Saturday, April 16, 2011

2011 Christian Book Award Finalists

Today I learned about the finalists in this year's Christian Book Awards. "Given out by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA), the awards honor excellence in content, literary quality, design, and significance of contribution in six categories, including: Bibles, Fiction, Children, Inspiration, Bible Reference, and Non-fiction." The winners will be announced in May, I believe.

The five Bibles honored are as follows:

 Apologetics Study Bible for Students (HCSB)

Product Description
Like the acclaimed Apologetics Study Bible, the Apologetics Study Bible for Students anchors younger Christians in the truths of Scripture by equipping them with thoughtful and practical responses for whenever the core issues of their faith and life are challenged.

In addition to the complete HCSB text and dozens of articles collected from today's most popular youth leaders, including editor Sean McDowell, this new study Bible also includes:
  • Two-color design-intensive layout on every page for the visual generation
  • Study notes
  • 120 articles by leading Christian thinkers dealing with life's ultimate questions
  • Sixty “Twisted Scriptures” explanations correcting distortion & misunderstanding of scripture
  • Fifty “Bones & Dirt” entries (archaeology meets apologetics)
  • Fifty "Notable Quotes" from influential people throughout history
  • Twenty-five “Tactics” against common anti-Christian arguments
  • Twenty “Personal Stories” of how God has worked in real lives
  • Twenty “Top Five” lists to help remember key apologetics topics
  • Bullet notes explain Bible terms
  • Book introductions
  • Presentation page
 ESV Seek and Find Bible (ESV) -- which I own!!! You can see my full review here.

Product Description

Published in partnership with Concordia Publishing House, this full-color children's Bible combines the complete ESV Bible text with more than 120 new, vibrant illustrations of major Bible stories. Accompanying each full-page illustration is the Bible story itself, clearly and accurately retold for young readers—and for the parents, grandparents, and teachers who read to them. Each story includes a Key Bible Verse to memorize, Additional Readings for discovering more of the story throughout the Bible, and simple Reflection Questions to help children begin to understand and apply God’s Word. Colorful icons make it easy for young readers to see where each story is found in the Bible text and to locate the illustration that goes with it.

In addition, dozens of Bible characters are profiled throughout the pages, and color call-out sections provide illustrated facts about important Bible objects, structures, and places. Each Bible book begins with a child-friendly introduction, highlighting the important characters and themes found in it.

The ESV Seek and Find Bible is the ideal first "real" Bible for pre-readers and young readers, ages 5 to 10, to grow up with. It is also a wonderful resource for parents to use in family Bible reading and for teachers who teach the Bible to young children.

  • More than 120 full-page, full-color illustrations
  • Simple Bible story retellings for each illustration
  • Age-appropriate introductions to each Bible book
  • Key Verses to memorize
  • Illustrated profiles of more than 60 major Bible characters
  • Illustrated facts about Bible objects, structures, and places.
  • Reflections Questions for children, parents and teachers

HCSB Study Bible (HCSB) -- which I own and just love, love, love!

Product Description
When reading a passage in the Bible, you shouldn't have to wonder where to find supporting reference notes and commentary that go along with it. That’s why the HCSB Study Bible-featuring approximately 15,000 study notes-is designed so that every clarifying resource is there on the same page spread as the biblical text to which it refers. You’ll never again forget what you were looking for, because the pertinent note, map, chart, word study, or illustration is already there. And when an even deeper view is desired, there are also introductions for each book, outlines and timelines, a concordance, and more. For the growing believer whose desire is to know Scripture more intimately and live out its loving instruction, the HCSB Study Bible always keeps you and God on the same page.

  • 290 word studies
  • 141 photographs
  • 62 timelines
  • 59 maps
  • 24 articles
  • 16 illustrations/reconstructions
  • 15 charts
  • Four-color presentation pages
  • Two-column text setting
  • One-year Bible reading plan
  • Center column references
  • Topical subheads
  • Black letter text
  • Lined pages for personal notes
  • Presentation page
  • Ribbon marker

The Case for Christ Study Bible: Investigating The Evidence for Belief, ed. by Lee Strobel. (NIV)

Product Description

Using a journalist's precision in gathering and presenting evidence, The Case for Christ Study Bible is an engaging, informative resource that motivates seekers and skeptics—as well as long-time Christians—to investigate for themselves the Bible’s most compelling claims: the existence of a compassionate God and the promise of eternal life through His Son, Jesus.

Drawn from Lee’s own experiences as a former atheist and featuring his journalistic style from his days as an investigative reporter with the Chicago Tribune, the notes and articles throughout The Case for Christ Study Bible are designed to motivate you to investigate the Bible’s claims for yourself. Whether you are a Christian seeking encouragement in your faith and knowledge about who God is or a seeker or skeptic searching for answers, you will benefit from Lee’s own extensive search for the truth.

Some of the excellent study notes found in this Bible include:
  • Case for Christ Articles Over 220 Case for Christ notes explore Jesus’ claims and deity and demonstrate that he is the Messiah.
  • Case for the Bible Notes
    More than 170 Case for the Bible notes explore the character of the Bible and the extra-biblical evidence that corroborates Scripture as well as explain apparent contradictions within the Bible.
  • Case for a Creator Notes 75 Case for a Creator notes highlight the wonders of creation and demonstrate how the scientific evidence points to one all-powerful Creator.
  • Case for Faith Articles 100 Case for Faith articles address questions such as, “How can there be a God that would allow so much pain and suffering?” and, “Doesn’t science prove that the world was created by chance?”
  • Verdict Notes 20 Verdict notes provide testimonies from scholars and other Christians who have examined the evidence, discovered the reality of Jesus, and put their faith in him.
  • Book Introductions
    Sixty-six Book Introductions offer a short overview of each book.
Additional Features
  • Book Introductions for each book of the Bible
  • 16 pages of full-color maps
  • NIV Concordance
  • Subject index
  • Presentation page

The NKJV Lucado Life Lessons Study Bible (NKJV) (I own the first edition of this one. And I can't justify buying it again even if it is new and improved.)

Product Description

Discover the life-enriching biblical application you're searching for in The Lucado Life Lessons Study Bible.
With more than 1,000 "Life Lessons" offering insights straight from Max, the message of God's Word will be more meaningful and impactful than ever.

This beautifully designed Bible contains practical application drawn from Max Lucado's entire career—from his first book to his latest release, Outlive Your Life. For the first time, all the devotional material in this fully-revised edition of The Inspirational Study Bible is from Max Lucado and uses the popular and reliable New King James Version translation!

An ideal companion for Max Lucado's Outlive Your Life DVD-Based Study.

With the Lucado Life Lessons Study Bible you will:
  • Gain a unique, inspirationally focused view of Scripture
  • Experience God's interaction with people like yourself
  • Acquire new perspectives from the devotional insights of Max Lucado
  • Shine a light on "the map that leads us to God's highest treasure"

I've not looked at two of these--the Apologetics Study Bible for Students and the Case for Christ NIV Study Bible. First, I'm not young enough to be a "student." And while I've spent *some* time in the store looking at the adult Apologetics Study Bible, I've not been persuaded enough to buy it. Second, the NIV is not my favorite or best translation of choice. I have read one Lee Strobel book--can't remember if it was The Case for Christ, The Case for Faith, or The Case for Resurrection. (If it was in another translation, I'd probably have opened it up and read some in the store to see if it was for me.)

The Life Lessons Lucado Bible I've *looked* at in the store. Even somewhat longingly. But knowing that I have the first edition, and knowing how full my Bible shelf already is has kept me far!

I own two of the finalists--the HCSB Study Bible which is one of the best, best, best study Bibles that I've discovered in a while! And the ESV Seek and Find Bible which is unique and good in its own way. (If I could have had this one when I was 8, it would have been love, love, love!!!)

Two of the finalists are for youth--either children or teens. Three are for adults. One seems a bit more "inspirational/devotional" than study-study. But I think each has its strengths. Each, of course, has the potential to be THE ONE for some one out there seeking God's Word, God's Truth.

I do wish that the ESV MacArthur Bible would have made the finalist list. I really, really do. Because it's one of my favorite Bibles. It's a great translation--I just love, love, love the ESV. And the notes are so thorough and well-written. And the format/design is great. I *think* it is the best formatted of the MacArthur Study Bibles--comparing it with the first edition of the NKJV, and the NASB edition.

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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