Men in the Word of God every day.
That’s the goal of He Reads Truth, and that’s what they hope to accomplish with their brand-new He Reads Truth Bible. …But did they do it?
Find out below in my brutally honest review of the He Reads Truth Bible.
Why He Reads Truth?
In total transparency, I wanted to buy this Bible for my husband for Father’s Day. It’s so hard to find a suitable gift for husbands on this special day. Of course I’m getting him a framed photo of our kids …but shhhh don’t tell him, because I kind of wanted to surprise him with a little something special of my own. So I was looking into the He Reads Truth Bible, when the publisher contacted me and kindly offered me a copy to review. (PLUS one to giveaway! Keep reading for your chance to win!)
Now, let me just say at the onset: I absolutely love my She Reads Truth Bible. It’s the Bible I use for my personal reading every day, as well as the one the kids and I use for Bible & Breakfast. If you want more details on that version, check out my She Reads Truth Bible video review here.
But anyway, I love my SRT Bible, so when I saw the HRT Bible, I had an inkling it would be the perfect fit for what I’m looking for.
If you’re unfamiliar with them, He Reads Truth and She Reads Truth are sister organizations that help men and women around the world study God’s Word every day. They provide reading plans, devotionals, and worldwide communities to help people stay consistent in their reading.
I love their mission, because it links arms with our own mission here at One Thing Alone Ministries so beautifully: helping women find joy in Jesus through consistent time in His Word.
I’m grateful how thoughtfully and carefully He Reads Truth crafted this Bibles. I’d give them high-fives for a lot of strengths, but I’ll also point out a few weak areas where I wish they’d have chosen differently.
The good, the bad, and the ugly… I tell it all below.
Strengths of He Reads Truth Bible
I thought I could make this Bible a surprise for Father’s Day but–surprise!–he got the mail before me. So he was surprised, just a little early. But I will say, what he immediately noticed was how visually appealing the layout, typeface, and design choices are. He was flipping pages and commenting on the thoughtful design, and I was elated to see that he loved it as much as I hoped he would!
Dual tone ink brings color
If you’re used to a black-and-white Bible, you’ll be pleased with the pops of color in the pages of the HRT Bible. It’s not like it changes the content or meaning, but it makes your experience of reading God’s Word that much more pleasant. And I’d count that as a major win.
Hand-lettered key verses represent cohesive narrative arc
At the beginning of every book of the Bible, you’ll find a hand-lettered key verse that represents the main theme of that book, but also fits into the overall narrative arc of the Bible. You’ll be relieved to hear that these aren’t cutesy verses with flowers and flourishes as you’d find in most women’s Bible journaling groups. They feel masculine and yet still beautiful.
Built-in reading plans keep you on track
If you’ve ever lost the reading plan you were supposed to follow along with, this feature will make you sing a hallelujah.
Dozens of helpful charts and maps make you want to linger
Also at the beginning of each book, aside from the hand-lettered key verses and reading plan, you’ll also find an outline of major themes in each book. This is new to the HRT Bible, and I’m a bit jealous that it’s not part of my SRT Bible. Seriously, such a helpful feature when doing a book study.
Oh, and interspersed throughout you’ll find charts and maps on every topic you can think of. Just causally flipping through the pages makes me want to slow down and study each topic. And that can only be a good thing, right?
Ample margins offer room for note-taking
Whether you’re writing an observation during your morning quiet time or jotting down something your pastor said, you’ll have plenty of room in the margins for notes.
Modern exterior looks sleek
I’m not going to lie: I’m kind of crushing on how the green and coral go together here. It’s like having matching His and Hers Bibles. Is that even a thing? I’m not sure, but don’t they look great together??
CSB translation is readable but also high fidelity to original text
Okay, this is what you really wanted to know, right? What translation is it??
The He Reads Truth Bible is the CSB translation, which stands for the Christian Standard Bible, also previously known as the Holman Christian Standard Bible translation. You can read more about it here, but basically, the translation stays as literal to the text as possible without sacrificing readability. Like I said, I use it for my daily Bible reading in the SRT Bible, but I go elsewhere when I’m doing word studies, sentence diagramming, and other fun Bible study skills.
As you can tell, I’m pleased with the He Reads Truth Bible, but it’s not perfect. Here are a few things I would have changed if they’d asked me. (But obviously, no one did. Because, well, I’m pretty sure they had other highly-qualified people on their team. But I digress.)
Bulky size makes it challenging to carry
Okay, to be brutally honest, I was surprised how bulky the He Reads Truth Bible is. From the promotional images I had seen online, I was expecting it to be a bit smaller than my SRT Bible, but when I actually held it in my hands, I realized it’s the same dimensions, but thicker. What? Why? I’m still not entirely sure what adds to the extra bulk, but you’ll probably get an upper body workout while lugging this from your car into the church every week. Which isn’t entirely a bad thing…
Semi-transparent paper jumbles the look of the page
This is my biggest complaint right here. The He Reads Truth Bible is so beautifully designed, with so much thought put into every stroke and placement… that it just hurts my heart to see it all jumbled on the page. The actual paper is so thin that what’s on the front of a page bleeds to the back, sometimes interfering with the text, graphic, chart, or actual verses, especially if it’s a large block of ink, like in a graphic.
And it’s not just from one page to another–sadly, sometimes an element that’s two or more pages removed will still show through. It’s a major bummer, but it didn’t seem to bother my husband as much as it bothered me.
Lack of devotionals disappoints
Again, I’m being totally honest here: I’m not the kind of person to read devotionals. There, I said it. However, I do occasionally find myself skimming the short devotionals included in my SRT Bible, and they’ve often given me new ways of pondering and applying the text I was reading. So while I’m not crushed that devotionals are absent from the HRT Bible, I am a bit disappointed, because I know that other people really do benefit from reading devotionals. I think that would have been helpful, but again, going back to Weakness #1, it probably would have added more bulky to an already-chunky Bible. So maybe it’s better this way.
Umm… there isn’t any ugly in the He Reads Truth Bible. It’s beautifully and artistically crafted, and it would make a stunning gift for the man in your life. (Well, yeah, there’s that little page-bleed thing I mentioned above. But that wouldn’t deter me from getting this. Like I said, it wasn’t a big deal to my hubby, so others might not even notice it.)
So to wrap things up: does the He Reads Truth Bible live up to its hype?
Why yes. Yes, it does.
Will the He Reads Truth Bible make you read the Word of God every day?
No. Not by itself sitting on a shelf. But if you have a desire to study God’s Word, this Bible provides thoughtful visuals, artistic designs, and helpful tools that will draw you in and make you want to linger longer in God’s Word. And that’s a pursuit that will change your life.