Ezra opened the book. All the people could see him because he was standing above them; and as he opened it, the people all stood up.“NIV

When I went ‘up’ from Junior school to Secondary modern, I felt certain differences in the atmosphere. One was that you had to stand up whenever the head, or head of year, walked into the room. Then there were certain other teachers who told us, ‘You stand up when I walk into the room too.’ One of them was a science teacher called Mr Little (who happened, ironically, to be quite big!) I found him scary. The early weeks at my new school were, at times, quite intimidating, although I soon got used to it. But I can still now feel the respect engendered (or demanded) by certain staff members, for whom we used to stand upon their entry. There was respect in the air.

Yet even more than this, I remember the impact of P.S.Brewster. Percy Brewster was the Secretary General (what would now call the General Superintendent) of the ‘Elim’ movement when I was in my teens. He carried about him a certain glow, an aura, a sense of the presence of God. I remember the first time he came to preach at my home church in Wigan one Saturday night, many moons ago. Still now I can feel something of what went through me when he asked the packed house to stand for the reading of God’s Word. This was not any old book, or a casual moment. This mattered. We were in the presence of God and His Holy Word, and we knew it. The air crackled with Spiritual power. I sensed ‘anointing’.

When I was a young boy, my old pastor (who may have been younger than I am now, so I’d better be careful) showed me the spine of a Bible, and pointing to each letter of the words ‘Holy Bible’ he said to me, ‘Honour, Obey, Love Your Bible. It Brings Life Everlasting.’

PRAYER: Teach us Lord to honour you and honour your Book.