Friday, October 10, 2014

Digging Deep: Make a Plan

Reading through the entire Bible is no small feat. It will take time and it will take discipline. Thankfully, the Father ordains time and His Spirit gives us self-control, so in Christ we have access to both time and discipline. What I mean is... YOU, yes you, can read through the whole Bible.

Most full-Bible reading plans are spread out over the course of a year. Some stretch it to two. If you do a year-long plan expect to read roughly 3-4 chapters a day. That might sound like a lot, but it really only takes about 15-20 minutes. In fact, some estimates say the average reader could finish the entire Bible in a year by reading 12.5 minutes per day. I know you have 12.5 minutes somewhere in your day to read God's Word broadly.

You will probably never finish your goal of reading through the Bible without a plan. Reading it cover to cover is tough, especially if it's your first time through the whole book. Most humans have more success in completing large projects when focusing on small, clear tasks each day, and that's exactly what the following Bible plans provide - small, achievable daily goals to help you do one great, fruitful, glorious thing - read ALL of God's story.


  • Two Year Bible Reading Plan - This is nice because you read the whole Bible, but it's spread out over two years instead of crammed into one. There are also "catch up days" built into the schedule in case you get behind.
  • M'Cheyne Plan - The M'Cheyne reading plan goes through the whole Bible once and the New Testament and Psalms twice in a one year schedule. {M'Cheyne was a Scottish pastor in the mid 1800s who came up with a Bible reading plan for his congregation that has since become the most-used plan in history.} Basically it's 3-4 chapters a day from different places in the Bible. D.A. Carson wrote two devotional books to go along with the plan that have been transferred to the For the Love of God Blog.
  • Slackers and Shirkers - This is a super easy Bible reading plan. Basically, it just breaks up the year into days of the week, and then under each day there is check box with a few passages of Scripture next to it. You read for the first Sunday, check it off, and when the next Sunday rolls around, you do the next reading and check it off. Then it does the same for each day of the week. And each day of the week is a specific genre, so Sundays might be the Pentateuch and Mondays might be the Epistles and so on. Here a pastor explains why he likes it.
  • Checklist - This plan basically allows you go at your own pace. You can make up any reading plan you want, and this checklist has every book of the Bible listed with its number of chapters. You just cross them out as you go. My only concern with this plan is that it's so open-ended it might be hard to stay on track. But then again, the freedom is nice and it will make it easy to honor the Bible instead of idolizing the schedule!
  • ESV Study Bible - There are bunch of plans that go along with the ESV Study Bible, which is my favorite Bible.
  • Chronological Bible - The first time I ever read through the whole Bible, I used the Chronological Bible. It puts all the chapters of the Bible into their {most likely}chronological order instead of the order in which they are traditionally published. For example, when you read about Saul trying to kill David in the wilderness, you also read the Psalms that David wrote during that time as he cried out to God. The only difficult thing about this Bible is that you don't get to the New Testament until September {if you start in January}, but the awesome thing is that you will read the Old Testament with new eyes and gain so much understanding of the Gospel throughout history.
  • YouVersion - Do you have YouVersion on your iPhone? {Search "Bible" in the app store and it will be the first one to pop up. It will say "" on it.} This app provides many different reading plans that you can conveniently read on your phone.
Read the rest of the Digging Deep series here...

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