Books are special, but the Bible is always new and vital

By Debra Whittington

Religion Columnist

Sunday School was over and our current lesson book was finished. As I closed its pages I thought about all the life lessons I learned through the study. I brought it home to place it among other Bible study books in my collection. Each time I pick one up and read it once again I am reminded of my spiritual journey at the time.

Books were always my special friends. As long as I can remember books were a part of my life. I was told I learned how to read by observing Mom teaching my older brother. When I could read by myself I was transported into a wonderful world that took me to places I never dreamed.

I realize so many people are discarding their print books and going to e-readers, but it isn’t the same as holding it in your hands. The second benefit of print books is you can loan them to your friends. I have one friend who subscribes to a series of books which she shares with friends. As the books are passed on to the next friend we discuss what we learned from the previous ones in the series.

There is so much to learn from the printed word that can’t be found anywhere else. One example came last week when a friend found a small history book that was being discarded. She was thrilled with the contents, especially stories written by people who are long gone.

Books like these contain not only historical information, but wisdom and insight into life in our country’s past.

The Bible is not just a book, but a powerful example of how we should live. In Deuteronomy 28:58 it warns us: “If thou wilt not observe to do all the words of this law that written in this book, that thou mayest fear this glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD.” Those words alone should provide the incentive we need to study the Bible.

There were times in the Old Testament when people ignored the Word of God. One example is found in the book of Nehemiah. When Ezra the priest brought out the book of the law, the people gathered and stood in honor of what was being read. Ezra read from morning until midday to the attentive crowd.

During the reign of Josiah, following a time of people turning from the Lord, the book containing the laws of God was brought before the king. Even though he was very young, the king, Josiah, recognized the importance of what was read to him. In 2 Kings 22:13, Josiah said, “Go ye, enquire of the LORD for me, …concerning the words of this book that is found: for great is the wrath of the LORD that is kindled against us, because our fathers have not hearkened unto the words of this book, to do according unto all that is written concerning us.”

Efforts by evil men through the centuries to get rid of the Bible have always failed. Publication of the Bible continues with an estimated 5 billion to 6 billion copies published.

While I don’t need to keep all of my books, there are certain favorites that will always be in my collection. However, out of all the books I own, the Bible continues to be the most important book. It is the only book that is new each time you read it and provides everything you need to know on your path through life.


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