Book Review: New NIV Quest Study Bible


My work-from-home mother’s sunlit kitchen and dining room always held assorted books. Recipe books. Journals. Bibles. I used to hold mom’s Bible near my nose to inhale the aroma of holy words bound up in old leather. Note books were filled with my mother’s precise cursive writing capturing observations from messages at church and personal study at home. Bible commentaries fed her desire for knowledge about the Bread of Life in between kneading dough and baking loaves of delicious bread for our family of seven. I observed mom’s love for God’s Word through her careful study and application of truth in our home, in Bible studies, and as a natural outgrowth of worship in our local church. Her faithful example fueled my love for reading, writing, and learning about God.

I grew up reading the King James Version, then discovered the New International Version, and later, the New American Standard Version Bible. A small KJV leather Bible traveled with me to South America after high school. A year later the trusty Schofield Reference Bible was one of my first purchases from the Bible college bookstore. The text expanded my Bible knowledge through courses like Pentateuch, Wisdom Literature, The Life of Christ, Theology I & II, and Daniel/Revelation. I was assigned a work-hour volunteer job in the college library; pure enjoyment. Fulfilling college requirements while surrounded by towering shelves of biblical literature? Yes, please.

When our girls were little I splurged and got my first hard cover NIV Study Bible. Currently (about 26 years later!) I personally enjoy the David Jeremiah NIV Study Bible.

Today, I am very glad to be able to do a book review of the new NIV Quest Study Bible.

Disclaimer: I’m a member of the Bible Gateway Blogger Grid (BG2) and I received a copy of the new NIV Quest Study Bible for free as a member of BG2.

The details about the new NIV Quest Study Bible can be found on the Zondervan website here.

Features I am enjoying are:

  • TONS of insightful notes throughout each page.
  • Built-in reading plans (there are three to choose from in the front of the Bible).
  • Easier to read style with “Comfort Print” text (9.9-point!).
  • Helpful notes arranged all over the place in a question and answer format.
  • I like the two-color page design. The scripture column is in white while the study text is an inviting teal.
  • 350 articles about the most asked questions in the Bible. The new NIV Quest Study Bible proactively provides insightful context that readers will find helpful.
  • The new NIV Quest Study Bible I received to review was the hard cover version. It’s very sturdy, the paper used to print the pages is more durable to the feel (it doesn’t wrinkle easily like some of my other Bibles with very fine paper), and the price point for the hard cover version is very reasonable – it is $39.99 on the Zondervan website. You can find the leather version for a very reasonable price over on Amazon, here. There is also a leather version that is indexed.
  • I think this study Bible would have been a welcome addition in mom’s kitchen many years ago. It’s an ideal tool for people just beginning to study God’s Word, and contains depth that individuals further along on the faith journey will appreciate.

Other thoughts:

  • The new Bible copy (“new” being the emphasis in this statement) doesn’t have that winsome nose-pressed-to-text-wonderful-leather-smell I loved back in mom’s kitchen, but we won’t dwell on that drawback. It’s new. And it’s a beautiful wealth of scriptural knowledge.
  • The Index to Subject has stumped me a bit. I decided to look up the word “Time” for a word study project related to another writing assignment. The first scripture/s listed in reference to “Time”, are: Exodus 1:6-8; 32:1. None of these verses includes the word “time”. They deal with periods of time (“generations”; “was so long in coming down from the mountain”; but the actual word “time” is not in the verses. This is confusing to me since in a study of a particular word/subject I would expect the verse to include the actual word, “Time”. I would be curious to see how the Index to Subjects is defined by the publisher/s to better understand the context of the resource.
  • The page setup in columns made me claustrophobic at first glance. I’m used to focusing on the meat of the text on the top 2/3 portion of a page, with the study text below. However, after spending more time in this Bible format, I like the information in columns. It’s a nice variation. This observation about column setup is probably one of those “picking the color of the church carpet” design committee meeting discussions, if you know what I mean. This observation doesn’t change the need for the information (carpet) and really doesn’t matter if the column layout (carpet color) is not what one would pick personally. The column formatting, and pages packed with information on both sides, works just fine. It’s growing on me.

Final thoughts:

Honestly, we are so blessed with many options to read scripture, to study, and to learn more about our holy God freely in our nation, right? So, in a day and age when some cultures are denied the opportunity to learn truth and worship the true and living God, resources packed with accurate theology and trusted information are to be treasured. I highly recommend the new NIV Quest Study Bible for those seeking a trusted scripture text to further their Christian walk. Especially in sunlit kitchens where moms and dads faithfully sacrifice for family and serve God by impacting future generations for Christ.

Thanks for the opportunity to do this book review, Bible Gateway and Zondervan!

About Sharon: I’m a wife, mom, and stage 4 colon cancer survivor who has been NED (“no evidence of disease”) since 2013. I’m happy when I’m enjoying coffee, reading, writing, and spending time with my family. I’m really grateful for wellness support strategies and good books that support living abundantly in the “new normal”.

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