Crossway ESV Classic Reference Bible (Premium Calfskin, Black)

Rated 4.00 out of 5 based on 6 customer ratings
(6 customer reviews)

$199.99 $107.99


Out of stock


The ESV Classic Reference Bible is a new edition of the first ESV Bible edition ever published in 2001—the ESV Classic Reference Bible. This practical and popular format combines the ESV text with a robust concordance and one of the most comprehensive and useful cross-reference systems available today—more than 80,000 references conveniently located in the center column on each page. This new edition adds 32 pages of full-color maps of Bible lands and illustrations of historic biblical sites, structures, and objects for ready reference and insight. The ESV Classic Reference Bible’s balance of helpful reference features and convenient size make it an ideal Bible for everyday use—at home, at church, at school, and on the road.

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  • Size: 5.5″ x 8.4375″
  • 9.0-point type
  • 1,344 pages
  • Double-column, paragraph format
  • Red letter text
  • More than 80,000 center-column cross-references
  • 32 full-color pages of maps and illustrations
  • Introductions to each Bible book
  • Extensive concordance
  • 2 Ribbon markers
  • Presentation pages
  • Smyth-sewn binding
  • Leather lined
  • Lifetime quality guarantee on all leather and TruTone® editions

Format:     Calfskin
Page Count:     1,344
Trim Size:     5.5 in x 8.4375 in
Type Size:     8.85
Page Layout     Double Column
Cover:             Calfskin Leather
Lifetime Guarantee
Book intros
Red Letter


Additional information

Weight 3 lbs

6 reviews for Crossway ESV Classic Reference Bible (Premium Calfskin, Black)

  1. Rated 4 out of 5

    Randall Cue

    There are some positives and some negatives to the New Classic Reference Bible in premium black calfskin. First the positives. The calfskin is very nice indeed. Mine has just the right amount of \”pebbling\” for my taste. The leather is very soft and supple. As advertised, the ghosting has been improved considerably. The text is very crisp and clear. It should be noted that this Bible has the 2011 text edition. There are a few small differences between this edition and the 2007 edition. I like the paper of this edition more than the last. It seems to be more substantial without feeling heavy.
    Now for the negatives. The type seems to be smaller than the last edition. That is not too great a problem because the typeface is so clean. It is very easy to read. I would have preferred that the size of the type had been retained. To me a negative is that this Bible does not come in a black letter edition. I\’m not too found of red lettering. The biggest negative is the inconsistency in the level of color in the type. On some pages the black ink is very very black. That is especially noticeable on pages with red lettering too. On other pages the black is very faded. The red lettering suffers from the same inconsistency, but not to the extremes found in the black type.
    This is my primary Bible and will continue to be. I just wish the darkness of the type could be more uniform. When you are dealing with a $200 Bible you expect a little better quality control.

  2. Rated 4 out of 5

    Jason Jordan (verified owner)

    First off it you have not read Randells review of this bible I would do so, great honest review. As you know Crossway has attempted to improve their Classic Reference Bible and I think they have achieved their goal.
    The New Classic Ref is a bit smaller than the old, which isn\’t a problem. The calfskin is the normal
    Crossway calfskin, very soft,very limp and smells great!
    The over all binding on this bible is amazing! The Smyth Sewn binding is good and tight (maybe to tight?) Some of the text block rolls into the gutter but with time I think will loosen up.) The reenforced stitching is close to Allan in my opinion, Crossway has done a GREAT improvement in this area.
    Now to the text. I have never seen a text as clear as this one. The spacing between verses and boldness of the font is comparable to none, a good comparison is the Classic Thinline Font but on \”bold steroids\”. Crossway has done a great job in improving legibility.
    The only draw back is the inconsistency in the ink. Some pages that are side by side you can tell a noticeable difference. Especially in the Gospels with the Red Lettering.
    I\’m not going to spend time on the Red Letter situation because everyone has an opinion on it. Has it improved, Yes. Is it still a little pink, Yes. Is it a \”Cambridge Red\”, No. But it has improved.
    The Paper is A+, Bleed through is almost non-existent. I prefer Crossway paper over Allan paper any day, but that\’s me.
    I give this Bible a solid 4 out of 5 stars. Crossway has achieved their goal of improving on the later and has a bright future of producing quality, lifelong bibles.

    Soli Deo Gloria

  3. Rated 3 out of 5

    Robert Richardson (verified owner)

    The leather covering is great…..the workmanship regarding fit/finish is very good!!……the readability is OK, in spite of the red-lettering being somewhat pinkish…….the two ribbons are nice…….the biggest knock that I have with this Bible is the same that I have with my other two Crossway premium Bibles: the Bible will open-flat/stay-flat but seems to offer too much resistance in doing so (too much crinkly/crackly noise and resistance from the paper in the inside spine area!!!! My Allan, Cambridge, Lockman, TBS and Holman Bibles all open silently and with zero resistance!!!…..I just think a premium Bible should not have this problem!!!……this is an OK Bible….but is definitely NOT a luxury Bible!!

  4. Rated 4 out of 5

    Rio Taylor

    When I Purchased this Bible I was very excited to receive it in the mail. When it arrived I was absolutely in Love with it! The Cover was very Smooth and Beautiful The inside layout of the Bible was amazing as well. The only problems that I have with this bible is the fact that number one it\’s pages are not very flexible as I thought they would be (meaning it doesn\’t lay flat right away) and the fact that the Print on some pages is darker than others. Other than that this will be my Preaching Bible for many years to come.

  5. Rated 5 out of 5

    Matthew Ervin (verified owner)

    I’ve owned this Bible for half a year now and spent a great deal of time with it. I initially reached for it when I required an ESV. Overtime I have begun reaching for it whenever I want a Bible period (except when needing a specific translation). The New Classic Reference Bible Premium now sits in the venerated position of next to my desk. It only leaves when I take it with me to preach from.

    I can fully understand the negative comments on the other reviews. It is true that at times the red print comes off as a bit pinkish. However, much of that comes from contrast with the very clear and dark black print. If you look at only the actual red lettering, even the lighter printed areas look like more of a brick red. Overall the consistency of darkness of the print does suffer. However, the print is always consistent on a given page so it’s not distracting. On the pages where it is lighter, it is still darker than many other Bibles. The lightest page I could find had print that was just as dark as the UltraThin HCSB’s print, if not darker. In other words, the greatest complaint comes from the great majority of pages having exceptional print, with a few being almost as light as the standard Holman print job. That’s not much of a “problem” from my point of view.

    The Bible absolutely opens flat. It only resists you within the first few days of owning it. Just give it some love and it will loosen up considerably. The final complaint that I see out there comes from some wrinkiling near the binding on some pages. While this is true, it is very minor. The virtue of this is that it is almost certainly a result of the super tight smyth-sewn binding on this edition. I can handle some tiny wrinkles in the spine if my Bible is all the tougher as a result!

    The profundity of so many features on this Bible absolutely eclipse the tiny problems mentioned above. First, the paper is exceptionally opaque. It is printed in the USA and that is becoming all the more rare. As said before, the binding is increadibly strong. From what I can tell it is stronger than my Allan’s. The leather is super soft and lined on the inside. There are six hubs on the side. Hubs are one of my favorite aspects that a Bible sometimes has. They help the Bible look more distinguished as it sees use. I have loved this Bible hard and as a result there is some wear starting to show. The Bible’s structural intergrity is still perfect. With use, this Bible just looks more handsome.

    Do you like maps? Well this edition has some of the best I’ve seen. I often ask congregants to turn to a map in order to put a Bible story into a very real place in a person’s mind. There are twelve full color maps here, created with the latest digital technology, satellite images and archaeological research. Maps are a must for me. But wait…there are also several highly detailed illustrations! You are going to love the “Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus” illustration. There are seventeen full color illustrations of important Bible sites, structures and objects, rendered in precise, historically accurate detail. Wonderful!

    Finally, there are not many ESV options that have the 2011 text. This Bible includes the updates that are showing up on software programs. And yet, you don’t have to compromise in choosing one of the few Bibles that has the updates. I highly recommend this Bible. It IS a premium Bible!

  6. Rated 4 out of 5

    David (verified owner)

    I purchased this Bible around October 2015. My experience with the Bible seems to be a little different than the posters who wrote back in 2011/2012.

    First of all the Bible is no longer printed in the USA but is printed in China. One would think this would be a detriment but it seems to be a plus. The China version does not seem to have the print issues that others have written about in the past. For the most part the print seems to be evenly dark and there is no noticeable fading in either the black or the red. If one were to place pages side by side and use a strong light one might see some difference but nothing really that can be noticed without extreme examination.

    The leather and construction is as mentioned above. The leather is really nice and supple. The only real issue with mine is that the print on the spine is substandard. Mine is printed off center and the gold leaf is not printed deep nor neat. In fact it is rather a sloppy print job. This does not bother me because it is the inside I really care about and the inside is fine enough plus the leather is great.

    The only other possible issue would be the rounding of the edges. The corners of the text block could be done a little better, a little more rounded and of course it would be nice if the Bible had art gilding which it does not.

    The paper in the Bible is very good and there is no real issue with ghosting. In fact it is one of the best Bibles I have concerning ghosting.

    That’s about all folks!

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