Book Briefs: NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible

Originally Posted by Bob Hayton


Zondervan has released a monumental study Bible. The NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible promises to bring the ancient world of Scripture to life for contemporary readers. The array of resources presented and the depth of research made accessible could almost be described as incredible.

This Bible is presented in a beautiful format and the study notes and articles are written by top-notch evangelical scholars. The editors, John H. Walton (professor of OT at Wheaton College) and Craig S. Keener (professor of NT at Asbury Theological Seminary) are experts in their fields. They have drawn from the work of other evangelical tools in creating this study Bible: most notably, the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary: Old Testament, (edited by John Walton), and the IVP Bible Background Commentary for Old and New Testaments, (the NT volume of which was edited by Craig Keener).

Introductions focusing on the historical setting, cultural/religious setting and literary setting are provided for each book of the Bible. Broader introductions for different genres and collections of books are also provided, and over 300 articles are furnished on a variety of cultural background topics. Nearly 400 full-color photos, illustrations and images brighten the pages of this volume. There are dozens of detailed maps and the study notes are by no means brief. I would say it rivals the ESV Study Bible for length, but the focus on the notes is largely centered on historical and cultural background information.

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