In Depth Review of the NIV Life Application Study Bible Third Edition

Life Application Study Bible review

Please note I was gifted this Bible through the Bible Gateway Blogger’s Grid in exchange for a review. The NIV Life Application Study Bible Third Edition was released on 1 October 2019 by Zondervan,

Reading the Bible can be overwhelming; sometimes it’s difficult to know where to begin. Picking it up and just randomly opening it for a read can leave you mystified and wondering how it is relevant or applies to your own life.

Holding the Bible

On the other hand, you may be familiar with the Bible and have been reading it for years, you may like to teach others and need help in doing this.

The Life Application Study Bible Third Edition is filled with very helpful resources to guide you through your reading and understanding of God’s word. It contains a multitude of tools to enable you to find your way around the Bible, to put it in context in history and to make it relevant for your life today.

The various notes, charts and tables in this Bible are useful for someone who is new to the Bible and is trying to figure out how everything fits together. However, for a seasoned reader and mature believer the Life Application Study Bible Third Edition is invaluable as it compares and contrasts major themes, personalities and events throughout God’s word.

Bible inside the box
Bible inside its protective cover box

First Impressions of the Life Application Study Bible Third Edition

This Bible comes in a sturdy hinged box which helps protect it if you have ordered it by mail delivery. There is a sample of the actual text size in the back so that you can see how easy or difficult if would be to read.

My first impression is that the Bible looks beautiful; it is bound in a soft two toned brown leather-like cover with white decorative stitching. The page edges have been foiled in gold and there are two ribbon place markers in two different shades. The cover is flexible and the Bible can open flat on the table.

The pages are thin because, apart from the two Testaments, a lot of additional content has been crammed between the covers. This is not a light weight book!

Bible on the desk with gold edging

Features of the Life Application Study Bible Third Edition

Application is deeply personal – unique for each individual. It is making a relevant truth a personal truth, and it involves developing a strategy and action plan to live your life in harmony with the Bible.

Life Application Study Bible

The extensive features of this Bible include the following:

  • More than 10,000 Life Application notes and features
  • Introductions and overviews for each book of the Bible
  • More than 500 maps & charts placed in context for quick reference
  • Vital statistics to start each book with quick facts
  • A comprehensive life Application index
  • A dictionary/concordance
  • Extensive side-column cross-reference system to facilitate deeper study
  • Life Application index to notes, charts, maps, and profiles
  • Refreshed design with a second color for visual clarity
  • Quality Smyth-sewn binding–durable, made for frequent use
  • Lays flat when open
  • Presentation page for personalisation or gifting
  • Single-column text format
  • Jesus’ words in red
  • Full text of the accurate, readable, and clear New International Version (NIV)
  • A table of weights and measures
  • A read through the Bible in 365 days chart
  • 16 pages of full-color maps
illustrated maps in the back of the Life Application Bible

Apart from these a couple of other features that I particularly like are: the Chronology of Bible Events and World Events which help put everything that happens through out the Bible into context with one another and with what was happening in the world at the time.

And I also like the explanation of what application is and why it’s important for us. This section lists what to look for when choosing a Bible and how applying God’s Word to our lives helps us grow in faith and understanding of God’s character and how the most important aspect is that we are changed ourselves through the reading of it.

page open on feature summary

My favourite additional Features of the Life Application Study Bible Third Edition

On top of all of the features I have mentioned above, this Bible contains a few very interesting and informative sections which I feel set it apart from any other Bible I have owned. These sections would be extremely helpful if you need to prepare a Bible study or teaching session. These include:

A Harmony of the Books of Kings & Chronicles

Because these books are similar in many ways, they can become a bit of a blur when you read them. This handy section explains how Kings relates to Chronicles, who all the kings were, where they ruled and who the prophets were during each reign.

The Time between the Old & New Testament

This is a helpful section of historical and theological information to bridge the gap in time between the two Testaments.

250 Events in the Life of Christ: A Harmony of the Gospels

This list contains 250 key moments in Jesus’ life and where these events are recorded in the Gospels. The list records whether those events occur in more than one Gospel and gives you the passage reference for each event.

Over 100 Life Application profiles of key Bible people

These are dotted throughout the book and highlight details about the life of the personality that is currently being featured in a particular chapter. Details include accomplishments and mistakes, lessons from their life, vital stats and key verses.

a peek inside the Bible

Comparison of the Four Gospels

This brief table helps us to understand how the Gospels are different to one another and what the main theme is of each.

Messianic Prophesies and Fulfillments

I love how all the prophesies about Jesus in the Old Testament are recorded here with their corresponding New Testament passages.

Christian Worker’s Resource

This is an extremely useful supplement designed to benefit a reader’s Christian ministry. It includes five topics which include:

  1. How to become a Christian
  2. How to Follow up with a new believer
  3. Mining the treasures of the Life Application Bible
  4. So you’ve been asked to speak…
  5. Taking the step to Application
And finally a very extensive dictionary/concordance

Buying your own copy of the NIV Life Application Study Bible Third Edition

This is the most thorough and detailed study Bible I have seen. I absolutely love how it encourages the application of the Word into our daily lives through the footnotes and other resources throughout.

I would absolutely recommend this Bible for someone who teaches Bible studies, or preaches sermons on God’s Word, as the cross referencing is easy to use and the footnotes are chock full of inspirational guidance. There are a multitude of teaching aids throughout and I can’t wait to use it for our ladies Bible study.

However, I would also equally recommend it to a non believer, a general seeker of truth or someone who is new to reading the Bible, because all the notes and diagrams help to enhance understanding of the Word of God and make it relevant to your individual context. This Bible will help you understand how everything fits together to create the bigger picture of God’s plan for our world.

All of the tools and resources in the Life Application Bible have not been assembled just so that we can accumulate knowledge, nor are they about illustrating how other people lived their lives. They are not only about showing that the passage is as relevant today as when it was written.

All these thing are important but most important of all, application is personal. It is being shown that God’s Word has the power to transform our lives, through reading, understanding and being inspired by the Holy Spirit to change appropriately, so that we are conformed to the image of Christ.

This Bible would make a very special gift too!

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At $74.99 or £66 this Bible is not cheap, however, if you consider the vast amount of additional content and useful aids that this version contains then I believe this is great value.

You can buy your own copy here. (Please note this is an affiliate link, if you make a purchase I receive a tiny commission at no extra cost to yourself).

Cover of the box
click on the image to take you through to buy your own copy

4 thoughts on “In Depth Review of the NIV Life Application Study Bible Third Edition”

  1. my NIV study Bible is 1987. What changes to the Bible text have been made?
    I’m finding it a little difficult to read now (82 years), what is the point size of this third edition text?

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