Thursday, October 23, 2014

NIV Teen Study Bible

This NIV version of the Bible is more than just Scripture. The NIV Teen Study Bible includes features meant to aid teens in understanding and applying Biblical truth. Those features and/or sections, edited by Lawrence O. and Sue W. Richards, include the following:

  • A copy of the Apostles' Creed, plus a follow up page that explains the history of this creed.
  • We Believe- a verse-by-verse breakdown of the meaning of the Apostles' Creed.
  • A table of Contents
  • A two page spread explaining how to use the bible
  • Panorama- short sidebars included in each book of the Bible designed to remind readers of the main theme of that book
  • To the Point- snippets that deal with a key idea (such as, God Keeps His Promises) and its proof  (list of ways God kept his promise to Abraham). 
  • Dear Jordan- full page "letter" from an everyday Joe teen asking advice on a certain topic with the aim to make lessons Biblical characters learned relevant for today.
  • Instant Access- short sidebars included throughout the Bible which describe a potential teen problem scenario and highlights Scripture that helps the reader see what God has to say about that issue
  • Bible Promises- green circle-shaped images with text; they focus on verses with a promise
  • Q & A- shaped like game cards, these show a trivia question (and bonus question) usually on the left hand pages and a similar-looking answer on the right hand side
  • Book Introductions- each book of the Bible provides a short (about half page) summary/overview of the book, a preview list of key events, and an outline with big ideas for headings and verses. For example: God Creates Something Really Special (big idea) Story in Genesis 2:3-4 (verses).
  • Following Revelations, this Bible provides a section called Study Helps. Those include a page with a list of weights and measures from Biblical times and today's equivalent, "What Do I Read Today?" which lists every book and chapter of the Bible with boxes that can be check off upon completion, a Bible Truth Index, and a Teen Life Index. There are also 8 pages of full color maps.

What I Like:

  • The added features help highlight some really key ideas in the Bible, so that they are more likely to be noticed and digested by the reader.
  • I appreciate the book introductions. They provide some background information and give teens  a preview of what they will find when they read.
  • The short Q & A inserts are fun.
  • I find colored maps very helpful.
  • There are numerous Instant Access points inserted throughout the Bible. Although not every one will be relevant to every teen, there are enough of them with for most to find useful wisdom.

What I Dislike:

  • Sometimes the Dear Jordan letter answers sound a little bit like a Sunday School lesson instead of a conversation with a teen, which may not appeal to all readers.
  • The words of Jesus are not in red letters. I wish they were!
  • I don't care for the green color that dominates this book.
  • Some of the sidebars may lean slightly toward a particular denominational point of view, so the buyer may want to skim through it to see if they are comfortable with them.
  • There are not a lot of footnotes or non-fiction support resources or even a glossary, so to me it's more like a life application Bible than a study Bible.

Overall Rating: Excellent

Age Appeal: Teens

Publisher Info: Zonderkidz, 2014; ISBN:978-0310745686; Paperback, Kindle and Hardback, 1632 pgs., $24.99/ $13.00/$29.99

Buy it Now at for $17.99 and the hardcover for $17.99.
OR Buy it at for paperback $17.99, Kindle edition for $13.00, and hardcover for $19.94.

Special Info: This Bible is also available in Italian Duo-Tone, Black Licorice/Hot Pink for $31.99, Graphite/Mediterranean Blue for $25.99, or Chocolate (brown) for $22.99.

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