Double your outreach possibilities - perfect for Outreach and Bible Study! We have recently made the decision to divide our parallel Bibles from our bilingual Bibles on two separate pages in an effort to make the differences between the two Bible types more discernible. Our definition of a parallel Bible is one that contains a side-by-side Bible text in two different versions. Our parallel Bibles present His Word side-by-side in two different Bible versions. This layout is excellent for comparative Bible study or sharing more traditional scripture next to an easier to understand version presented in a more modern vernacular. Some versions may also include Psalms and Proverbs.
It is often wrongly assumed that parallel Bibles are a fairly modern variation to modern Bibles text. The truth is that the first proper parallel Bible was a Greek-Latin text published in 1516 by Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam and printer John Froben1. This was partially due to Erasmus’ opinion that Latin had changed so much that the Latin Vulgate had become corrupted. So, the first parallel was actually a more of a bilingual Bible but it explains very clearly why we not have parallel and bilingual Bibles.
In 1522, Spanish Cardinal Ximenez financed the creation of the Complutesian Polyglot. This Old Testament was a compendium of Jerome's Latin Vulgate, various Hebrew texts, Septuagint (the Greek version of the Old Testament), the Pentateuch (the five books of Moses) and an Aramaic translation – all presented in four volumes2.
In 1841, the Hexapla was published by Samuel Bagster & Sons of London, England. This text contains the original 1611 King James Version text in parallel with five other pre-KJV translations published between 1380 and 1611. This New Testament included: The Wycliffe version of 1380 (the first English scripture), The Tyndale version of 1534-1536, and Cranmer's Great Bible of 1539, The Geneva “1557”, (the Bible of the Protestant Reformation), The Rheims 1582 (the first Roman Catholic English version), and the 1611 King James First Edition. Oh and if that was not enough, the original Greek text was printed at the top of each page! This was a truly impressive parallel Bible.
There has been a long history of parallel Bibles. Over time, as more and more scriptural interpretations evolved, the line between bilingual and parallel New and Old Testament versions became much more distinct. In modern days, the term parallel Bibles has come to represent one book that presents two or more Bibles versions side-by-side. This format has become widely accepted as an easy to compare two interpretations at the same time making parallel Bibles perfect for all levels of Bibles study. Still looking for a bilingual Bible? See our full line of bilingual Bibles here.
Some example of our parallel Bibles are:
1) New International Version (NIV) with the King James Version (KJV)
2) Amplified (AMP) with the King James Version (KJV)
3) New American Standard Bible (NASB) and The Message
4) Reina Valera (RVR) and Nueva Versión Internacional (NVI)
5) New International Version (NIV), New King James Version (NKJV) and the New Living Translation (NLT)