How to Index the Edge of Your Bible

You can make it easy to find each book in your Bible. All you need is a pencil, a fine-tipped pen, and an eraser and you’ll be able to flip quickly to the chapter and verse you’re looking for. A few minutes of time now will save you from the frustration of searching on the spot.

Materials Needed:

  • soft-lead pencil
  • fine or very fine black ink pen
  • soft eraser
  1. We suggest that you practice your first index on an old Bible or inexpensive Testament
  2. Spread out the edge of the Bible at an angle to the right and with a soft-leaded pencil make seven parallel lines across the edge approximately one-third of the way down from the top of the Bible and three-sixteenths of an inch apart.
  3. Take four or five of the sections* at a time and place between each of them a card of sufficient size and stiffness so that when spread out there is a distinguishing space between each section. Beginning on the bottom pencil line with Genesis, make ink lines across each section and up the edge of the first page of the next section. When the top pencil line is reached, make the vertical line down the first page of the next section to the line below.
  4. Taking one-third of the index at a time, spread out at an angle to the right and hold down tightly with the left hand while lettering and strengthening the lines. All pen strokes must be made straight up and down or to the right to prevent catching on the edge of the page.
  5. Spread out the whole Bible at an angle to the right and erase the pencil lines with an art eraser or other soft eraser, making all motions up and down and to the right.

 

*A section is a book or group of books like those put together in the illustration shown. Note the books that are grouped together in the sections of the index. In some cases all of the books are marked; others are not for lack of space. Groupings are as follows:

Old Testament

  • Judges, Ruth
  • Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther
  • Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon
  • Jeremiah, Lamentations
  • Daniel, Hosea
  • The 11 other Minor Prophets are equally divided into three groups and marked as desired

New Testament

  • Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians
  • Thessalonians, Timothy, Titus, Philemon
  • Hebrews, James
  • Peter, John, Jude