Bible Society of South Africa

Your Word the biggest treasure of all – 3 June 2022

By Ben Fourie

Bible text(s)

162How happy I am because of your promises —

as happy as someone who finds rich treasure.

Psalms 119:162GNBOpen in Bible reader

I have a large number of Bibles in my study, at last count a total of 52. I have copies of all four official Afrikaans translations and many English translations as well as Dutch and German, both languages that I understand well. I also have copies in Greek and Hebrew, languages that I am supposed to be able to read, but alas the days of university are too far in the past. However, the one translation that I would have loved to be able to read my Bible in isiXhosa.

I have big and bulky old collector’s items, others with modern covers and beautiful leather-bound Bibles that I received as gifts. Probably the most precious of all is a fairly battered old Children’s Bible that my parents gave me when I was six years old. The Bible was printed in 1955. The price that is still visible on the front page is 18 shillings and six pence. Quite expensive for the time, but to me it was a wonderful gift.

What a rich treasure to find, as the Psalm says, but it only becomes a treasure when I open it, read it and above all, believe in what I have read. If I do not read and believe, all these Bibles are worth nothing more than the boxes of old motoring magazines that I have also collected. It is just so much paper that will maybe fetch a small amount of money from the people who collect it to be recycled.

It does not matter if you have one Bible or a hundred Bibles. The Bible is still the greatest treasure that one can ever own, all the more so if it is in your own language. In the end, however, it is nothing more than just a book. The real treasure is in the message of that Book, namely that God loves us. It does not matter if you read it in English, isiXhosa or Afrikaans or maybe in braille or Sign Language, the message of his love as can be seen through his Son, Jesus Christ, does not change. Every one of the millions and millions of Bibles all over the planet tells us the same story: God loves us. What a treasure!

Prayer: Thank you Lord for your Word that is a greater treasure that anything else in this world. Amen

Bible Society of South Africav.4.16.16
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