NIV Grace and Truth Study Bible

Reviewed by:

Julie-Allyson Ieron, author/Bible teacher/worship minister



NIV Grace and Truth Study Bible


Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., general editor






various HB, leather, Logos; English or Spanish



The distinguishing mark of Zondervan’s new foray into the crowded study Bible market is its conversational tone. The NIV Grace and Truth Study Bible reads like the writer is beside you, explaining what you’re encountering, passage by passage, and putting its lessons into a modern-day context. For example, in the description of Jeremiah 29, the commentator explains, “Jeremiah’s first letter to the exiles in Babylon establishes an important principle for how Christians should regard their place in the world and the governments under which they live. The Jewish exiles were to pray for Babylon, settle in the city, and become responsible, productive members of the community … Christians, likewise, should abide by the law, pray for their country, and contribute to their society. But their true citizenship is in heaven (Php 3:20).”


The introductions to each Bible book are especially engaging. They explain context, authorship, and the unique contribution each book makes to the canon. For example, Mom opened to the intro to Philippians. Here’s what she read first: “Some people are easier to love than others. The same goes for churches.” Talk about practical, down-to-earth commentary. It goes on to tell of Paul’s affection for the church in Philippi, despite its challenges. She loved the fact that the intro lead her back to Acts and how Paul became involved with these believers.


General editor, Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., is president of Southern Baptist Seminary, and a regular commentator in secular and Christian media speaking on world events. The list of book-by-book contributors is heavily weighted to faculty of, and scholars who hold PhDs from, Southern Baptist Seminary.


As to added-value items, the maps are especially well done. They’re most useful as they paint a picture of the content we read in travel-oriented books like Exodus, the Gospels, and Acts. One I can’t recall having encountered this way before is a map of Jesus’ ministry, with descriptions of sites where His most notable healings took place.


In a search through passages I’ve researched and written on extensively, I found nothing I didn’t agree with in this new volume; but also not much ground-breaking content. Compared to the Expanded Edition of the Ryrie (my study Bible of choice) the content is less scholarly in Grace and Truth.


As to layout, the Bible text is easily readable, but the commentary and references are small and tight. The layout is so jam-packed that there’s no room to write in the margins. I use an Inductive Study Bible devotionally. It has wide margins, so I’ve become accustomed to space on the pages for processing what I’m reading. Don’t look for that luxury here.


The various print editions (ranging in price from $50 to $280 in English, and from $45 to $80 in Spanish–using the NBLA translation) contain a fairly extensive concordance. That said, I feel awkward turning stuck-together pages and holding my finger in the current passage to locate references. Although the publicity materials didn’t indicate it, I did find that these study notes are available on the Logos Bible software platform for $19.99.


Overall, this is a nice entry point study Bible for someone who wants easy-to-understand, book-by-book notes to enhance their devotional reading of the Word.



Rating (1 to 5):


Suggested Audience:

Christians, new and long-time, who desire a more complete view of the Word and how its lessons apply to life today.

Christian Impact:

Using the popular NIV, this study Bible is a conversational, easily accessible addition to a family’s or a church’s Bible library.

NIV, The Grace and Truth Study Bible, Hardcover, Red Letter, Comfort Print

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