Monday, October 20, 2014

Book review: Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary: New and Enhanced Edition
General Editor: Ronald F. Youngblood
Thomas Nelson, 2014
English, 1280 pgs

Nelson's Illustrated Bible Dictionary is the most comprehensive and up-to-date Bible dictionary available. With a fresh new look and updated photographs, this new and enhanced edition is a wealth of basic study information with more than 7,000 entries plus more than 500 full-color photographs, maps, and pronunciation guides.
Features include:
  • Cross-references to major translations
  • More than 7,000 up-to-date entries
  • More than 500 full-color photographs and maps
  • Enlarged type size for easier reading
  • Visual Survey of the Bible from The Open Bible
About the Editor and Contributors
Ronald F. Youngblood is Professor of Old Testament and Hebrew Emeritus, Bethel Seminary San Diego.
F.F. Bruce (1910-1990) was Rylands Professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis, University of Manchester in England.
R.K. Harrison (1920-1993) was Professor of Old Testament at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto.

This is a well done new edition of the Bible Dictionary. It has been revised using the most current and up to date findings in the field of Biblical research, archaeology and language study. The photos are larger and more abundant than in the previous edition (which I borrowed from the church library for comparison). The type is a little larger and easier to read. But what I like the best from this new edition is the outline and study guides for the books of the Bible. There are charts and diagrams and maps to help in understanding. There is Bible referencing within the articles for those who wish to study a subject further (or like me, get on a tangent...). For instance, in the article on Jesus, there are scriptures noted through it to guide you back to the Bible for the prophesies and life stories which are mentioned in the article.

The writing is clear and understandable, yet at the same time informative and authoritative. It is obvious much care has gone into the updating of the information by the team of editors. It tells you in the introduction that there are cross-references within the articles to point you to another article that will help in the understanding. I've been searching for examples and haven't found as many as I thought there would be. However, you can find articles on virtually every name, place, tribe and doctrine so if you see something as you're reading that you would like more information on, it is probably in there.

I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for a review on this blog and a commercial book-selling site. No additional compensation has been received and I was not required to write a positive review.

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