To celebrate 5 years of the CSB, we interviewed a couple people who have played key roles in both the early days and ongoing efforts behind the translation.
Today, we’ll talk with Andy McLean. He’s the Publisher and Director of the Bibles and References team at Lifeway. Andy discusses the CSB and continuing the mission set up 5 years ago.
For those who don’t know you, what’s your role with the CSB?
As the Publisher and Director of the Bible and Reference team at B&H|Lifeway, I get to provide leadership to our marketing and production teams, do acquisition work with authors and ministry partners as it relates to new Bible and Reference titles, as well as serve on the translation oversight committee of the CSB.
How have you seen the CSB find its place in the Bible market?
Honestly, it’s been extremely remarkable to have witnessed such far-reaching adoption of the CSB since the launch five years ago. Since the early days of the revision, it was always the goal of the oversight committee to produce a translation that struck the ideal balance between accuracy and readability, so to see this goal realized and corroborated by Bible readers across the spectrum is immensely encouraging. Because of their persistent and hardworking efforts on the translation itself, combined with the incredible work from our marketing and production teams, we have witnessed 10% market-share growth of the CSB in less than five years.
What excites you about churches and ministries adopting the CSB?
One of the greatest and most fulfilling aspects of our work as a Bible publisher is to help Bible readers of all ages engage meaningfully with the text of Scripture. Our mission of getting God’s written Word into the hands and hearts of people is what excites us and drives our publishing strategy. Whether working on a new Kids’ Bible that is aimed at helping young readers to engage with the history and the culture and the meaning of the text, or with a new Bible specifically aimed at women’s discipleship, everything we publish is filtered through the lens of helping readers across the spectrum understand the Bible better, so that they can hide God’s Word in their hearts.
What are your hopes and your vision for the CSB in the coming 5 years?
As a publishing house, it’s not lost on us how we are afforded such a unique opportunity to steward a major English translation and we want to continue to be found faithful in the stewardship we’ve been given. Part of that will involve continuing our oversight efforts with the translation itself—making sure the CSB is maintaining accuracy and readability at an optimum level.
In addition, it will involve maintaining a future pipeline of Bible releases that serves the global church well for all ages. Whether it be with a one-year Bible, a Study or Devotional Bible, or a Bible specifically aimed at men, women, or kids, our goal is to create titles that help equip readers to rightly handle and divide the word of truth.
And finally, I’ll just say that we also want to create beautiful Bibles given that the medium should always be commensurate with the message. We have a beautiful message inside the pages of Scripture, so we want to create Bibles that reflect that beauty.
As we celebrate the CSB this month, can you share what you most enjoy about the translation?
I’ve personally come to appreciate more and more the readability of the text when spoken. Whether through teaching in my own small group or elsewhere, the text just flows really well when read aloud. That’s one of the things I most enjoy about the translation.
What’s your favorite edition (for your personal use)?
I’ll mention two if I can. First, I’m really enjoying the CSB Scripture Notebooks right now. My small group at church has been going through individual books of the Bible, and because of that, the notebooks have been a great way for us to be on the same page and engage with the reflections and questions we are able to record together. We are currently working through Romans and everyone has a copy of the CSB Romans Notebook, making it easy to engage with the text and record insights from personal and group study. And while my second mention hasn’t been released yet, I believe that the upcoming Explorer Bible for Kids is going to be an instant favorite in my household later this year. We have young kids, and having worked closely with my team on the creation of this one and the features we were able to create specifically for a kids’ audience, I’m excited to be able to read this Bible alongside my kids later this year.