Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Bible Review: KJV Creedal Bible

Creedal Bible: KJV. Holman Bible Staff. 2016. 1600 pages. [Source: Review copy]

How is the Creedal Bible different from other Bibles? Is it a necessary or beneficial publication? Who is the best match for the Creedal Bible?

The Creedal Bible is essentially a text-only Bible with a few special features tucked in at the beginning and end of the Bible. 

The special features include a section prepared by Tom J. Nettles entitled "The Bible And Creeds." There are four creeds included in the Bible. They are: "The Apostles' Creed," "The Creed of Nicea," "The Nicaeno-Constantinopolitan," and "The Symbol of Chalcedon." Each of these creeds is introduced briefly, and then following the creed itself, there is some commentary as well. This article hints that there are plenty of other confessions and catechisms to explore depending on your denomination within the Protestant tradition. In all, this special section that makes the Creedal Bible unique, in part, is about thirty pages in length.

At the end of the Bible, more special features are to be found.

"How To Read the Bible Through" is a short article on how to best read the Bible. It balances between the why and the how. I liked it very much.

"A Short History of the Holy Bible" is another short article. After one or two pages of introduction, it essentially shares the organization of the Bible. Each book of the Bible is summarized concisely. (These summaries are longer than a tweet, but not by much.) Since the Creedal Bible does not have book introductions, this is a nice study help to have.

Other study helps included: "Favorite Readings from the Bible," "A Harmony of the Life of Christ," "Appearances After the Resurrection," "Miracles of Our Lord," and "Parables of Our Lord."

There is also a small concordance; it is about fifty pages in length. There are also eight maps.

Is it necessary and/or beneficial publication? This is the most subjective question of all. Except for some of the books' front matter and back matter, it is essentially a text-only Bible.

To help you assess if it would be beneficial to you, I've included the following questions.
  • Which translation is used? The KJV translation is used.
  • Are the Words of Christ in red? Yes. 
  • What is the size of the text? It uses 11 point font. 
  • How thick are the pages? Well, there is some bleed through. But it isn't horrible…relatively speaking.
Are creeds important? I think so. Is this Bible the best resource for learning more about creeds? Probably not. I would recommend Justin Holcomb's Know The Creeds and Councils

Is it the only Bible that includes creeds as a study help? No. The ESV and NKJV Reformation Study Bibles published by Reformation Trust include sections on creeds, confessions, and catechisms. So does the KJV Reformation Heritage Study Bible published by Reformation Heritage. I will say, however, that these Bibles suffer from having tiny print. So even though they have more to offer readers, if small print frustrates you, then they may not be all that beneficial. I think the font size of the Creedal Bible is one of its greatest strengths. 

Who is the best match for the Creedal Bible?  Traditional believers who like or love the King James Version of the Bible. Traditional in the sense that they are Bible-believing, creed-affirming, and conservative as opposed to liberal. ("The Bible is the Word of God and has authority over my life" as opposed to "the Bible is a nice book that I can pick and choose from as my mood suits me.") 

I would say that it's a Bible on the light and comfortable size. One can easily carry it to church or Bible study. One can read easily with it in bed. It isn't too heavy to hold up and read for long periods of times. In terms of size and weight--it really doesn't get more convenient than this. 

Anyone who appreciates a larger-print Bible. 

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