Why NOT to do Bible Journaling

Do you know the dangers of Bible journaling? Today my friend Carolina is here to share some reasons why not to do Bible journaling.

Read the dangers of journaling and find out why NOT to do  journaling in your Bible.

When I was searching on the internet for this blog post, I found a video that was a confirmation for me to write this post.

I will tell you what I found on the video in a little bit. But for right now I want to tell you that this post is not meant to judge you, criticize you or make you feel bad.

The reason for this post is for you to be aware of what is happening and to check yourself to see if you have fallen in the trap of being deceived by Bible journaling, so you can fix things.

Most of us, if not all of us have seen all the beautiful Bible journaling pictures on Pinterest or in Google images.

There are amazing drawings and paintings decorating the pages of the Bible. Stickers, washi tape, templates, paintings, markers, color pencils and more are used now days to do “Bible journaling”.

All that is beautiful to look at and entertaining, but that is not what Bible journaling is all about.

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What is Bible Journaling?

Bible Journaling is praying for The Holy Spirit to give us revelation of His word.

Once He gives us revelation and understanding of what we are reading, then we write down what God is speaking to us. That is Bible journaling!

3 Ways You are Being Deceived with Bible Journaling 

Is Bible journaling deceiving you? Let’s take a look at these 3 areas to find out.  

Is journaling deceiving you? Read some of our concerns and see if you've fallen victim to any of these traps.

1. Mechanics

You know how sometimes we are driving and all of the sudden we realized that we were not paying attention to what we were doing?

The same thing can happen to us when we do Bible Journaling, we just read the Bible verse or the chapter and then go on to decorating the page!

There is no prayer, there is no connection, there is no quiet time where we sit to hear God’s voice and write down what He is speaking to us.

Remember, it is not about the pictures, the colors, or the pretty fonts. It is about writing down what God is speaking to you.

How to fix it: Don’t just go through the motions. Pray and listen to what your Daddy God wants to tell you and write it down. It will help you develop a personal relationship with God.

2. What is really important

At the beginning of the post I talked about a video that I found on YouTube and what I found on there.

The video was made by a lady that is super talented and creative. Her Bible was full of beautiful pictures, and paintings, and awesome fonts. Yet most of her pictures covered The Word of God.

The pictures completely took over of what was really important, The Word.

The Word of God is life, salvation, it is a blueprint for success. We should not cover it with anything to the point where it is unreadable.

Pictures are great, but they are not great when they are used to cover what God is speaking to you. Please don’t be deceived by having beautiful images in your Bible but missing the message. 

How to fix it: If you want to write, draw or paint in your Bible, make sure you take care not to cover what is really important. You should always be able to read the Word of God. Use light colors so the Word will be the main focus, not the picture.

3. Taking the focus away from The Word

This one goes hand to hand with the last point.

Sometimes we focus too much on the art. We spend more time thinking and planning and doing the art than the time we spend praying, reading and meditating on The Word of God.

All this takes away from the real Bible journaling but it doesn’t have to. It should be a compliment, not the priority. 

How to fix it: Check your heart. Make sure you are focusing on God’s Word and giving Him first place. Let the time you spend decorating your Bible not be greater than the time you spend reading, meditating, listening and writing what the Lord wants to tell you.

If you're concerned with the dangers of journaling in your Bible, read our reasons for not journaling in your Bible. See what we recommend instead.

In Conclusion

I think you know by now that Bible journaling is more than a picture. Bible journaling is writing down what God speaks to your heart. It is writing down the revelation that The Holy Spirit gives you.

Are pictures bad? No, you can have beautiful pictures in your Bible. Just check your heart and focus on what is really important.

Know that nothing can take the place of the Word of God.

If you find yourself guilty of 1 or all 3 of the dangers of Bible journaling shared here, no big deal. Today is a new day. You can start doing things right today!

Bible Journaling is a great way to connect with God and His word. I pray that you have ears to hear what God wants to teach you through His word. Write it down and meditate on it. It will be a great blessing in your life!

This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth; but you shall meditate therein day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success. Joshua 1:8

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Additional Resources: 

How to do Bible Journaling in a Notebooka wonderful alternative to journaling in your Bible 
3 Ways to Use Bible Journaling Coloring Pages 
9 Easy and Simple Bible Journaling Ideas 
How to do Bible Journaling 
Bible Journaling Tips for Beginners 
5 Steps to Bible Journaling for Beginners 
Ultimate Bible Journaling Glossary 
How to start Bible journaling: For Beginners 
7 Simple Bible Journaling Methods for Beginners 
25+ Best Bible Journaling Accessories 
4 FREE and Easy Bible Journaling Templates 
30 Favorite Bible Journaling Verses You Should Try 
FREE Bible Journaling Designs for Beginners


Carolina was born in the beautiful country of Costa Rica. She is a wife, mom of 2 boys, and 2 dogs and a Sunday school teacher.  She is proud to be a Texan and to call Houston her home. She studied Biblical and Ministerial Studies and graduated from Harvest School of Ministry.  She writes at Our Kingdom Culture, a Christ-centered blog dedicated to help and encourage women with wisdom to live a beautiful kingdom life. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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  1. Thank you for the caution about journaling in your Bible with drawing pictures, painting, etc. I just started Bible journaling (creative). It is definitely NOT just about the creative element, but TOTALLY about the Word of God settling into your heart. I am very Berean in nature and a very determined studier of the Word. I do find, however, that for me the verses that I have focused on creatively through Bible journaling, stays with me for days and I continue to think about the words of what I read. I also find that when I add the extra element of being creative it taps another part of my brain and helps me remember the verse(s) that I used. I have struggled with memorizing Scriptures most of my life, but I find that when I add the creative element, I can recall the verses even by looking at the picture. And so far, I have found no difference between being creative and doing a Precept study. The WORD is getting in and making a difference in my heart.

  2. I agree with this!!! I never understood the need to decorate the Bible! I have a Bible journal that I use to write my love letters to God; I may use little stickers, etc., but it’s NOT in my Bible. I only use highlighters during Bible to highlight the message. Good post! Thank you! :-)

  3. I am also doing bible journaling, but am I glad I haven’t seen the one with the space for coloring and drawing,the Journal book I have, has a space for reflection,revelation, impactful verse,praises,prayers, and application.but when I saw those bible journal books just today, I was entertained about its owners creativity but then I notice that some verses are covered already, and the drawing takes time, which steals our time for chewing gently and carefully the food for our soul. THANK YOU FOR THIS REMINDER

  4. I am Brazilian and I love Bible Journaling. When I found these two words and googled it.. oh it was marvellous! So much possibilities.. but I don’t cover the precious word. I use crayon and delicate things. I don’t have much space in my Bible to make drawings so I use a transparent paper (I don’t know the name in English it’s vegetal paper in Portuguese) and I put between the pages my art. I like to read and think about a image to express my thoughts and feelings about the Word of God and this helps me to focus a lot cause I have no discipline I am terrible. Thank you for this point of view. It was important and I think you are right in many points. But Bible Journaling can be good too. In the right measure. God bless you. Deus abençoe.

  5. THANK YOU so much for sharing this. I have recently became interested in Bible journaling as a way to help me connect with the Word and draw closer to God. As I have been researching a starting point, I was confused by the art covering an entire page of God’s word, making it illegible. The art is BEAUTIFUL but I think God’s word is even more beautiful.

  6. I have done
    Bible journaling now for about three or four years. I have always been confused why anyone would want to cover up God’s Word. I highlight, scriptures, but all of my pictures are in the blank spaces. I believe that God has lead me to several verses while doing this that I desperately needed and as I dwell on them, I highlight and draw out key parts to write in the spaces on the side. My Bible journaling is only a part of my time in God’s Word. I like to just read it and sit and meditate on it and pray for God to speak to me and help me to understand and apply His Word in my life. Another activity I enjoy doing is copying God’s Word. Then once I have copied a section of scripture, I write out a summary of it and what the verses are about. I also have a devotional book that I do where I take a subject and make two or more pages about it. I’ve done pages on Truth, Why I can depend on God’s Word to be true, Prayer, Worship and so on. I decorate the pages as I find verses about those topics. I have really enjoyed being creative with God’s Word in my life. Instead of just doing art, I get to do art with God. I think it is an AWESOME way to be in His Word, but I do understand the dangers of just going through the creative part of it without benefitting from the closeness to God that comes with it.

  7. Bible journaling is a very good way of learning especially for visual learners. I find the scriptures and pages in my Bible once journaled I can recall with color or highlighted words so much easier. Most everyone I know that journals with art keeps a separate Bible for their journal art designs as well, and have more than one Bible they use for the study or art they created. I feel the Lord gave us our learning styles and our creativity and loves to see how we connect with Him using the God given talents we have. Love your ideas! ♥️

    1. The ladies I follow call it Bible Art Journaling and also warn not to replace this for studying the word of God. They have separate Bibles for their Bible studies, prayer journals, and Art journaling. I have all 3 as well. Great article, especially for people who were a little confused about the different types of journaling. Love your blog and ideas! God bless!❤️😀🙏🏽

  8. I have been journaling for 5 years. I too have separate Bibles for my written journaling, my sermon and study Bible and an artistic journal Bible. I am a very creative person and to me this was an amazing opportunity that has helped me dig deeper. To express what God is revealing to me thru the talent He has given me. We are all different in the way we learn and express ourselves. These are definitely things to consider if you find yourself worried more about the outcome of your art than you do learning the precepts of Gods word. But, I have to say let’s be careful not to discourage anyone studying Gods word. I believe God can and does reveal himself in different ways to each of us.

  9. I appreciate this article. I underline and cross reference in my Bible; I journal and do artwork in my Faith Journal. Because doing the art work takes time away from study and meditation, I usually save it for some other time or at least leave it until the end of my time with God. It gives me time to reflect while I’m doing it, and enriches another part of my day- kind of like checking back in with Him part way through my day.

  10. Bible ‘art’ journaling has been a blessing. To express what God’s word means to someone thru art is powerful. I’ve taught Bible art classes. It’s amazing how God uses His word & someone’s creative hand to strengthen faith in different way. Sure, it’s not for everyone but that’s the beauty of God’s creation. We all learn, grow, connect, & draw deeper to Him differently. There is no right or wrong way to study the Bible. The bottom line is, does it help you grow & share your faith? I hope we can encourage others to use their creative gifts in studying the Bible if it keeps them in the Word… by underlining, writing, drawing, painting, &/or using embellishments. They are all different techniques to accomplish the same goal (understand, memorize, & draw closer to our Father God). There are incredible women of faith that teaching Bible (art) journaling has been their calling & passion. Also, believers that use the traditional Bible journaling techniques. Keep it up & may God continue to be honored & praised through each of us, who are beautifully & wonderfully made by His hands.

    1. I agree. I think people should be able to use whatever learning style works for them. If drawing helps them understand what they read in one of the hardest books to understand, then they should (and do) have that ability.

  11. Thank you so much for this article. I love the artwork that I’ve seen and I totally understand how someone can meditate on scripture by expressing it through art. However, I am not an artist and I got very caught up in learning how to make cute pages instead of actually studying. I even felt guilty because it wasn’t working for me. And all of this led to frustration, which isn’t supposed to be an emotion that is associated with spiritual growth through bible study. So I decided to walk away from my attempts at producing works of art in my bible.
    I am in awe of the art that I’ve seen and I admire the talents of the artists. But I also realize it is ok for me to not have that particular gift and that I can continue to grow by applying my basic study skills.

  12. Bible journaling, decorating and reminding one another that we are God’s children. When a non believer receives a decorated Bible and sees the message of the Lord pop out on a page instead of one they may never open, they will feel the love of God and may be drawn to get in the word as they may not ever done otherwise. Decorate and give those Bibles away😊

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