At the start of a new year, a lot of us decide it’s time to change some habits, to get serious about our lives. We set goals, we start to exercise and eat healthier, and many of us decide that we need to be spiritually healthier too. We determine that we are going to read our Bibles more—maybe we’ll even read through the whole thing this year. Reading through the Bible in a year can be a very important part of our spiritual development. And Tyndale’s One Year Bible was the first Bible specifically designed to do just that.
But this year, I would like to suggest that you may want to try something just a bit different. Try a deep dive. Make the decision to get to know the Bible better this year by using a study Bible.
There are a lot of study Bibles available today, and many of them are great (even ones we don’t publish). Some are general, and some are highly targeted. The choices can be more than a little overwhelming. So let me introduce you to a few of Tyndale’s study Bibles so you can make an informed choice. But first, I think we need to ask a simple question:
What is a study Bible for?
Chances are, you have seen more than one or two study Bibles in your life. You know that they are full of background information, maps and charts, illustrations, and study notes. Based on this, it would be easy to think that study Bibles are mostly—perhaps exclusively—designed to be a conduit for information transfer, to answer those foundational questions: Who, What, When, Where, How.
But honestly, as cool as all that stuff is, as well done as it may be, is that what a study Bible is for? In case you hadn’t guessed, my answer is a resounding NO!
A study Bible should do more than feed your brain.
A study Bible should open a window to what God has done so that we can live what he is doing.
If it’s just a conduit for information, then it will be limited by the amount of notes or maps or charts it contains, the amount of facts it can convey. Whoever has the most—or the coolest-looking ones—wins.
But that’s not really what a study Bible is. A study Bible is not merely a tool for downloading information. It’s a catalyst: “an agent that provokes or speeds significant change or action” (Merriam-webster.com).
A study Bible makes it possible to:
Hear God’s voice (2 Peter 1:20-21)
In our HEARTS and well as our minds (Hebrews 10:16)
Recapture the Wonder. (Exodus 15:11)
So here’s a few of our study Bibles for your consideration:
NLT Study Bible: Ask. Seek. Knock.—clear, uncluttered, and portable.
Sometimes, even when the language is clear, we have questions. What is going on? Why did that happen? Why does this matter?
The NLT Study Bible translates both the words and the world of the Bible. The New Living Translation makes the message clear. The features of the NLT Study Bible bring the world of the Bible to life so that the meaning and significance of its message shine through. Join almost 50 of today’s most trusted Bible teachers as they help you understand God’s Word through introductions, charts, maps, study notes, word studies, profiles, and theme articles.
Illustrated Study Bible: The Word of God Is Alive and Powerful; Now See Why
Recapture the wonder of God’s Word by seeing what God is doing in a whole new way. The Illustrated Study Bible is a stunning visual study experience that will open your eyes to the truth of God’s Word. Hundreds of windows to the Bible world—including over 1,000 images—bring the story of Scripture to life in a new and compelling way.
Built from the assets of the NLT Study Bible, the Illustrated Study Bible is perfect for visual learners. In its pages you will meet the people who lived the Bible, understand how it all fits together, see where the events in Scripture happened, and explore the Bible’s message.
Africa Study Bible: God’s Word through African Eyes
Perhaps the most unique study Bible that Tyndale has published, the Africa Study Bible is the most ethnically diverse single-volume biblical resource to date. Written by 350 contributors from 50 countries, it includes over 2,600 features that illuminate the Scriptures for a unique African perspective.
Why would a non-African want to read this Bible?
Because sometimes we need to move out of our own comfortable skins in order to hear something that God wants to teach us. This Bible is Africa’s gift to the global church, and reading it might just help you to see something that you had never even thought of before. One of my favorite a-ha moments was reading the African Touch Point on salt in Matthew 5.
The Swindoll Study Bible: Walk Closer with Jesus
For over 50 years, Chuck Swindoll has been ministering to people, showing the relevance and practicality of the Bible for everyday life. This study Bible features Chuck’s warm, personal style—getting straight to the heart of the message God’s Word has for the world today. Chuck puts it this way:
“This study Bible was designed with you in mind. As you read the Scriptures, imagine my sitting beside you and sharing personal stories, important insights, and hard-earned lessons that will encourage you to walk more closely with Jesus.”
Life Application Study Bible: Today’s #1–Selling Study Bible
Millions of people have benefited from the Life Application Study Bible. Just as the name says, all of the many helps in this Bible are designed to help you apply the Bible to everyday life. Nearly 10,000 Life Application notes, book introductions, personality profiles, more than 400 maps and charts, and much more will help you to live out God’s Word. Available in the NLT, NIV, NKJV, KJV, and HCSB.