I'm wondering if you would take a look at the Dake Annotated Reference Bible, written by Finis Jennings Dake. I don't agree with some of his theology, but there is still a great deal of teaching in this reference Bible that is helpful. The website is www.dake.com. -- Shaun (Los Angeles)

Perusing the website, I saw that his reference Bible is based on the text of the King James Version. (That is, Dake did not translate the Bible; he merely added his views in the margins and in supplementary pages.) To me, such a basis for a reference work seems unnecessarily archaic. Dake was born in 1902, yet even a hundred years ago no one spoke or wrote in Elizabethan English. All the same, millions of English readers today still prefer its familiar cadences and antique feel.

The approach of the commentary, charts, etc. are, in my opinion, overly literalistic. (For the problems with such an approach, please see Genesis, Science & History, and also Revelation and the End of the World.) In addition, the premillennialism and Pentecostalism superimposed onto the scriptures are not justified by them. To his credit, I did notice that he admitted that the souls of the lost are not yet in heaven or hell, but awaiting the Judgment Day. The sincerity of his approach also comes through.

Yes, there is a lot of material in this book. I suppose, though, that "helpful" means not only clear or interesting, but on-target theologically. You were right to disagree with some of the theology. Overall, I would say that there are better reference Bibles out there than this one.

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