I am giving away a hardcover edition of this Bible.
The Systematic Theology Study Bible from Crossway, is a different kind of Study Bible. It isn’t really accurate to call it a reference Bible, or a Study Bible. It is technically a study Bible in the sense that it has study aids in it, but it looks more like a reference Bible with a systematic theology book blended in with it.
For my conservative paedobaptist friends, you’ll notice the notes seem to be in favor of credobaptism. For my friends who don’t believe in God’s sovereign election, you’ll notice the notes don’t agree with you.
Some people would like it if a broad range of theologians worked on this Bible, but they didn’t 🙂 It was mostly Reformed Baptists, and conservative Presbyterians, from what I gathered reading the list of men involved with writing the theology articles.
- Gregg Allison
- Bruce Ashford
- Gerald Bray
- Bryan Chapell
- Graham Cole
- David Dockery
- John Frame
- Michael Horton
- Kelly Kapic
- Michael Kruger
- Robert Letham
- Donald Macleod
- Chris Morgan
- Stephen Nichols
- J. I. Packer
- Michael Reeves
- Fred Sanders
- Sam Storms
- Scott Swain
- Stephen Wellum
- David Wells
The systematic theology seems to lean towards a general Reformed position, which is good, because… well, I think it is the right position lol. 🙂 I think any person who affirms the reformed position on soteriology will be appreciative of this Bible and the articles in it. It is broad in appeal to people who are reformed. It might not get all of your more nuanced secondary, or tertiary doctrines just the way you want them, but we will all be in accord over the treatment of the primary ones. I can definitely see the Reformed Baptist position reflected in the work.
There is basically a mini systematic theology book in the back of the Bible along with some other very useful features. Here is a list of features you’ll find;
“Double-column, paragraph format
- Book intros
- Topical index of sidebars
- 400+ doctrinal summaries explaining core doctrines and connecting them to specific Bible passages
- 25+ longer articles on key theological topics
- Lifetime guarantee on leather and TruTone editions
- Smyth-sewn binding
- Packaging: J-Card (Hardcover); Box (Genuine Leather and TruTone)”
When we look at most study Bibles they either are one man’s theology, like the Ryrie, Scofield, and MacArthur, or they are a compilation of a wide range of theologies like the massive ESV, NIV, Thomas Nelson NKJV study Bibles. The last three are humongous study Bibles with a little bit of everything. The Systematic Theology Study Bible is a neat hybrid. It isn’t one man’s theology, or a broad, neither here nor there conglomeration of positions. (Excluding the ESV which does a great job.) It is from the reformed position. The theology is systematic, which means that it is harmonized. Verses are not put against verses. They are all contextually harmonious.
You’ll find book introductions and outlines before each book. You’ll also notice that the Bible looks a lot like a Cross Reference Bible. It seems to me that Crossway integrated their systematic theology features into the Bible very well. The articles are relevant to the scriptures they appear with, and are indexed in the back along with several theological articles.
This Crossway Bible was packaged well and delivered in a cardboard box. The Bible was in a two piece retail box. You should always keep the retail boxes for storing your Bibles in if you are swapping it out with another one to read for a while.
The cover is black genuine leather with a perimeter groove.
The spine is decorated with the ESV logo at the top, then, “Systematic Theology Study Bible.” English Standard Version at the bottom, with Crossway’s logo hot stamped in gold colored foil.
The page edges are also gold gilt. There are yellow and black, head and tail bands, and one black ribbon marker.
The cover is joined to the text block via case binding. The spine is sewn for superior flexibility, and durability.
In the front of the Bible there is a presentation page, and some family records pages.
If you look at the copyright page, you’ll be pleased to see this edition was printed and bound in the United States.
The book introductions are well done. I found them to be informative, and concise, but not to a fault.
Cross references and footnotes, along with the systematic theology articles are found at the bottom of the page to save space. The text is laid out in a double column, paragraph format.
The main font is an easy to read 9 pt. Lexicon, and the features are an 8 pt. Gotham, printed crisply on 30 g.s.m. Apple Thin Opaque paper. The paper is smooth, and offers a decent contrast, and due to its color reduces eyestrain.
If you don’t already own one of these, you should get one. It is a times saver if you are intending to read a systematic theology book. You can kill two birds with one stone. It is available from Crossway, Amazon, or Christianbook for a very fair price.
Since you stuck around for the entire review, if you comment on this review, and ask to be in the running for the hardback copy of this Bible I will select a winner out of those who commented. Be sure to check back so I can get your mailing address. I will only mail this to an address in the U.S.