Tearing Through the Bible

I received The Message//Remix Bible for Christmas. I like it because it reads like a novel, not a reference book. There are no column notes, side notes, foot notes, end notes, nor cross references to distract me from the text. The text numbering is small and in the margins. I can pick it up and read a few chapters straight. It’s working: I’m up to 1 Kings 8.

In fact, I like this Bible so much, that I gave my parents one when I saw them a couple of weeks ago. While there, I learned that my mother is tearing through the Bible, too. Literally. Her Bible is in four pieces. She went to a conference having a section on reading the Bible through multiple times a year. We all have time. We just don’t have a Bible with us. The solution is to make the Bible small enough to carry.

What she did was quite simple.

Start with a large print, modern translation Bible with minimal study guides, helps, notes, etc. The goal is easy to read, but minimal bulk. You’ll also need four file folders, some white glue, and some contact paper.

  1. Remove the Bible’s cover. That’s right. Tear the cover of the Bible off. Save it for later.
  2. Divide the Bible into four sections about the same size and then cut them apart. Almost feels sacrilegious, doesn’t it? You now have a Bible with four volumes.
  3. Cut one of the file folders to about the same size as the Bible’s cover. It will be a cover for the first of the four volumes. It can be a little smaller than the Bible’s original cover because each volume is smaller than all four of them were together.
  4. Bend the cut file folder to shape around the first volume.
  5. Squirt some white glue down the center of the cut folder (just the spine) and place the volume in it. Prop the now-covered volume on its spine (back) between some books so its weight holds it together.
  6. After the glue has cured (I’d wait overnight), cover the folder with the contact paper. My mother was able to find some tan, suede-like contact paper. Looked really nice.
  7. Repeat for the remaining three volumes.

You’ll now have four, thin volumes about the size of a larger paperback. One will fit almost anywhere.

For more ideas (and more complex ideas), search bookbinding or bookmaking.

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