The HCSB Study Bible – Review

HCSB Study Bible

The HCSB Study Bible – Book Review

At the beginning of each New Year, I like to start a fresh journey through God’s Holy Word. Because my regular Bibles often become filled with notes and highlights from previous sojourns, I find it helpful to start with fresh, clean pages. In recent years, I’ve also found it helpful to supplement readings from my preferred translation with readings from less familiar translations so that when God speaks to me through Scripture, I hear His voice anew.

Today, there are more Bibles available than at any other time in history – but with so many Bibles to choose from, finding the right Bible that accurately and faithfully translates the Word of God into contemporary language can be a challenging, daunting task.

That’s why I am so excited to discover the HCSB Study Bible (Holman Christian Standard Bible – God’s Word For Life) – an award-winning Bible that faithfully translates Scripture in a way that is easy to read and understand – yet highly accurate.

The HCSB Study Bible uses the Holman Christian Standard Bible as its translation – a Modern English translation that was initially published in 1999 (New Testament) and completed in 2004 (Old Testament). The Bible was translated by an interdenominational translation team of over 100 top conservative scholars who ascribe to the inspiration and inerrancy of God’s Word.

The original translation team translated the HCSB Study Bible using a process called Optimal Equivalence – a methodology that combines the use of literal translation where a word-for-word rendering is clearly understandable, and a more dynamic translation where a literal translation would obscure the meaning for today’s audience. This results in a text is both accurate and readable – the best of both worlds when it comes to Bible translation!

The current development team of the HCSB Study Bible surveyed focus groups to determine what they would find useful in a Study Bible and incorporated their ideas into the design. The result? A beautiful blend of study aids that enhance – not overwhelm – the text!

Here are a few of the features you’ll find inside of the HCSB Study Bible:

  • 15,000 Study Notes
  • 290 Word Studies
  • Four-Color Presentation Pages
  • 141 Photographs
  • Two-Column Text Setting
  • 62 Timelines
  • 59 Maps
  • One-Year Bible Reading Plan
  • 24 Articles
  • Center Column References
  • 16 Illustrations/Reconstructions
  • Topical Subheads
  • 15 Charts

The HCSB Study Bible has received accolades from many top Christian pastors, authors, and Bible teachers, and is a 2011 ECPA Christian Book Award Winner!

If you are looking for a full-featured Study Bible – particularly one featuring an alternative yet reliable translation to enhance your time in God’s Word – the HCSB Study Bible is definitely worth your consideration!

I rate this Bible 5 out of 5 Stars.


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Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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12 Responses to “The HCSB Study Bible – Review”

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  1. I am thinking of getting a study bible.
    This is helpful.
    Thank you!

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1

      Hi Colette,
      I’m so glad you found my review helpful! I’ve reviewed a number of study bibles if you’d like to compare them. I’d love to know which Bible you end up with – are there any special features you are looking for in the Bible you choose?

  2. Tina at Mommynificent
    Twitter: mommynificent

    I like the amount of thought you’ve put into what Bible you will study this year. Blessings on your readings! Thanks for sharing at Booknificent Thursday.

  3. Kathy Gossen says:

    I just bought this Bible for myself this past year and love it. Great study helps. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Mary Hill
    Twitter: MaryHill16

    Thanks for sharing at Book Musing Mondays. This looks like a great translation.

  5. LuAnn Braley
    Twitter: KentuckyGal

    I’ve always been a KJV kind of a gal, but this one looks like it has possibilities. I noticed there are a couple of e-versions as well (desktop, etc.) Do you think it would have all the features of the print version?

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1

      I would think so but I don’t know for certain as I only reviewed the print version. Did you have a chance to visit the site (in the links)? Perhaps you can find more information about the alternative versions there! 🙂

  6. Joanne Viola says:

    I enjoyed reading this review as when I need a new Bible, this was the one I already had in mind 🙂 I love reading the wording of the HCSB.

    • Create With Joy
      Twitter: CreateWithJoy1

      I’m so excited to hear that you are familiar with this Bible, Joanne, and enjoyed the review!
      This was a new translation for me and I am truly enjoying it! 🙂

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