Pathways into God’s Word – Read the Bible in a Year
Our church focus to begin 2014 is “entering the story of God.” We are getting into the Bible and getting the Bible into us so that our lives are shaped by God’s Spirit speaking through God’s word.
In the first sermon in this church-wide emphasis on Bible reading, scripture memorization was suggested a way of entering the story of scripture. If a person memorizes a verse every 2 weeks, by the end of the year, he or she will have 25 verses they’ve memorized. The memorization in and of itself is good, but the real value is the way the memorized verses begin to shape the thinking and outlook of the individual Christ-follower. If all I can say is, “I memorized this or that verse,” well, who cares? But, if I find myself in life situations that call upon me to choose and I find that when I need to choose my first thought is a scripture passage that has been imprinted on my brain, then the memorization is directly coloring who I am. I am God’s and the Word is a reminder and a guide.
Another pathway is to take in the entire scope of the story of the Bible. Read the entire Bible through in 2014. By the time you decide to do this, it may be January 10th or something like that. If that is the case, then read the Bible through by January 10, 2015. Or read a little extra so you can complete the read-through by December 31, 2014.
Ewordtoday.com has several programs to guide you as you go to read through in a year. You could simply pick up, start in Genesis, and not stop until you finish Revelation. I have done that and it is a neat way of reading through, but not the only way. Ewordtoday offers several programs (http://www.ewordtoday.com/year/).
I offer one comment related to this. The Eword site asserts as fact some details about the Bible that actually educated theories, but not established facts. A notable example is the book of Job. One of the Eword programs is to arrange the Bible chronologically. A popular theory suggests Job lived before the days of Abraham. Thus in the chronological read through program, readings in Job fall within the readings in the book of Genesis.
The fact is no one knows when Job lived. It is even possible that the book of Job is a parable and not a history. It is also possible Job was a historical figure. The Eword site accepts the latter theory, asserts it as fact, and locates Job in the primeval history (the era described in Genesis 1-11). This is fine, and it might be accurate. I do not endorse this interpretive decision, but I do recommend that if you want to read through the Bible in a year, the Eword site is helpful. And I highly endorse the notion of reading through the Bible in a year.
We are a week into 2014. I have offered two pathways into scripture:
- Scripture memorization
- Read through the Bible in a year
There is more to come. Read your Bible and seek God.