This was a random conviction, but my Old Testament Studies professor got me thinking about, well…my bible. I know he’s supposed to do that, especially in a seminary environment, but in this particular case it was about quality rather than content. He told the class that he still uses his 1971 NASB bible every time he preaches and reads (one he bought new while he was in seminary). He knows that bible inside and out, he knows where he has notes and even what side of the page a specific passage would land! Even more convicting was the way he spoke about his bible, as if it was a real person that he loved and adored; he seemed to know that book better than the back of his hand.
Now, I not only found his passionate adoration for his bible slightly creepy, but the longevity of his bible was impressive and it got me thinking about mine. Ideally, I would have a bible that lasts a lifetime, with my notes and references all included in there. I could bring it with me wherever I go, I could pour over the words everyday without worrying about its condition. Then I looked at mine: the fake leather cover with its corners peeling, thin margins (which aren’t very conducive to note-taking), and thin pages that bleed through. It has served me well, and contains many of my notes or convictions over the years but I think it’s days are numbered.
I immediately felt guilty about thinking about buying a new bible. I mean, how many people are out there who need a bible more desperately than me? I have a couple study bibles at home, isn’t that enough? After all, I can only read one bible at a time, right? But then I came across a blog that was encouraging. I mean, it could just be that this blog tells me exactly what I want to hear (“Yea, go spend money on something you don’t really need, it’s justified spending!”). But at the same time, it might be worthwhile to get my ideal bible now, and start using it as my only, most beloved bible. I’d probably have to transcribe all my notes and such. Then 30 years down the line, assuming my contentment with the style I select, I’d love and adore my bible just as much as my professor does his.
For now, the thing that’s holding me back is my insufficient funds for this big of an investment. It wouldn’t be proper stewardship of God’s blessings right now for such a purchase, but in the future it might cross my mind again. I know my bible will not last as long as my professor’s, and I’ll eventually have to invest in a better quality bible, but for now there’s no use in fixing something that’s not completely broken. Besides, no matter how the Word of God is packaged, as long as it’s the Word of God, it’s alright with me (as it should be).