Slow down and be a scribe

scribe- a person who copies out documents, especially one employed to do this before printing was invented

A couple Sundays ago while our church group was eating potluck together after the meeting, one of the brothers asked everyone something along the lines of, “assuming you had access to writing instruments and paper, if you were in prison for the sake of Christ and were handed a Bible that you could only keep with you for 24 hours what portion of the Bible would you write down to keep with you?”

Colossians was mentioned a few times as was 1 Peter and everyone agreed that Romans would be a good book to have. I started over thinking it and wondering how long it would take to copy down one of Paul’s letters? 3 hours? The whole 24 hours? I had no idea.

That next day I opened up to Romans and started writing. I set the stop watch on my phone and stopped the stop watch when I stopped writing and made a note in the notebook how long I had been writing for. I used the stop watch every time I had a chance to sit down and write some. (Because I’m not actually locked in a jail cell and I have work to do.. ha ha!) So far I am in chapter 9 and I have been writing for 4 hours and 25 minutes.

It has given me a new appreciation for Paul and the love he had for each of the churches he wrote to. I looked around online to see what was used as a writing instrument during new testament Bible times and from what I read Paul was probably using a hollow reed that had a diagonal point on one end and a fine slit cut into the point. It would be sharpened with a piece of pumice stone. Wow! Using my modern day ball point pen and having smooth notebook paper to write on after 20 minutes my hand is hurting and my neck is starting to cramp up! Not to mention that Paul was in pain from so many beatings and a lot of the time sitting in jail when writing- not exactly cozy.

It has given me a new appreciation for each and every word in the scripture that was painstakingly written, preserved, translated and printed for me to read. Writing this has also helped me to slooow down and savor each word. I read fast, I work fast, most things I do fast but mediating on God’s word is something that shouldn’t be rushed and copying down the scripture into a notebook is helping me slow down and see things and think about things that I wouldn’t if I was just reading. It’s something I recommend doing!

2 Timothy 4:13-21 The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments.

Galatians 6:11 Ye see how large a letter I have written unto you with mine own hand.


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