How Much Coffee Does It Take to Handwrite the Entire Bible?

How Much Coffee Does It Take to Handwrite the Entire Bible? January 25, 2018


I’ll admit it: coffee helps fuel my Bible handwriting. Yes, this is a spiritual pursuit led by God’s Spirit.

It’s also a lot of lonely work.

Caffeine helps.

In handwriting the Bible the first time, I was still in my “stop by Starbucks every morning” phase of life. I usually order a grande coffee, estimated at 330 milligrams of caffeine.

So let’s do the math: 330 milligrams times 899 days equals 296,670 milligrams or 296.67 grams. This is nearly 10 and a half ounces of pure caffeine.

In terms of coffee itself, 16 ounces times 899 days equals 14,384 ounces of coffee–over 112 gallons of coffee!

I’ve changed my habits, but maybe not my overall caffeine intake.

I rarely make a Starbucks stop now, instead making my own coffee or drinking a double shot bottled drink. This way I can “pace” how much I drink at a time and save some money in the process.

This has been a good health move, but maybe my pace of handwriting reflects my changed coffee habits. Instead of less than three years, my second time through is currently at four and a half years and ticking!

Is the answer found in a (larger) cup of coffee?

I don’t know what ancient scribes took to keep writing long sections of biblical text, but I have found what works for me.

Of course, medieval monks had all sorts of comments found in their manuscripts, both real and perhaps legendary. One of my favorites found at the end of a manuscript claims to read, “Now I’ve written the whole thing… give me a drink!”

Not sure what drink that monk referred to, but as long as good coffee is nearby, I may keep writing out the Bible for a long, long time.


Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and blogs about his experiences of handwriting the Bible at the Holy Writ Project on Find out more about Dillon at Facebook or Twitter.

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