In 2007 the United Bible Societies published The UBS Greek New Testament: A Reader’s Edition. This is a perfect source for those who wish to facilitate their Greek reading. It contains the text of UBS4, which is identical to the Nestle-Aland Novum Testamentum Graece, 27th ed. A running dictionary, compiled by Barclay M. Newman, provides contextual definitions for words that occur 30 times or less. An appendix in the back defines words that occur more than 30 times in the New Testament. The running dictionary also defines unusual root words and forms when they appear. Some basic textual criticism marks remain in the text, such as brackets that indicate a disputed reading, double brackets which indicate later additions to the text, etc. The only disadvantage is the absence of UBS4’s more detailed apparatus.
A Reader’s Greek New Testament (RGNT), 2d ed., by Richard J. Goodrich and Albert L. Lukaszewski was also released in 2007. Similarly, it provides definitions for words that occur only 30 times or less. A short lexicon in the back provides definitions for words that occur more than 30 times. Textual criticism marks also remain in the text (brackets that indicate a disputed reading, double brackets which indicate later additions to the text, etc.). But the RGNT has some major disadvantages. The text base for RGNT is based on the “eclectic text that underpins the Today’s New International Version” (p. 9). As a result, an abbreviated apparatus identifies where RNGT varies from the UBS, based on translation decisions made by TNIV translators. But, some advantages remain. The abbreviated apparatus also provides source citations for Old Testament and Apocryphal quotations. RGNT is also lighter, thinner and bound in burgundy, duo tone leather.
Both the UBS Reader’s Edition and RGNT are fine sources for those who wish to better their Greek reading skills. If you are in search of a text that is based on standard scholarship, then The UBS Greek New Testament: A Reader’s Edition is highly recommended. It is available for only $22.99. If you are in need of a source that is easy to carry, aesthetically appealing and even provides OT and Apocryphal citations, then A Reader’s Greek New Testament is the text for you. It is available for only $27.99.
Review by: J. Bisbee