The lesson plans in the leader's guide call for class members to read the scriptures aloud dramatically, like a play. I found that the new translation The Voice is well-suited to this. It's a paraphrase written in a screenplay style, with dialog called out this way:
Jesus: Move out into deeper water, and drop your nets to see what you’ll catch.
Simon (perplexed): Master, we’ve been fishing all night, and we haven’t caught even a minnow. But…all right, I’ll do it if You say so.
It's almost as if The Voice was written for the purpose. But The Voice is published by Thomas Nelson, and The Way by Abingdon Press. So I doubt they planned it.
In April, a colleague pointed me to the HarperCollins Christian Publishing Consumer Insights Panel. After signing on as a member of the panel, I got a promotional e-version of The Voice New Testament. Right about the same time, the Christian Education director at our church got a postcard promoting The Way and suggested it would be appropriate for my class.
That all sounds very coincidental, but I don't believe in coincidences. I think Someone planned it, but it wasn't likely the publishers.
Some of these links are affiliate links, so if you click on one and purchase the item, I will receive a pittance of a commission. As noted, I received The Voice NT for free in the hope that I would promote it. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe provide value. Per Federal Trade Commission, 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”