Book Review by Gary Amirault
Zondervan Handbook to the Bible
Published By Zondervan Publishing
5249 Corporate Grove S.E.
Grand Rapids, MI. 49512
The "Zondervan Handbook to the Bible" published by Zondervan. This is a beautifully illustrated 817 page Dictionary to the Bible. The first part of this excellent dictionary explains how the printed Bible came into being with tips on how to read it. Then this fine work goes through the Bible from Genesis to Revelation making clear hundreds of passages using photographs, illustrations, maps, etc detailing the manners and customs of the peoples of the Biblical period. I am convinced that without immersing oneself into the very culture in which the Bible was written, it is impossible to fully understand the meaning of many texts. This dictionary goes a LONG way in clearly up many obscure passages of the Bible.
Zondervan Publishing describes the purpose for this book as: This Handbook is designed for use with the Bible; to stand alongside it. It is not jut for reference, telling the reader about the Bible. The intention is to bring together on page, where it happens, information that would otherwise have to be gathered from a number of different reference books. This is provided visually as well as through the written word. The pictures, maps and graphics are there, not to decorate the text but to illuminate its meaning. The Handbook can be used with any version of the Bible.
It's a beautiful book to put on the coffee table. It is a book well worth reading from cover to cover, but it is primarily a reference work. It retails for $39.99 and in my opinion is worth every cent.
Many of the latest Biblical archaeological finds are included in this fine work. Nearly every page contains beautiful photograph or an illustration to awaken much of the imagery which is needed to fully appreciate many passages in the Bible. The last thirty pages of this work are devoted to a rapid factfinder, an index to locate the pages containing the major names, places and events in the Bible. A book like this would surely be treasured by a new believerdefinitely a great gift idea.
It may be ordered from any Christian bookstore or from distributors and discounters like Christian Book Distributors.