The New American Bible revised edition is more than a mere Bible translation. Authorizedby the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine and approved by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the New American Bible seeks to provide the best resource for understanding the church's sacred Scripture. To begin with, the translation beautifully and accurately conveys the word of God in English, using the most recent scholarly resources available and translating directly from the original languages. While the Bible plays a central role in the church's life, it is also important to remember that it is an ancient book written over several centuries. It carries a rich tradition of interpretation over even more centuries. That is why the many scholars and church teachers who worked years on this project did more than provide a clear and accessible translation; they also sought to provide additional help and guidance for those who truly want to understand what they are reading: Each book of the Bible begins with an introduction, providing the historical context of the work, its literary style, its main themes, its use in the history of the church, as well as an outline of the contents. As you read the Scriptures, notes have beenprovided at the bottom of the page offeringexplanations for particular passages, terms, and concepts. Since Scripture often refers to itself, a system of cross-references are provided so you can see where else historical figures, particular stories, or similar concepts are also treated in the Bible. At the end of the Bible, sixteen pages of color maps are provided to help orient the Bible's stories in their geographical context.