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For years, I’ve resisted putting the primary text of a message on the screen or PowerPoint. Instead, I’ve remained “old school,” and encouraged people to actually bring their Bibles to church, open them to the text and read along. I believe there is great benefit – and power – in actually opening a Bible and following along with the preacher.

I’ve discovered that I’m not alone in this belief.

Jonathan Dodson notes several reasons to bring your Bible to church and use it:

It allows the Bible to make up your mind about meaning, not you make up your own mind about the meaning. Having a Bible in front of you (electronic or hardcopy), allows you to read and refer to the passage as a complete thought. Reading it in complete allows you to compare the reasoning of the preacher to the reasoning of Scripture. We can follow the argument of Scripture, not just the argument of the preacher. Instead of making up your mind about the Bible, let the Bible make up your mind about the Bible.

Dodson also suggests that It allows you to read the Bible in context, and helps you avoid confusing the medium for the message.

He writes..

Follow the argument of Scripture, not just the argument of the preacher.

When we read in context we get to see the Bible, not in bits and pieces, but as an awe-inspiring whole.

Reading in PowerPoint prevents us from seeing the Bible as complete thoughts that hang together in context.


One Comment

  1. I agree with the “Bring Your Bible to Church” philosophy and not putting the text on the screen. I have a favorite Bible that I carry; it’s my ESV thinline that I had during a time where I was going through job troubles and some ‘interesting’ times at a church that was experiencing some ‘interesting’ issues. I’ve been thinking that I need to make a note in that Bible somewhere for future generations to maybe look at and understand why I highlighted some of the things that I highlighted.

    I also get some ‘confirmation’ or ‘feedback’ when I see that I’ve highlighted some passage in my own self-study that later comes out in a sermon or teaching. It somewhat confirms that I was on the right track in my thinking.

    While I enjoy some electronic versions (like YouVersion) I still want to have my physical, hardcopy Bible with me at church. Not as a show-offy kind of thing, but just a way to touch and feel the scriptures as I hear it read aloud.

    Keep up the good work pastor Sam.

    Grace and peace to you.

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