Okay, I confess, it’s not just the Bible. The Rupert, Idaho ordinance is from 1960, and it reads,

A. Purpose: The purpose of this section is to promote the general welfare, good morals and safety of the inhabitants of the city, and particularly the minor children thereof, by protecting said minor children from the harmful influences of the prohibited matters hereinafter mentioned. (1960 Code, Sec. 9-801)

B. Prohibitions: No person shall distribute, exhibit, display, sell, give or furnish or possess with intent to do the same, to a minor or in any place within the view or which may be within the view of any minor, any book, magazine, pamphlet, printed paper, card, postcard, leaflet or article which:

1. Contains an account, plot, story, narrative, statement, picture, drawing, illustration or photograph of a gruesome, weird or horrible deed, character or thing depicted as real or fanciful, human or inhuman; or of a crime of violence, brutality, bloodshed or lust;

2. Contains an account, plot, story, narrative, statement, picture, drawing, illustration or photograph which is sexually indecent or suggestive or which features or portrays illicit love, immoral conduct, or vice, or which is otherwise obscene, immoral, lewd or lascivious;

3. Advertises wares for the prurient minded. (1960 Code, Sec. 9-802)

C. Exceptions: The provisions of this section shall not apply to any media for the general dissemination of current news nor to scientific, sociological or educational treatises or studies by qualified authorities, nor to such drawings, illustrations and photographs as are reasonably necessary to illustrate the same. (1960 Code, Sec. 9-803)

D. Enforcement: The publications advisory board shall enforce the provisions of this section. (1977 Code)

Many states had laws of this general sort, but I think this one was unusually broad. I should say that I’m not saying this to fault the Bible — the ordinance would equally apply to the Odyssey and the Iliad, many Shakespeare plays, and a vast range of other literature that “[c]ontains an account … of a gruesome, weird or horrible deed … or of a crime of violence … or portrays illicit love, immoral conduct, or vice.” And none of them are “media for the general dissemination of current news” or “treatises or studies by qualified authorities” in any normal sense of those terms; the Bible can be seen as many things, but it is not in normal language a “scientific, sociological or educational” “treatise[]" or “stud[y].”