Anyone else like to color-code their Bible?


I’ve used color pencils to color-code my KJV Bible for the past 20 years, at least. Now that I’ve got a new Catholic Bible (the Didache RSV-2CE), I’m having fun recoloring my Bible.

I’ve been reading the Daily Readings with my Magnificat and my Bible so I can read the larger context of the Readings and color as I go.

I love to study Scripture using this method, since I can flip to a page and easily find the passage I want. My Bible is becoming a beautiful rainbow of colors. I don’t find it distracting at all…the color helps me remember the passages that I’ve studied and makes it much easier for me to find the particular passages again quickly.

I use Prismacolor pencils so the color glides on easily, and can easily be erased if I make a mistake or change my mind. Color pencils don’t bleed through the page and are light enough that the text is not obscured like it would be with pens or highlighters.

My personal color-code method is:

  • Red–Salvation, Jesus’ Mercy and Blood, and desperate pleas to God for salvation/deliverance/protection
  • Pink–Uplifting, encouraging, comforting promises from God
  • Purple–God the Father
  • Sky Blue–Jesus
  • Green–Holy Spirit & Wisdom
  • Magenta–Mother Mary
  • Blue–Christian living, commands and exhortations of how I should be living
  • Orange–The future, the Second Coming of Christ, Heaven
  • Yellow–the Scriptures and Sacred Tradition

Since I am addicted to Bible study and love using this method, I was wondering if anyone else out there does this as well? I’d love to hear your method of highlighting your favorite passages.


I tend to only read the markings if I colour or underline something in a book. Writing on separate paper on in a notebook is best for me.

I have glued several ribbons to my Bibles to make it easier to keep track where I am. The latest has the liturgical colours (+ blue for Mary and gold) instead of just colours that match the cover.


Same here. I’m a notetaker and underliner.

However, I have to always use the same pen in my prayer journal haha I have a jar of just black ‘gel’ pens reserved for journaling


I thought my grandpa was the only one who does this! He has about 4 different colors of highlighters he uses.

I remember when he got a new Bible and spent weeks sitting at the kitchen table flipping through new and old side by side highlighting everything.


I am not a very creative person, so I do not do this, but it really amazes me when people do this and I see their Bibles all filled with colour. It’s really something else.


I will frequently do that in my Bible App, especially if I am trying to distinguish something specific. So one time I was looking at the Trinity and used color coding to distinguish between actions taken by the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Sometimes I’ll do the same to distinguish law and gospel, etc. The nice thing is that it isn’t permanent.


I did similar things for a long time. My old KJV looked like a coloring book.


I like doing this, too. One of my favorite things about my Bible is coloring the parts of the OT that point to Jesus, whether it’s prophecies, like in Isaiah, or psalms like 22, 72, and 142.

Sometimes it can feel like a treasure hunt to find those passsges that point to Christ, and I love being able to flip through and find them.


What Bible are you using now? Was there any reason you stopped coloring or highlighting?

I’ve always wondered a little about the percentages of women and men who do this, or if it is predominantly visual learners who like to use a lot of color.


That’s good you have a system that works, and your ribbons sound lovely. I haven’t been brave enough to figure out how to add ribbons yet.

I tried taking separate notes, but I never go back and read them, so that’s why I like to color right in the Bible. I still read the whole passage, but I can easily find my favorites.


I use several bibles now. Some are better than others. That old KJV I eventually discarded. As pretty as it had become with yellow, purple, red, and green hi lites, it relfected too much of the doctrinal positions of the Worldwide Church of God, which I have mentioned on the forum previously. In a moment of “lets get rid of all this clutter”, I tossed it out as a final nose-thumbing at Herbert W. Armstrong. :slight_smile:

Now I just underline and bracket.


That was the cult, right? Getting rid of that particular Bible was probably a good thing, lol.

I have several Bibles, too, but just one that I’m using as my main devotional Bible.

I really like my Ignatius Study Bible, but it’s only the NT, and it has so many notes that I end up only reading the notes and not the Word itself! So it’s only used for reference.


I sometimes struggle with the concept of categorizing Bible passages. Many Bible passages fit into several of those categories simulataneosuly. Which one of those categories is dominant depends very much on your personal perspective and can change depending on your situation in ypur life and what exactl question it is that you are seeking an answer to…


Yes, I run into this problem, too. So I take each passsge or verse slowly and meditate and think about it if I’m unsure how I want to mark it. Some passages I’ll leave unmarked for a long time till I’ve decided how I want to designate them.

For me, I know each verse has layers of meaning, but I have a pretty specific coloring system, so I can usually fit the verse into a category. It’s usually easy to see if the verse is about God the Father or a command to do something or is about future judgement. I highlight according to how it is most meaningful to me, but if I’m not sure then I wait.

The Epistles often have a lot jam-packed into each verse, so I take it slow and reread the passage over several times to decide how I want to particularly remember that message or what is the most important thing I should remember.

Do you have a coloring system that you try to use?


We probably have a dozen or more bibles kicking around the house so there’s always one within easy reach. Several KJV’s, a New KJV, the RSV, the NIV, the Good News Bible, Living Bible, New American Standard, and some I can’t recall the names of. Two concordances plus an online one. And there’s the New Jerome Commentary as well. We Protestants tend be somewhat bible oriented. LOL


I used to, back when I was a pentecostal / evangelical. Nowadays my Bible reading is on devices, so – no coloring. @ShowersofRoses, looks like you have a pretty good system :smiley:



No I don’t , but there is nothing really objectively wrong with doing it.

I would not do it myself, as I only know of a bible color code system which is involved with a particular cult, and it sort of creepy to me personally.

But I know others do it too, not just cultists, so go for it.


I don’t color code, but I think it is a great idea for some.

I know myself, I would get distracted by the colors and focus too much on the system rather than on the scriptures.

I’m more of a note maker plus some underlining, brackets, and stars. Most of my notes are in a journal or on pieces of paper inside my bible. I do have a few highlights. It’s just yellow and it denotes frequently referenced or foundational scriptures.


I am an omnivorous reader but I never underline or color code. I find it way too distracting.


I underline, bracket, highlight and write notes in my Bibles. It’s kind of random to be honest. I go with whatever seems to work best at the time when a passage stands out to me.

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