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Review: The Dort Study Bible

Here’s a treasure from the past that promises to be a great blessing to Reformed households of our time: the Dort Study Bible.

The Dort Study Bible is a translation of the Annotations to the Dutch Staten Bijbel of 1637. These annotations, commissioned by the great international Synod of Dort, were used through out the Dutch-speaking world for many years. At the general desire in both Kingdomes (England and Scotland) to have the Belgick or Dutch Annotations upon the Bible (come forth first Anno Domini 1637) translated into English, they were indeed translated. This work was completed in 1657, and, in fact, Charles Spurgeon had a copy of it in his library.

Now retranslated and edited, the Dort Study Bible is once again being made available to the English-speaking world. Currently the first five volumes have been published, covering the Old Testament from Genesis to Job.

Each Bible book is introduced in a short essay entitled “The Content of This Book.” Each Bible chapter is summarized briefly and then the entire chapter is printed in bold type, with numbered annotations printed in ordinary type interspersed among the verses. Both the font and layout are clear and appealing, making this much more than an ordinary study Bible and almost like a commentary.

When I used the Dort Study Bible to read Esther, I learned a lot. However, when I used it to study Job, it was as though I finally understood that book. The Study Bible was full of insights that I had not grasped before. The annotations are not theological and scholarly in the modern sense; instead they seem to have an almost pastoral flavor, as if a dear godly guide is pointing out all the Biblical treasures that we would miss on our own.

The multivolume Dort Study Bible is beautifully bound with burgundy and gold covers, including a stamped replica of the coin minted to commemorate the Synod of Dort. Each volume costs just over $20 US and is available from Inheritance Publications.

If you own the Inheritance Publications catalogue, you can find a detailed description, with sample pages, on pages 126 to 131. Note that the catalogue, which contains the best-selling adventure Scout: Secret of the Swamp, is available free with any purchase from Inheritance Publications.

Disclosure: I received Volume 1 (Genesis to Exodus) and Volume 5 (2 Chronicles to Job) of the Dort Study Bible from Inheritance Publications in order to review the series. I receive no compensation for this review and my opinions are my own.

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7 Comments

  1. David Merkel says:

    So what language is this in, Dutch, or an English translation of the Dutch?

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Hi David,

      This is an English translation of the Dutch. I’m sorry that the photos above are not very clear; it’s the best my camera could do.

      Annie Kate

  2. Frederic N. André says:

    INQUIRIES:

    1. If I send you a $20 check on a USA bank, will you send me Volume 1 of the Dort Study Bible?

    2. What is your mailing address?

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Hi Frederic

      You’ll have to contact Inheritance Publications directly by clicking on the link in the review above. I do not sell books; I only review them.

      I’m sure you’ll be very happy with it once you get it.

      Blessings,

      Annie Kate

  3. Wendy MacDonald says:

    Hi. Thank you for the review! Is this Bible part of this translation from the Geneva Bible, or KJV, or a Dutch version from that time that was never in English until now?
    Thank you–
    Wendy

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Hi Wendy,

      That is an excellent question.

      My understanding is that the Bible part is a translation of a Dutch version that has been edited for this version. It was translated into English by 1657. I will verify this with Inheritance Publications.

      Blessings,

      Annie Kate

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