Whenever Moody Publishers releases a new title in their Bible Studies for Women series, I know it will be worthwhile. “If God is For Us: The Everlasting Truth of Our Great Salvation” is a 6-week study of Romans 8, and was written by new-to-me author Trillia J. Newbell.
So, when I first read about “If God is For Us” I wondered how an entire Bible study could be written about a single chapter of the Bible. As I got into the study, however, it was clear that there was so much to be uncovered from Romans 8 that this is not a stretch at all. In addition, I really like how the entire first week is dedicated to an overview of Romans as a whole, and guides you to read through (and reflect on) the first seven chapters of the book. This provides much-needed context.
I enjoyed this study of Romans 8, for sure. I was able to dive in and really seek the meaning of Paul’s words with a careful focus, like using a magnifying glass rather than a wide-angle lens. However I don’t feel that the study features of this book quite lived up to the standards I was expecting from a Moody Bible Study for Women. The week opens with an overview reading of several verses, followed by several questions to respond to during the course of the week. The daily lessons are comprised of an Explore section where the author shares her thoughts on that day’s Scripture passage, and followed by a Reflect section of several questions to answer. That’s it. This in itself is good, and gives plenty of opportunity to really think and apply Romans 8 to our lives, but I was expecting more opportunity for interaction. Some of the other books in this series feature space for drawing, fill-in-the-blank exercises, corresponding worship songs, online links for further study, suggested verses to memorize, lots of opportunities for cross-referencing, helpful diagrams, and more. In contrast, “If God is For Us” was primarily reading and then answering questions.
In the end, if the book of Romans, and chapter eight in specific, is a topic you would like to dive in and study I certainly recommend this new release from Moody. It takes a well-known section of God’s Word and shines a bright spotlight on it, challenging us to dig deeper into each verse. If, however, you are expecting an interactive study with more than just a question and answer format, this book does not quite live up to the expectations of the other Moody Bible Studies for Women.
I received this book courtesy of Moody Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.