The scriptures were an oral tradition long before they were a written one. Stories of the faith were told and retold, recited in homes and in houses of worship, made real for the hearer by the storyteller. Only after many generations and much debate did the Bible reach the form we read it in today.
When you sit in pews, you will see new Bibles in the racks. These Bibles are the same translation as our old Bibles, the New Revised Standard Version; however, they are uniform in edition, meaning that the page numbers are all the same. The page number for each lesson is cited in the weekly order of service. The passage itself is no longer printed in the bulletins.
You are welcome to open the Bibles to see the full context in which each passage occurs. You are equally welcome to listen without reading along. Our scriptures are among the oldest stories still shared today.