Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Start! The Bible for New Believers

I was recently given a free copy of Start! The Bible for New Believers through Thomas Nelson publisher’s BookSneeze program. This is a study Bible edited by Pastor Greg Laurie. It is a paperback with a bright red cover that has a large white arrow pointing up on the front. The paper is very thin (typical Bible paper) so print on the reverse does show through. The thin paper also serves to make this a thin, easily handled volume.

The text is the New King James version with the slight updates that were made in 1984 (the copyright is dated 1982). The additions are found in several features sprinkled throughout the Bible. Sections titled “Know” deal with core beliefs of the Christian faith, “Learn” - mini commentaries , “Grow” - guidance on key principles of Christian life and “Live” - short articles on various aspects of being a Christian.

The articles I read were helpful, clear and practical. Simple theology and personal application are both covered in the various features. I found several that were personally encouraging. I have read some of Greg Laurie’s writings and heard some of his preaching - I found the notes in this Bible to be as well grounded and spiritual as his other work.

I had only one minor criticism: I expected some kind of “start” or path through the Bible. There are initial sections on the plan of salvation and secrets to spiritual success. But I would like to have seen something on getting started with reading the Bible.

I would feel comfortable recommending this Bible to both new converts and existing believers. The text is not cluttered and notes do not overtake the Scriptures. This is a simple and helpful edition of the Bible.

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