Mark Your BibleJeremiah 23:18: For who hath stood in the counsel of the LORD, and hath perceived and heard his word? who hath marked his word, and heard it?
I use that passage somewhat facetiously. The word marked means to prick up the ears, hearken, attend, cause to hear, give heed, incline, mark well, or regard.
Alan Redfield said that we should wreck a Bible about every ten years. I am just about on schedule. In about three decades I have wrecked three of them. As a rule, the Christians that I see carrying worn Bibles are my favorite Christians. I do now have a Bible that I want to keep pristine. I am able to do that since I carry a notebook to church and Sunday School and wreck the notebook instead. It seems to me that the less expensive Bibles that I have owned fall apart faster.
It does help us greatly to underline, circle or highlight passages in the Bible. One problem with that is the underlining, circling and highlighting in the three wrecked Bibles is not easily available to me any more. In order to avail myself of all the passages that have blessed me in a special way over the years, I would have to carry three wrecked Bibles. I still have a couple of them in my home.
My underlining, circling and highlighting have been rather sloppy too. That bothers me. I have more than once sat behind someone in a church who actually carried a small straightedge bookmark so they might underline passages carefully, patiently and neatly. Some Bibles have large margins where you can keep notes. It seems that the more precious the Word of God is to us, the sooner we will wreck a Bible.
I have owned three electronic Bibles and have a wonderful program in my personal computer and my laptop called Power Bible. I recommend it highly. The CD can be purchased online for as little as seven dollars. The electronic Bibles have saved much wear and tear on my printed Bibles but I dropped my favorite electronic Bible and broke it. The replacements I found were not as helpful.
I do admire Christians who handle their Bibles with great care and loving hands. My heart is pricked when I drop my Bible or damage it. I am troubled when I see Christians tossing Bibles or putting other things on top of them. I have done those things too and my heart is pricked by my own lack of reverence for the Bible. We should reverence the Bible and it should occupy a higher position for us than any other book or possession.
If we truly love and respect the Bible, it will be well-worn from study. People who keep Bibles under wraps or on coffee tables and never read them do not respect it. We ought to preserve the Bible in our hearts and lives, not just in keeping it new and pristine.Psalms 119:97: O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day. Psalms 119:165: Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Joshua 1:8: This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.
The passage does not mean you will not speak the word of God. Quite the contrary, it means you will ALWAYS speak it.2 Timothy 4:2a: Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; . . .
The more of the Bible you absorb, the more you will be blessed and the less you will be able to hold it in. I pray that you will be blessed by this burning fire in your bones too.James 1:21: Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. Jeremiah 20:9: Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name. But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.