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ESV Journaling Bible {Review}

I received this product free from FlyBy Promotions for the purpose of reviewing it. I received no other compensation for this review. The opinions expressed in this review are my personal, honest opinions. Your experience may vary. Please read my full disclosure policy for more details.

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ESV Journaling Bible {Review}Journaling Bible (Blue Flora) by Crossway Bibles

ISBN: 1433552264
Published by Crossway Books on October 30th 2015
Pages: 1088
Format: Hardcover
Source: FlyBy Promotions
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The ESV Journaling Bible provides the perfect way for you to keep a journal of your spiritual life right inside the Bible that you read and study each day. With covers and formats that look like the finest journals, the Journaling Bible features 2-inch ruled margins for writing observations, reflections, prayers, praises, notes, and journal entries. This unique Bible makes a great gift and lasting keepsake for anyone who values God's Word.

When I was in high school I was already doing a bit of a journaling thing in my Bibles, however not to the artistic ability that I’ve seen on blogs today with this new theme of journaling Bibles. I would look forever in the book stores just trying to find the widest margins. When I heard about the opportunity to be able to see one of these now is so exciting! When I opened the box though, my enthusiasm quickly dimmed. The book itself is good quality and many people will be thrilled with it. The margins definitely provide space to write and journal as artsy as you would like. It just wasn’t what I was hoping for.

I requested this English Standard Version Journaling Bible on the concept of what it is, but I did not read any of the details about the size. The translation is fine, and I enjoy it.

The ESV Bible is an essentially literal Bible translation that combines word-for-word accuracy with literary excellence, beauty, and depth of meaning.

First published in 2001, the ESV Bible has become trusted by millions of Christian leaders, pastors, and individuals in every part of the world.


This is a small Bible. I have quite the collection of Bibles and translations. Other than pocket-sized Bibles this is nearly one of the smallest I now own. If it were a leather bound edition it might be better, but as a hardcover in this size it just feels awkward to hold. If I am going to be sitting and journaling in a Bible, I’m going to be snuggled up and immersed somewhere, not sitting at a table and this Bible doesn’t feel conducive to that. My personal Bible is written all over and I’m delighted with the concept of a journaling Bible. I think that perhaps when purchasing one, you need to consider if the format will affect your journaling. There appears to be quite a few elegant imitation and bonded leather editions available.

ESV Journaling Bible ReviewThe ESV Journaling Bible is a straight up ESV translation Bible with wide margins. There are no commentary notes here, just minimal footnote references. The features include:

  • Black letter text
  • Double-column, paragraph format
  • Cream-colored paper
  • 2″ ruled margins
  • One-Year Bible Reading Plan (in the appendix)
  • Introductions and section headings for each Bible book (in the appendix)
  • Salvation plan (in the appendix)
  • Navy blue ribbon bookmark
  • Fabric covered hardcover

It’s not just a hardcover book, but it is fabric covered. As in it’s super soft. I’m thinking more as I type, and looking at what I’ve written I do not want you to get the wrong idea. This is a great product, I’m just not in love with it. Perhaps after a lot of use the cover would bend a bit (you know what I mean, Bibles can get quite a beating over the years!).  When you first open the ESV Journaling Bible, you see blank lines of this Bible belongs to… On the next page there is an invitation to journal and start a living relationship with the scriptures through this Bible. I love this quote…

The more you use this Bible, the more valuable it will become. Years later you will be able to thumb through it, read your journal entries, and reflect on your spiritual journey and the great work God has done in your life. We invite you now to begin a dialogue with God, using the Journaling Bible as a tool. – ESV Journaling Bible – blue floral cloth over board

The only other thing that makes me unsure of my feelings toward this Bible is that the font size is 7-point font. It seems tiny! I know my mother would not approve. But most younger generation folk should be just fine. 😉 The Enginerd tells my I’m whining about nothing and that he can read it just fine and would have no trouble with it. His other comment was that he couldn’t fathom the idea of writing in a leather Bible as I mentioned and thinks that he would only be able to write in a hardcover like this cloth over a hard board version. So go figure, he banishes my only off-putting thoughts.

Other information to share? The edges are white and not gilded. There are no thumb tabs with this edition, but there is, however, a ribbon marker as I mentioned. It measures 7.8 by 6.5 by 1.7 inches and is just under 2 lbs in weight. It comes in a slipcover box case and I would probably plan to put it back in the box for protection, especially if I were to put it in a purse or bag for carrying. It’s not perfect for me, but it a great concept and one I’m eager to indulge in.

Download a PDF excerpt of the interior

Bonus for reading all the way, there’s a giveaway!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don’t miss, the just added #giveaway thanks to #flyby for a brand new #journalbible from Crossway. http://wp.me/pYHD5-6Pz 

ESV Journaling Bible Review and Giveaway #flyby

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About CherryBlossomMJ

The Creative Madness Mama also known as Margaret is a Christian Stay-at-home Mama, married to the Enginerd, Quilter, avid reader and book-a-holic. A book blogger for bunches of different publicists. She loves to share the latest and greatest about books coming out as well as her quilt and other crafty projects with some pictures of her eight-year-old AppleBlossom, three-year-old Almond Blossom (the Rascal boy!), six-year-old OrangeBlossom (the Princess), and newborn Mermaid Warrior in between. Plotting to be a homeschooler, she's a cloth diapering, breastfeeding, babywearing, list making mama full of a little creative and a lot of madness.
  • I like to vary my Bible reading every few years. So, over the course of time, I’ll read an NIV, then the HSJB, the NAS, and so forth. Also, I would LOVE to win this journaling Bible because I’ve been intrigued lately with the Bibles I’m seen in which women have both journaled AND created artwork alongside their journaling. I have wanted to do this since I saw the first example of it! I think it’s an most unusual way to approach and glean from Scripture.

    Awesome giveaway, Margaret–thank you!
    Melanie (Wren)´s last blog post ..November mani!

    Melanie (Wren) recently posted: November mani!
    • I would love to learn the way of penmanship that I have seen some people do in the journaling Bibles lately. I’m not so into the collage parts, but I’m intrigued as to what this adventure might bring!

  • I have been looking at journaling Bibles. I’d love to have one and have been thinking about asking for one for Christmas. I think it is neat to look back about what struck you on certain passages and notes that you have taken.
    Lori H´s last blog post ..Jesus – a review and giveaway

    Lori H recently posted: Jesus – a review and giveaway
  • I’ve never used one, but I’ve been thinking about getting one, and I do love the ESV translation 🙂
    Rebecca Ray´s last blog post ..NIV Understand the Faith Study Bible

    Rebecca Ray recently posted: NIV Understand the Faith Study Bible
  • Lauren

    I like that there is a lot of room to write. I have never used one before.