By Brian Borgman
I want to encourage you with thoughts on Bible reading that I’ve shared before in one form or another.
- You need God’s Word and so be resolved to consistently read it this year. We know the passages, Matt. 4:4; Psa. 119: 9, 11, 105; Josh. 1:8 and so on. Great passages that many of us memorized as new believers. We cannot live without the Word. If we try, we will be walking on our own, in darkness. One of the best ways to be sure you are consistent is to pick a Bible reading plan that fits you. Resolve to read regularly.
- You need familiarity with God’s Word, so read widely and then deeply. We want to read widely so that we are exposed to the whole counsel of God. We want to know the story line from Gen – Rev. We don’t simply want to know a verse here and there, we want to know God’s story. Read widely. The best way to do this is to pick a Bible reading plan that takes you through the Bible in a year. Over the years, one of the most profitable disciplines I’ve ever developed is reading the Bible through every year.
Another great breadth strategy is to read a book of the Bible in one sitting. Andy Naselli, in a good article, has a chart that shows how long it takes to read each book of the Bible in one sitting.
But there is not only breadth, there is depth. Choose a book or a chapter and make an effort to read more deeply. This may involve memorizing. This may involve using Study Bible notes or a commentary. But own something for the year. Settle in one something, like John 3 or Romans 8 or Isaiah 40 or Psalm 23 or 119. Be like the Psalm 1 man who is planted by streams of living water.
- You need the wisdom of God’s Word, so read prayerfully. Psalm 119:18 should be our prayer as we read, “Open my eyes so that I may behold wonderful things from Your law.” We should not read as if we are jumping through a hoop or performing a ritual. We want to be disciplined, but discipline and desperation are not opposites. I come to the Word as a desperate person, needing communion with God, a hungry person looking for food, a thirsty person for drink, a foolish person looking for wisdom, a poor person looking for wisdom.
We need God’s Word, so we need to be resolved, we should have a plan and we should read as if our life depended on it. It does.
There are Bible reading plans in the foyer. I have written one, there are navigator plans and I have included a link below.