Many of the study notes seem quite intricate and useful and exegetical. Several of the pages are quite packed with notes. There were various scholars writing the study notes for each individual book of the Bible and you can see the negatives and positives to that. For instance, I was pleasantly surprised (shocked may be the better term) that the person who did the study notes in 1 Corinthians actually took the literal view of chapter 7, where Paul repeats, affirms and perhaps expounds upon, the Lord's command, "To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband. But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife." 1 Cor. 7:10-11 The writer of the study notes comments: vs. 11"...There are only two options for a divorced woman: (1) remain unmarried or (2) reconcile with her husband. a husband must not divorce his wife. Just as a woman must not divorce her husband; again Paul formulates no exception." Vs. 15, 'Let it be so.' when a non-Christian spouse divorces a Christian spouse, the Christian cannot do anything about it. not bound in such circumstances. it is often suggested that this allows a deserted Christian spouse to remarry since the Christian is not 'bound' to the marriage that has been dissolved. This interpretation is not plausible: (1) In v. 11 Paul prohibits remarriage in cases where divorce has taken place. (2) The Greek verb does not mean 'bound'; it means 'enslaved' or 'under bondage.' (3) The thrust of the context is maintaining marriage. (4) Paul speaks of 'freedom' for a new marriage only in cases when the spouse has died (v. 39; Rom 7:1-3). If a non-Christian spouse leaves the marriage, the Christian spouse is not responsible for the divorce. Christian spouses may not initiate divorce from non-Christian spouses on religious grounds..." But then where you turn to Christ's comments on divorce and remarriage in Matthew 7 and 19 you find the usual view espoused (dissolution of a marriage before God in the case of adultery)by whomever wrote the study notes.
But now I must talk about the negative aspects of this Bible. One is not so bad, but some may find it quite inconvenient, and that is that the font is (or seems to me) quite small, and that is aggravated by the fact that it is difficult to lift the book closer to one's face to take a closer look because it is so heavy. But if they made the font any bigger the Bible's overall size would be impractical and it would probably end up having to be treated like some old gigantic Bibles of the past where would you just designate a place for it to be left open on its own stand as it would be difficult to transport.
The second negative was that the person(s) who wrote the study notes on Genesis did not come down firmly on a literal 24 hour day creation. For instance in the introduction to Genesis it is stated that, "The question of the age of the earth is not automatically resolved with the use of the seven days in 1:1-2:3. In 2:4, Moses uses the same Hebrew word for 'day' to summarize all the work of creation…Of course, this does not mean that the term 'day' cannot refer to a 24-hour day in the seven days of creation. But it may also serve other purposes." And therefore of course, they also do not firmly promote a global flood in Genesis 6-7 but leave it open to the possibility of its being a regional flood.
The third negative is that the Bible has at least a few engravings, paintings and other forms of art picturing unclothed people. I'll mention three of them here: First there was a picture of a naked Adam and Eve holding a few tiny conveniently placed leaves…I don't get why they don't at least depict them in the clothing of leaves they had tried to make, or why don't they picture them when God clothed them with animal skins? Why depict the father and mother of all mankind in what is now their shame??? It is STILL their SHAME, why is it okay for their offspring to have pictures of them in that state???????I don't understand that at all. And then there was an engraving or something showing circumcision being performed on men and it was completely unnecessary, I didn't need to see that. And lastly there was a painting in the introduction to Psalms that showed unclothed and scantily clothed Egyptian women musicians, the only connection to the Psalms was that they were musicians. Why? Why choose that one? I don't care if they are ancient archaeological finds and are considered 'a work of art', I don't care how old it is, there are bad/immoral works of art from history just as there are bad works of 'art' today! I don't understand how a person can think that pictures depicting naked people are justified to have in a Bible, rather I see it as an affront and a contradiction to the teachings of the Bible itself. Think of Christ's statement: "Ye have heard that it was said, Thou shalt not commit adultery: but I say unto you, that every one that looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. "(Mat 5:27-28 ASV). What if a picture was placed beside it showing a lewdly dressed woman with the caption "ancient depiction of a prostitute", wouldn't that seem a little (sarcasm) contradictory?
I'm sorry to have to be so negative but I simply had to say something. I would have rated the study Bible higher if it hadn't been for the bad pictures.
I received a free review copy of this book from the Booklook blogger program in exchange for my review which did not have to be favorable.