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Best Study Bible For Beginners – How To Choose It?

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  • Post last modified:February 20, 2024
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Choosing The Best Study Bible For Beginners

So, you are shopping for the best study Bible for beginners? 

This means that I shall utilize my expertise in Study Bibles to guide you in making your Bible purchase.

By far, choosing the best study Bible for beginners, Christians, or unsaved, male or female, is no easy task.

Nevertheless, to accomplish this goal, I shall explore the nature of the Study Bible; the Important features of one; which is the best Study Bible for you; then make a recommendation. 

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My Recommendation

Best Study Bible For BeginnersTranslation
NKJV Study BibleNKJV
The King James Study BibleKJV
ESV Study BibleESV
Tyndale NLT Life Application Study BibleNLT
The Amplified Study BibleAMP
The Woman’s Study BibleNIV
Quest Study BibleNIV
Best Study Bible For New Converts!

What Is a Study Bible?

The Bible is a very special book but it’s a book nevertheless. Therefore, you will find all the expected features of a book in your Bible.

Things like copyright page, forward, preface, table of contents, divisions into books, and chapters, pages, glossary, and a basic map, etc.

However, a Study Bible has all these features and many, many, more.

So, a Study Bible is a special edition of the Bible designed to aid in understanding and interpreting the biblical text.

It typically includes various tools and resources to help Bible Students obtain a deeper understanding of the meanings, contexts, and applications of the scriptures.

Therefore, Study Bibles vary in their contents, but they are usually heavier because they are larger and broader than traditional Bibles.

However, besides its size and weight, a Study Bible has far more resources than a regular Bible.

The extent of the additional resources will depend on the author or authors, the publishing team, and the publisher.

All these added resources should make your seeking for truth easier, enjoyable, quicker, and more efficient.

What Are The Important Features of a Good Study Bible? 

Most, if not all, good Study Bibles will come equipt with a different combination or permutation of the following:

  • Detailed Maps and Charts: These visual aids help to provide geographical and historical context. They show locations of key events and track the movements of people and nations in biblical times.
  • Articles and Essays: Some study Bibles include in-depth articles on biblical history, theology, and interpretation methods to provide additional insights.
  • Concordance: This is an index of keywords found in the Bible, allowing readers to locate where certain words or themes are mentioned throughout the text.
  • Translation: KJV, NIV, NKJV, AMP, NLT, etc
  • Book Introductions
  • Annotations and Commentary: These are notes that explain difficult or complex verses. They provide historical and cultural contexts and offer interpretations from biblical scholars.
  • Words of Jesus In Red.
  • Dictionary or Glossary: This helps to define terms, names, and places that might be unfamiliar to modern readers.
  • Provide lots of whitespace or pages for personal notes.
  • Detailed Index
  • Cross-references: These are references to other parts of the Bible where similar themes or topics are discussed. This helps to connect different parts of the scripture.

Who Uses Them?

Study Bibles come in various translations and can cater to different theological perspectives. They are used not only for personal study but also in academic and religious education settings.

For someone deeply involved in content creation and online marketing, a Study Bible could be a valuable resource.

And you guessed it, Bible Teachers, Pastors, and Preachers love these Bibles too!

It aids in creating content that explores theological or historical aspects of Christianity.

7 Best Study Bibles For Beginners

Here are my top picks for the seven best study Bibles for beginners:

#1. NKJV STUDY BIBLE

The Best Study Bible For Beginners (Amazon has the best price $33.99).

The NKJV Study Bible is my number one choice for many reasons.

It is rife with exclusive study tools that will help you understand and interact with the text.

The brand has global recognition and is very popular. But the Bible is beautiful and full of color throughout.

It has over 250 photos and illustrations of important places, artifacts, and pieces of art. It’s very easy to read with a large 9-pt print size. Try NKJV

best-study-bibles-for-beginners
NKJV

Key Features Include:

  • Very popular and trusted worldwide.
  • Over 250 photos and illustrations of important places, artifacts, and pieces of art.
  • Exclusive study tools that help you understand, appreciate, and live out what you read:
    • Book introductions, book outlines, and timelines provide important and helpful background information, historical context, and content overviews.
    • 15,000 Bottom-of-the-page study notes offer over 850,000 words of clear and compelling commentary.
    • 345+ Word studies with Strong’s numbers give insight into the meaning of the original Greek and Hebrew words.
    • 150+ Bible Times and Cultural notes deepen understanding of the historical context surrounding Scripture.
    • 110+ Articles to clarify and expand upon key concepts in Scripture. 
  • Indexes and concordances that are easy to use and make it easy to find what you are looking for:
    • Concordance of over 6,000 terms with 37,000 verses.
    • Teachings and Illustrations of Christ of over 400 subjects addressed by Jesus.
    • Prayers of the Bible of nearly 100 prayers in the Bible, who prayed them, and what they prayed about.
    • Subject Index to Annotations and Features.
  • Articles that offer tips and information to get the most out of your study of the Bible:
    • “How to Understand what the Bible Means by What it Says” offers a four-step process for rightly interpreting the Scriptures.
    • “Thinking about the Study of the New Testament” provides an introduction to the New Testament manuscripts. 
    • “The Geography of the Gospels” gives an overview of the major cities and regions mentioned in the Gospels.
    • “The Bible as History” addresses the importance of reading each book of the Bible in its historical context.
    • “What Is Theology?” defines theology and proposes that theology must begin with the gospel.
  • Tables that provide helpful information at a glance:
    • “Harmony of the Gospels” details the life and ministry of Jesus in chronological order showing where each event and teaching occurs in the Gospels.
    • “From Biblical Book to Contemporary Hook” provides the major theme, Christ-focus, implication, and helpful questions to prompt thinking and discussion for all 66 books of Scripture.
    • “Parables of Christ” shows where you can find 39 parables in the Gospels.
    • “Miracles of Christ” shows where you can find 37 miracles in the Gospels.
    • “Prophecies of The Messiah Fulfilled in Christ” provides 43 Old Testament prophecies and where they have been fulfilled in the New Testament.
    • “Monies, Weights, and Measures”
  • 32,000 references linking to over 73,000 related passages and nearly 8,000 translation notes allow you to follow important words and thoughts throughout Scripture.
  • 140+ Maps and charts throughout the Scriptures and in the back to show a visual representation of locations and themes in the Bible.

What I Dislike/Like About The NKJV:

It’s a little heavy. I’m a bit disappointed because it doesn’t come with the cover as advertised. It was just a plain burgundy Bible. I would’ve really appreciated having the cover.

It’s easy to read. It’s a perfect size and the thickness of the pages is great. I love the two high-quality ribbon markers because I’m always using paper to mark my Bible.

And the price is right at $33.99.

#2. The King James Study Bible.

KJV
best-study-bible-for-beginners
KJV

Key Features Include:

  • Exclusive study tools that help you understand, appreciate, and live out what you read:
  • Book introductions, book outlines, and testament introductions provide important and helpful background information, historical context, and content overviews and it’s easy to read.

Notes:-

  • 5,700 Bottom-of-the-page study notes offer nearly 400,000 words of clear and compelling commentary.
  • 200+ Doctrinal notes unlock the wealth of theological truth in Scripture by detailing 10 major doctrines: the Bible, God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, man, sin, salvation, angels, the church, and last things.
  • 100+ Archaeological notes focus on major places mentioned in Scripture and related archeological discoveries.
  • 100+ Personality profiles give overviews of significant men and women in the Bible.

Index & Concordance:-

  • Indexes and concordances that are easy to use and make it easy to find what you are looking for:
  • Concordance of over 1,000 terms with 13,000 verses keyed to the Strong’s numbering system. Over 200 keywords also include a brief discussion noting the term’s significance.
  • “Topical Index to Christ and the Gospels” of 130 topics with Scripture references organized into 7 helpful subcategories: teachings, events, miracles, parables, conversations, healings, and prophecies.
  • “Teachings and Illustrations of Christ” of over 430 entries with Scripture references.
  • “Topical Index to Paul and His Letters” of 170 topics with Scripture references organized into 7 helpful subcategories: doctrine, precept, prophecy, conversation, event, healing, and visit.
  • “Topical Index to End Times Prophecy” of 7 topics (characters, events that unfold, judgments from God, locations, promises and rewards to victors, signs of the times, what believers should do in the meantime) with 52 subtopics.
  • “God’s Answers to Our Concerns” of over 100 topics listed in alphabetical order with Scripture references.
  • “Prayers of the Bible” of nearly 100 prayers in the Bible, who prayed them, and what they prayed about.
  • “Index to Annotations” of topics with significant study notes.

Articles:-

  • Articles that offer tips and information to get the most out of your study of the Bible:
    • How to Use The King James Study Bible shows how each feature works with helpful examples and illustrations. How to Study the Bible provides tips and strategies for personal and family study and basic principles of Bible interpretation.
    • Between the Testaments explains the 400-year history between the Old and New Testaments including important regional and world events, political and military leaders, and societal changes in Palestine.

Tables:-

  • Tables that supply useful and helpful information at a glance:
    • Harmony of the Gospels details the life and ministry of Jesus in chronological order showing where each event and teaching occur in the Gospels. Parables of Christ shows where you can find 39 parables in the Gospels. Miracles of Christ shows where you can find 37 miracles in the Gospels. Prophecies of The Messiah Fulfilled in Christ provides 43 Old Testament prophecies and where they have been fulfilled in the New Testament.
    • Monies, Weights, and Measures

Calendar:-

  • The Jewish Calendar

References:-

  • 32,000 Center-column references linking to over 73,000 related passages and over 22,000 translation notes allow you to follow important words and thoughts throughout Scripture.

Maps & Charts:-

  • Maps and charts throughout the Scriptures and in the back to show a visual representation of locations and themes in the Bible.

Easy to Read:-

  • Easy-to-read large 10-pt print size

What I Dislike/Like About The KJV:

It’s big and heavy.  It has only one marker ribbon. 

If you don’t have much experience with the Bible you shall discover that’s easy to navigate and read. The text is large and easy to read. It’s a pleasure to hold and to look at. It’s flawlessly bound. The pages fell great between my fingers and the paper quality is superb. It stands up well to markers like Sharpie and MIcron 005 pens.

It has the finger index to assist with finding the books of the Bible quicker and easier. Finally, it’s a lay-flat Bible.

A really beautiful and resource pack Bible.

  1. ESV Study Bible.
  2. Tyndale NLT Life Application Study Bible.
  3. The Amplified Study Bible.
  4. The Woman’s Study Bible.
  5. Quest Study Bible.

But Which Is The Best Study Bible For You?

  •  Which translation is best for you?
  •  How do you study?
  •  The Bible That You Do Study!

One of the crucial features, to consider in determining the best Bible for beginners, is your impetus for Bible Study.

Are you studying the Bible for a deeper insight, do you desire to know the Word of God; are you planning on teaching it; or do you only want to grow in God’s Word?

To Choose The Best Bible For Beginners – Determine Which Translation Is Best For You?

Your reason for Bible Study will dictate the best Bible for you a beginner or seasoned Bible student.

Next, consider how you study. Do you mind Elizebithan or contemporary English?

Your answer to this will determine the translation that is right for you.

Factors To Consider In Choosing The Best Bible For Beginners

  1. Format – Hard copy Vs. eBook
  2. Cover
  3. Font Size
  4. Quality of Paper

Choose a Hard Copy

Your first study Bible should be a hard copy and not an eBook.

The former lends itself to note-taking and Bible journalizing more than the latter.

There’s something special about the fell of the Bible pages between your fingers.

You can access the hard copy anytime and any place. You don’t need electricity, WiFi, or Internet.

The Cover

One of the important considerations in determining the best study Bible for beginners is the nature of the cover.

It determines, to a large extent, how much wear and tear the remainder of the Bible could endure.

A Study Bible with a firm and durable cover will last longer than others. 

Leather covers are expensive but they last long. But your first study Bible doesn’t need leather covers. 

As long as it’s sturdy and durable they will last many, many years.  


Font Size

At a quick glance, this feature may seem insignificant. However, if the font size is too small for you your Bible will be difficult to read.

Thus, choose a Study Bible with a font size that you are comfortable with. It should be easy to read.

This one feature will ensure that you spend much time searching your Bible or not.

One of the best manner to determine this is to have the physical Bible in your hands. However, the King James Version family of Bibles, published by Thomas Nelson, has font sizes for everyone. You could trust them.

Conclusion

Having established the features that you desire in your Study Bible, then decide on the translation. If you like Elizabethan English the New and King James Versions will satisfy you.

If not, any of the others will suffice.

Another factor to take into account when choosing the best Bible for beginners is the quality of the paper.

It should feel sturdy between your fingers. Next, you shouldn’t see the print on the reverse side looking from the opposite page.

It should not be too thin. And ink shouldn’t bleed through on any page.

Finally, the best Study Bible for beginners is the one that entices you to study and you do the study!

The study Bible aids your search for truth. But you could possess the best study Bible and still not know the Word.

Ultimately, then you are the most crucial element in your search for truth. The Word of God just helps you get there easier and with less legwork.

Other Study Bible Options

Best Bible For New Believers

My Recommendation

Best Study Bible For BeginnersTranslation
NKJV Study BibleNKJV
The King James Study BibleKJV
ESV Study BibleESV
Tyndale NLT Life Application Study BibleNLT
The Amplified Study BibleAMP
The Woman’s Study BibleNIV
Quest Study BibleNIV

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