Monday, September 3, 2012

Book Review: Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament

The book I am reviewing today is the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible: New Testament, published by Ignatius Press and edited by Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch. I'm aware that many people have already weighed in on this masterpiece, but I wanted to add my two cents to the discussion. And, let me just start by saying that this is not the Gideons' "Little Red Bible," not that I have anything against the Gideons. They do great work, and I applaud them for it.

This New Testament was ten years in the making and was first published as thirteen volumes. It is the Revised Standard Version (RSV), which is a more literal translation than the New American Bible (NAB), the one you hear in the readings at Mass. Don't get me wrong, I like the wording in the NAB, and it is great for liturgical use, but if you are going to study the Bible, you need a more literal translation, and that's where the RSV delivers.

The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible is chock full of information. Within these 700+ pages, you will find that the pages are divided in a way that one-half of the page is Scripture, and the other half is footnotes explaining the above Scripture. There are also study aids including maps, word studies (like expiation), doctrine explanation (like Faith and Works), important indices, and a concise concordance.

This truly is the perfect starter study Bible and one that you will grow with as well as one that you will use for years to come. The only complaint I have about this Bible is that they cut the study questions that you could find in the individual volumes originally published. Luckily for, Ignatius Press was kind enough to provide these on their website.

On a scale of one to five, this Bible is five stars all the way. I can't wait for them to finish this Old Testament. Unfortunately, I fear we might be waiting at least another ten years for that, as they have only completed Genesis and Exodus so far. When it is complete though, I have no doubt it will be worth the wait and worth every penny.

Thank you for stopping by today and taking the time to read my first review. Tune in this Friday for my first lesson as a 7th Grade catechist this year. And tune in next Monday, as I review The Orthodox Study Bible: Ancient Christianity Speaks to Today's World. See you next time, and don't forget to tell your friends if you enjoyed this post.