I lower my nose to inches above the surface of the text and slowly inhale, taking in the scent of fresh leather, ink, and paper. The new black Scofield Study Bible in my hands feels firm, heavy, and resolute. I drink in the sight, the feel, the smell, the sound of the pages as they whisper when I turn them. I carefully run my fingers over it so as not to bend a corner or mess up the beautiful gold trim on the edges of each page. There is nothing quite so wonderful as a new Bible.
My old one was wonderful, but was worn out. More than one page on which resided verses of the Romans Road had been ripped from heavy use, and then there were the ketchup stains from the Children's Church sermon where I preached on Sisera, Barak, Deborah, and the tent peg through the temple (my Bible was a casualty when the tent peg caused the ketchup to violently squirt, as was the white dress of a little girl in the front row). Ah yes, a Bible which carried with it memories, stories, and legends. But now I have a clean slate. A new tool for my use in the service of the Saviour. A fresh blade with which to behead the forces of darkness and free captives from the bondage of sin. A sharpened blade. And I will keep it sharp, clean, and ready. Always ready.
I was taught in the Marines to never allow my weapon to be more than arm's length from my body. I ate with it, slept with it, and lived with it. It was part of me and as comfortable in my hand as my right arm in my shoulder socket. And when the enemy attacked I was ready to fight with it.
May we never take our weapons for granted. I will treasure this one.