You have areas where you spend money, and others where you don’t. Some folks like to have a new model car, and resign themselves to a life of car payments. Others buy guns or expensive golf clubs or pricey fishing gear. If one suggests spending money on something not in their immediate area of interest you’ll get a response something like, “Not all of us have the kind of money to spend on [fill in the blank here]!”
But if there’s one area to splurge a bit it’s on a good Bible. No, I mean a good Bible. Ah, but I have a “genuine leather” Bible. See it’s stamped right here, you say. None of that bonded leather business for me. Alas, “genuine” leather isn’t what it used to be. I felt a genuine leather Bible at a bookstore the other day that would win an Oscar for its convincing role as plastic. Genuine leather is the new bonded.
It’s not only about aesthetics. Yes, quality leather will look better. The leather will look like something natural rather than something processed. But it also won’t crack with use. It will bend and roll without resistance. The pages are sewn into signatures rather than glued. The soft leather demands you to hold it.
While our Bible companies have been in a race to the bottom, a few makers are producing enduring editions. Cambridge, particularly their Pitt Minion Bibles in goatskin, is embracing its heritage. Crossway’s premium editions (calfskin) live up to their billing. But the ne plus ultra of premium (read, quality) Bible editions seem to be coming from Allan Bibles of Scotland. Offering a variety of translations in both single and double column formats, the Bibles are then bound in Highland goatskin. Once you touch Highland goatskin you will be thankful these fine ruminants have been sacrificed for your reading pleasure.
One stop shopping can be found at evangelicalBible.com, which company serves as importers for Allan and Cambridge, as well as distributors for other fine Bibles. For a more detailed discussion of fine Bibles as well as reviews of most every fine edition of the last few years, see J. Mark Bertrand’s comprehensive Bible Design Blog. Pinstripe Pulpit, too, will be offering reviews of some select Bibles, and provide suggestions of what to consider before purchase.
There was a time when a Bible would last a lifetime and more. Too many of today’s Bibles begin to self-destruct within a couple of years. Your Bible isn’t an area to skimp.