I have noticed that there seems to be an influx of Study Bibles being produced at the moment, most notably the NLT Study Bible, the ESV Study Bible, and even the NRSV Discipleship Study Bible. Of those three, I have only purchased the NRSV Discipleship Study Bible, mostly because I like the NRSV and it includes the Deuterocanonicals. (Truth be told, I have yet to really spend some time with it.)
I always go back and forth on study Bibles, not so much on which one contains which translation, but rather on their usefulness. As my knowledge of the Scriptures has grown during the past few years, both through graduate work and prayer, I have often found myself disliking the idea of using a study Bible on a daily basis. Usually when I am doing class work or preparing to lead a Bible study, I refer to more in depth commentaries rather than seeing what a particular note has to say in a study Bible. Now don't get me wrong, I appreciate the fact that there are so many study Bibles out there. It certainly is a wonderful aid for people who are first getting into serious Bible study or for those who like to have either scholarly or application notes available to them. So, I am certainly in no way anti-study Bible.
I am also not one of those who will not use a particular study Bible because a note or two disagree with my theology or that it dates certain books later than I think or that it may question authorship of particular books. I always tell folks who come to Bible study that the text is infallible, not the notes!
Recently, however, I have been considering going back to using a study Bible again. This is probably due to recent publications of so many new study Bibles. Many of them look, on the surface, to be very well put together and include a number of helpful study tools. One thing I have noticed is that many study Bibles are trying to become smaller. While I think that makes them more easy to carry around, I wonder if that limits the amount of space for a reader to take personal notes. I think, particularly in a study Bible, that this is essential. I have an older 1990 Oxford Catholic Study Bible. One of the reasons I liked it was the fact that it had quite a bit of margin space, however all recent "updates" have reduced the margin space considerably.
So, what do you all think? Is there a particular study Bible out there that you rely on? If so, why? Obviously I would like to have one that includes the full Catholic canon, but I am open to reading about others as well.