Scripture Marking Methods
Everyone who has a strict marking method can tell you that their’s is the absolute most effective method. You don’t have to burst their bubble by informing them of the fact, but take note of other’s methods, because they may serve you well for a while. Here are a few that I have come across. Don’t forget that most of these can use in other types of scripture, such as the words of living prophets and your patriarchal blessing:
1. Take 4 different colors of either pen, pencil, or marker. Have one color represent promises, one represent warnings, one represent doctrines, and one represent commandments, and underline verses in their appropriate color. This works especially good for the doctrine and covenants and patriarchal blessings.
2. Watch in your scriptures for the testimony pattern of knowing, feeling, and doing. use 3 different colors of pen to mark which of the three is being best represented in the verse you are reading.
3. Do the same with the 3 pillars of salvation – the creation, fall, and atonement. Considering the 3 as categories of doctrines, underline every doctrine you come across in the scriptures with the appropriate category’s color.
4. Mark every reference to Jesus Christ, including every use of any title He has, such as Lord, God, Father, etc. Especially look for different and unique names referring to Him.
5. Come up with a way to mark the “types” and symbols of Christ that you come across – the foreshadows or reflections of Him. Mark the type, with a note or cross-reference to the event or scripture that references Christ in that manner. Ex. While reading about Nephi, you might mark the verse about his fleeing into the wilderness and cross reference it with Christ’s having to flee for His life, or when His parents took Him to Egypt for safety. The scriptures are jam-packed with such types. Find and mark them.
6. If you like to be detailed or comprehensive in your marking system, use a variety of marking styles to represent all the different things. With a mix of both colors and styles, there is virtually no limit to how many marking representations you can have. Use underlines for one thing, brackets for another, circles for another, etc. Striped circles, cross-patterns, slashes, boxes, stars, asterisks – even smiley faces can be used to point out a particular thing. Any of these styles, multiplied by the number of colors you are using, allow you use as many marking methods as you want. With this method you’ll want to be consistent – perhaps green brackets can always represent prophetic warnings, or blue asterisks always represent when God the Father is speaking. Make a key to help you remember what represents what.
7. Have different markings to represent your different roles in life, such as mother, father, son, friend. Include your callings and other duties. As you come across scriptures that speak to that role, mark it accordingly.
8. Go fishing. Just get a marking tinsel, and every time you come across a verse you like, mark it.
9. Mark every time Christ is speaking – whether in person, by His voice, or by gentle thoughts of comfort.
10. Use colors to represent things appropriate to that color, such as red to represent the atonement, purple (royalty or power) to mark every time the priesthood is used, green for mention of life or the earth, blue to represent heavenly things, etc. Use colors that seem most appropriate to you.
To be continued… tomorrow!