6 Best Online Bible Study Sites in 2020 – Part One

With Wordsearch about to bite the dust, we lose one of the best online Bible study sites probably by the end of 2020 or early in 2021. So, that means we need to reexamine the online platform for studying God’s word.

Five years ago I wrote, “Bible study’s going online, not entirely, but increasingly so.” Today online bible study is more mainstream, but still not the primary way most people study their Bibles. However, it’s better than ever in 2020.

So here’s the first 3 of my 6 best online Bible study sites that you can use on a Chromebook, a tablet, or even a smartphone. Fire up any web browser and study your Bible. You’ll find that you might not need to run one of the complicated Bible study suites that you install on a Mac or Windows computer.

Why Use Online Bible Study Sites?

online bible study sites
Two alternatives to running a computer with Bible study software include online bible study sites and mobile Bible study apps. Here’s my Samsung Galaxy Note from 2015 running an old version of an Android Bible app.

With limited storage these computers can’t handle huge libraries from the complex Bible study programs like Logos, Accordance or Olive Tree to name some of the most popular.

BibleStudyTools.com

biblestudytools

We first look at BibleStudyTools.com. What makes this a viable option for intermediate level Bible study software? Users can search the Bible, read it, track daily Bible reading plans and share scripture via copy/paste or links to post to popular social media outlets. Almost every online Bible can do those things. Here’s what this site offers in addition to the basics.

Bible Study Tools adds some public domain tools like …

  • Commentaries
  • Dictionaries
  • The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
  • Old and New Testament Greek Lexicons
  • Classic sermons from past scholars and preachers
Click on the Study menu to reveal study tools like Commentaries, Dictionaries, and more.

The site includes a number of modern and public domain Bible translations. The list of Bibles includes…

  • ASV
  • CEB
  • Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible
  • ESV
  • God’s Word
  • Good News
  • CSB
  • Jubile Bible 2000
  • KJV
  • Lexham English Bible
  • NASB
  • NIV
  • NKJV
  • NLT
  • NRSV
  • RSV
  • The Message

There’s also some limited original language study. You can use an Interlinear Bible for languages study.

The site will collect user notes and highlights for those who sign up for a free account. The Bible student can mark up their Bibles and save their study findings for future reference.

biblestudytools interlinear online bible study site
The Interlinear Bible in Bible Study Tools online Bible study site uses KJV and NASB as the English translation.

While the site doesn’t offer as many modern reference tools, a user with simple needs can get a lot done. Read a text, highlight it and write observations in a note attached to a verse. Then open the interlinear Bibles based on the KJV and NASB to do some original language study. Search the text for some cross references related to the topics in the passage. This gives any Bible student a good start in understanding their passage.

The Interlinear Hebrew text comes from Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia from United Bible Societies. The Greek text comes from Center For Computer Analysis of Texts, University of Pennsylvania based on Nestle Aland 26.

Here’s a demo of the old 2015 site. Look for an updated video soon.

After these early steps, open some commentaries, dictionaries or the ISBE and learn more about the passage and what others said years ago. Record those findings in the notes. Then find the passage’s Big Idea and come up with an outline using an online word processor like Google Docs or Office 365’s version of Word online.

If I had to compare the site to a piece of Bible software, I’d say it can do almost as much as e-Sword with a few modern translations added to it.

Bible Hub

biblehub

The next of these six best online Bible study websites comes from Online Parallel Bible Project in the form of BibleHub.com. The interface looks a little cluttered, but it’s still a useful site with plenty of resources. In fact, it’s a deceptively useful tool.

Enter a Bible reference in the top search box and the site opens the verse in all the translations and commentaries available in the left column. Along the right column we find some helpful tools like the context of the passage, cross references and Treasury of Scripture Knowledge.

Here’s a demo of the old 2015 site. Look for an updated video soon.

Across the top of the site there’s a toolbar that helps people navigate to specific passages in any of the supported translations. The site includes a large collection of modern and public domain translations. The toolbar also includes some public domain commentaries. Access them through drop down lists.

The toolbar buttons put many of the tools a click away. We get a parallel Bible button, cross references and a context button that shows the single verse within the pericope. In addition there’s links to a few specific commentaries and more.

Like the other sites, Bible Hub lets me share to Facebook, Twitter and Google+. It includes some nice pictures, maps and outlines.

Biblia

Biblia by Faithlife offers a simplified version of their Logos 9 Webapp.

Logos Bible Software users will want to go first to Biblia.com. The site offers a simplified version of what the company offers their customers in their Logos 9 Webapp. You’ll need to own one of their expensive software packages or subscribe to Faithlife Connect to access the webapp. You can also check it out because it’s very powerful for an online site. We’ll look at it in part two of this article.

Biblia gives users access to their Logos Bible Software library online and a selection of tools and features even if you just sign up for a free account. You’ll want to pay to really make good use of Biblia. And in that case you’d do better to use the Logos 9 Webapp. However, mobile users may like Biblia since it has a very nice Mobile version of the site.

Here’s a demo of the old 2015 site. Look for an updated video soon.

The left hand column includes four tabs with the following features:

  • Home – Shows reading plans and the About Biblia list of links.
  • Library – List of books available to a user whether they pay for the suite of Faithlife Bible tools, subscribe to Faithlife Connect or sign up for a free account.
  • Search – Search one book or other books in the library.
  • Notes – Shows notes on a particular verse or book passage from the Faithflife.com community, but not a Logos Bile Software user’s notes created in the computer program or mobile apps. You also have to sign into even see this tab.

The main part of the Biblia screen includes two window pane. The user can open books in either side. For example, open a Bible in the center column and a commentary on the right. The two will sync up to the same verse when a user turns the feature on using instructions explained below.

Use a mouse wheel or swipe on a laptop trackpad to scroll through the Bible from Genesis 1:1 all the way to the end of Revelations 22.

Click the menu (three dots) in the upper right corner to show the view settings.

Click on the menu button (three dots) in the upper right corner of the window pane to show view settings. The user can do the following:

  • Change the font size
  • Sync the two panes
  • Open the book’s table of contents
  • Change the reading view from column, stretched across both pans or full-screen reading view
  • Toggle the community notes from other Faithlife users (but not personal notes from the computer or mobile apps_

The sharing tool will let you post to Twitter or Facebook, get a link to the verse on Biblia.com to post online or email, and an embed code to post to a website. See image below.

Check back for part two of this roundup of the 6 best online Bible study sites.