Endorsement by Pastor Robert Folkenberg.
"Out of his personal devotional life and study of the Scriptures Dr. Jack Blanco, chairman of the religion department at Southern College of Seventh-day Adventists in Tennessee, produced his own paraphrase of the New Testament. He undertook this project at his own initiative and was not commissioned to do so by any committee or administrator of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Though it was printed by the Review and Herald Publishing Association the issue of officially endorsing it has never come up in any church council. As such, it represents the effort of an individual Seventh-day Adventist to make the Scriptures more readable for himself and for those who choose to read it. As a paraphrase it is appropriate for ones personal devotional study. For detailed doctrinal Bible study the serious student will choose to use a more literal translation of the original languages.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church does not limit the various meaningful avenues through which its members study the Scriptures and we would hope that Dr. Blanco's significant personal effort would contribute to this purpose as well. Those who read it prayerfully should receive a blessing from it, just as they do from other paraphrases of the Bible. This Bible should in no way be considered an official Seventh-day Adventist Bible, nor did Dr. Blanco intend for it to be considered as such."
Dust Jacket Endorsements
"This paraphrase has captured the essence of the biblical thoughts in fresh, contemporary English. Passages that have almost become cliches through familiarity leap from the page with new life, luster, clarity, and relevance." Richard M. Davidson, chair, Old Testament Department, Theological Seminary, Andrews University.
Below this is a line which reads, "Responses to the New Testament paraphrase that preceded the complete Clear Word Bible"
...and below that...
"I deeply appreciate Dr. Blanco's paraphrase. It has been such a blessing to me that I have been looking forward to his completion of the entire Bible." --Robert S. Rolkenberg, president, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists.
"When I open the paraphrased New Testament, it is as if the Lord Himself is standing in front of me, speaking to me personally like a friend. Only the Holy Spirit could have given such a beautiful gift of expression." --Emilio B. Knechtle, revivalist.
"Thank you for making Jesus real for me!" --Shawn Hicks, teenager.
"This Bible paraphrase grew out of the personal devotions of a deeply committed Christian scholar. Anyone who reads it thoughtfully will find their spiritual life greatly enhanced." --Malcolm D. Gordon, president, Southern Union of Seventh-day Adventists.
"Seasoned with a down-to-earth style that will make it difficult to put down. A must for academy Bible classes." --D. Wayne Culmore, academy principal.
"Finally, I may understand Romans." --Miriam Wood, author of the Dear Miriam column in the Adventist Review.
"I use it often. I recommend it from the pulpit to every believer who hungers for a clearer understanding of God's Word." --Wesley M. Hall, pastor.
"In the past, when youth workers opened up the Bible with young people, we could expect to hear a confused 'Huh?' or 'Whazzat mean?' With The Clear Word Bible, we'll have to get used to hearing, 'Oh, I get it!'" --Randy Fishell, associate editor, Guide magazine.
Large Type...."I N T R O D U C I N G" ...
On reproduced Book Cover..."The Clear Word Bible: A Paraphrase to nurture Faith and Growth"
Large Type..."MORE UNDERSTANDING, MORE JOY IN YOUR TIME WITH THE BIBLE"
Text of ad..."It began as a private devotional experience for a Christian professor. Then family and friends prevailed on Jack Blanco, head of the Religion Department at Southern College, to publish his New Testament paraphrase. It energized the devotional lives of people from coast to coast. "Now, the Old Testament has been added to create The Clear Word Bible. You'll find it's a pleasure to read Scripture when the meaning is crystal clear. If a point needs explaining, it is explained right in the text. Like a letter from a friend, it is simple, down-to-earth, and a source of joy."
[Folkenberg and Davidson endorsements as above...also...]
"I never thought I would see the day when I would have to take a Bible away from my sons to get them to go to bed." --Wayne Hicks, youth leader, Upper Columbia Conference of SDA.
The complete Bible in hardcover, with dust jacket. Regular price. US$34.95, Cdn$50.70 INTRODUCTORY SALE, US$29.95, Cdn$43.45.
Call your Adventist Book Center to order at 1-800-765-6955.
Review and Herald Publishing Association
Excerpts from the Preface of _The_Clear_Word_Bible_ . Quotation marks are not used since everything is directly quoted, except brief notations which I have enclosed in square brackets. Omissions are shown in the usual way. (ie . . .)
This is not a new translation but a paraphrase of the Scriptures. It is not intended for in-depth study or for public reading in churches. Those who are better qualified have given readers of the Holy Scriptures excellent translations for such purposes and undoubtedly will continue to do so as additional manuscripts come to light. This paraphrase is intended to provide the reader with fresh indsights into the gracious character of God, the living ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ and the struggles of the early Christian church to survive. It is written in hope that the Holy Spirit may use it as an agency to stimulate a new experience of faith and spiritual growth.It was begun as an attempt to enrich my own spiritual life and my relationship with Jesus. Each verse was written out by hand before being typed into the computer. I visualized myself being in each Biblical scene, participating or listening as if the action and conversation were taking place today. The central thought in each verse was held sacred as God's revelation and compared with the original languages for accuracy but without attempting to convey every nuance contained in the original languages. The amplification and expansion of each text came from lexicons, translations, commentaries, doctoral these and numerous other helps. . . . .
. . . in order to enhance the readability of more difficult passages, it was necessary to employ at times a certain amount of interpretative freedom. Examples are as follows: Some scholars take Genesis 1:1,2 to mean that God created the material substance of the earth on the first day of creation week, while others understand these verses to mean that God brought order and beauty to the raw mass of earth's material created previously. To paraphrase it both ways would be confusing to the reader, and after careful research I decided on the latter.
. . . .[several paragraphs omitted. The following is the only example given from Daniel.]
Chapters 11 and 12 of Daniel were a challenge. Here more interpretative freedom in the light of historical studies and related prophecies (such as found in Revelation) had to be exercised in order to make the chapters more readable and understandable. In the New Testament, I attempted to harmonize in the four gospels what at first appears to be contradictory. The more difficult passages were made clearer by allowing each gospel to inform the other three and elaborating on certain points or scenes revealed in the other gospels. Certain passages from the book of Acts, a historical narrative, were slightly expanded with insights gleaned from commentaries. The epistles of Paul were the most difficult to paraphrase. Much prayer and research were required in a sincere attempt to hold to the central thought of each epistle, taking into consideration the immediate context, the tenor, what was said in his other epistles and the overall teachings of the entire Scriptures--which all have the same Author. This approach was also used in paraphrasing the epistles of Peter, James, Jude and John. For the sake of the reader, the book of Revelation with its many symbols demanded a greater amount of interpretative freedom. The seven churches, seals and trumpets were paraphrased in light of the historical understanding of these passages. The more prophetic portions of the book, particularly from Chapter 13 on, were paraphrased in harmony with the understanding which the Reformers, such as Luther and Calvin, had of these chapters, rather than the preterist or futurist approach, which places these prophecies either in the past or in the distant future.
There were times when certain words and expressions from commentaries, translations, word studies, periodicals and conversations with colleagues were found to be more appropriate and accurate than my own. For such assistance I am truly grateful. May the Holy Spirit be praised who has guided other men and women in their research and writing, thus helping here to present the Word of God more clearly. . . . . I now stand anew in awe of the Holy Scriptures--that priceless treasure we have in God's word, and in amazement at God's extraordinary love for us in sacrificing His own Son to die for our sins and draw us to Himself. So I share with you a paraphrase of the scriptures which has grown out of my own devotional experience and which has enriched my personal life immeasurably. I pray that God will through the Holy Spirit bring those who are outside of Christ and who prayerfully read this paraphrase back into fellowship with Him, and will give those who know Him an enriched experience in faith and spiritual growth. To the glory of God,
Jack J. Blanco