great discussions. However, if you want tto know "The Rest of The Story" you must get into THE BIBLE. Hopefully this book will wet your appetite to do just that.
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on November 3, 2008
I had always had the desire to read the Bible from cover to cover, but was always defeated somewhere in between. After purchasing this book, I couldn't put it down! It read like a regular story broken down by major (short) chapters that are well defined and described. The themes and teachings are revealed and relevant. I recommend this to anyone with the desire to have an easy to read version of the Bible.
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on April 5, 2010
Book group selection for liberal Episcopal church. The Story is accessible and readible, and elicits some interesting discussion. But the bare bones approach moves along a bit like a 7th grade text book, all the "meat" gone (and a lot of the edgier Bibles stories--whre is Job, for instance?). It may provoke me to go on to read the actual BOOK. Good place to start, but definitely not the whole story on which Christianity is based.
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on November 19, 2009
I did notice that "The Story" leaves out some things from the Bible. For example, when Noah sent out a dove from the ark and it brought back an olive branch, is not even mentioned. On the other hand, if "The Story" included every single little detail, it would be a 1000 page book like the Bible itself. This 400 page book is much more manageable. As long as you realize this is a summary, I think "The Story" is completely acceptable.
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on November 19, 2011
Basically, an adult version, of the Children's Bible-although, in my opinion, unreadable, in more ways than one. Our church, is finishing up The Story as a program, and the only thing I like about it is, the fact they have the scripture references in it, so I can look them up in a real Bible.

The book chops, slices, and dices, the Bible up, so bad, I can hardly keep track, of what's going on. The antique white pages, with brown type, don't help in physicaly being able to read it, either.

Another note: many in my Church, were upset that this book, claims to be an alternative to the Bible, in the Preface. Edited to say: In spite of 'The Story' the leaders of our congregation, did a wonderful job, sticking to the scriptures, in the sermons, etc. during the 31 weeks.
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on June 1, 2009
I am sorry to say I was very disappointed with this purchase ... after reading the fabulous reviews I was so excited to get this book ... and I have to admit that I started reading it as soon as I could and it just was not the quality I expected ... I had trouble getting into it ... and keeping up reading it. I tried and tried and just could not do it. I have since purchased another easy reading story (type) Bible that I ABSOLUTEY love and enjoy reading daily ... it is so much easier to read and understand and it was well worth the purchase ... I guess it just goes to prove that there are different things for different people ... all the others can't be wrong but I didn't just give up ... I tried and tried and just could not get into it ... but when I started the other book I immediately LOVED IT ... if one is interest I feel uncomfortable putting the title in this review but feel free to go to my reviews and you will see it recommeneded with a 5 star rating ... Titled "The Bible in A Story Book".
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on December 14, 2013
One might re-title this book as "Tales from the Bible, chopped, rearranged, and forced into the author's idea of what it's supposed to say."

The work takes bits from the Bible, both Old and New Testament and scrambles them. In fact, unless you read a small table at the end of the book, you can't tell what you're reading. You'll be reading this Old Testament story and then some New Testament text miraculously appears without warning. It's hard to understand the meaning because you can't tell who's talking and from what era.

The Bible text comes from the NIV translation, which is fraught with its own problems.

I could understand an abridged Bible and one with some bridge discussion (which The Story has) to account for the lost time. What I cannot abide is taking it apart and re-assembling it in a different order and abusing the context.

You can find all of the Bibles you want for free on the Internet. Avoid this doctrinally adjusted, condensed version.
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