Buying books on a budget, or, The $200 Theological Library A Pitts Weekly Workshop

Why would a theology student ever spend money on books?

There are Alternatives to Buying Books

Your friendly, neighborhood theological library
Your friends (divide and conquer)
Free online sources (Google Books Snippet View, Amazon Look Inside, etc.)
Alternate editions/PUblic Domain? ( and

Where can you buy these things?

(But please, look at used copies first!)
Pay attention!

So, start a theological library for less than $200? Challenge accepted

Category 1: The Biblical Text

Interlinear Bible: Hebrew-Greek-English : With Strong's Concordance Numbers Above Each Word (Hendrickson, 1986/2014)

Alternative: The STEP Bible (

Category 2: A critical Concordance

The NIV Exhaustive Bible Concordance, Third Edition (Zondervan, 2015)

Alternative: Blue Letter Bible (

Category 3: A Resource on the Historical Context

Backgrounds of Early Christianity, 3rd Edition (Eerdmans, 2003)

Ancient Near Eastern Thought and the Old Testament: Introducing the Conceptual World of the Hebrew Bible (Baker, 2006)

Alternative: Wikipedia/the Web

CATEGORY 4: A good Dictionary

The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (Oxford, 2005)

Previous Editions, Used!!!


Category 5: Commentaries

The Oxford Bible Commentary (Oxford, 2001)

Alternative: Free, out of print commentaries online

Category 6: A Journal Subscription

Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology

Word and World: Theology for Christian Ministry

Alternative: Directory of Open Access Journals (

Comprehensive Alternative:

Free Content: Sermon examples, worship planning guides, prayers, devotions, etc.
Paid Content: New Interpreter's Dictionary of the Bible
Paid Content: Old Testament Library, New Testament Library Commentary Series
Paid Content: New Interpreter's Bible
Paid Content: Much, Much More
$149/year or $14.99/month; student and group rates available

Comprehensive Alternative: Find a Theological Library Near You!

How are you going to keep track of your library?



But Please Remember...

"Read what gives you delight—at least most of the time—and do so without shame.” -Alan Jacobs, The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction (Oxford, 2011)

Created By
Bo Adams

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