Resources to Enhance your Biblical Study - Part 3: Online Resources
Continuing our series on free resources to enhance biblical and theological study, I’m turning this week to look at a number of websites that are very helpful. This is really a sampling and certainly not an exhaustive list, but as long as you have a computer and an internet connection, you will have more solid stuff available to read than you will even find time for…
Monergism.com is a massive collection of Reformed resources—articles, podcasts, sermons, free ebooks, and more. I probably recommend this site more than any other general theological resource. It is a pan-Reformed site, so you will get advocacy of traditional covenant theology and paedobaptism and some other theological perspectives we’d disagree with, but usually in a helpful way.
This website has a huge number of Bible translations, and I find it very useful for light research—its search tools are easy to use, and the ability to compare different translations has come in handy. I even cut-copy-pasted from the Russian Bibles there to prepare handouts when I went over to Russia several years ago to teach, so don’t forget this website’s utility if you are witnessing across a language barrier!
The NET Bible is a newer English Bible translation. While I’m not personally a huge fan of the translation itself, what sets this Bible translation apart is the copious notes—unlike a study Bible, which usually devotes its notes to theological issues, the NET Bible’s notes generally have to do with specific words in the underlying Greek and Hebrew or with other technical issues like manuscript variants. This has become a go-to reference for me in lesson and sermon preparation.
BAKER’S EVANGELICAL DICTIONARY OF THEOLOGY
Most online biblical reference books are a century old or more. The BEDT is a rare exception—released in 1996, the articles from the dictionary are available here If you don’t have a modern Bible dictionary, but you have a computer with an internet connection, well, then you do actually have a modern Bible dictionary.
CHRISTIAN CLASSICS ETHEREAL LIBRARY
A truly massive site, CCEL has thousands of works by various ancient, medieval, Reformation-era and Puritan-era authors, all completely free. Books can be read online or even downloaded, in plain text or often in PDF as well.
The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood maintains an online resource library. Of note is the book Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, a massive 482-page book that mounts a definitive case for how to understand gender biblically—the PDF is completely free here, so download it if you don’t have it!
The webpage of John Piper’s ministry, Desiring God has a staggering collection of sermons, articles, interviews, and more. The “Books” section has a very large number of free e-book downloads—I would recommend clicking on each and looking to the left side to see if a free PDF is available. Some excellent free downloads include his classic Desiring God (and the study guide!) as well as many others like
- Think: The Life of the Mind and the Love of God
- Don’t Waste Your Life
- When the Darkness Will Not Lift
- Sex and the Supremacy of Christ
- The Supremacy of Christ in a Postmodern World
- Brothers, We Are Not Professionals
- plus lots more!
Don’t neglect his biographical books on figures like Andrew Fuller, Adoniram Judson, William Wilberforce and many others.
Any Christian needs to be interested in the health of the local church and being a healthy church member, and 9Marks is a ministry that specializes in creating resources to help Christians learn about just that. The website has lots of very helpful articles. I would also highly recommend signing up for the 9Marks Journal, an online/emailed newsletter.
The President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary maintains both an extremely interesting website with lots of useful articles, sermons, and interviews, and a fascinating daily podcast called “The Briefing” that is a useful perspective on current events.
Tim Challies is one of the most influential Christian bloggers out there, and his blog is always worth a read. A useful feature is his daily “A La Carte” which curates and points to other articles worth reading, as well as free or discounted ebooks Tim has come across. He also has a periodic giveaway.
The Gospel Coalition is a website (and now a series of interconnected conferences) bringing together evangelicals. It hosts a number of blogs, including absolute must-reads like Kevin DeYoung and Thabiti Anyabwile as well as material from scholars like D.A. Carson. Their resource page is extensive. I do recommend some discernment as the Gospel Coalition, again, brings together folks we’d heartily agree with as well as those we wouldn’t be as comfortable with, but it is still helpful. The Gospel Coalition produces an online theological journal calledThemelios which I would recommend as well.