At my private, church-run, Christian school, we often played a game called “sword drill.” It involved trying to find verses in the Bible as quickly as possible.

The name for the game came from Hebrews 2:12 “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” As good little culture warriors, we needed to be adept at finding verses in the Bible fast. After all, nothing convinces non-believers and Satanist to concede arguments better than a few quickly quoted Bible verses.

There were rules of course.

  1.  Everyone closes their Bibles and holds them by the binder. It’s important to hold them this way because some cheat will stick his finger between the Old and New Testament to get a few seconds advantage.
  2. The Leader shouts “Sheathe swords everyone should put their Bibles under their arms.
  3. The leader shouts “Draw swords” everyone should hold their Bibles in the air with straight arms.
  4.  A chapter and verse reference is given, and everyone has to repeat it after the leader. For example, “Proverbs chapter 31 verse 6.”
  5. After everyone repeats it, the leader shouts “Charge” and the race is on. Everyone tries to look up the verse as quickly as possible.
  6. The first one to find the reference stands and reads the first few words. if they are correct, they read the whole verse.
  7. Congratulations they win that round.
  8. Keep playing until recess because the teacher’s lesson went short.

There were of course cheaters. Some kids had ribbon bookmarks they kept between the Old and New Testament. Some kids had tabs in their Bibles that helped them find the books quicker. Those of us who could find the books without tabs were better Christians who really knew their Bible and didn’t need help. We won’t even talk about the pagans who didn’t know that Habakkuk was in the Old Testament. They would still be flipping pages in their Bible long after the whole verse had been read.

I did feel kind of bad for the kid from the Episcopal Church . . . he had the extra books of the Apocrypha in his Bible. He always lost.

Oh well, draw swords Ezekiel 23:20.

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