What is it about the color “red” that gets our attention? Just drive through our subdivision and you’ll see that about half the home-owners have painted their front door red. Get a work assignment back at school and the teacher’s comments are generally in red. Most ads that catch our attention contain red. There’s just something about the color!
That’s also true when it comes to the Bible. Although all the words in the Bible are truly the Words of God, the words in red usually garner extra respect. Red-letter Bibles have become so common that it’s easy to assume they have been around for as long as Bibles have been printed, but the first red-letter New Testament was not published until 1899. The first red-letter Bible followed two years later.
According to the Crossway.org website, the idea of printing the words of Christ in red originated with Louis Klopsch, editor of Christian Herald magazine. Klopsch was a close friend of such contemporaries as T. DeWitt Talmage, D.L. Moody, and Ira Sankey. Klopsch was an early supporter of Moody’s Bible Institute in Chicago, rallying Christian Herald readers to send in contributions for the financially strapped school. In his eighteen years as proprietor of Christian Herald, Klopsch raised more than three billion dollars for relief work throughout the world.
In my fall sermon series we will take a closer look at some of the words written in red. Every sermon will be based upon the very words of Jesus; the words that are written in red in a red-letter edition of the Bible.
Plan now to be present every Sunday if possible. Remember that you can also access our Sunday sermons at http://www.shelbyvillebaptist.com.