KJV Bible Recommendations

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Have you been looking for a fantastic study Bible? Or maybe a lovely journaling Bible in the King James Version?

Well, look no further! I’m back after a much needed break and I’ve got two great new resource recommendations for you.

I’ve had a number of Bibles, and I still do. I count about five that I use on a weekly basis, and I enjoy having the variety but you may prefer just to have one or two that you use. Whatever your preference is, the two Bibles that I’m going to recommend to you this month are: 

    • the KJV Holy Bible Personal Reflections Edition from Barbour Bibles, and
    • the King James Study Bible Full Colour Edition from Thomas Nelson.

I have never had two Bibles that I have so enjoyed pulling off my shelf and opening up, and both for very different reasons. Both styles are excellent and have their own strengths, suiting those who prefer a Bible that leaves room for creative outlet and those who are just looking for a great study resource packed right into their Bible.

KJV Holy Bible Personal Reflections Edition {https://amzn.to/3Cfoa3g}

Let’s start with the journaling Bible. I’ve had this beauty for almost a full year now, and I have to say, if anything ever happens to it, I will be terribly disappointed!

The pages are not the standard tissue-thin pages that you have probably come to expect when you open up a Bible. Since this is targeted to those who like to write notes and create art, it is designed for a variety of mediums that one might use to journal (i.e. pens, markers, highlighters, wax crayon, pencil crayon, etc). I have used pencil crayon, black gel pen {these are my absolute favourites – https://amzn.to/3CjLaOu with no smudging, bleeding, or splattering ink}, marker, micron felt tip pens, and flair felt tip pens in multiple colours of both. There is very little bleed, if any, to the backs of the pages. The cover is made of an imitation leather and there are three colour varieties to choose from. The lettering in the Bible is a good size, though it could be larger. If you require extra large letter sizing, this may not be the one for you, but considering how large it already is I can see why the lettering isn’t larger.

The side margins toward the edges of the pages are quite broad and a really good size for taking notes, hand lettering, or drawing/painting – or all three! And there is a colourable floral design with a prompt for further reflection (hence the name), which is a feature that I really enjoy. It makes the Bible stand out from other journaling styles by offering more than just additional blank space for writing or artwork. Along the outer edging of the pages, when it is closed, there is a marbled pattern which gives the Bible a lovely finished touch.

At the rear, you have book-by-book summaries for every book in order of appearance. These summaries include the name of the book and its meaning, when it was written and by whom, the meaning of the writer’s name, and its place in order. The summary also tells you the kind of book that it is, names of note throughout, a nutshell description, the significance of the book and its “claim to fame”. It’s a good amount of information for a general overview but being included separately at the back it helps keep the rest of the pages free of distraction for easier reading.

Other features in the back include key events and accounts, key characters, important women, passages for times of personal need, and a brief overview of both Testaments. This Bible does not include cross-references.

King James Study Bible Full Colour Edition {https://amzn.to/3ApmxyO}

This study Bible is great for either men or women as it has a gender neutral two-tone grey cloth cover over board (I’ve also seen it available in imitation leather/bonded leather). The binding has gold embossed lettering and there are two grey tone ribbon markers. It is thick and fairly heavy, so I wouldn’t recommend it for church use, but it is excellent for use at home or in the office. This edition was produced by Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA and has gone through several updates. The opening few pages include instructions for how to use the study features as well as explanations for their purpose in creating this edition.

The paper isn’t the shiny thin paper you see in traditional Bibles, and while still very, very thin it is more of a matte finish. The typeface is typical of what I would expect to see in most Bibles, as well, so if you need a larger text this is probably not going to serve you well.

Now for the study features!

These are what really made this my choice when I was searching for a good study Bible – the variety of solid features for further study. I’ve had others, like the Scofield and the Rock of Ages, but neither of those really compares. This is like having a Bible with an atlas, an encyclopedia, a commentary, and scholar’s notes all rolled into one. There are many full colour images of things such as paintings and sculptures of biblical people and events, maps, archaeological findings, etc. There are centre-column cross-references on every page including the reference, equivalent translation, literal translation, explanatory notes, language notes, and alternate translations.

You will also find doctrinal footnotes throughout to aid in learning the core doctrines of Scripture and their source in the Scriptures. There is a even a section with guidance on how to study the Bible! To follow this up, each chapter also has a historical and factual overview to give the literary and historical context of the book before one begins reading. This overview includes a synopsis of the book, notes on the authorship, the date of writing, and an in-depth outline of the book just before the beginning of the first chapter.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a professional scholar or a linguistic expert. I cannot vouch absolutely for the content of the study notes, but I have found it to be true that no study Bible I have used to this point has notes that I agree with fully. As the study notes were written by people, people with biases and their own understanding of the facts, it is assumed that they may come to different conclusions on some things than I. However, I have noticed that when there are things in Scripture over which scholars debate, the notes present all views which is something I personally appreciate. Overall, I have found the notes to reliable and helpful. (DO your own studying and verify the information you read to the best of your ability!)

Conclusion

Well, there you have it! I hope that this recommendation has been a help to you and given you something to look for even if you don’t select either of these Bibles. Honestly, I would recommend either of them highly and have so enjoyed putting them to use each day. I prefer to use them in tandem, but find the study style that works best for you and then dive in. There’s no “right way” to do it, you just need to dig in and let the Spirit lead you!

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