January 8, 2015

NASB Note-Taker's Bible {a review}

Have you ever noticed how many variations of the Bible are available? Seriously, there are cultures and languages with no Biblical text and we have more than a smorgasbord of options. Do you want a two column text or one column? Find the right one easily. Do you want a red letter or all black and white? Not a problem. The store has both. A Bible with study notes or without? Maybe just cross references in the column? Done.

I don't say this to degrade us or the blessing. I say it because I think it means that everyone who is searching may find the perfect Bible format and style for themselves. Many choices can be good.

Zondervan has released yet another option into our saturated Bible choices. This one is geared toward those of us who like to write in the margins of our Bibles. That's right. Amongst all the choices in our Bible buffet, you know have the choice of how wide your margins are.

This NASB Note-Taker's Bible also features red lettered words of Christ and short supplemental sections in the back. A concordance, listing of Biblical perspectives, and tables outlining the ministry of Jesus, teachings of Jesus, miracles, and parables are found within the binding.

To be honest, at first I hated the look. My initial impression was that it looked like the publishers did not line up the cutting correctly. What's more, this was a note-taker's Bible and there was no lines?!

Then, I began to explore the pages a bit more. My mind began to comprehend how someone could actually use this. With the margins as wide as possible on the sides and bottom, note-takers have ample space to add their thoughts or thoughts of others into the pages. Without lines, writing would not be confined to a certain predetermined size or horizontal direction.

A possible way note-takers can benefit from this format is by using different color ink for notes on specific roles (wife, mom, teacher, etc.) or themes (sin, grace, love, etc.). Or, note-takers may prefer to use a specific color ink per year of notes. Since most will not study the entire Bible in one year, it may be nice to look back in a few years and see the green colored ink of 2015 and know where you were that year in your Christian growth.

The supplemental information in the back could be used as a basis for personal study. Whether you wanted to spend some time researching a Biblical world view or the miracles of Jesus, the supplemental section could be of use.

After exploring the pages and determining how I could use the wide margins to my best advantage, I did convert from dislike to appreciation. The only part I cannot truly appreciate is the two column text. I would have preferred a one column printing. It would have made referencing particular sections or verses of the text easier. For instance, if I want to write something about the column furthest from the margin, I will either have to code the note with a verse reference header or identifying number/letter or draw a line over/around the column in between. In the end, this is really my only complaint about the printing.

~ Dorie

On a side note, for those wondering...the hard cover edition is actually relatively blank under the dust jacket. When I first received the Bible, I was curious and thought someone else might be as well.

Fine Print: The publisher provided me a copy of this Bible in exchange for a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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