Follow a Strategy to Regularly Study Scripture
Most years I read the entire Bible in a year. It takes 12 to 15 minutes a day. If you’re up to the challenge, I encourage you to join me as I read the Bible next year. Here’s the Bible reading schedule that I like to follow.
Though a few minutes a day isn’t a huge time commitment, it is a habit that takes a while to develop. Though many people start strong with their desire to study Scripture every day, after a few weeks it looms as a huge commitment, which requires a lot of self-discipline. The temptation is to quit, just as most people do with their New Year’s resolutions.
Monthly Bible Reading Plans
For that reason, if you’re new to the idea of reading the Bible every day, I recommend taking smaller bites to begin with. Instead of committing to reading the entire Bible in one year—blocking out 12 to 15 minutes a day, every day—how about committing to reading one book of the Bible in a month, 3 to 4 minutes a day?
An ideal place to start is with Luke and then Acts. Read Luke one month and Acts, the next. It’s a great duo of books to get you started. Luke teaches us about Jesus, and his story continues in Acts, letting us know about the early church.
Another consideration is John. John is a book that many people adore. He writes with a poetic flare. So, reading John requires a slower, more thoughtful pace.
You can find other books to consider as you read the Bible each month. If you follow this list for twelve months, by the end of the year you will have read many of the Bible’s essential passages. From there you can move into one of the following more comprehensive plans for the following year.
New Testament Reading Schedule
Though all the Bible is useful for us and can help us on our faith journey, the New Testament contains more relevant, readily applicable passages. Reading the New Testament in one year is an ideal way to help you develop the habit of regular Bible reading.
The commitment is 3 to 4 minutes a day, Monday through Friday. That’s right, you can take the weekend off when you focus on the New Testament as you read the Bible in one year.
Old Testament Reading Schedule
The following year, read the Old Testament in one year. This can build on the habit you formed by reading the New Testament in one year. This requires 10 to 12 minutes a day for an average reader. The Old Testament helps us better understand the New Testament, adding insights and clarity that we would have otherwise missed.
Read the Entire Bible in One Year
At this point, you will have developed a habit of regular Bible reading. Congratulations! You’ve read the New Testament and the Old Testament, covering the entire Bible, albeit in two years, not one. Now you can grow your habit of studying Scripture by reading the entire Bible in one year. As I mentioned, it only takes 12 to 15 minutes a day.
Plan to Read the Bible
It doesn’t matter which of these Bible reading schedules you follow. Any plan is better than no plan. The point is to pick a plan to read the Bible and move forward.
You, too, can set a goal to read the Bible next year.
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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