We’ve all done it. Despite the warnings, at one time or another we have placed something on top of our cars, forgot about it, and drove away. This past Sunday, I was walking out of the church building with my daughter in one arm and my notebook and Bible in the other. Since I can’t juggle very well and I haven’t grown a third arm yet, I had to put something down to reach my keys and get into the car. So, I set my notebook and Bible down on the trunk, opened up the car, and buckled in my daughter. As I’m sure you have guessed by this point, I completely forgot about the items sitting on my trunk. I started the car, made a left turn and drove down the street. Luckily, my notebook and Bible had stayed on the trunk to this point. Then I made another left turn onto a major road, and this is when my Bible slid off my trunk and into the gutter. To make matters worse, it had snowed the day before, and this sunny Sunday made everything a dirty, wet mess. I didn’t realize what I had done until we got out of the car and my wife asked me why my notebook was sitting on the trunk (somehow it survived the trip). Oops. At that point my reality came crashing down. We backtracked and found my Bible. It was still in one piece and wasn’t torn up at all, but it was filled with dirt, grime, and was soaking wet. My Bible was ruined.
It was an honest mistake, but I couldn’t help but think about how I had just destroyed my precious copy of God’s Word. As I sulked over my silly mistake, I came to realize that people do much worse things with their Bibles every day. What am I talking about? 2 Timothy 2:15 gives us the answer: “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.”
A person who isn’t “accurately handling” God’s word is a person who isn’t teaching, preaching, defending, and studying the Scriptures. They are mishandling the precious words God has spoken to us. They are not evangelizing. They hide in the corner when God and the Bible are being ridiculed. They are not concerned about the specific commands God has given in Scripture. Sometimes all of these apply to such people, but other times only a few do.
It’s bad enough destroying the physical words and pages in the Bible (trust me), but may we never “inaccurately handle the word of truth.” May we never be guilty of mishandling the information God has trusted us with by not defending the truth, by teaching false doctrine, or by not teaching it at all.
P.S. Oh, and make sure you check your car roof before you drive away as well.