I remember when I got my first study Bible. This was more than 30 years ago; I was a relatively new Christian, and I had no idea what a study Bible was. As soon as I opened the book and began reading the footnotes, I began to experience something transformative. The book-by-book introductions gave me a completely new perspective, the cross references helped me connect the Old Testament to the New Testament, and the maps and other helps opened up a whole new world of Bible knowledge.
As a member of the Bible Gateway Blogger Grid, I was given the opportunity to receive a complimentary copy of the NIV Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition, for my evaluation. This is the first time I’ve seen a Life Application Study Bible and I’m once again astonished by the additional tools provided that make Bible study so much more productive. Keep in mind, I have been studying the Bible for more than 30 years and I have a small library of Bible reference books. What I find tremendously useful about the NIV Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition, is the fact that it combines a small Bible reference library into one volume.
Integrated into the text you will find helpful maps, timelines, and a wonderful collection of Personality Profiles that bring Bible characters to life as you read their story. In addition to the footnotes and cross references, this Bible also includes various charts, diagrams, book introductions, outlines, a dictionary, and concordance. Everything you need to have an in-depth experience and more fulfilling and engaging Bible reading session is included in this work. This truly is a remarkably useful resource.
Of course the crowning achievement of the Life Application Study Bible is the application footnotes. Like all other study Bibles, the truth of God’s Word is clarified, but the life application footnote takes the process two steps further. Beyond clarification is a practical suggestion about what to do with the information provided and how to take appropriate action in your own life.
No matter how long you’ve been studying the Bible, there is always something new to learn and discover. Often a new perspective is precisely what is needed to move your study beyond ordinary and into a deeper, more life affirming experience. In addition, I’ve found the NIV Life Application Study Bible, Third Edition to be a perfect tool for helping to communicate the scripture to other believers. Those of us who have been studying the Bible for years sometimes have a hard time explaining our understanding to others. This Bible is the perfect resource for assisting in articulating our Bible knowledge to others – especially new believers.
Without question, this is hands down the best study Bible for new believers, and from my perspective this is an indispensable study Bible for the more advanced Bible student who wants to develop sharper Bible study communications skills.