I have been a fan of Bibles for 50 years!
I collect Bibles…and I also read them…from time to time!
Our local Christian Bookstore, LifeWay, is closing, and I am sorry to see it happen.
I became a Christian in 1969 and my mother purchased a, large hardback study Bible, from Hart’s Department store in Harrisburg, Illinois.
I was captivated with my, comprehensive, study Bible and I proudly carried it to church, every time the doors were open! Yes, in those days…we all carried our Bibles to church.
My Jewish hippie friend, Michael Toppel, made me a leather cover for my, humongous, Bible…and I have it on the book until this day.
My, deceased friend and surrogate father, Jim Dunmyer, liked my comprehensive Bible so well…that I gave it to him…and his family returned it to me after his passing.
I had a friend in Des Moines, Iowa who knew that I was searching for an Oxford Bible…and he found me one! I was so pleased and subsequently preached around 25 funeral messages from that, special, Bible.
I, fondly recall when the Amplified Bible first was printed. I had to have one! I throughly enjoyed the facility it gave in opening the scriptures of the Bible to fuller explanation.
I have been a King James Version man…for most of my life…and it is still my preferred translation. However there is a greater understanding of God’s word with the aid of modern translations.
The Living Bible was hard for me to get accustomed to. For years I thought that it’s modern language had taken something away from the meaning of the scripture.
My lifelong friend, Jeff Lestz, went to the LifeWay Christian Bookstore in Carterville when he visited us in the fall of 2013. Jeff was in need of a new Bible and he had purchased his last one at the Baptist Bookstore, that had been the predecessor of Life Way, 40 years ago.
So, when we entered the store on a brisk October day in 2013 I inquired of one of the staff if they had a replacement Bible for my friend who had purchased his last Bible 40 years ago? The eyes of the staff person became saucer shaped and she announced that they probably did not…but that she was certain that they had something similar. I smiled as I thought that the person helping us…was far from 40 years old!
Jeff and I purchased matching Bibles…that October day!
I was awaiting the results of a medical test…a couple of Easter seasons ago…and I purchased a new Bible for both Aaron and Jonathon. Just being around Bibles…brings me comfort!
And, so, I purchased a new Bible…today! My Bible bookstore of 50 years…is going out of business!
It was a different translation than the King Jame Version. The cover is goat leather and indexed and silver edging! It reminded me of my Cambridge Bible that I purchased 35 years ago…or more!
I have often said that I think in scripture! I literally think of scriptures on a daily basis. Scriptures come to my mind that aid me in difficult times.
In 1969…when I discovered the Bible…I was infatuated and mesmerized with it’s wisdom and counsel.
As a eight grader and throughout high school…I read my Bible two or more hours each evening in our little, country kitchen, with the adjacent coal stove curling the pages of the book!
There are a lot of vagaries and doubts and confusions in this life…but the Bible makes sense out of, at times, a senseless world!