The Penny Bible

I attend classes at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City.  As a given the Bible is a standard text in all classes, and yet somehow this past week arrived on campus minus my copy.  I was going to study the Word of God, without bringing the Word of God with me.  As you can probably guess, that wouldn’t work so well.

It just so happens that our campus has a LifeWay store in the same building my class is in, so I grabbed some change out of the cup holder in my van and ran in to buy myself a copy.  After quickly searching through the 800 available copies I grabbed the cheapest one I could find and checked out.  My total:  $2.15.  I bought the Word of God, for the change in my car.

The cheapness isn’t what caught my attention though.

I realized, I forgot my Bible and I just ran in and grabbed a copy like no big deal.  For a few pennies I bought another copy without evening batting an eye.  On top of that, I will probably give it to my kids to use, not even thinking too much if they misplace it, or tear it up.

How blessed are we in America to be able to do this.  I own roughly 50 copies of the Bible.  I have almost every single modern English translation.  I have the Bible in Dutch, Greek, Hebrew, and Latin.  I have study bibles, and regular Bibles.  I have decorative Bibles and I have cheap ‘throw away’ Bibles.  Even with all of that I just ran in and grabbed another.

I have this, while people all over the world have no ability to even get a single copy.  Because of persecution Bibles are taken from people.  2,000 years after the Cross entire groups live without a translation in their language.  People die in order to attempt to get a single Bible, or even a small section of one.

This excess, while others have none made me realize how blessed I am to be an American.  With as much as there is wrong with this country, we are still so blessed to be able to have access to Scripture without fear.  We are blessed to be able to share the Gospel without suffering.

The problem with this is, I don’t like I should.  Many have died so I can read my Bible openly, and yet many times it sits unread.  Men and women have lost their life so that I might have the freedom to share the Gospel, and yet I am afraid to knock on the door across the street.

I realized this week, while shelling out the $2.15 for my Bible, that I have an obligation to those who have died for my freedoms, to use them.  I must be a good steward of what they have gained for me.

People all across this world would give anything to have a Bible, I can’t help them get one in many cases, but I can read mine.  I can share my faith.  It is my obligation.  Why squander what was given to me at such great cost?  I will read my Bible.  I will share the Gospel.  Will you join me?

J.W. Willard

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