3 Reasons We’re Doing This
1. That we might “be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus, so that with one accord [we] may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 15:5–6).
Reading the Bible together will promote our unity and love for one another, and that unity will come out as we gather each week to sing praises to our God.
2. For daily spiritual nourishment.
Matthew 4:3–4 says,
The tempter came and said to [Jesus], “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’”
3. That we may not sin against God.
Psalm 119:11 says,
Your word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against You.
1. Start on January 1.
It’s easy to fall behind on Bible reading on holidays, weekends, and other days off. Don’t fall into that trap!
2. Read in the morning.
It’s popular advice not to worry about what time of day you read your Bible. However, I would strongly encourage you to read your Bible and pray in the morning, before you begin your daily labors. This is one way of offering to God the firstfruits of your time each day. I and many others (especially our fathers in the faith) can testify of the great benefits of starting your day with the Word and prayer.
Let me hear Your lovingkindness in the morning;
For I trust in You;
Teach me the way in which I should walk;
For to You I lift up my soul.
In the morning, O LORD, You will hear my voice;
In the morning I will order my prayer to You and eagerly watch.
That being said, if you don’t manage to get it done in the morning, don’t lose heart. Doing it at any time of the day is infinitely better than not doing it at all.
3. What if you fall behind? Jump back in.
Don’t get discouraged or overwhelmed if you fall behind. If you’re a self-disciplined person, I would recommend applying your faculties to catching up—either spread out your deficit over the course of the next few days, or tackle your catching up during a free morning or afternoon. If you’re not so naturally self-disciplined, or this is your first go at something like this, I recommend just jumping back into the plan on the day you’re supposed to be reading, and not worrying about reading what you missed. My mom says, “If you were at the movie theater and needed to run out to the bathroom, when you came back and realized you had missed something, you wouldn’t just give up on the movie altogether. Instead you would sit back down and try to understand what was going on or ask someone and then sometime in the future, you would watch the whole movie again.”
4. Pray before, during, and after Bible reading.
- Come to God’s Word asking Him for understanding and humility.
- As you read, follow the Holy Spirit’s leading in responding to His Word with…
- Adoration – Praise God for who He is and what He has done.
- Confession – Confess your sins to God.
- Thanksgiving – Give thanks to God for specific blessings.
- Supplication – Present your requests to God.
5. Read, listen, or read.
There are several media for doing your Bible reading. In order of my own recommendation and preference, here are the main options:
- Read from a physical Bible. This is preferable. I believe holding a physical book and reading on physical pages helps your brain retain what you’re reading.
- Listen to an audio version. Listening to the Bible is a good option, and most Christians throughout history would have gotten their Bible from someone reading it out loud (live and in person, of course). I do a lot of my Bible “reading” in the car as I drive around, especially if I need to catch up when I fall behind. I also really enjoy listening to a whole New Testament letter all the way through. The YouVersion mobile app has easily accessible audio versions for most English translations. Just don’t get into into a habit of using this medium as a convenient way to check off reading your Bible without actually paying attention to it.
- Read on your phone. Obviously, reading on your phone is better than not reading the Bible, but this one’s at the bottom of the list. Bible reading is a good opportunity to take a break from screens and distracting notifications. I also believe screen-read content fails to stick in our minds as well as content read from a physical page.