An international editorial team of Seventh-day Adventist Bible scholars began work on a new study Bible this month, the president of Adventist-owned Andrews University announced March 4. The Andrews Study Bible, to be published by the university's press, is the first such project in Adventist publishing.
"The [study Bible] will provide the tools necessary for any Bible reader -- no matter their level of theological training -- to navigate the Scripture in a meaningful way," said Niels-Erik Andreasen, university president.
| President of Adventist-owned Andrews University, Niels-Erik Andreasen, said this month that the university's press will publish a new study Bible edited by a group of Adventist theologians and scholars. [photo: courtesy Andrews University]
Based on one of the standard English translations of the Bible commonly used by conservative evangelicals, the Andrews Study Bible is slated to include study notes and reference systems, articles on theological principles and Biblical interpretation, maps, charts and indexes. Andreasen said the final result -- an academically credible, theologically sound and practically useful version of the Bible -- would be widely distributed during Adventist outreach efforts.
Andreasen said a request for startup and development costs granted by the Adventist world church's headquarters is accelerating work on the project.
"I'm very excited at the prospect of what this study Bible will do," said Mark Finley, world church vice president for evangelism. "Besides the tremendous value it will have for readers around the world in the years ahead, its production now will help scholars of the church to think as evangelists and help the church's evangelists think as scholars," said Finley, who is serving as a consultant for the project.
Also serving as project consultants are Gerry D. Karst, a world church vice president and Andrews University Board of Trustees chair, and Angel Rodriguez, director for the world church's Biblical Research Institute.
Despite the myriad study Bibles already available, Rodriguez said the Andrews Study Bible will spotlight the uniquely Adventist theology found in Scripture. "If there's one book that resonates universally within Adventism, it's the Bible, so if we can add tools to illuminate the central themes of Adventist theology, then I think we can increase the study of the Bible among our members," Rodriguez said.
In January, the Andrews Study Bible Project Committee named Jon Dybdahl, recently retired president of Adventist-owned Walla Walla University in Washington State, general editor of the project.
"I am particularly excited about the impact this project can have on the church and the world," Dybdahl said. "If it can bring church members and those who are seeking God into direct contact with the Bible in a meaningful way, the possibilities of what can happen are limitless."
The editorial team expects to release the Andrews Study Bible at the world church's business session in 2010, Rodriguez said.