The Bible will soon be on sale at local supermarkets alongside popular tabloids and People magazine. The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), in cooperation with Tyndale House Publishers, has launched a multimillion-dollar campaign called “Project Bible.” The campaign is designed to increase Bible readership and knowledge across the United States.

The project is built around The Book, a special edition of The Living Bible paraphrase (Tyndale) to be sold in the secular marketplace, CBN is prepared to spend $10 million on radio, television, and possibly billboard advertising to promote The Book. The ad campaign is being coordinated by Compton Advertising of New York City, which handles some $200 million worth of advertising for Procter & Gamble products.

In September, consumers throughout the country will be able to buy The Book for $9.95 at grocery stores, convenience stores, bookstores, and discount stores. The book is being test marketed in Milwaukee, Kansas City, Portland, Providence, Nashville, Oklahoma City, and Norfolk.

“So far we’ve had an overwhelmingly positive response in these cities,” says Tyndale president Mark Taylor. “About twice as many stores as we anticipated are displaying The Book.” But Taylor says the real test is whether or not people will buy it.

Project Bible is the result of extensive research and analysis, much of it commissioned by CBN and done by the Gallup organization. The major conclusion of the research is that America is biblically illiterate. According to Gallup, more than 100 million Americans read the Bible once a month or less often. Nearly 50 million never read it.

Ninety-six percent of American households own a Bible. The overwhelming majority own the King James Version (KJV). Research done ...

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