A new Bible app, ToYouBible, is revolutionizing the way Bible readers experience the Bible. The American Bible Society puts it on the short list of the 11 most creative and innovative Bible apps.
ToYouBible instantly populates thousands of applicable Bible passages with the user's name and customizes them to read according to the user's gender. A version of the app also allows the user to input their spouse's name, if married, and then instantly customizes all relevant biblical passages on marriage with both spouses' names. For instance, John 3:16 for a woman named Susan would read this way:
"For God so loved Susan, that he gave his one and only Son, that Susan believing in him should not perish, but have eternal life."
The popularity of Bible reading using mobile device applications has been demonstrated by the success of the YouVersion Bible app, which currently has over 100 million users worldwide. This trend piggybacks on the increasing popularity of smartphones and the busy and active lifestyles of many users who are people of faith.
The ToYouBible app caters to the popularity of personalized merchandise and gifts. The creators of the ToYouBible app believe that use of mobile devices as well as the added value of personalization could help make Bible reading more meaningful and relevant to readers.
One of the creators, Gregory Ijiwola, Ph.D., an evangelical pastor and a Moody Theological Seminary alumnus, said his desire is to foster a more intimate experience with reading God's word.
"We believe the Bible is God's letter to humanity on his love and plans for us and it contains the answer to all of life's questions," said Ijiwola. "However, when people read it, the words and promises of the Bible oftentimes seem distant and meant for people who lived thousands of years ago."
Ijiwola asserts that people of faith are taught to memorize and meditate on scriptures by speaking them. He believes the ToYouBible app can encourage this practice. "While using sound hermeneutical principles and staying true to the original text, we want to use this app to liven up Bible reading by making it read like a letter to the individual with their names directly in it," he said.
The ToYouBible App, tagged "The Bible That Reads in Your Name," is currently available in both iOS and Android versions. According to the creators, it already has downloads from multiple countries; it even topped the chart for the most downloaded paid book app in Nigeria.
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