I have always had a certain affinity for books. I can relate to the statement once made by Abraham Lincoln that used to be displayed on the wall at Border’s books: “My best friend is a person who will give me a book I have not read.”
I was asked this week what my favorite book is. The answer, as might be expected from me as a Pastor, is the Bible. It should not come as a surprise that I love and treasure this book. Or that I have numerous copies, including multiple English translations, Hebrew and Greek and Latin versions, and several foreign language editions.
Moreover, a substantial portion of my own ministerial library consists of books written about the Bible. Commentaries, concordances, language and other reference books comprise several feet of shelf space in my library. In fact, my entire eleven years of higher education essentially revolved around this one book.
But the Bible held a special place for me long before I became a Pastor. Among my earliest memories are the layout of our living room in the home where I grew up. On the coffee table in a place of conspicuous honor sat this venerable book. It was the only book I ever saw my dad carry, let alone read. My mom’s Bible is marked up with notes reflecting a lifetime of study and devotion.
Among my own Bibles are the one I received when I was baptized at age nine. I also have a Gideon Bible given to me in the fifth grade, as well as several used in my teenage and college years. As an adult, I have collected Bibles as well. I have several from days gone by, including a few that have quite a bit of age on them.
It is no exaggeration to say that this one book has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. And its influence on me has been immeasurable. In fact, I cannot imagine a life without the impact of this particular book.
It is little wonder then that I have been so moved by the short video sent to me earlier this week by a fellow staff member. It is from Justin Taylor’s blog dated January 31, 2014, and is titled: “What Does It Look Like to Open Your Own Bible for the First Time?”
It is less than one minute long. But it will be one minute out of your busy day that is well spent - and hopefully not soon forgotten. Please check it out here:
(If this link does not work, you can watch it here on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yhvranRtlKk.)
Wow! I don't know about you; but all I can say is: “I am so blessed.” I cannot imagine not having had a Bible for my entire life. And yet, I can think of an even worse tragedy: that of having had a Bible for years and years and years and having taken it for granted, rarely if ever reading it, let along putting its teachings into effect in my life.
I conclude this short post just as Justin concludes his for that day, with a quote from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, in Luke 12:48: "From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked."