The Illustrated Study Bible (NLT): A Unique Visual Study Experience Like No Other

I own several different Bibles, each one is unique in it's own way and has a little extra something that adds to the whole reading experience. When I first received the Illustrated Study Bible, I was excited to see what it had to offer, and how it would would differ from the others that I've owned.

The Illustrated Study Bible brings Scripture's message to life by giving you an entirely new visual study experience. Seamlessly integrated with background material, study notes and theme articles, The Illustrated Study Bible empowers you to draw closer to God by opening your eyes to Scripture's living, powerful message.

The Bible is fairly large and heavy, not the heaviest I've seen, but not the type of Bible that I'd typically take along with me to church. It is a wonderful study Bible, nonetheless, perfect for home studies. It includes so many neat extras that really make it stand out among the rest. These additional features really help aid in learning and studying the Bible in more depth, which is not only great for new Bible readers, but seasoned ones, as well.

For some reason I did expect to see more illustrations in this Bible – not that this is a deal breaker for me, especially since it's the text that truly matters. I guess given the title, I just thought there would be more. The plus about this is that more illustrations would make this Bible huge. Since it's already quite large, I think it's perfect the way it is, and there are enough illustrations to still make a great impact.

Some of my favorite aspects of the Illustrated Study Bible include:

A Timeline of Biblical History: Not only displays historical biblical events such as births, deaths, battles, rulings, etc., but also puts them side by side with other non-biblical events that occurred during each period in time. 

Israel's festivals: A section that displays all of Israel's celebrations and holidays with detailed information about each one. 

Introductions: Not only will you find an introduction right before both the Old and New Testaments, but each book of the Bible also includes an introduction that offers a summary, meaning/message, etc.

The Maps: Throughout this Bible, you'll find actual maps, topography, and other geographical information as you read certain passages of the Bible. There is even a section in the back of the book that lists all of the maps and on what page you'll find them.

Themes in Proverbs: A diagram showing the proverbs and where you can read about them throughout the Bible.

In the back you'll also find a section entitled "Reference Materials," which includes:
  • Table of Ancient Weight, Measures, and Coins
  • Hebrew and Greek Word Studies
  • Features Index (highlighting different topics, people, places and what passages you can find them in)
  • Notes Index (An additional more in depth area that highlights different topics, people, places and what passages you can find them in)
  • Dictionary/Concordance
All in all this a truly amazing Bible to have, especially for my studies. The New Living Translation (NLT), a favorite of mine, is easy to read and understand. I also really like the detailed footnotes on the bottom of each page. An asterisk is shown in the pertaining passage when there is more to read, below. This is another important feature that any study Bible should always have. Of course, you also have all of the beautiful illustrations, as well as the many guides, maps, and additional features throughout – making the Illustrated Study Bible the ultimate study Bible to own.