Friday, May 7, 2010

Homemade KJV Looseleaf

The King James Version has been around for a long time. In fact, its 400th birthday is coming up next year, and many still hold it to be the fountainhead of Bible translation. Because of its longevity and popularity, the KJV has no copyright in the United States (in the UK the Crown technically holds the copyright), which means that anyone can print the KJV any way they want, including you. offers free Microsoft word and Plain Text files of the entire KJV. This means that the text block can reformatted and printed it any way. It also features the books of the Bible in individual documents so you can print an individual book to look at. Perhaps the most obvious use of this resource is the creation of an interleaf Bible.

I used the file to print John, 1 John, 2 John and 3 John. I reformatted the text block to two inch margins, single column, verse per line and used a three hole punch to add blank pages in-between the pages of text. With the wide margins and the blank pages I can write copious notes. By keeping the pages in a binder, I can add pages as I desire, and I can carry whatever portions of the Bible I am currently studying.

Because of the large amount of space, I decided to use a four color writing system to separate my notes. I made margin notes first, dividing them by color, and then used the same color to key the notes to more complete comments and notes written on the opposing page, so red notes correspond to red notes on the blank page etc.

As you can see, I still nearly ran out of space on the blank page. Whenever, you have the space it becomes easy to use up.

For this project I used notes on 1 John, which is probably my favorite epistle. Its clarity and poetry are impacting and John constantly uses parallels, dichotomies and oppositions to clarify the word. I used margin and in-text notes to track these dichotomies and parallels, making brief illustrations to trace them. I simply wanted to get enough down to point to the notes on the opposite page. What's nice is that with normal weight paper you don't have to worry about the size or pressure of your writing, you can simply write naturally.

I separated the verses into thoughts by theme, bracketing them by subject and alternating colors.

I then marked the verse numbers down, but wrote all the notes on each bracket in the same color I made the bracket. This makes it easy to find your thoughts later and know what note goes where.

This is an excellent way to keep teaching outlines etc. because you have all of your notes and thoughts keyed to the text and side by side. It's also nice because you don't have to mark up your reading Bible if you find notes distracting.

One of the things I studied during this project was the parallel between the opening of the Gospel of John and the introduction of 1 John. John 1:1-5 is one of the most beautiful and powerful passages in the whole Bible and its also one of the strongest descriptions of the deity of Christ.
 John opened his Gospel in such a way to proclaim Christ as the Son of God in the fullness of his deity. 1 John 1:1-3 uses the same style to emphasize the humanity of Christ. John declares Christ's eternity "That which was from the beginning," but links Him to an auditory, visual and tactile experience. John refers to a real, physical experience with Christ, a human experience, featuring physical interaction: an eyewitness account. He ends the  first verse with the phrase "of the Word of life" a clear reference to Christ and an allusion to the opening of John's Gospel. John in no way weakens Christ's deity, but he stresses that Christ was human, that he came in the flesh, that he had a physical body and that he could be touched. The introductions of the Gospel of John and the first Epistle of John work together to emphasize the overwhelming deity and the overwhelming humanity of Christ. 1 John is very much a letter written to assure the saints that Jesus came in the flesh (1 John 4:2 and 1 John 4:3), but it does so even as it equates Jesus with eternity and reveals Christ Himself as eternal life (1 John 1:2).


  1. You could put a standard margin on the inside and an extra wide margin on the right. In essence you would be creating a two column page. The left or inside column would be the text and the right or outside column would be your notes.

  2. This is great!!! I'm going to put one together as I study a book of the Bible...Thanks for sharing.

  3. I too use the loose leaf method with the 2" margin format.
    Like yours, mine works great.
    Alongside using this bible format, I use the Cornell Note Taking Method for extra note taking.

    It is a great addition in conjunction with my Bible.

    Try downloading the Cornell Note page.
    There are several sites or you can make your own.
    Just google Cornell Note templates and you should locate one. It consist of three parts.
    1. detailed note taking
    2. outlining the notes
    3. general summary of the entire page.

    This makes for a great way to outline your studies.


  4. praise the Lord, i finally have located a site that fits my needs, only how i will use mine is to scoot all the scriptures to the left, and have one 3.5" wide column, but instead of printing with pen on it, i will type my notations. God Bless

  5. I also provide a Loose leaf Bible at my site MS Word and PDF formats available, All the Books are not complete, but I have more that 1/ of them available now. I have been working on this for the last 9 months or so. Check out my Site to see if the fit your needs. Free. Enjoy and Spread the WORD.

    While you are there check out my website on how to study Bible Symbols.