Of all the Bibles I own, my very favorite is my NASB Giant Print Personal Size Reference Bible from Zondervan. It’s a wonderful, handy size with a large 10 pt. font and nice dark ink in both the black and red text. The center column is full of, not only cross references, but also some very complete text and translator’s notes. It makes this Bible a handy study tool even though it’s not a study Bible, per se.

I have discovered one drawback to this Bible, however. The one I own is bonded leather. It is only available in bonded and in imitation leather; no genuine leather is available. And over several years of heavy use the cover is becoming frayed, and the grain is starting to lose its leather appearance and becoming one mass of black sludge (for lack of a more descriptive term.)

The text block is still in very good shape for its age and usage. It is a sewn binding, and except for a couple pages at each end it remains solid. The gold gilding on the page edges is also in very good shape, although it started out quite wavy in appearance and that has always bothered me.

So what should I do with this Bible? Do I just continue to use it until it falls apart? Do I replace it with another just like it?

One curious thought is that perhaps a imitation leather one would hold up better, that is, if it’s a good quality imitation leather, and I don’t know if it is. The imitation leather version is available from CBD for under $23 + shipping. I could use it hard until it falls apart and not worry about the replacement price quite as much. (But the imitation leather one comes with “gold stained” edges, which I don’t find at all appealing.)

Another possibility would be to send it away and have it recovered in real leather. A good, durable pigskin leather cover and a couple extra ribbons could be had for around $70 and would probably last a lifetime.

I’m thinking about just what I want to use this Bible for. I expect it will continue to be my every-day carry-to-church-and-Bible-study beat-around Bible. The pigskin would probably hold up very well under such use. But if I accidentally damaged it somehow, I’d hate to see that, and I’d hate to have to have it repaired.

I’m seriously thinking that my best path to take would be to order a new, imitation leather one, and then just use it until it wears out. And then get another one. (Of course, it may be replaced by another version at any time, should one become available that I really like!)