Sometimes No Doesn’t Mean No

Several years ago I asked the German Bible Society if they were ever going to produce a single volume edition of the LXX bound with the Greek New Testament, as they had a Hebrew Bible bound together under one cover with the Greek New Testament.

Here is the answer I received:

Dear Dr. West,

Apologies for this belated reply. It took a few days until your request was finally forwarded to me.
We have considered several times a one volume edition of the Rahlfs Septuagint and the NA. It is obvious that such an edition would perhaps make even better sense than the existing Biblia Sacra with BHS and NA. There are, however, two substantial obstacles: First the Septuagint alone comprises already more than 2100 pages, approximately the same as the enire Biblia Sacra, and still adding the NA would go beyond the technical limits for one volume. And second the number of copies sold of the BHS & NA version is so modest that we are not encouraged to try the Septuagint & NA version as well. Therefore the chance that we will produce a one volume edition of the Septuagint and the GNT or NA is unfortunately close to zero.

With greetings and best wishes
Rolf Schäfer

Dr. Rolf Schäfer
Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft
Kirchliche Stiftung des öffentlichen Rechts
Balinger Straße 31 A D-70567 Stuttgart

‘Close to zero’ turns out to be a resounding yes!  My copy arrived today and now sits in the place of chief honor on my desk along with its brother, the Biblia Sacra: Hebraica et Graeca.


May I offer a bit of advice?  Don’t dawdle.  Get a copy now- because it may not be around in a year or so.  Publishers don’t keep things in print.

To be sure, I’ve heard the quibbling here and there about the edition.  ‘No this, no that, no the other thing.’  Such quibbling may be true but it isn’t meaningful when compared to the usefulness of having under one cover what is in fact the Bible of the early church.  The edition is beautifully done, as we might expect from our German friends.  Get. It. While. You. Can.

About Jim

I am a Pastor, and Lecturer in Church History and Biblical Studies at Ming Hua Theological College.
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