January 16, 2021

Van Til Announces Class Action Lawsuit Against Justin Taylor For Cruelty and Abuse of Bibliophiles

Just in case the talking dog doesn’t do it, this is a bit o’humor. I can’t wait to get my copy….and if it’s not here by the 15th, I’m starting a crusade to Wheaton.

Let me say hello to the Internet Monk audience and re-introduce myself. My name is Van Til, and in addition to my day job as the BHT’s Magic Tail Chasing Wonder Dog and technical producer at the Internet Monk Radio Podcast, I’m also a recent graduate of the St. Sadie’s School of Law. Yes, yours truly is a lawyer. (I’ve been chasing ambulances for years, but that’s another story.)

As an attorney, I’m constantly looking for financial opportnity injustice and suffering. I’m aware that some attorneys have reputations of using the misfortune of others in order to enrich themselves, but I would never consider such an abuse of our precious legal system….unless led to do so by the Holy Spirit with signs confirming. I have dedicated myself to representing those whose suffering goes largely overlooked because of the ability of “the man” to cover up, obfuscate and evade responsibility.

I am, therefore, announcing a class action lawsuit against Justin Taylor, the man responsible for the suffering of thousands of bookish Calvinists and Bibliophiles all over the world. My clients- whom I believe will soon include many of you reading this post- hope to reclaim millions of dollars in compensation for mental anquish and suffering.

For those who may not know the details of this case, Justin Taylor is the man responsible for the marketing of the English Standard Version Study Bible. For many months now, Taylor has been engaged in a campaign to create hysteria over interest in the ESV Study Bible. This campaign has proceeded on multiple levels, with multiple strategies, and has included web sites, widgets, blogs, videos and hundreds of pages of sample text.

Recently, Taylor released a series of videos that contained actual photographs of the ESVSB in completed form, being held by a distant relative of Billy Graham with an unpronounceable name. These videos- cleverly modeled after the videos of a certain popular manufacturer of technology- gave detailed insights into the many features o the ESVSB. They were, to be perfectly honest, more than the normal reformed book-buyer could be expected to stand. Some Bibliophiles are sitting at their computers, deep into the wee hours of the morning, clicking these videos over and over, mumbling to themselves. Sad. And Taylor is to blame.

Taylor’s plan to promote the ESV Study Bible has been ruthlessly and heartlessly effective. He obviously is a man with many talents and methods in the field of product promotion. But Taylor is also a cruel and callous person, with no real concern over what he is doing to individuals and families. Would Jesus run videos of the ESVSB when they can’t be purchased for weeks? I think not.

Taylor is creating extreme stress and mental abuse in that segment of the population known as the bookish Calvinist and/or Bibliophile. Under Taylor’s master plan to market the ESVSB, these people are now suffering the torments of the darned.

Taylor announced early on that the Bibles would be published on October 15. Obviously, Taylor hoped for a Harry Potter-like response to this date, with ESV fans dressing up like Bible characters and Calvinist celebrities, going to their local book shop and camping out for the week preceding publication and making it onto the evening news.

Instead, Taylor has brought about a response that only now is beginning to come to light, as thousands of Calvinists and Bibliophiles break down mentally and emotionally under the “wait” of an October 15th deadline.

Mere humans simply cannot stand the pressure. But now, even book fans who are used to waiting years for their next Puritan facsimile are breaking down.

Matthew J. of Onyx Hills, Mississippi recently found himself in trouble with the law when he stole his neighbor’s weed-eater and pawned it to raise money for the Bible.

Dylan R. of Wheaton, Illinois, was arrested attempting to break into the Crossway warehouse.

Rev. William S of Shrewsberry, Vermont took the money he’d put away for his wife’s anniversary gift and bought an ESVSB on pre-order.

In one of the saddest cases of all, Norma L or Grandview, Indiana sold her dog- !!!- for money to buy an ESVSB.

I could fill up this space with more and more stories, but two things are important here:

1) These people and hundreds, thousands, like them are innocent victims. They simply can’t wait till October 15th. No one can. Not even Tim Challies. (Has Taylor sent out Bibles to those who threatened to turn on him violently? We’re looking into it.)

2) Taylor has continued to ramp up the ESVSB promotion in the face of the breakdown of family and moral sanity among his customers. With October 15 now less than three weeks away, Taylor continues to promote the ESVSB, knowing that thousands are even now raiding the money they put away for baby’s little shoes.

It’s time to stand up to this abuse of power. Justin Taylor has done extensive research on his audience. He knows their weaknesses. He knows what he’s doing. He is ruthless and heartless in his constant promotion of a Study Bible that his obsessed customer base can’t yet buy.

For shame, Mr. Taylor. Well…..your time is up.

I’m asking the book-buying public to rise up and join me in this class action lawsuit against Justin Taylor. What is your story? WHAT IS YOUR SUFFERING WORTH? How much can I clear, after taxes? What will it take to put your life back together again? Can you ever recover?

Add your name, your story and your cry for justice here in the comments of this blog. Let’s stand up to the tyranny. Fight the powers that be. We’re mad as gehenna, and we’re not going to take it any more.

Publish now or Pay Up, Mr. Taylor. It’s your choice.


  1. Van Til: I am deeply, deeply offended by the slurs against lawyers in this post.

    As for the ESVSB: I’m an NRSV-reading Lutheran heretic – who dislikes study Bibles anyway – so I’m a little out of the target market. 🙂

    Besides, the ESVSB is only a warm-up for the main event: October 2009’s launch of the Lutheran Study Bible

  2. I think you should thank Luther or whoever it is you worship that you’ve been spared. Van Til is truly doing God’s work.

  3. I am on board. I can’t stop staring at your ESV Study Bible countdown clock! The time is so close, yet feels so far away. My zeal has caused me to compare what tidbits I have of the ESVSB with the NLTSB.

  4. So much for the perseverance of the saints.

    Even the staid Calvinists have succumbed to the corrosive pressure of instant gratification.

    For corrupting the souls of so many otherwise fine, but bland, Calvinists I will gladly join the dog chase.

  5. I think Crossway should drop the price to $5. That way, since I already own five study Bibles – all of which have great teaching notes in their own right – I won’t feel as guilty for paying for it, and piling up more stuff in my home, instead of reading the Bibles I already own 🙂

  6. This kind of suffering goes international because I am subscribed both to JT’s, Crossway’s, ESV’s and ESVSB’s blogs and my American friend goes to Russia on October 19, so he cannot bring me an ESVSB to Russia! :'(

  7. I decided a while ago to purchase the ESVSB, but not until 2010 when I plan to use it for my daily Bible reading. A little self-denial is good, right? And those of us who wait may get a second printing with typos corrected.

  8. I just did my indoctrination, oops, training this weekend for the new esvsb. I’m thinking we might even need to lay down some plastic sheeting in case people get too excited. Maybe we can give a free copy to the best CJ Mahaney look-alike!

  9. Actually, I’m looking forward to the NRSV Wesley Study Bible (to make an appearance February 2009), so I can appreciate the tension the ESV is causing you all. 🙂

  10. Reality check- the ESV study Bible release will be a yawning non-event, in full communion with every other study Bible released since the Geneva version in the 16’th century.

    Marketing hype is not the same thing as spiritual hunger on the part of the average Christian in the pew.

    Wait a year or two, and you can get a dozen of ’em on the bargain table for a song.

  11. Van Til:

    Please add J. Mark Bertrand as a co-defendant for getting us in a tizzy waiting months for the Cambridge Brown Goatskin ESV. The anticipation of receiving two “almost perfect” ESV Bibles is killing me.

    However, if both arrive on the same day I am afraid that I might expire from apoplexy. Is that good for treble damages?

  12. I still think they should do a parallel with the NIV and New King James for broader manuscript family representation. It would be the NIVNKJVESVSB. I agree with John H. about the lawyer slurs too – you shouldn’t let 99% of them give all the rest a bad name!

  13. I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of the ESVSB. True story: over the past 3 weeks I have sold on ebay the following to raise money to purchase an ESVSB: 1. my New Geneva Study Bible, 2. Jerusalem Bible, 3. a parallel Bible, 4. NIV Serendipity Bible, 5. ESV Compact Bible 6. A few other books that I am ashamed to mention. As of now I have about $80 set aside for the purchase.

    Lawsuit? Since I’ve sold all my other Bibles I’ll have to wait until I get my ESVSB so I can read what it says about taking other Christians to court.

  14. I’m waiting for an apocrypha to be sandwiched between the OT and NT. Then I’ll get it.


    What? I’m Anglican.

    Come on, Crossway. Do it for J.C. Ryle. Do it for J.I. Packer. Do it for me!!!

    But on a serious note, I am a bad buyer of Bibles. Since I was given an allowance, I’ve accrued an NKJV, two ESVs (one the Reformation Study Bible , the other a compact), a NRSV pocket Bible, two TNIVs (one a study Bible, the other a women’s Bible)…

    I’m sticking to my simple NRSV and ESV compacts. Must. Resist. Purchase.

    It looks so good…I must not covet. I must not covet!!!
    [In low voice: “How much is it on Amazon?”]

  15. “…suffering the torments of the darned.”


  16. CBD has been advertising the ESV SB as though they have it ready for sale. Is that possible?

  17. CBD does this all the time. If a catalog will cover a full 3 months, they write all the ads as if they had the product in stock, even if it’s not published.

    Justin is bringing me, personally, the very first copy. He’ll be dressed as Moses.

  18. They had the hardback and (I think) a calfskin copy at the Desiring God conference last weekend. I was severely disappointed when I found out that it wouldn’t fit under my shirt.

  19. As a priest, it’s time for my confession. I have had a genuine leather, burgundy, ESVSB on pre-order from Amazon.com since the day they made the Bible available for pre-purchase(a $70.00 gift certificate was just waiting to be spent). Yes, from the moment it was possible to be had and duped by Justin Taylor, I was had and duped. I sit at my computer reading the pre-release .pdf files over and over again. I even handed out numerous brochures about the ESV Study Bible at church. It’s like I am hypnotized. Please, please Van Til file a law suit as fast you can before it is too late.

    I know of several others who caught in the spell cast by that man, the tormentor, Justin Taylor.

  20. There was a blogger get together after Saturday Night’s session (Paul Tripp) at the DGM National Conference. Justin Taylor was there, holding, and allowing other people to touch a hard copy of the ESVSB. That is like showing crack addicts some rock but not letting them have any. But really, he did let people thumb through it, if only for a moment. I resisted.

    15 days 8 minutes and 4 seconds until the release!

  21. The original author should have kept up on the copyright.

  22. Yeah, go easy on lawyers, 95% of them give all the rest of them a bad name.

  23. So, what’s so great about his as compared to other study Bibles? What am I missing here?

  24. I use NASB what is the difference with the ESV? Havn’t really heard much about it. I only have a few study bibles though, I mostly use the computer program for commentaries and such.

  25. “…being held by a distant relative of Billy Graham with an unpronounceable name”

    This made me laugh so hard I forgot the sufferings the wait for the ESVSB have induced. Try to be less clever, Cornelius; you’re losing clients!

  26. You guys are so lucky! Here in South Africa we have to wait until November!


    And Mike hasn’t heard much about the ESV?! Off with his left litle toe. Oh the sacrilege!

    Crawling back into my dark corner till November…

  27. my God, i thought you were going to chip in with some decisive insght at the end there, not leave it with ‘we leave it to you to decide’.

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