The following quotation is copied from the Introduction of the International English Bible. This is the translation I was reading from on Sunday.
This Book (the Holy Bible) contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable. Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, and practice it to be holy. It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you. It is the traveler’s map, the pilgrim’s staff, the pilot’s compass, the soldier’s sword, and the Christian’s charter. Here paradise is restored, heaven is opened, and the gates of hell are disclosed. Christ is its grand subject, our good is its design, and the glory of God is its end. It should fill the memory, test the heart, and guide the feet.
Read it slowly, frequently, prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth, a paradise of glory, and a river of pleasure. It is given to you in life, it will be opened in the Judgment, and it will be remembered forever. It involves the highest responsibility, rewards the greatest labor, and condemns all who trifle with its sacred contents.
– Robert Chapman
May we understand and know that when we open the Bible and read its words with careful attention, we are opening our hearts and minds to the very words of God spoken by him to us. May we be faithful and careful listeners.