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Study Bible

A study Bible is an edition of the Holy Bible prepared for the use of a serious student of the Bible. Such a Bible usually contains an extensive apparatus, which may contain such features as: The creation of Bible commentaries has been going on almost as long as there have been Biblical texts. With the invention of printing, however, it became easier to combine both text and commentary in a single volume.

Perhaps the first edition of the Bible that qualified as a "study Bible" was the Geneva Bible; it contained extensive cross references, synopses, and doctrinal points. The text of the Geneva Bible was never printed without the commentary. The Church of England disputed some of the statements made in the Geneva Bible annotations; this led to the creation of the King James Bible, which was typically printed with a much less extensive apparatus, or none at all. Several commentators have supplied annotated King James Bibles containing their own points of view, but unlike the Geneva Bible, these commentaries are not as thoroughly integrated into the text.

Another historically significant study Bible was the Scofield Reference Bible, first printed by Cyrus I. Scofield in 1909. This study Bible became widely popular in the United States, where it spread the interpretation system known as dispensationalism among fundamentalist Christians.

The Jerusalem Bible is a widely respected study Bible originally made in France under the auspices of the Roman Catholic Church. The original French edition of 1961 became the basis of versions of this study Bible in several other languages, including English.

Other study Bibles worthy of note include:

Study Bible Software

With the rise of the personal computer, Study Bible software has come to existence, which can aid readers in the study of the Bible.

This software normally includes several Bible translations, commentaries, dictionaries, maps, and other content. They also include search engines to enable users to find Bible passages by keyword and by theme.

Some of the best freeware / open source ones include: