How To Read Through The Bible And Why We Should
Before I became a Christian I used to be a smoker. I was a real 20-a-day smoker, but for all the 20 years that I did, I probably spent about 10-15 of those years trying to give up. I tried cold turkey, gradual reduction, patches, gum, medication, acupuncture and hypnosis. Most of them several times. The main thing was that I kept trying different things, and I didnt give up giving up.
The next time I experienced something of this repeated failure was quiet time. I tried different devotional books, a Bible verse a day, Bible reading apps nothing seemed to stick. If I only read a Bible verse, it was good, but just not enough to sink in and create any real space for God to do work in me. Some devotional books were a bit lame and I gave up. Some were really good but I couldnt seem to do it every day and after missing a few days would also give up. Id do the Bible-in-one-year on an app but end up skim reading a lot of it by scrolling too fast.
But Ive always known that reading the Bible in its totality is a wise and good thing to do. It increases fluency, provides repeated insights into the whole story arc of the Bible and who God is. It is where God communicates with us. And while we need Bible preachers and teachers to help us interpret and understand it, we also need to know what God is saying to us. Martin Luther said that as long as I have Gods word, I know that I am walking in his way.
Bible Reading Plan #5
Another no stress, no pressure Bible reading plan is this one from Read the Hard Parts. Just mark off each chapter when you have finished and you can go in any order as fast or as slow as youd like. This is good for the person who likes a plan but also likes to have some say in the plan.
reading tips newsletter. Get encouragement all year long to stay in the word and tackle those hard parts!
Can You Read The Bible In One Day
It takes just 70 hours and 40 minutes to read the Bible through at pulpit rate, and aloud! It takes only 52 hours and 20 minutes to read the Old Testament, and just 18 hours and 20 minutes to read the New Testament. One could read the Bible through in a year by reading less than 12 minutes a day!
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These Are Gods Very Words
You may have heard the Bible referred to as The Word of God. This idea comes from within the Bible itself. The authors of the Old Testament referred to the words they recorded as the Word of God. And in the New Testament, Jesus Himself referred to the words recorded in the Old Testament as being the very words of God.
This means that these very words carry Gods authority and speak the truth about Gods character, His actions and His plans for the world.
The Bible reveals that God is a God who speaks with authority. Much of the Bible is a recording of Gods instructions, corrections and blessings that He spoke both audibly and through His Spirit in visions and dreams to His people. It is difficult to pick just one example from the Bible that illustrates this idea because there are so many!
The Bible clearly contains the understanding that Gods spoken word is true and authoritative in creation and the lives of His people. Over and over the words, God said or The Word of God or The voice of the Lord occurs in the Old Testament.
In the New Testament, the author of the book of Hebrews explains it like this:
In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe.
Refer To A Concordance Or Use A Catholic Study Bible
Learning how to read the Bible can be a fun adventure, but sometimes you may want a little help to understand it better.
A concordance is a book that has an alphabetical index of the main words you find in the Bible and where to find them. It can be helpful when you have specific themes or words you want to locate in the Bible. The New American Bible Revised Edition Concise Concordance is one such book.
A Catholic Study Bible is helpful to give more details and information about the Bible passages to help you understand them more fully. A study Bible may also contain essays or other commentaries about certain Bible passages or topics. Two Catholic study Bibles are: The Catholic Study Bible and .
For further reading: A Bible Reading Plan for Beginners- 3 Different Ways You Can Read the Bible in Just 15 Minutes a Day
Also Check: What The Bible Says About Divorce And Remarriage
Reading The Bible Helps Me Look Forward To Our Glorious End
I have now read the Bible from Genesis through Revelation. Can I now say that I know God well? Hardly! How many times do we have to read through the Bible to know God wholly? Two times? Three times?
The truth is that it is not until we meet the Lord face to face that we can really know Him fully. One day, God will return and dwell among us. On that day, we will see Him face to face, and death or sin will no longer stand in our way . We will then be able to converse directly with the Word Himself.
Until then, the Bible is the only way we can reliably know God now. We, whose minds were blinded by the gods of this world, can now see the light of the Gospel and the glory of Christ through the Bible . Though we can only know God partially because of our finite minds, He promises to meet us so that one day we can see Him fully. We may then say confidently with the apostle Paul, Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known . Im looking forward to that day!
While waiting to see God face to face, let us keep growing in our understanding and knowledge of Him through the Word He has given us, which ultimately points to the true, living WordJesus Christ.
I want to close by inviting you to pray a prayer by Anselm, a church father from the 11th;century. After meditating on the majestic characters of God in his book Proslogion, Anselm responded with the following words:
Soli Deo gloria.
How Can Reading The Bible Change Your Life
The more time we spend reading the Bible the stronger our identity in Christ becomes. We are able to love and forgive others, and the closer we grow to Christ the more we desire to read His word. Connecting with God is what changes our life.
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How Long Does It Really Take To Read The Bible
If you are like me, you may often make excuses for not reading Scripture, the most common of which is theres not enough time! But the reality is that there is enough time. We fill our schedules with other priorities while we neglect Gods Word. It can be helpful for us to realize just how much time reading the Bible actual takes. Ive compiled a list of each book of the Bible ranked according to word count and how long they take to read .
Almost half the books in the Bible take less than a half-hour to read. Twenty-three of them can be read in under twenty minutes! Thats one episode of your favourite episode on Netflix . Thats the amount of time you probably spend checking Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter on any given morning. Thats the amount of half a lunch break at work.
I hope this list will help you to see that reading whole books of the Bible is an attainable goal if we make it a priority.
Shortest to Longest3 John 219 words, 2.2 minutes2 John 245, 2.5 minutesPhilemon 335, 3.5 minutes
Don’t Wait Until Next Year
We know it’s easy to fade in Bible reading. We’ve all been there. But don’t give up and buy into the idea that next year will be different. It won’t be. Today is the best possible day to engage God’s Word. So forget the guilt over “what was” and resist the temptation to think “what could be” and jump in right now. Try mixing things up with one of the ways listed above and use our resources freely-that’s why they’re there. And remember, God’s Word is a living Word that speaks life to his people and leads us to Jesus, so it really is worth engaging.
BibleProject is a nonprofit ed-tech organization and animation studio that produces 100% free Bible videos, podcasts, blogs, classes, and educational Bible resources to help make the biblical story accessible to everyone, everywhere.
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About The Bible Study Tools Reading Plan
Statistics show that most people professing faith in Jesus have never completely read their Bible. Many people start reading the Bible but then become overwhelmed by the number of chapters and verses there are. What we don’t realize is that we can read the Bible in a year by reading fewer than four chapters a day.
By dividing the Bible into 365 daily readings, your goal of reading the Bible in a year can easily be accomplished. Here at Bible Study Tools, not only can you come and read the Bible on a daily basis, but we can help you chart your reading progress online during the year. That means you don’t have to wait until the New Year — you can start reading the Bible today.
First, just register or login so we can show you a customized Bible reading plan tracking chart. We currently have over 20 Bible reading plans so you can choose one that works right for you! The Bible in a Year reading plan contains 365 daily readings designed to help you easily read the entire Bible in just one year! Simply select your preferred Bible reading plan, the date you wish to begin reading and your preferred Bible translation. We will create your customized progress chart, and you’ll be on your way! Record your Bible reading progress as you go – complete your assigned Bible reading each day and click Finished Reading at the top or bottom of the Bible in a Year reading page.
Start your daily Bible reading journey today!
Choose A Bible Reading Plan
There are many plans for how to read through the Bible in a year, and its important to select one that feels both doable and interesting. If you start in Genesis 1 and hope for the best, theres a good chance you might get bogged down in the Old Testament and give up.
The most common plans have a daily mixture of Old Testament and New Testament readings, often paired with a Psalm and a verse or two from Proverbs. Another interesting option is to read through the Bible chronologically, in the historical order of when the events happen .
There are also plans grouped by theme, plans designed for families, and more.
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Where Should I Start Reading The Bible
A lot of new and seasoned Christians have a story about their attempts to read the Bible cover to cover that goes something like this: It was going great as they read through Genesis and Exodus, but somewhere in Leviticus or Numbers, they started to get bogged down in details they didnt quite understand. And by the time they hit Deuteronomy, they were done.
While its true that all Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness , we need to recognize that the Bible is not like any other book. It isnt necessarily meant to be read from front to back. In fact, the Bible is actually a library.
The Protestant Bible is comprised of 66 books, and many of those books are written in a variety of different genres or types of literature. These genres all need to be read a little differently. Starting at Genesis and trying to read straight through without a strategy can get frustrating if you dont know how these books and their literary genres work together.
There are a few ways to classify the genres of the Bible, but they typically fall into these categories.
Where To Start Reading
Like any great story it makes sense to start at the beginning, but perhaps if you are like me, skipping ahead to the climax of the story is also very attractive.
Its up to you where you start, and hopefully as you read, study, discuss and digest Gods truth, you will learn that every new page is God speaking to you and into your life. Enjoy every pageits a book that youll never get tired of.
Although this is not an exhaustive list, the passages found in Jesus on every page: Reading the Biblical narrative in Five Acts;can be a good place to start as you seek to understand the overview of Gods story. Once you have read through these, dig deeper into the life and teachings of Jesus Christ starting in the book of John, in the New Testament.
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What I Did The First Time I Read The Bible Through In Its Entirety
No, the first time I read the Bible in its entirety was years ago and I did it with one simple checklist. A list that didnt dictate how many chapters I HAD to read each day. This checklist didnt set a time frame of 5 years or 3 years or 1 year or 6 months. This checklist didnt say You must read for 30 minutes each day. There were no time parameters on this checklist at all.
The checklist was simply a list of the books of the Bible with the number of chapters listed after each book. So Genesis was listed and then a list of numbers followed, 1-50, to represent each chapter in the book of Genesis. Every book in the Bible was listed the same way. I remembered hearing one of my pastors say to start reading the Bible in the Gospels. So I read Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John in that order. Then I didnt know what to do, so I kept reading the New Testament in order. This was over the course of months, reading a chapter or two as I could. Some days I might have extra time riding on the bus, so I would read an entire book. I remember reading the book of Ruth in this manner because it is only four chapters. But I didnt worry about the quantity or time frame at all. I just marked off the chapters and books as I read them.
Level Three: The Prophetic Books
The last section contains the writings of the prophets.;They wrote about a great deal of things, but mostly they spoke about two major catastrophes in Israels history.
In 722 B.C., Israel was destroyed by Assyria, and then in 586 B.C., Babylon attacked and captured Jerusalem. These events were incredibly significant in the life of Israel. By and large, the prophets wrote to warn of, or explain, these events.
The final prophet, Malachi, wrote about 400 B.C., and then there was silence until Jesus arrival.
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How To Read Through The Bible In A Year With Kids
Journey through Scripture and grow your relationship
One of the most important spheres of influence in which we can lead Scripture engagement is within our own families. But often this is the most difficult place to start! Thats why we asked J.R. Briggs, founder of Kairos Partnerships, to give us some tips. Find out how leading his son in reading through the Bible in a year became one of his favorite leadership roles. Then try it yourself with this one year Bible reading plan or another of your choosing.
While Scripture reading is an important part of my daily rhythm and preparation to lead others in engaging the Bible, as a parent of two sons Ive thought often about ways to seek out and implement opportunities to read the Bible with my kids. As our oldest son, Carter, turned 10 this year, I saw this as a significant year of his lifea rite of passage, moving from a kid to being a young man. A Christian bar mitzvah of sorts.
And so, I officially invited Carter to join me on an adventure: to read the entire Bible together in a year. If he accepted the challenge, he could choose to go on a trip anywhere in the U.S. on a three-day father-son trip. He acceptedand he was excitedbut, admittedly, I had doubts and lots of questions.
Would this work?
What if he hates reading the Bible?
Are we setting ourselves up for failure with too big of a goal? Is this too soon?
Would he not want it taking time from his day, every day?
I knew it was a risk. But it was worth it.