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The Story (NIV): The Bible as One Continuing Story of God and His People
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The Story (NIV): The Bible as One Continuing Story of God and His People

4.36  ·  Rating details ·  5,033 ratings  ·  461 reviews
'The Greatest Story Ever Told' is more than just a cliche. God has gone to great lengths to rescue lost and hurting people. That is what The Story is all about: the story of the Bible, God's great love affair with humanity. Condensed into 31 accessible chapters---and using the clear, accessible text of the NIV---this rendering of the Bible allows its stories, poems, and te ...more
Kindle Edition, 513 pages
Published April 19th 2011 by Zondervan (first published 1996)
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Average rating 4.36  · 
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 ·  5,033 ratings  ·  461 reviews

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Jan 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spiritual, own, 2016
The Story was written to help make the Bible more accessible to those who may get lost in the language or who do not have the desire to get the whole message from 1000+ pages.

I think it was pretty good. I can see how it would help some be more comfortable with the journey through the Bible. However, I feel like there was a lot of it that was just a reprint of the source material and, therefore, was not any more accessible than just reading the Bible. If I had to guess, 60% of the people who stru
Donald White
Jul 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I understand the criticism of those who say it is an "edited" Bible, leaving out some uncomfortable portions, however THE STORY does not pretend to be "The Bible." Nor is it like the failed Reader's Digest version that came out in the 70s. It is a collection of excerpts to give one the central themes of the Bible, presenting it as one continuous story of humanity's relationship with their God. Read in that way, it works! And it works well! Our church is going through THE STORY series, in classes ...more
Keith Beasley-Topliffe
It seemed like a good idea. Make an abridged Bible that emphasized the main story from creation to end of time and could be read as a novel. Of course a lot would have to be cut, but even a third of the bible is a lot of material and an amazing chronicle of God's interaction with people over a couple thousand years. Then I read it. I've read the entire bible in various translations several times. I've led groups through "The Bible in 90 Days" (also by Zondervan). And so I was more struck by what ...more
David Jones
Oct 02, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Kind of pointless. Just read the Bible. That way you won't get things left out.
Amy R
Dec 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, nonfiction
There was a lot of Bible in this relatively short book! I have never read a book about the Bible like this (meaning reads like a story). This was a good big-picture type read of the Bible. I learned a lot and feel when I go back and study parts of the Bible it will make more sense since I have read a broad version. I would recommend this to anyone that wants to know the story of Christ in a compact easy read.
Bonnie Garrett
Oct 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I came into this book with only a fuzzy concept of the Old Testament. This seemed like just the right thing to give me a clear, chronological picture of events, and it certainly did the trick. However, I had already read much of the New Testament, so I could definitely tell when The Story left out large chunks of it. As a whole, I enjoyed it and I learned a lot. Not only did it read like a page-turner (Imagine that - The Bible as a fast-paced novel!), it was a fantastic tool to gain an understan ...more
Michael Powe
This book is a useful tool for study of the Bible. It is not, despite the cover, "selections from the New International Version." It is selected Biblical stories rewritten in modernized American English.

It's useful because it allows the student to follow the narrative lines of the Bible. Most of the historical annotations inserted by the original Biblical authors are stripped out.

The book fails, in my opinion, in two important respects. First, it does not include annotations that parallel its te
Smart idea, but it has the risk of being interpreted as a "substitute" for the Bible itself. When its purpose is defined clearly, it could be a great evangelical tool. Certain chapters might give great perspective and clarity to some of the lesser-known parts of the Scriptures. Yet other valuable parts of Scripture are taken out, and some of it feels incomplete.

Some of the language in the commentary contained a little too much slang for my tastes (you really wanna say they "just plain forget," i
Sep 03, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This audio version helped me with my study of The Story. However, some of the readers were slow, the last disc had some sort of manufacturing defect, and certain parts--especially Revelation--could have been much more dramatic. As helpful as it was, I'm trading in my copy first chance I get.
Bailey Marissa
While I appreciate the fact they put the stories in chronological order, I can't get behind this. By doing the 'highlights' of the Bible (mostly just the more famous Bible stories), they are neglecting important parts (such as Job!!) and not focusing on the main point of the Bible: God's character.

If you want to really witness to someone with the Bible, don't use this; give the person an actual Bible and offer to read it with them.

Christians need to stop trying to go for the quickest results (
Once I got used to the things that bothered me (see "first impressions" below), it wasn't too bad. I still wish it had been more than the NIV, more descriptive, more "current," but it's obviously a Zondervan thing, so I'll have to wish for Tyndale or Eugene Peterson to copy the idea (if they haven't already, I honestly have no idea).

I'm glad I listened to the whole thing and got a glimpse of the entire Bible as a story. It's not a foreign concept by any means, but since it's so long, it was nice
Cathryn Conroy
Dec 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you have ever wanted to read the Bible from start to finish but found the length daunting and the "begats" boring, this is the book for you. "The Story" contains all the big stories of the Old Testament and New Testament in 31 chapters using the New International Version (NIV). When parts are skipped, the author summarizes in italics what happened. I read "The Story" as part of a nine-month Episcopal church Bible study group, and it's ideal for this if you're looking for such a resource. But ...more
Ntombezinhle Nzama
This book weaved together the story of the bible so beautifully. Although it was not a word for word account of the bible (we would just read the bible if that were the case), it puts the story together. I actually learnt a lot about the bible and how some things fit together. I tool a while to finish this book and read other books in between, but every time I cam back to it I felt so enlightened...

I must say though, the old testament was A LOT of history but I actually got to understand how ev
Dec 30, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I went into this expecting it to be a novel-ish version of the bible because I had heard it was, but it wasn't - actually, it's the bible rewritten so it's in chronological order and more easily understandable. So it wasn't exactly what I was looking for, but it was still very interesting and good to read. However, I felt that the authors comments in italics were - at least to me - more distracting than helpful and so I quickly started skimming over them or skipping them altogether.
Feb 01, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Story is a (somewhat) compact version of the stories in the Bible. Of course it starts with Adam and Eve and goes all the way through to Revelations.

Although it covers the main points it does leave out a few stories and passages. But that was okay with me because I read this book with the intention that I was only going to get the "meat and potatoes" out of it. I had already planned to get the "gravy" directly from the Bible (KJV) after reading this.

In summation, this book gives you a prett
Jun 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My church just finished going through this book together (in the worship services and in weekly small group discussions). It's not a replacement for the Bible, it's simply meant as a tool to encourage fuller engagement with the Bible.

And it was extremely effective in our community -- it raised biblical literacy, encouraged deeper worship, and allowed us a venue for asking some really tough and wonderful questions.

If you're someone who has always been interested in the Bible but for one reason or
Jun 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book to go along with on ongoing sermon series at our church. Between the book itself and the sermons that accompanied it, I learned a lot and understand parts of the Bible that were foreign to me beforehand.
Kait Wellens
I used this book to guide my daily Bible reading, and really enjoyed going through the Bible in this way! This book helped me to get a broader understanding of the Bible as one continuous story of God’s creation and how he is redeeming his people. I also feel that I have gained a much better understanding of the historical timeline and context of the Bible through reading this, especially the Old Testament.
Sep 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While nothing could compare with the entire Bible, this book is a good devotional, and helps you see God's Word as a complete story. However, if you haven't read the Good Book in its entirety, you should; there's a lot of important content that was left out of this, such as the General Epistles.
Dec 31, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this is like reading the Readers Digest Condensed Version of the Bible, but it does present the narrative arc of the Bible in a useful way.

In no way is this intended to be a study Bible. There are no chapter and verse numbers. (Although, the author includes an appendix of discussion questions should you want to read this in a study group.) Only stories that have narrative flow are included, with some other text such as Psalms, Proverbs, and from the prophets when such text helps with the
Feb 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
We are reading this book in church and so now that I have gotten up to where the church is, I'll be reading one chapter each week. Although it is abridged and simplified and does leave out quite a bit, it has been in interesting way to read the Bible and I'm enjoying it. Now I have finished it, and I have enjoyed reading it. I have learned quite a bit about parts of the Bible that I really hadn't read thoroughly. It also makes me want to read some of the parts more in depth.
May 30, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book did a great job giving the over-arching story from Genesis to Revelation. The parts I liked best were the authors notes to help explain the story and allow the storyline to flow better. The majority of this book is taken right out of the NIV. By sticking to the overarching storyline of scripture there were definitely minor storylines that were left out. For the big picture - read the Bible :)
Julie Heckman
Mar 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: faith
I've never read the bible cover to cover so this was a good first stepping stone for me. I don't know enough to know what it left out and now it's given me a good fundamental starting point and enough interest to want to go deeper.
This is more of a spark notes summary of the Bible. It's worth a read (especially for the deal I got on it) however, the actual Bible reads better. Cannot replace the Bible, bit for those inclined, can be a supplement to the Bible.
Sep 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Highly recommend! This book will give you a good overview of the Bible which will in turn make you want to dig deeper.
Feb 05, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reads like "a Story" with significant portions missing!
Jan 08, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an interesting experience. I kept finding myself thinking, "Oh, but we're missing so much depth by skipping this detail!" Which I'd say is a testament to the incredible cohesion of the lengthy epic that is the Bible.

Don't misunderstand me; I think this is a quality abridgment that presents the overall storyline well. If it interests you, go for it. Just know, if you've picked this up because you're struggling to get through the whole Bible, there is so much more fantastic stuff to be di
Dianne Butts
Oct 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A helpful way to get an overview of the Bible. Enjoyable for those who want a new way to read the Bible. Would be good for new Christians or a Bible study for new believers or young believers.

The commentary that weaves the parts of the actual Bible together wasn't exactly neutral, at times showing biases toward certain interpretations. Would have liked it more if they'd stayed neutral.

I was a little disappointed that The End skipped over all the bad stuff in Revelation and went straight to the
Sep 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: christianity
Amazing. With a thick text like the Old Testament, this book nicely summarizes and reminds you of what's happened so far in the continuing story of the Bible. It nicely weaves stories from the Bible in chronological order and gives you great context for what's happening in the current times. Of course not a substitute for reading the Bible, it's a great and insightful read for any exploring non-Christian or for the Christian believer in any stage of their journey. I especially found the OT passa ...more
Feb 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The style of The Story breathed new life into stories I had let become dry through over-familiarity, not with Scripture itself, but with my memory of Scripture. I saw characters in new light and found myself saying more than once 'Does the Bible really say that?' The Story has led me back to Scripture with new eyes and a hunger to truly know what the Bible says and not just what I think it says. I noticed the discussion questions at the end of the book when I was almost done it, so I am looking ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Correction request 4 13 Jul 23, 2020 06:33PM  

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Randy Frazee is the senior minister at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, Texas. Oak Hills is one of the largest churches in America, where Randy teaches and leads in partnership with pastor and author Max Lucado. An emerging leader and innovator in spiritual formation and biblical community, Randy is the architect of The Story church engagement campaign. He is the author of The Heart of The Story, ...more

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