Reading the Bible in 2018

To be a good Placemaker it all starts with the truth of God’s Word, The Bible. Our church has followed a bible reading plan which takes us through the entire Bible every year for the past 7 years and will be doing the same again this year.

Some think of reading through the entire Bible in a year as too large a task or something reserved for Priests and Pastors. This is not a healthy way to think and goes against the grain of the Reformation which sought to put the Bible into the hands of every believer in the language they could understand.

The following are some motivations for reading the entire Bible with us this year.

1 The Bible is the Word of God

The Bible is God’s Word in written form. As Disciples of Jesus Christ, we need to live according to and guided by the word of God as revealed in the Bible. Other books can certainly be useful and there is nothing wrong with daily devotionals or faithful bible commentaries but there is no substitute for hearing or reading the word of God directly from the Bible yourself.

Paul reminds us in 2 Timothy 3:16–17…

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.

2 Why read the Old Testament

The Old Testament is often neglected in Bible reading in favour of the New Testament but this is a mistake.

  • The New Testament finds its roots in the Old.
  • The Old Testament is as much the word of God as the New Testament is.
  • The Old Testament is the Bible Jesus read.

As Augustine famously said…

“In the Old Testament the New is concealed, in the New Testament the Old is revealed.”

Peter remind us 2 Peter 1:20–21…

“knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”

3 Why Read the New Testament

There are lots of good reasons to read the New Testament:

  • We hear the Gospel in the New Testament.
  • We read about our Lord, Jesus in the New Testament.
  • We find out about the early Church and believers.
  • We find teaching that guides us with what it means to be new covenant people of God and so much more.

Luke mentions this in Luke 1:1–4 when explaining why he compiled his gospel concerning Jesus Christ…

Inasmuch as many have undertaken to compile a narrative of the things that have been accomplished among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having followed all things closely for some time past, to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, that you may have certainty concerning the things you have been taught.

4 Bible reading is part of being a healthy disciple

The Bible is described as food for the Soul. As much as our physical body needs a daily intake of food we need a daily serving of God’s word to nourish our minds and our very being with God’s life-sustaining truth.

As Jesus said to the enemy when he was tempted in Matthew 4:4

But he answered, “It is written, “ ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ”

5 It is encouraging to read together

All God’s enemies including your own flesh will be against you reading through the entire Bible each year, there is just so much truth there that the enemy is afraid of you being both free and strong. Knowing others are reading and listening in community with you will encourage you when you feel weak, weary and distracted. Let’s read the bible together.

We are encouraged in Psalm 18:30…

This God—his way is perfect; the word of the Lord proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.

In conclusion

I hope the above points which are by no means exhaustive, will encourage you to persevere in the hearing, reading, studying and applying the Bible to your life every day this year on our (or another) bible reading plan.

I hope to post a series of short articles on the Humble Majesty website blog about each of our daily readings this year, to encourage you to find application for your own life. You can also pick up a copy of Daily Truth from Amazon or Logos which includes study and application notes for each day of the reading plan.

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