Review: NIV Faith & Work Bible

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NIV Faith & Work Bible

Edited by David Kim (Zondervan)

Faith and Work Bible 200We spend much of our lives at work, whether at paid employment, volunteer service or as a caregiver in a family setting. Even so, many Christians have difficulty understanding how their faith relates to their work. This study Bible helps readers make those connections.

Editor David Kim, executive director of the Center for Faith and Work, provides a useful introductory essay. While he does not minimize the importance of Christians practicing personal evangelism and serving as a good moral example in the workplace, he challenges readers to think beyond to other ways they can be transformative influences where they work. He particularly focuses on motivations for work, relationships at work and how our work makes an impact on the world—key themes fleshed out in notes through the Scriptures.

Scattered throughout the Bible are 75 personal “Deeper at Work” stories of Christians living our their faith in their places of work—from a cabinetmaker, to a pediatric occupational therapist, to an administrative assistant, to a bookseller, to a photographer, to a window cleaner, to a singer-songwriter, to a stand-up comedian, to a house parent at a children’s home.

“Storyline” notes help provide a big-picture look at the sweeping biblical story of redemption. They are broken down into 31 themes—from “Introduction of the Sovereign King” in Genesis 1 to “Return of the King” in Revelation 21—that could be read as devotional guides for one month.

Notes on doctrine have a decidedly Reformed bent to them. So, expect a heavy dose of God’s sovereignty, along with footnotes citing Calvin and Kuyper. But if there’s any mention of limited atonement or irresistible grace here, it’s hard to find.

The study Bible closes with essays by Jon Tyson, Richard Mouw and Nancy Ortberg. In particular, Ortberg’s essay on “Finding Our Story in God’s Story” helps frame the biblical narrative, not just in terms of doctrinal propositions but rather a grand narrative God invites us to join. She writes of God: “He sent his Son to be with us and die for us because he knows us and wants us to know him. This truth helps us not only understand God’s Word, but also who we are and how our work fits into his grand story.”

Ken Camp, managing editor

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