Vines Expository Bible Review

Thomas Nelson’s NKJV Vines Expository Bible contains notes from Dr. Jerry Vines’ 24 years of expository sermons that he preached as the pastor of the First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, FL. Dr. Vines has adapted his expositions into the notes and outlines to create this study Bible. I’m reviewing the hardcover edition, ISBN: 9780718098513, made in China.

Thomas Nelson provided this Bible free for review. I was not required to give a positive review, only an honest one. All opinions are my own.


This book is available at (includes some affiliate links)



Church Source

Barnes & Noble

and many local Bible bookstores



This edition is a ruby red cloth over board and includes a dust-jacket. The text-block is sewn and looks to be made well. The paper feels to be around 30gsm (just a guess though). It’s decently opaque and does not have a glare under direct light. It’s white in color. It has a slightly rough texture that makes it easy to turn pages. It includes two 3/8″ ruby red ribbons that match the ruby red that’s used throughout the Bible. I love these ribbons. I’m glad they’ve started adding two thick ribbons. They’re not ultra-elegant, but they are nice. The overall size is 9.5 x 6.5 x 1.75″.


The text is presented in double-column paragraph with poetry in stanzas. Notes are placed in boxes both within the text and at the bottom of the page. The header shows the page number, book name, chapter, and verse number in the outer column. Translation footnotes are placed under the last verse on the page. Ruby red is used for section headings, titles for notes, and other highlights.

The typeface is the Comfort Print font designed by 2K/Denmark. It’s 10.5 black-letter and it’s dark and consistent throughout. It has around 48 characters per line with around 10 words per line.  Where there is Bible text on both sides of the page it seems to be line-matched. This is one of the most well-designed and readable study Bibles I’ve seen. I love the clean text and red highlights.

Book Introductions

Book introductions take about a page and a half and cover the author, date, outline, and themes of the book. It discusses what’s unique about the book, setting, purpose of writing, important events, who it was written to, the major divisions of the book, type of writing, and even some information and advice on interpreting the book. They’re well-written and even though they include theology that’s not the main focus. They don’t seem to divide between denominations, making them highly applicable to most groups.

Study Material

There are four different types of study material that was taken from Dr. Jerry Vines’ sermons. They take the same approach as the book introductions. They include some theology, but it’s mostly not divisive. The notes seem to have a devotional quality.

Presenting the Message – these are 200 detailed outlines from Jerry Vines’ sermons. These are more like articles that are divided into three or four parts, with each part covering a specific section of a chapter of a book of the Bible. Each section of the sermon deals with the point made in the outline. These are well-written. I always like seeing how other preachers develop their sermons. This is very similar to my personal method of outlining a sermon.

Living the Message – these are 100 articles with illustrations about living for God. They have the verse reference, title, and a couple of paragraphs that discuss the main point of the verse that’s drawn out by the title. The title is in ruby red.

Applying the Message – there are 200 notes that help you apply the Scriptures to your life. They provide a Scripture reference, a title, and then a couple of paragraphs about how to deal with the topic. They also include other examples from Scripture with references. These have a gray bar across the top to help them stand apart from the other notes.

Discerning the Meaning – these are 300 word studies of major key words in Scripture. It provides the verse reference the word is from, the word itself, and then a paragraph discussing the word from its original language and how it’s used throughout Scripture.

Topical Index

A 17-page topical index lists the various topics with the Scripture reference where there are notes on that topic. Topic names are printed in ruby red.


The concordance is 73 pages and presented in three columns per page. A larger concordance would have been helpful considering this isn’t a reference edition, but it is a good concordance for basic study. Here are a few example entries with the number of references for each:

  • Christ -13
  • Christian(s) – 2
  • Faith – 40
  • Faithful – 20
  • Faithfulness – 5
  • Faithless – 2
  • God – 38
  • Goddess – 2
  • Godhead – 2
  • Godliness – 4
  • Godly – 3
  • Praise – 25
  • Praised – 4
  • Praises – 2
  • Praiseworthy – 1
  • Praising – 3
  • Pray – 14
  • Prayed – 2
  • Prayer – 16
  • Prayers – 5


It has 8 pages of full-color maps, with a total of 7 maps, printed on thick, semi-glossy paper. These are the standard Thomas Nelson maps. There isn’t an index. They include elevation, topography, possible locations of ancient cities, journeys, distance, battles, events, dates, etc. I love the colors. They’re not too bright or vibrant but they do stand out.

Maps include:

  1. World of the Patriarchs
  2. Exodus and Conquest of Canaan
  3. Land of the Twelve Tribes
  4. Kingdom of David and Solomon
  5. Jesus’ Ministry
  6. Paul’s Missionary Journeys
  7. Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus

Concluding Thoughts on the Vines Expository Bible

The Vines Expository Bible is one of my favorite designs for a study Bible. I love the typeface and the ruby red highlights and ribbons stand out beautifully. The notes in the are better suited to multiple denominations than those from most study Bibles. I found all of the notes well-written and applicable to most readers. There is some theology but it isn’t the main focus of the notes. Instead, they’re more focused on drawing closer to God and our daily walk. Many of them have a devotional quality. It does have a lot of word studies, but there aren’t many other tools to do your own study. I recommend the Vines Expository Bible to anyone interested in a study Bible with a seasoned Pastor’s commentary.


This book is available at (includes some affiliate links)



Church Source

Barnes & Noble

and many local Bible bookstores


Photography by hannah C brown

Thomas Nelson provided this Bible free for review. I was not required to give a positive review, only an honest one. All opinions are my own.

About The Author

Randy A Brown

WordPress writer by day, Bible reviewer by night, pastor all the time. And there's also that author thing.


  1. Tanner

    Hey Randy, this is Tanner Walton. I frequently look at your reviews and have even left you some comments. Do you have any KJVs you’d be willing to trade for a new KJV Holman Legacy Bible?
    I left this message on your twitter as well. Don’t know what you check more often.

    • Randy A Brown

      Hi Tanner. I sent you an email.


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