For those who enjoy reading the New International Version, this teen study Bible would be a good choice. (The only other NIV teen Bible I've read in is the NIV Student Bible.) Earlier in the year, I had the opportunity to review two other Zondervan NIV Bibles: the Faithgirlz Bible and the NIV Boys Bible. While I found plenty to appreciate in the NIV Boys Bible, I found the Faithgirlz Bible to be lacking. I didn't quite know what to expect from the Rock Solid Faith Study Bible, but decided it was worth a try.
Overall, I liked it. The NIV isn't my preferred translation. BUT. I liked the basics of this one. I loved that it wasn't trying to do too much in terms of layout and design. It's not glittery or sparkly. It's not camouflage. It's not covered in butterflies, kittens, or puppies. It's straight-forward and authentic. I think it's easy to use. I don't think it's overwhelming or confusing. It could work for younger or older teens. It may not be the most in-depth, extensive study Bible available. But it's good at the basics. For those who want or need more, there are always other Bibles. Some readers might be overwhelmed with too much information. They might read a one-page book introduction but be intimidated by a four or five page introduction. Every reader is different.
- NIV translation, one of the better thought-for-thought translations
- plain, no-nonsense, straight-forward layout and design. It isn't trying to appeal to readers with bright, bold colors, look-at-me fonts, and graphics on every other page. It isn't trying to be cute or cool. It isn't trying to appeal to just guys or just girls. I think this basic design will keep it classic and it won't become dated in just a few months or years.
- Offers a handful of features and study helps including book introductions, Rock Solid Truths, Rock Solid Promises, Rock Solid Principles, Rock Solid Plans, Unshaken People, Unshaken God, reading plans, topical indexes, concordance, maps. Application of the Bible to daily life is encouraged and supported by the features.
- NIV translation; for those who prefer word-for-word or essentially literal translations, or, for those who prefer the 1984 NIV translation, this translation choice may not be a strength.
- Not every Bible that calls itself a "study Bible" has enough in it to make it a STUDY Bible. This one has features which make it a definite improvement over a text-only Bible--in terms of being a reader-friendly, accessible Bible for studying and reading. But. It doesn't have notes at the bottom of each page. It doesn't have extensive notes for specific chapters and verses. It doesn't have long, detailed book introductions. It doesn't feature lists and charts. (No charts chronicling the life and ministry of Jesus, or, the last week; no charts to help with miracles or parables; etc.) For those really wanting to dig deep and STUDY, this one may not be the best choice. (I would recommend the ESV Student Bible). For those who want a good, basic introduction, this one may satisfy.
© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible