If this is the year you commit to reading the bible through cover to cover, you probably know there are dozens of plans from which to choose.
Several years ago, after labouring through bible plans that seemed ponderous, I put together my own that has breathed new life into my personal daily bible reading for more than a decade.
1. Jesus’ story needs to be read…often.
Early on I realized that I want to revisit the life and ministry of Christ throughout the year. My plan places the four gospels in each season of the year.
2. Naming the elephant in the room – Some parts of the bible are boring.
Ploughing through some sections of the Law or the minutia of genealogies can suck the life out of bible reading. I intersperse these sections with regular “bursts” of Psalms and Proverbs.
3. The Prophets come to life when they’re matched with their history.
I like to provide context for the major and minor prophets by positioning these readings as near to their corresponding history book as possible.
4. Grouping the Epistles creates context and texture.
I love working through the Pauline epistles, taking a “gospel break” then tackling the other letters a bit later in the year.
5. Wrapping up the year with John
I’ve always had a special appreciation for “the disciple Jesus loved”. I end the year with John’s gospel, followed by his epistles, then the Revelation.
John Ortberg has rightly observed that while getting through the bible is good, getting all of the bible through you is what really matters. That’s very true. Reading the bible all the way through is not in and of itself spiritually significant. But the discipline of spending time in scripture can yield marvellous results.
Whatever plan you use, stick with it, and watch as God’s Spirit breathes His life into you through His Word.