Do any of you write in your Bibles?


I maintain a “dirty” Bible for apologetics/highlights/notes, and a “clean” one for devotional reading.


We found my great grandmother’s bible and it was full of margin notes.


That’s interesting.
I think writing in Bibles is a fairly recent thing. IOW, since the 20th century, but rarely earlier. Books were still prized, especially Bibles. Although family bibles dating back to the 18th c. usually had “family pages” for writing in births, deaths, and marriages.

Also, I believe writing in Bibles was a basically an Evangelical thing (at least at first it was.) But I remember my Grandfather (a staunch Lutheran) reading his Bible religiously, and never writing in it.

I have seen MANY old bibles from the 19th century and earlier, and they almost never have any writing in them, apart from correcting printing errors.

Personally I never write in my Bibles (and I have a few dozen,) other than my name and date in the front, and even that is in pencil.

I once rebound a cheap NIV Bible from the 70’s for an Evangelical friend because he had worn it out pretty much with use and because it was filled with his notes, and he didn’t want to lose the use of it.


No I don’t write notes in my bibles nor do I tab it.

Actually for Catholics the notes are already written out for us in the Catechism of the Catholic Church. :smiley:


Back in my evangelical / Pentecostal days, I used to highlight in various colors, according to what the subject or emphasis of the target passage was. I also used to write brief notes in light pencil, usually a different translation of a word, or something like that.

Nowadays I have moved away from carrying a printed Bible, preferring to use one of several on my phone or my Kindle. If I want to take notes, I do so in a pocket notebook that I [almost] always have in my shirt pocket.

As an aside, I recently watched a video of one of my cousins delivering a sermon at a chapel service at a nationally known Pentecostal university. At one point he announced a Bible passage that he was going to read, and he added, “. . . if you would quickly turn there on your devices.” I still have a lot of contacts in my former religious circles, but that was the first time I heard that, and it made me laugh.



Well, she likely did the writing in the 70s or 80s. But she was still staunchly conservative even when she was older. Though she also had like, 5 bibles.


Sometimes I underline with a pencil the interesting grammar/lexical word meanings from a particular verse in Spanish, Polish, Romanian.
I am native speaker of Ukrainian (and Russian.)
I try to read Turkish-English new Testament, but no success yet.
I am interested in linguistic meanings of the words too.
Before , I used to study “Hebrew-Greek key study Bible”, but I dont have that Bible any more, and I study languages, so, together with spiritual message I am interested in linguistic aspects of the Holy Scripture,and for me personally the pencil sometimes helps.


Do you mean like this ???


No. No. No,no,nononono. Just no.

My Bible was a gift from a very dear friend when I joined RCIA - she’s not Catholic, but really the only one of my friends and family to actively support me. I was unemployed and very poor at the time, and didn’t know how I was going to buy a Bible like the leader had recommended, and she scoured through the different Catholic bibles on Amazon to find this one. I keep it in pristine condition. It took me quite a while to break down and put my name in the front cover, and that was only because I accidentally set it down in the church one day and walked out without it, and had nightmares that I might do that again and not get it back.

I would love to get a good Catholic journalling Bible, like the Inspire Bibles, but Catholic. I feel like they would be very meditative.


And like this ???

How one answers the question is sometimes answered in terms of how can we most show our reverence for God’s Holy Word ?

I was initially opposed to writing in my Bible. Then the question appeared in my mind ( which I believe was from my Guardian Angel) :
Do I show more reverence by keeping it pristine, clear and untouched, like a talent buried in the sand ?
Or do I do what most facilitates my learning of it so that it comes into my mind, my memory, my heart so that I might know Jesus and His Word better?

When I go to Bible studies there is always someone who attacks the Church’s teaching, or genuinely inquires on how to help Protestants who attack Church teaching on Mary, Eucharist, or whatever.

Now, I have studied the answers to hundreds of these questions. However, I do not have instant recall to everything I have learned. It does little good in many cases to come up with the answer on my way driving home. Or even next week. By then, to bring back up the divisive issue make me come across as just looking for an argument. So …

Do I show my reverence and gratitude by placing into my Bible notes that will assist me clarifying what it does mean when I am in a Bible study with others, and sometimes Protestants ?

My notes come from articles or talks Karl Keating, Scott Hahn Ph.D., Tim Staples, Steve Ray, and also my Father who always had a deep passion for God’s Holy Word. I do not add the notes unless they are better than the ones already there in print.

One thing to remember is that Faith is not an award of the intellect. Learning the Bible is more than just intellectual study. Always pray to the Holy Spirit before you even begin to read it.

The notes are color coded with the underlined words.

Right click on the image to bring up the drop down menu and select
"view image"
so see whole page.
Feel free to print it out and place in your Bible if you are so inclined.



I can’t bring myself to write in any book, so no.


I particularly don’t like to write in any book. That also means, that I don’t write in any of my Bibles. To me, the Bible is sacred and the word of God is written in its pages and It feels wrong to me to write on it.

What I do is, that I write my notes on a notebook that I keep. On it, I write the passage chapter and verse number, and then I add my notes. I also keep and maintain a file on the computer were I add the notes I have on the notebook. It is easier for me to reference back to the file I keep on the computer at any time.


I highlight quite heavily in my Bible. It helps when I want to read scripture and know the book, but not the verse numbers. I keep a journal with me to write when I read, it’s easier for me to refer to my reflections when I read something that suddenly made clear what I had previously not understood or when I experienced an epiphany while reading the Word.


Except for the highlighting mine looks a lot like yours.


Normally I am not a fan of writing notes or underlining in Bibles. The reason is, every time we read the Bible it is (or should be I think) like hearing God anew. Therefore notes and underlinings can sort of freeze in time a meaning, and perhaps stifle new insights.

However, in your case, you have a definite apologetic agenda, which I applaud, and whole-heartedly agree with! :grinning:


On the other hand, I find it interesting to see what’s struck me previously, compared to what’s striking me now. :grinning:


Thanks AmbroseSJ.
I have more than one Bible.

After much prayer and discernment I went for two weeks to visit a relative who was at Christ for the Nations, Protestant Ant-Catholic Bible College in Dallas. So, I was sure to take the Bible pictured above. I let it be known I was Catholic, as I wore a shirt with this beautiful Icon of Mary at 12 x 15 inches.

People would come to my dormitory room there two at time to save me. Most Protestants who approach Catholics on Bible subjects are not inclined to want to learn from the Catholic. As soon as they find out the Catholic can respond to a specific accusation of theirs they quickly change subjects, and switch to a new line of attack.

So, before the discussions / debates began I got them to agree that each side would be given all the time they wanted to explore or explain their views on that subject. So, I told them they could pick any one topic of their choice, but we needed to stay on that subject till we were both finished. In other settings, I would insist that I also get to choose one subject as well.

I had a good time there.

My previous upload is a little fuzzy.
Hopefully this will be better.



I have an RSV CE Bible that I read only, wanting to keep it pristine but I have a smaller Ignatius New Testament reserved for writing in. I also have my favourite hymn: “Walk in the light” written in the back of it. :slight_smile:


I did in the one that I gave my little sister, I underlined stuff, and I put little boxes around things so I can remember verses, I don’t do it in my study Bible though, oddly enough.


This is pretty much that I do. I do not write note in my Bible.

I do, however, highlight the appropriate verses which I need to remember for reference later when I’d be looking for them. I have poor memory and cannot remember those chapters and verses of the Bible very well.

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