It was a Sunday morning. I was sitting in church, listening to the sermon. The pastor read out the Bible reference for the sermon. I flipped over to the spot in my Bible. The verse was a great verse and I felt like it was special to me. I also wanted to remember what the pastor was speaking about it. So I decided to underline the verse in my Bible. (I always keep a pen in my Bible just in case.) I then proceeded to underline the verse.
That's when the person sitting next to me leaned over and whispered, "Just underline the whole Bible!"
I felt that was a fair enough call. I mean, the Bible is a treasure trove of useful advice, meaningful verses and special things. Above all, it is the Word of God! Every word in the Bible has been put there for a reason and is special.
So, with that being the case, why do I underline and highlight my Bible?
There are plenty of arguments for and against Bible writing. Some of the arguments against include:
- The fact that all the Bible is meaningful and special and some people don't like picking one verse as more 'special' than others
- Some people would opine that highlighting and writing in one's Bible is sort of desecrating it. I mean, the Bible is the word of God, after all. Isn't that disrespectful?
- Some people like to keep their Bibles 'clean'. This way, they can reread their Bible over and over, without being distracted by the highlighting here and there from previous trips through Scripture. When they're travelling along in the Word, some people find their eyes jumping to the highlighted and underlined sections and find it distracting.
I think it might be clear to you that from the images in this post and the story at the beginning of it, I'm an avid Bible highlighter! :)
There are several reasons I highlight my Bible. I'd like to share them with you today.
Keep in mind that although this is one of the "Bonnie's Opinion" blog posts (in which I share my opinion on a certain subject), I am in no way passing judgment on anyone who prefers not to mark their Bibles. Everyone has different opinions on the subject and I'm certainly not slamming anyone who has a different viewpoint to me! :)
- I've always loved reading Mum's big Bible, growing up. It is highlighted and marked here and there. I've found it fascinating seeing the verses she chose to highlight. It's so much more interested reading someone else's Bible when it's highlighted! For this reason, mainly, I began highlighting my Bible when I was given it for Christmas in 2010.
- I'd like any future descendants or relatives of mine to have something interesting to look back on. As I said above, Mum's Bible has always fascinated me. I hope mine will be a family Bible like Mum's.
- The lover of beauty in me loves highlighting and marking special verses. Pink and yellow in a Bible makes it seem so bright and cheery.
- I just plain like highlighting verses.
- Highlighting and marking verses helps me in Scripture memory, too. Instead of just reading the verse once and glossing over it, through underlining or marking the verse you go over it multiple times.
- I don't feel that highlighting my Bible is damaging or desecrating it in any way. I don't regard any one verse any higher than others... I'm just marking it for future reference.
- More recently, I've discovered an advantage of having a highlighted Bible. I love illustrating Bible verses. When I decide I want to do another illustration, I'll just look through my Bible for a highlighted verse, and pick one of them. These are often the verses that I want to illustrate more than any other verse. It makes it nice and easy to pick one.
Just as an interesting side note to this fascinating topic, there's a whole movement out there now called Illustrated Faith. It's a thing commonly known as 'Bible journalling' and it's where you draw and write on your Bible. Some of the art people do is amazing. Some artists cover up the words with art, others just draw in the extra wide margins of their journalling Bibles.
I don't go so far as to do that at the moment! It's pretty cool though, and great inspiration for illustrating verses. (If you're interested in the Bible journalling I'm finding inspirational, feel free to follow my Pinterest board here.)
Anyway, enough from me!
I'm curious about your Bible studying habits. Do you mark your Bible? Why or why not? :)