Orthodox Study Bible

Can anyone give me some good insight on the Orthodox Study Bible?

There are mixed reviews on it from what I can tell and I have even found some very strongly negative reviews from an Orthodox Priest which cause me to question both the translation as well as the study notes. Most of the reviews on Amazon are positive but many of them are from admitted non-Orthodox or non-Eastern Catholics so that causes me to have a bit of suspicion regarding the utility of the reviews.

I would like pick up a study bible from the Eastern perspective as I enjoy learning about the entire tradition regarding sacred scripture but I don’t want to get something that is non-Orthodox in its teaching.


Thanks in advance and God Bless!

Hello jwinch,

I own an Orthodox Study Bible, and I happen to like it. Coming from a Protestant background, it definitley gives me a new way of looking at passages with the extra commentary. I hope you know that the commentary is also coming from an Eastern Orthodox perspective, so don’t expect it to always be supportive of some aspects of the Catholic faith.

Thanks. I am expecting that and don’t have a problem with it.

I have the Ignatius NT Catholic Study Bible now and am getting ready to purchase the Navarre Hardback Set and will also get the Ignatius Old Testament when it comes out, hopefully soon.

Between the Ignatius and the Navarre volumes I will have two good, solidly Catholic, approaches to Sacred Scripture from the Western perspective but I also think there would be much I could learn from the Eastern approach. Particularly the writings of some the Eastern Church Fathers that don’t get cited as much in the Latin Church. Unless there is an Eastern Catholic Study Bible that I am unaware of, I thought that this might be a good place to go, but after reading the reviews I am second guessing my thoughts.

Oh, and congrats on your Chrismation! I was just Confirmed Catholic this Eater Vigil as well. God Love you!

I have one a OSB I’m currently reading the book of the Ephesians

I have the Orthodox Study Bible. Overall, I find that it is a very good scriptural commentary. There’s a good bit at the beginning on Church history, although I do think it’s somewhat flawed in how it depicts the Catholic Church. The notes themselves provide lots of good information. Occasionally you get a full page on some topic, such as original sin, the clergy, the role of works in salvation, etc. They’re excellent sources of information. Finally, at the end you have some good stuff that talks about scripture, and there’s even some nice prayers. Scattered throughout this bible are pictures of icons that are absolutely beautiful. Besides how it describes the Catholic Church, I would say that this is an excellent study bible. If you choose to buy it, I’d recommend buying it through the Eparchy of Newton. That way, part of the money goes to supporting the Melkite Church, which is indeed a worthy cause. Also, I would add that it is a good complement to the Ignatius NT Commentary. I own both, and they work together quite nicely.

Thank you for your response. I appreciate you taking the time and your thoughts. If I end up getting the OSB, I will purchase it through the link you provided.


Thanks jwinch2. :slight_smile:

May the Lord have mercy on all of us for being so divided!! I hope we can all follow our catholic faith as much as possible, to feel the presence of Christ in our lives through the fasting and the sacraments.

Also if you google a little on Eastern theology, in regards to ancestral sin, theosis, the atonement… you can find a wealth of information. I’ve found it useful to divide Roman and Eastern Christianity between Aristotle and Plato, if you’re familiar with them. Rome tends to see things more through the eyes of Aristotle, while the East… takes more of a neoplatonic approach on so many subjects.

First of all, let me say that I pray for a reunion between Catholic and Orthodox as well as Catholic and Anglican often.

I was not aware of the philosophical differences between Eastern theology and Western either. But that is not surprising as I know nothing of philosophy anyway! LOL

I am a very recent convert, not only to the Church but also to Christianity in general and am just now really learning the Faith. I have read the US Catechism for Adults but am just now going through the Bible for the first time, but I am itching to learn more.

Thanks for the insight.


The Orthodox Study Bible is a product of a group of Protestants who developed into the “Evangelical Orthodox Church” and then joined the canonical Antiochian Orthodox Church as individuals and entire groups/parishes. They even negotiated a kind of “Evangelical Rite” which is simply an adaptation of certain of their Evangelical sermonizing and hymn-singing to the Byzantine liturgical tradition.

The Antiochian Orthodox Church also has two Western Rites, that of St Gregory and that of St Tikhon (for former Anglicans).

So this Bible is intended for a largely Western and Protestant North American audience and is adapted to that audience.

There is nothing wrong with that and the critique by the Orthodox priest above is a critique largely of style where style is mistaken for faith content.

There’s nothing like converts from a Protestant, Evangelical background to really liven things up for everyone, eh? :wink:


Interesting comments, I appreciate you taking the time. Do you have any information on the depth and accuracy of the study notes and commentary?

Your comment about converts is funny also!



I have tons of comments about converts - my favourite topic! :smiley:

How does a convert wear a prayer rope? Dunno, it’s never only one . . .

How do converts see icons? One can;'t be sure since they rarely actually get up off the floor to get a good look at them . . .

How many times do converts make the Sign of the Cross? You mean just over themselves?

Anyway, the commentary of the Orthodox Study Bible is very “catholic” save for the “Orthodox interjections” :wink: .

I’ve known Protestants who began reading it who have undergone a “road to Damascus” experience, so, on the strength of that alone, I’d say it packs a punch.

Also, since these are “Evangelical Orthodox” scholars, they evince a sensitivity to Evangelical Christians that is remarkable (and certainly outside my own experience as theirs are questions they would raise that would never occur to me).

I’ve had occasion to speak to some of the editors, and it seems to me that they are the genuine article and it shows in their work.


My parish has quite a few Protestant converts (myself included!) and our priest has to gently remind us that we don’t need to try to outdue monks, we’re ordinary laymen! He’s taken to blanching at the site of a prayer rope on us :smiley:

I have an Orthodox Study Bible having been interested in Orthodooxy before I had doubts on their (lack of) the Papacy. They use the NKJV for the New Testament which is a Protestant translation but the study articles are really illuminating. It’s a lot like a Protestant Study Bible except they include the disputed books(plus 3rd Maccabbees) and the thoughts of the Church Fathers throughout. I guess it’s a good Bible if you want to learn. Skip the introductory part introducing the Orthodox Church though. They’re rather biased and unkind towards the Western Church and the Pope:(

Thanks again!

Yes, but they do say it’s an Orthodox Bible! :wink:

If they were kind to the Papacy, they would be Catholics!


You know I’m only jesting - my Protestant friends who have become Orthodox/Eastern Catholics are the very best of Christians that I know.

They’re not afraid to read the Bible, for one thing! :smiley:

There really is nothing wrong with zeal . . . the jokes are just because we cradles feel outclassed by those of you who take your commitment to Christ so seriously.

As you should . . .:thumbsup:


Thanks. As I stated above, I fully expect the Bible to go against RC teachings on some issues. I can gloss over that stuff no problem. What I am looking for, is an in-depth spiritual study of scripture from the Eastern perspective. I have read a very small amount of some of the Eastern church fathers and their approach to scripture and I really enjoyed it. As I already have some study bibles from the Western perspective and have more on the way, I thought that the OSB might help to round out my scripture study from the perspective of the universal catholic church.

Some of the criticisms I have read of the OSB include that the study notes are not always orthodox in teaching and that they are not very in-depth in many places.

Peace and thanks again,

I have an OSB and I like it very much.
If you want a look at it before buying, I got mine at Barnes & Noble. (JUst walked in looking for something completely different, & they had one copy, which I promptly bought).

Fair enough.:o

You are a good man, sir!

It’s not the best Bible for a Western Catholic or a catechumen. But it’s true value lies in how they think about Apostolic Christianity from an Evangelical perspective.



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