I love the opportunity to review a book, especially one that could be used by children or adults. I wasn't at all sure what to expect from a 'Bible handbook." But I was impressed as soon as I opened it.
This book is a high quality book, a sturdy cardstock like cover that has tabs that could mark your place in the book, and the inside pages are a heavy high quality shiny paper. So from the start it has a great look and feel.
This Bible handbook is an overview of all the books of the Bible. Each book has an Outline, FAQ, Look out for, and Study Questions. There are also pictures throughout- some are real images and some are detailed and beautiful drawn illustrations, all have captions.
In addition there are also some solid overviews and timelines, that pull together some of the big concepts in the Bible. (like Jesus miracles, parables, the tabernacle, Jerusalem,...) The appendix at the end shares some other helpful info like key Bible characters, key passages/promises, and key big ideas in the Bible.
I know other reviewers were puzzled as to the target or audience of this book, and I would say it is for a new Bible reader or a repeat Bible reader who wants support. It's a nonfiction book that is meant to pull together the concepts, books, and people of the Bible together. In some ways it could be like a 'cliff notes', I think that when you start reading through the Bible, many people need support to build connections, summarize, and synthesize their reading. Many people just give up when they read their Bible alone. This book would definitely help bridge the gap for a lay person who wants support or guidance as he reads the Bible for the first time, or the tenth time, but with a new purpose in mind.
This book would help you choose a theme or concept and see it across both the Old Testament and New Testament. Or if you wanted to read the Bible through in a year, it would help give you an overview and focus, even comprehension checks as you complete a book reading.
So many people who read the Bible lack formal Bible education and are afraid to seek support, or even choose a helpful study Bible. This book would fill in that gap, is a great visual resource, as well as a synthesis several layers of the Bible. I believe it would be a helpful resource for children or adults who are reading through the Bible.
I believe that when I do a book study I will consult the overview in this book for my own personal study, and I know that when I teach Sunday School or children, this book will have helpful images, charts, and definitions as I prepare to lead a discussion. I really enjoyed it and would recommend it.
I was given this book as a part of Kregel's blog tour, all ideas and opinions are my own.