Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Bible Review: NIV Worship Together Bible

The “NIV Worship Together Bible” is a Bible that helps people understand the Biblical inspiration behind popular worship songs. Some of the worship songs sandwiched throughout its pages are “How Great Thou Art”, “Blessed Be Your Name”, “Indescribable”, “Mighty to Save”, “Open the Eyes of My Heart”, “Better is One Day”, etc. (to name a few). Included in this Bible are the words to the worship songs, Scripture references which inspired the songs, and the stories behind the songs. There is also a Selah message on the page where the “behind the song” story is located so that Bible readers can pause and reflect on a thought related to the song. A “Song as Worship” section describing why singing is worship, a “Song Index” listing the songs with the inspirational Scripture reference and page numbers, and Chord charts are also listed in the back of the Bible for a little under half of the songs included.

I was happy to find the "Table of Contents" at the beginning of this Bible, right after the title page. I studied the book of Romans, Ephesians, and Philemon while reading and reviewing this Bible. I studied those Biblical books because they were on my schedule to study them through a Biblical school I study through. Not one of those chapters had a worship song / description behind the song listed so I wasn’t able to learn if I would be distracted while reading those Biblical books. I did go back and read the lyrics to each worship song though, the Scripture that inspired the worship songs, and the story behind each worship song when I had finished those Biblical chapters.

As I was reading the songs in this Bible, I noticed a lot of worship songs I have heard before that I didn’t know the story behind. The worship songs were pretty much not located anywhere near the Scripture verses that inspired them but I did notice that some of the songs were inspired by the same verses so that might be one reason why they weren’t listed like that. I also learned that songwriters have an important job because people often remember what they hear/learn in songs. I was also not disappointed that this was a hardback version of this Bible, which I liked because a hardback Bible is usually easier to lay flat.

There was a new song included about every 25th page which probably wouldn’t make it excessive enough for me to be distracted if I was reading straight through the Bible. In fact, I think it might be good for some readers to be able to pause while they are reading the Bible at times and read the lyrics to a worship song they know well and see how the verses that inspired them were woven into the song. And as suggested in the “How to Use This Bible” section, readers might want to integrate worship songs into their Bible reading time.

My rating = 5 out of 5 stars

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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