Sometimes we all need a little help, and seek it. People get advice on how to start a business, take the SAT, or fix a car. For this help, they may talk to someone who knows a lot about it or buy a book. PlainFaith.com is one aid you can use in your study of the Bible, but there are many other resources available to you.
One of the best things you can do in studying the Bible is to obtain a variety of translations. When you have a variety of translations, you can read a book, chapter, or verse in each translation to get a better understanding. You will want to investigate whether or not the translation is “word-for-word” or what is known as “thought” or a “transliteration.” The “word-for-word” translations seek to take the Bible from the original languages and translate every word into our language. The “thought” or “transliteration” versions simply try to covey the meaning of the passage. Some may think the latter is a great idea, but beware—these types of translations are often tainted with the prejudices of the translators. With a “word-for-word” translation, you are the one who assigns meaning to a passage. Some good “word-for-word” translations are the New King James Version (NKJV), New American Standard Bible (NASB), King James Version (KJV), and American Standard Version (ASV).
Listed below are some suggested Bible study aids. You are CAUTIONED to use them with care because they are the products of men, not God.
Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words by W.E. Vine
Defines original meaning of words.
Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of The Bible
Gives an A to Z list of Bible words and the passages where there are found.
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (4 volumes)
Articles on Bible topics from A to Z.
Word Pictures In The New Testament by Robertson (6 volumes)
Gives the meaning of words.
Unger’s Bible Dictionary
A Bible Atlas
Helps geographically orient Bible events.
The Fourfold Gospel by J.W. McGarvey
Blends Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John and gives a commentary on the events of Jesus’ life.
Original Commentary on Acts by J.W. McGarvey
Good commentary on Acts. An easy read.
Truth Commentaries (Various authors)
Variety of books, mostly New Testament. Packed with information and explanation. Some of the best out there.
Commentary on Romans by R.L. Whiteside
Good short commentary. Explains difficult passages well.
Revelation: An Introduction and Commentary by Homer Hailey
Good commentary on a fascinating book. Sensible explanations of the various visions.
A Commentary on the Minor Prophets by Homer Hailey
Good material. Easy to read.
The Pulpit Commentary (23 Volumes on the whole Bible)
Originally published in the 1800s. Fairly good material by various men.
Old Testament History by Alfred Edersheim
Excellent resource and easy to read.
The Life and Times of the Messiah by Alfred Edersheim
Information packed about first century life.
The Heart of Hebrew History by H.I. Hester
Great work to aid understanding of ancient Israel.
*Most all the books above can be purchased at Truth Bookstore (800-428-0121); some specialty books, like the Truth Commentaries, cannot be purchased at local book stores or discount retailers like christianbook.com.
Web Sites & Software
There are many Web sites that promote religious issues. Some are good, many are terrible, and a few are excellent. Be careful on what you read, examine it in light of the Bible.
Free Bible study software with lots of add-ons.
Useful tools and translations.
DTS Turpin Library Rare books
Electronically accessible rare books. Pretty neat.
Simple but powerful Bible study software that is inexpensive. Search for “power Bible.”