ESV Study Bible Update and Giveaway

esvsb-featureA while back I posted on why I like the ESV Study Bible and my plan to read through it by the end of 2009. Here’s my first update on how it’s going.

I just started 1 Samuel. If I continue at my current pace, I should be done before the end of 2009. I’ve only grown in my appreciation for the precise scholarship, helpful layout, and pastoral thought that went into producing this study Bible. The maps are abundant, easy to use, informative, and relevant, as are the various charts. The introductions to each book have helped me grasp the overall flow of the book as well as how the book fits into salvation history.

I haven’t spent much time using the online version, but it contains everything in the printed version, only it’s also searchable and you can attach your own notes. My good friend Tony Reinke says it’s outstanding.

Using the ESV Study Bible is like having a Bible pastor/scholar with me each morning as I read. But rather than becoming dependent on the notes themselves, they build my faith for hearing God speak to me directly through his Word.

I’d like more people, especially corporate worship leaders, to benefit from the resources of the ESV Study Bible by reading through it. And what better time to start than the beginning of a new year! (West Breedlove mentions in the comments that Crossway has a great list of Bible reading plans at their site.)

So I’ll be giving away ten of them – free – to people who didn’t get one for Christmas and want to join me in reading through it. Here are the details:

1. Send me an email to me by 11:59 PM EST, Saturday, January 3, using the Contact Me tab above.
2. In your email, use no more than 50 words to tell me why you’d like to receive the ESV Study Bible and read through it.
3. Include your full name, address, and email address in your email. I won’t count those words as part of your word total.
4. If you’re not already signed up to receive Worship Matters by email or through an RSS reader, do me a favor and do one or the other.
5. I’ll pick 5 “best entry” winners, and 5 “out of the hat” winners.
6. I’ll announce the winners on Monday, January 5. You should receive your Bible shortly after that.

Whether or not you participate in the giveaway, I pray you become more devoted to mining the riches of God’s Word in 2009.

Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Prov. 30:5
I will delight in your statutes; I will not forget your word. Ps. 119:16

UPDATE: Apparently the “contact me” form was not working all day Monday and most of Tuesday morning. It’s working now. If you sent an email to me during that time, feel free to send me another one. Sorry about the inconvenience. We’re working on recovering the lost emails.

UPDATE #2: I’m happy to report that we found the emails that were sent Sunday night through Tuesday morning. They were in the SPAM folder of our off-site server. Ah, the joys of technology.

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16 Responses to ESV Study Bible Update and Giveaway

  1. Randy December 29, 2008 at 6:00 PM #

    I love the ESVSB! I already have mine but I will be passing on your invitation to my friends.

    Thank you for doing this very generous thing.

  2. Solomon Lee December 29, 2008 at 6:06 PM #

    I am involved in Taekwondo mission team. We have a several new believers in our demonstration team. I understand that this is easy to read and understand. And it will be good for the new believers. I would like to share with them. Thanks for doing this.

  3. mike quinlisk December 29, 2008 at 6:11 PM #

    your blog is so savvy that it has a mobile version! Sadly, there is no contact me link that I can see on it :-)

  4. Natsai Maveneka December 30, 2008 at 5:55 AM #

    Hi :)
    love the site as always, I am excited that you are getting into God’s word. It is AMAZING!!! Food for the spirit and downright common sense in a world that sometimes makes no sense.

    The word is a sword a weapon that helps us to be more than overcomers. I pray that everyperson who gets the bibles you are distributing will grow to love the word more!!

  5. Matthew Westerholm December 30, 2008 at 9:07 AM #


    Why have you started in 1 Samuel? Is there a plan that you’re going through?

    • Bob Kauflin December 30, 2008 at 9:44 AM #


      I started in Genesis in mid-October. I wrote about it in this post. My plan is the “read straight through, including the notes” plan. I read a chapter, then the notes. I appreciate that the notes include both comments on individual verses as well as sections, and that all words quoted from Scripture are bolded.

  6. west breedlove December 30, 2008 at 11:34 AM #

    Hey Bob, one thing the online version doesn’t have is the reading plan found in the back of the bound version. But Crossway does have a lot of reading plans already online at; they’re just not included in your personal ESV online study bible.

  7. John December 30, 2008 at 1:25 PM #

    Yes, thank you for your generosity.

    My wife is using the reading plan mentioned by west and loves it.

  8. Amy Bell December 30, 2008 at 3:19 PM #

    I was drawn to this sight after recently watching a conference of yours with our worship team. We ordered your book worship matters, and I have to say I have been inspired beyond words. I pray that God will do wonderous things having learned more about how to worship Him.

  9. Bob Kauflin December 30, 2008 at 10:02 PM #


    Thanks for the encouraging words.

  10. Chris Ko December 31, 2008 at 2:55 AM #

    Hi Bob,

    I just listened to your talk on “Heart Attitudes for the Worship Team,” and I melted.

    It’s been so long since I’ve felt such a wonderful balance in God’s spirit reflected with His truth. Your sense of humor, honesty, and courage in what you shared just healed something deep in me. I am happy to find someone who values the beautiful theology of God and is still in child-like awe of it.

    It gives me hope to do the same.


  11. AndyC December 31, 2008 at 9:48 AM #

    Great idea! I have an ESV Study Bible was planning to start using it tomorrow to read through it in 2009 in conjunction with the Daily Walk program.

    I’m pulling for Peter P at Rediscovering the Church in your contest. Or at least a mercy pull on the back 5.

  12. Fred F. McKinnon December 31, 2008 at 10:19 AM #

    Funny you should post this … I told my wife this AM that I wanted some time today to drive over to the mainland (Brunswick, GA) to see if Books-A-Million had this in stock – I want to start my 2009 out with ESV … I’ve tried to read the Bible in a year each year for … well, quite some time … I would guess I’ve read the NIV through a couple of times, and the NKJV 2-3 times … so, I’m eager to get into the ESV.

    God bless, and Happy New Year
    From St. Simons Island, GA


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