The Word Study Bible helps the reader better understand the deeper meaning of important words of the biblical text. It promotes itself as possessing "1,700 easy-to-understand Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek word studies, plus thousands of cross references to word studies." Being that this is the primary feature that sells that Bible, perhaps a few examples be helpful.
In Genesis 1:1, the Word Study Bible highlights "create" which the note tells us:
(Heb. bara) (Gen. 1:27; 6:7; Is. 45:18; 65:17) 1254: God alone has the power to create everything out of nothing, whether it's 'the heavens and the earth' (Gen. 1:1), people (Gen. 1:27), or everything in between. Of course, God also has the power to destroy, as happens during the Flood (Gen. 6:7). The book of Isaiah is filled with references to the creative power of God (Gen. 40:26; 41:20; 42:5; 43:1, 7; 45:8, 12), emphasizing His uniqueness and superiority over all earthly gods. God promises that he will create a 'new heavens and a new earth' for us to dwell in, a promise that is initiated with the birth of Jesus and finds its fulfillment in the prophecy in Revelation. (1)On "Eden" in Genesis 2:15:
(Heb eden) (Gen. 2:8; Ezek. 36:35; Joel 2:3) H5731: This word is a proper noun designating the place where God planted a garden for Adam and Even (Gen. 2:8). It is probably based on a word indicating luxury, delight, pleasure, and bliss. This base word expresses the feelings of Sarah at the prospect of finally bearing a child (Gen. 18;12), as well other pleasures that come from God (Ps. 36:8). Economically, it denotes luxurious clothing and other delicacies (2 Sam. 1:24). While the expression Garden of Eden is prevalent, Ezekiel speaks of the "trees of Eden" four times (Ezek. 31:9-18). It truly was a "Garden of Bliss." (3-4)Finally, on "propitiation" in Romans 3:25:
(Gr. hilasterion) (Heb. 9:5) G2435: Used twice in the New Testament, this term is derived from the Greek verb hilaskomai, a word that has three meanings: (1) "to placate" or "to appease"; (2) to be propitious and merciful"; or (3) "to make propitiation for someone." The New Testament never describes people appeasing God. Instead as Luke 18;13 and 1 John 2:2 make clear, the New Testament describes God as being merciful to, or making propitiation, for us. God provides a merciful expiation, or atonement, of the sins of believers through the death of Christ. But since Paul also speaks of God's wrath, it must also speak of the conciliation of God's anger by means of a sacrifice - namely, the sacrifice of His Son. John states that God demonstrated His love to us by sending His son to become "the propitiation for our sins" (1 John 4:10). Just as the blood of the sin offering was sprinkled on the altar, so Christ's death brings us into fellowship with God. (1296)This entry is important because of the theological implications. I believe the editors got this one right.
Overall, this is a helpful resource to have on your shelf especially if you are interesting in a deeper study of God's Word. Though word studies can be abused, they are crucial to "rightly dividing the" Word of God. Resources like this go a long way to help us do just that.
I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”