A particular delight in my devotional life during the last few months has been discovering the Common English Bible. The Common English Bible or CEB for short is a new translation encompassing the best of current biblical scholarship from across the spectrum. The translation is fresh and exciting. It moves beyond the theological positioning of other biblical translations to embrace a deep accuracy with the original biblical text. “The Common English Bible is committed to the whole church of Jesus Christ. To achieve this, the CEB represents the work of a diverse team with broad scholarship, including the work of over one hundred and seventeen scholars—men and women from twenty-two faith traditions in American, African, Asian, European and Latino communities. As a result, the English translation of ancient words has an uncommon relevance for a broad audience of Bible readers—from children to scholars” (www.commonenglishbible.com). With joy, I enthusiastically recommend the CEB translation! Taste the fresh CEB translation of Jeremiah 29:11-12. “I know the plans I have in mind for you, declares the LORD; they are plans for peace, not disaster, to give you a future filled with hope. When you call me and come and pray to me, I will listen to you.” The promo blurb is right. “The Common English Bible is not simply a revision or update of an existing translation. It is a bold new translation designed to meet the needs of Christians as they work to build a strong and meaningful relationship with God through Jesus Christ.” Tomorrow I fly out to El Paso to visit The Lydia Patterson Institute. Lydia Patterson is a mission of the South Central Jurisdiction of The United Methodist Church (of which the Central Texas Conference is a part). The bishops of the South Central Jurisdiction will be meeting together at Lydia Patterson as we seek to strengthen our mission and witness to the greater Hispanic community (www.lydiapattersoninstitute.org). Their mission is to:
- “Represent Christian Faith as understood by The United Methodist Church.
- Provide quality bilingual, cross-cultural academic education.
- Provide a Center where local church leaders, clergy and lay, may receive training and experience in effecting Christian witness and ministry with persons of other races and ethnic backgrounds.
- Develop leadership skills in persons interested in cross-cultural and international positions of Christian ministry.”