Bible Reviews

Hey women! Are you tired of the pink, “so-called” Study Bibles, that are full of fluffy self-esteem candy?

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 003

Well, Holman has got a surprise for you!  Their, “Study Bible for Women” in the HCSB translation.  It comes in this quality chocolate color, genuine cowhide leather, with thumb indexes.  It was a very pleasant surprise to see some actual study aids as opposed to junk food.  There is academic quality here.  There are some notes on hermeneutics, theology, some original language notes and transliteration help.  Most women’s Bibles are pink and have a bunch of Osteen-esque, self help, self-esteem, feel good, prattle in them with little in the way of useful exegesis of scripture or how to apply it today.  This study Bible has significant work in it from two established Christian women.  Here are short bio’s from Holman’s site,

Dorothy Kelley Patterson is Professor of Theology in Women’s Studies at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. She is a homemaker, popular speaker, and successful writer, editor, and compiler of numerous books including A Handbook for Ministers’ Wives, The Family, BeAttitudes for Women, and Touched by Greatness: Women in the Life of Moses. She is co-editor of the two volume Women’s Evangelical Commentary:Old Testament and New Testament. Her husband Paige is President of Southwester Baptist Theological Seminary.”


Rhonda Harrington Kelley is President’s wife and Adjunct Professor of Women’s Ministry at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a frequent speaker for women as well as an author of books including Divine Disciple, Life Lessons for Women of the Bible, and Personal Holiness: A Biblical Study for Developing a Holy Lifestyle. She is co-editor of the three volume Women’s Evangelical Library including Women’s Evangelical Commentary: Old Testament, New Testament, and The Study Bible for Women. Her husband Chuck Kelley is President of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.”

There is some of the fluff, don’t get me wrong.  It is just kept in its proper place and proportion.  I think that women should find this very helpful.  However, I am not a woman and am just commenting because I want one like this for men.

Here is what the Publisher has to say about this Bible,

Publisher’s Description

The Study Bible for Women will equip you to reach deep into God’s Word.  Perhaps the single most powerful aspect of this Bible are the “threads” of specialized study thoughtfully woven throughout, pointing you to God’s larger story and allowing the Holy Spirit to write His revealed truths on your heart.In The Study Bible for Women, you’ll join a host of other women, all academically trained in the original languages of the Bible and passionate about God’s Word, for an intimately deep dive into Scripture that will equip you to unlock the riches and majesty of His Word, and ignite a passion to mentor others in your life to do the same.  The Study Bible for Women includes the full text of the Holman Christian Standard Bible, a clear, contemporary English translation that’s faithful to the original languages of the Bible.

Features include extensive commentary notes, word studies, answers to hard questions, doctrinal notes, Biblical womanhood articles, character profiles, Written on My Heart applications, extensive book introductions, presentation pages, in-text maps, charts & timelines, full-color maps section and concordance.”

The Bible was shipped in a cardboard box with paper packing material.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 001

The Bible was inside a two piece retail box.  It arrived undamaged and in good condition.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 002

Inside the retail packaging it was wrapped in two pieces of black construction paper to keep it from getting bent corners.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 006

The genuine cowhide is a chocolate brown color with a soft texture.  I can’t stress enough that this is not some cheap synthetic leather, nor is it some hard, shiny, pigskin leather you would find on other Bibles in this price range.  This is a soft and supple cowhide leather.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 018

The spine is hot stamped with, “HCSB” at the top, “The Study Bible for Women” orientated horizontally along the spine in the middle, and at the bottom is the Holman logo.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 013

The page edges are gilded gold.  The Bible is thumb indexed with gold text on black for the Old Testament and gold text on Red for the New Testament.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 009

The pages are white with a faded blue color that becomes more solid as you approach the page edges and perimeter of the page.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 015

It kind of gives it an art gilded look of blue under gold.  It might have been better to gild this with silver instead.  However, the effect is minimal so as not to be unattractive.  The paper is 30 g.s.m. making it pretty opaque.  Lighter paper would not have been good.  With this weight of paper you don’t have much in the way of ghosting (seeing the text on the backside of the page show through)

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 045

There are numerous decorative designs throughout.  I don’t know what your opinion is of that, but I could do without them.  The font used for the main text is 10 point in ITC Clearface Standard. (Open-type)  This makes it easy on they eyes unless you have bad eyesight.  The coloring of the page perimeters could cut down on the contrast of the text to the paper.  The paper could be a little brighter white where the text is, but then the perimeter effect would be lost.  The text is laid out in a double column, paragraph format with the cross-references on the outside of the page instead of at the bottom or in a center column.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 042

Interspersed throughout are other features.  The inside cover is made of vinyl of the same color and glued down.  They did a good job with the corners.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 017

There is one ribbon marker and it is matching in color as well.

Holman woman's hcsb study bible 051

The binding on this Bible is a South Korean, sewn binding. They have been doing a lot of Holman’s bindings and are holding up quite well. This also makes them flexible on top of being durable. Way better than a glued binding.

Even though this is a study Bible, I don’t want you to be afraid that it is a behemoth. (funny right?)  For a study Bible this thing is very manageable.  It is just the right size for ladies who don’t want to use a hand-truck to carry their study Bibles to Wednesday night Bible Study.  I think it is a very good investment if you are looking for a women’s study Bible that has good content instead of the motivational junk you get pushed on you nowadays.

ISBN: 9781586400941

You can purchase this Bible on Amazon  or on Christianbook

Bible Reviews

Review of the Trinitarian Bible Societies (TBS) Royal Ruby Text Bible with Zipper, Thumb Index, and Metrical Psalms in Black Calfskin Leather.

tbs and nkjv study bible 007

I was looking for a nice compact Bible to carry with me at work.  Most of the Bibles I found were not of good enough quality.  They would not withstand daily use and carry.  I wanted one that had a smyth-sewn binding and was covered in genuine leather.  While scouring the usual online retail sites I kept finding the same low priced compact Bibles.  Don’t get me wrong, for the price a person could afford to replace them when they fall apart, but there are other problems with inexpensive value Bibles.  The paper is usually not Bible paper, the font is not printed sharply and clearly, the Bible is put together in China or Korea where the workmanship isn’t as conscientious, The Bibles are stiff and by the time you brake them in they are falling apart, the bonded leather cracks and swells, the bindings come unglued and pages start falling out, and so on.  If you are like I am you’d rather spend a few extra dollars and get a Bible that will become an old friend, or something you’ll be able to hand down to loved ones when you pass.  Something that you would have used so often that it takes on your scent and the wear and tear you cause remind your loved ones of your love for God’s word.  Maybe it will inspire them to open it up and read it as well.

So with all of that in mind I did a search for, “compact smyth-sewn Bible” and found out about a Bible publisher called, “Trinitarian Bible Society.”  We’ll refer to them as, “TBS” for the rest of the review.  I tried to visit their web page, but to my surprise it was closed for business due to it being Sunday.  This was a pleasant surprise and caused me to become even more curious about them.  I did some research and found this little gem.

tbs and nkjv study bible 077

It is the TBS PS31UTZ/BK Royal Ruby Text Bible

tbs and nkjv study bible 020

in black genuine calfskin leather

tbs and nkjv study bible 018

with a zipper,

tbs and nkjv study bible 013

tbs and nkjv study bible 012

thumb indexes,

tbs and nkjv study bible 015

tbs and nkjv study bible 028

gold gild page edges,

tbs and nkjv study bible 027

tbs and nkjv study bible 029


tbs and nkjv study bible 078

and Holy Bible on the front cover,

tbs and nkjv study bible 009

metrical Psalms,

tbs and nkjv study bible 034

two ribbon markers,

tbs and nkjv study bible 014

presentation page,

tbs and nkjv study bible 019

dictionary of King James era words,

tbs and nkjv study bible 030

reading plan,

tbs and nkjv study bible 033

Bible paper, set by jongbloed and printed in Belarus,

tbs and nkjv study bible 022

and in the Authorized King James Version.

I’d like to take a bit of time here to tell you a little about TBS.  They are a ministry based in England.  They use the money they make off of the sales to provide Bibles to those who can not afford them.  They only print the Authorized King James Version, so if you want a different version you might try Cambridge.  I sent them an e-mail and asked for a review copy.  They sent one gratis with no strings attached.

I really like the size of the Bible.

tbs and nkjv study bible 026

tbs and nkjv study bible 025

tbs and nkjv study bible 078

It’s cover is a bit stiff as it is glued to card paper and then lined with vinyl.  The grain of the leather is pretty defined so that makes it easy to hold on to.

tbs and nkjv study bible 009

The zipper is sewn to the semi-yap cover.  It does a good job of protecting the pages.

tbs and nkjv study bible 016

The Bible feels like it is going to break in nicely.  It looks like it is put together well.  It fits in my hand easily and it is light weight enough to hold for long stretches of time.  The Bible having a zipper makes this Bible able to survive my B.D.U. pants pockets.  I don’t have to worry about it opening up and having the pages get wrinkled, bent, or mutilated.  The genuine calfskin is pretty tough so it is protected from getting scratched of torn.  The font is a bit on the small side at 6.5 point, but it is a compact Bible.

tbs and nkjv study bible 080

tbs and nkjv study bible 024

tbs and nkjv study bible 023

If you have descent vision it shouldn’t be a problem.  Mine is about 20/25 and I can read it fine.  I didn’t notice any production errors or defects.  The Bible came packaged in a cardboard box packed in foam packing shells.

tbs and nkjv study bible 001

tbs and nkjv study bible 002

tbs and nkjv study bible 003

The Bible itself was in a cardboard sleeve, neatly wrapped in clear plastic.

tbs and nkjv study bible 004

One might save the cardboard slip case for storage purposes.  Unlike the card paper sleeves that many value Bibles come in this case can provide a service to the owner rather than being thrown away.

I hope this review has been helpful.

ISBN 9781862283527