Several years ago I bought myself a NASB Giant Print Personal Size Reference Bible, red letter, black bonded leather cover, published by Zondervan. I have used it very heavily since then; not so much recently since I’ve been researching other translations, but heavily nonetheless.

It’s still in pretty fair condition. I don’t write in my Bibles, so it isn’t all marked up; and the pages are in remarkably good condition with very little bending or rippling of the pages. I think it’s a glued binding, yet it has always opened quite flat. The bonded leather has become soft and flexible over the years and it can do the requisite “Bible yoga” as well as just about any fine leather Bible. The gold page edging still shines, though the wear is noticeable.

A couple years ago I noticed the nice shine had begun to come off the bonded leather on the edges where it bends, leaving a dull streak up the spine. This has continued to worsen. Now that finish is starting to come off several other spots in various places, mostly on the edge but one or two places away from the edge as well.

When I look at the Bible from the end, I can see how the leather has come away from the spine more than before, which is probably fine, but I also see the bonded leather cover is starting to separate from the inner lining; and also the first few pages front and back are also coming unglued. Those are the dedication pages in the front and the maps in the back.

In some ways this Bible fits me very comfortably, like an old shoe. The cover is like “holding water”. The font size of the text is big enough for me to read without my bifocals, although the font of the notes and references is a little too small for that. The type is a nice, heavy black, and the red letters are a deep red, all of which makes for a very pleasant reading experience.

The one thing I always said about this Bible is that it’s too bad Zondervan didn’t publish it with a real leather cover; that and the page edging wasn’t finished very well, it was rough and wavy.

And so I’m contemplating replacing this Bible. And I mean replacing it, with another NASB. I’m seriously considering getting Foundation’s Large Print Ultrathin NASB, since I got a good look at one and discovered that it really isn’t a thin Bible at all, but a full-size double column with center-column references. That’s exactly what I want.

But how much life is left in the old one? Can I justify replacing it yet?