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What is a Lectionary?

Question: What is a Lectionary?

Answer: A lectionary is a methodical Bible reading plan that covers the entire Bible in a set time. By definition, our Bible reading plans are lectionaries.

A common and popular lectionary is the Revised Common Lectionary, which is a three-year plan. In it, each day’s reading covers three or four sections from Bible, often an Old Testament passage, a Psalm, a reading from a Gospel, and a selection from an Epistle.

This provides great variety, but also introduces discontinuity as it makes it hard to see the big picture, instead showing several small vignettes of the Bible each day.

For this reason, the Bible reading plans on this site involve only one passage each day and group whole sections of the Bible together over successive days. We feel this is a more effective way to comprehend and appreciate the way in which the Bible fits together as a collective whole.

This is not to be critical of the Revised Common Lectionary or other lectionaries, but to offer a perspective of its strengths and weaknesses.

[See more Bible FAQs for answers to other frequently asked questions.]

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

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