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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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November 4, 2008

Seeing the light?

From Newsweek: Swedish advertiser Dag Soderberg decided the Bible lacked visual punch, so he developed the Bible Illuminated: The New Testament. The book juxtaposes glossy photos of modern imagery with Scripture. For example, Mark (“God says, ‘I will send my messenger ahead of you to open the way’ “) runs with photos of Gandhi, Nelson Mandela and Angelina Jolie.

“It’s a kind of un-Bible approach to presenting the text,” said Philip Towner of the American Bible Society, which provided the book’s Good News translation. “The idea is to get the reader to move from the image to the text.”

Alea from a pop culture blog agrees: “I’m going to be upfront, I’ve never read the Bible but was instantly attracted to this approach. I think that this book can be a great tool to get people interested in reading the Bible, even if just to educate themselves to see what the Bible is all about. It’s very easily approachable.”

In Sweden, Bible Illuminated sold 30,000 copies last year. Newsweek says the book “might be a harder sell” in the U.S. You can see some of the images at www.illuminatedworld.com/. Think it will sell here?

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