Note-Taker’s Bible – KJV (King James Version)

I was extremely excited to have the opportunity to review this Bible, because I’m the kind of person who takes a whole lot of notes in her margins (and above the lines too), so a Bible that’s specifically set up for people to take notes in it?  What a brilliant idea!  That said, I was honestly really disappointed by it.  I just didn’t feel like the space provided was really “enough” space.  There’s room on the outside edge of each page, but no extra space between lines or on the top or bottom, or even the inside edge of the pages… and I really had hoped for all of the above!  Maybe I write in my Bible more than most people would, but I didn’t think this Bible had enough available space for someone who really wants to take notes in it.  It’s sad, because in all other ways, it was a wonderful Bible!  It would be perfect for someone who writes references to other verses or a couple words, but sadly, just doesn’t have the available room if you write much.

I received a free copy of this Bible from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review.  I was in no way required to write anything specific – all thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

 

KJV Note Takers Bible Cover

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Little Chick’s Bible by P. J. Lyons and Melanie Mitchell

This Bible is, hands down, of the coolest Bibles I have EVER seen.  If you read my blog regularly, you know I have two little guys.  While I’ve seen Bibles that are appropriate for my preschooler, I haven’t seen a Bible like this, that is perfect for my 19-month old.  He absolutely loves it, carries it around, plays with the chick’s wings and beak, talks to it, and jabbers as he “reads” the stories inside.  There aren’t many Bible stories (only eight altogether), so it’s not a long book at all, but it’s perfect for young children, and wonderful for us to use with our two little guys.  The older ones likes to try to read to the younger one, and they sit together with it and get so excited about reading their Bibles with each other.  As a mommy, I really do love that!  Each story is told in rhyme, and for those who might be concerned that they might not be very “accurate”, they’re all very true to the original stories.

This Bible would make a wonderful gift, and will quickly become a favorite for anyone who receives it.  I highly recommend it!

I received a free copy of this Bible from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.  I was in no way required to write anything positive – all thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

Little Chicks Bible Cover

 

NIV Real-Life Devotional Bible for Women – Compact

This Bible is absolutely gorgeous!  With an Italian duo-tone sea glass/Carribean blue embossed cover, beautiful pale blue ribbon to mark the page you’re on, lots of blue ink on the pages, devotions on blue backgrounds, and lots of “delicate” details, this Bible is a welcome change from all the women’s Bibles that have pink covers and brown details.  It’s an NIV (New International Version) Bible, but also includes 366 devotions in it from many of the Proverbs 31 authors.  Each devotion takes up one page, and they are placed in the area where their main Scripture is located.  As someone who receives the daily devotions via email from Proverbs 31, I really thought these devotions were good.  They were long enough to have things that made you think, but not “too” long to read on a daily basis.  They also weren’t things I recognized having read before – huge bonus!

There are sections at the back with short biographies about each author who has work included, an index of devotions by author (in case you have a favorite author, or just want to see the other devotions by any of these authors), and a general topical index.  Each of these are really great information if you’re interested in finding out more.

The only thing about this Bible that could be seen as a “negative” is that with it being the compact version, the font is pretty small.  It’s the perfect size to put in your purse or into a backpack, and as I mentioned before, it’s really gorgeous, so it would be great to carry around!  I have long carried a Bible in my purse, but it’s bigger than this one and doesn’t have any devotions included in it.  I think it might just be time to change my Bibles around!

For more information (including the ability to view some of the pages for yourself!), please check out this site: http://www.zondervan.com/niv-real-life-devotional-bible-for-women-compact.

I received a free copy of this Bible from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review.  I was in no way required to write anything positive – all thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

 

Bible Cover

The Jesus Bible – New International Version (NIV)

The description says (in part) that “Jesus isn’t just found in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. His presence can be felt throughout the whole Bible, even in Genesis.”  This is so very true, and what a great idea for a Bible for kids!

Specifically geared towards kids who are 9-12 (although I think it could easily be used for younger kids as well), what makes this Bible especially unique is the fact that it includes 365 devotional readings.  I expected them to be maybe a few sentences or a couple paragraphs, but each of the devotions is a full page.  That’s some serious space dedicated to the devotions!  It makes the Bible much thicker than others, but what a great reason!  This Bible uses multiple colors, and even different fonts, to make the various sections stand out from the text of the Bible itself.  The whole layout of the Bible helps you see Jesus in every book, something that I feel is really special.  As a child, I don’t remember learning about how Jesus was in each book.  I remember learning about how God was talked about, but not Jesus and how to see Him through all that we read or learned about.  Jesus was talked about in the New Testament, but not in anything else.  (For those who may be concerned about me, I do completely understand that God and Jesus are the same person, but I think it’s pretty neat that this version of the Bible doesn’t just show Jesus in the New Testament, but gives devotions that help you see where Jesus was at in the Old Testament too.)

There are all sorts of charts, checklists (a list of parables that Jesus taught, for example), an index of the devotions (so you can check them off as you do them!), and various maps at the end.  It’s a great Bible to get for kids, to help them see how the Bible isn’t two separate parts – talking about God in the Old Testament and Jesus in the New Testament, but it’s one story that all shows you the same person.  Not different people, but the same person.  That is pretty doggone cool, especially in a Bible for kids.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review.  I was in no way required to write anything positive – the thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

 

The Jesus Bible Cover

Chronological Life Application Study Bible – New Living Translation (NLT)

This is one super cool Bible.  While it’s bigger (and heavier!) than some of my Bibles, it has SO MUCH incredible information in it, and it’s super easy to read – and to use.  It’s filled with pictures, with colors, with charts, and in many ways seems to be extremely interactive.  I know that might sound kind of silly, because we all know that books can’t respond to us while we read them, but on the other hand, isn’t that what the Bible does?  We know, from Scripture, that it’s “living and active” (Hebrews 4:12), so shouldn’t it be able to “speak” to us as we read it?  I really felt like that’s what this Bible did, in a way that my other Bibles haven’t done for me in the past.

This Bible has a website (http://chronolifeapp.com) and that site is FULL of great information.  It also has an area to sign up to receive daily emails, and if you go read the emails each day, you will read the entire Bible in two years – chronologically.  I think that’s a pretty cool part of this Bible and highly recommend subscribing to the emails, even if you don’t have a copy of this Bible.

There are ten “sections” to this Bible, and you can see your progress through each of them at the top of the page.  They are: Beginnings, God’s Chosen Family, Birth of Israel, Possessing the Land, United Monarchy, Splintered Nation, Exile, Return and Diaspora, Jesus Christ, and The Church.  The notes at the bottom of each page (the “study” part of this Bible) are pretty fantastic.  I have read a few different study Bibles, and while they all have good information, this Bible made the notes easier to relate to.  For example, in Isaiah 13:12, it says “I will make people scarcer than gold – more rare than the fine gold of Ophir.”  The note for that verse says “Ophir was known for its rare and valuable gold.  It is thought to have been located on the southwestern coast of Arabia.”  The notes in the Old Testament are full of things like that – explanations of various terms or places that we wouldn’t understand if they didn’t tell us more about them.  That’s great information to have, especially as a New Testament believer!  The New Testament has great notes too though.  For example, in Matthew 13:8 “Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”  The note on that verse is really great – “This parable should encourage spiritual “farmers” – those who teach, preach, and seek to lead other to the Lord…. belief cannot be forced to follow a mathematical formula (i.e. a 4:1 ratio of seeds planted to seeds sprouted).  Rather, it is a miracle of God’s Holy Spirit using your words to produce faith in Christ.”  I’ve read the parable of the four soils (also referred to as the parable of the sower) many times, but I’ve never thought about how WE should think of ourselves as farmers in a spiritual sense.  As soon as I read it, I completely understood what they were getting at, I’ve just never thought of it on my own before (sad as that may be).  I’ve taken it much more literally, I guess.  This is just a sampling of notes and how they helped me, but there are many, many more, and I am sure that you would have a lot to be able to take away from the notes as well!

At the end of the Bible (after Revelation), there’s a section called “Book-by-Book”.  That gives information on each book, the “blueprint” of the book, and the “megathemes” that are in that book.  For example, the Blueprint for Exodus shows three points: Israel in Egypt, Israel in the Wilderness, and Israel at Sinai.  Each of those has anywhere from three-five points under it.  The Megathemes are: Slavery, Rescue/Redemption, Guidance, Ten Commandments, and The Nation.  They give an Explanation sentence/paragraph for each, and then some information on the Importance.  This is really a fantastic study guide to help you dig even more into each book of the Bible!

All in all, I found this to be a terrific Bible, and one that I know I will enjoy using in the years to come.  I highly encourage you to check it out as well!

I received a free copy of this Bible from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.  I was in no way required to write anything positive – the thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

NIV Essentials Study Bible

This Bible is a pretty amazing compilation of information from six different resources:

*NIV Study Bible

*NIV Quest Study Bible

*NIV Archaeological Study Bible

*NIV Student Bible

*The Great Rescue Bible

*The Essential Bible Companion

As someone who grew up using an NIV Bible, I was really interested in THIS Bible because so much “extra stuff” was included (especially the archaeological stuff!).  Over the past couple of years I’ve been using study Bibles almost exclusively in my study times (and for Bible reading in general, I guess!), so having one Bible that had the wisdom and thoughts from all these other books in it – what a way to make study even easier and even better, right?  The dust jacket shows pictures of each of the other books, and tells you that depending on what you liked the most, you may want to pick one (or more!) of those books up.  While that may be good, I think I can say that this Bible really does have the best of all worlds.  Why pull out six books when you can pull out one?

The start of each book includes a section with key concepts, key verses, key teachings, key terms, people to know, a great visual with “when did these things happen?”, and a picture that shows something important from that book (in Genesis, the picture is of “The Land of the Bible” and in Exodus, it’s “From Egypt to Mount Sinai”).  Each book include sections on history, large sections on the people in the book (and they aren’t always the people you’d think they’d be!), details about things that are important to know (in Exodus, you see a half a page on the Names of God), Q&A sections (in Exodus 7, you get a great answer to “Why Did God Choose These Particular Plagues?”, and in Exodus 21, you get a section on “Does the Bible Support Slavery?”), R&R (reflect and respond) sections (in I Kings, it includes a section on doubts, which gives you a portion to “read”, a portion to “think”, and a portion to “live”, and then gives you the “next level”, where it asks you to read in Jeremiah – then it even tells what page to go to for the “next devotional” reading!), and more.  Like all good study Bibles, each page has footnotes – many of the things noted are what you’d expect (and very similar to other study Bible footnotes), but they do also include portions that aren’t what you would have expected.

One thing I noticed pretty early on was related to the layout – with all the extra content included, the margins are definitely not wide enough to write much on.  If you are used to writing in your Bible (and I absolutely am!), this would make it a little bit more complicated to use as your Bible that you take to group studies.  I think it would still be great for personal use at home though!

Not related at all to the content, but I was a little bit disappointed in the cover of the actual Bible itself.  The paper dust jacket is wonderful, but the cover of the Bible just says “Holy Bible” and “NIV”.  You wouldn’t have any clue that the Bible was this really amazing grouping of books if you didn’t have the outside dust jacket on it.

All in all, this is a pretty great Bible, and one that I think could make for great study times.  It’s a wonderful compilation of some pretty amazing resources, and a great way to get access to all the cool stuff those books include without having to spread out at the dining room table with six separate books in front of you.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review.  The thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

niv essentials study bible

Worship Together Bible (NIV) – Zondervan Publishers

This is an absolutely amazing Bible, with so many fun things included in it.  As someone who has long enjoyed praise and worship music (I’m even listening to it while I write this review!), I was completely intrigued by the idea of a Bible that had songs and the stories behind those songs included within it.  But this Bible goes a step further, including short devotional thoughts, with questions for you to ask yourself after each two-page reading (which include a page with the song lyrics, and a page with the devotional/story and questions/things to consider).  It has a section at the back with the chord charts for 20 popular worship songs, as well as essays that “explore the purpose and history of worship music” – it’s really a great book in many, many ways, and it definitely makes it easy to read through the Bible when you have all of these things to consider as you go!

One of the things that struck me from the start was the size of this Bible, that really seems like it’s a novel.  It’s no bigger than most of my fiction books!  While in some ways that feels a little bit “strange”, since I’m used to my Bibles being larger in size than other books on my shelves, it’s also great as a way to make you re-think how you look at your Bible – not just as a book that you read on Sundays at church, but one that you can pick up and ready anytime.  I absolutely love that the words throughout this Bible are printed in a deep blue-green, not in black (the standard in most books).  What a fun change from the normal dark color in my other Bibles!

The only thing that could have been better would be to put the songs/devotionals closer to the books that they came from.  Some songs were nowhere close – the were based on a song in one book, but showed up within a book multiple books away.  That didn’t make a whole lot of sense, although there is a great index at the back, showing the verse(s) that the song is based on, and the place it appears in this Bible.

I thought it was a fantastic edition of the Bible, in a version that is well-known and well-loved.  I would absolutely recommend it to others!

I received a free copy of this Bible from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.  The thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

Worship Together Bible Cover