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Christian Living

Hold on to Every Thought

Make Our Thoughts Obedient to Jesus

Paul tells the church in Corinth to capture every thought and make it obedient to Jesus. Likewise, Proverbs advises us to guard our thoughts (Proverbs 4:23). (Some translations say to guard our hearts, putting a different twist on the same concept).

This is often hard to do—but not impossible.

Though I’m still working on it, my solution is to distract myself from wayward thoughts. When I remember to do this, they usually dissipate quickly. My distractions take two forms:

Quote the Bible

The first verse that comes to mind is in James: “Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). This is good advice to follow, but when I cite it, I end up focusing on what I’m trying to escape. It doesn’t help me control my every thought.

Instead, my go to verse is from Revelation: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come” (Revelation 4:8). This passage places my focus on God, praising him, worshiping him, and acknowledging his eternal existence.” The enemy doesn’t like that.

I end up reciting this verse just about every day, often multiple times.

The key to holding every thought captive is remembering to pray. Click To Tweet

Pray

Another way I distract myself from wrong thinking is to pray. The enemy doesn’t like that either. However, I don’t pray that I’ll stop thinking wrong thoughts or for strength to hold them captive; that also focuses my attention on what I’m trying to escape. Instead I pray for someone else.

Just as I have one predetermined verse, I have one predetermined person who I will automatically pray for when wrong thoughts beckon. This keeps me from wasting time, trying to determine who I should pray for and gets me to the praying part quickly.

Capturing every thought and subjecting it to Jesus is usually quite easy when I remember to cite scripture or pray. The key is remembering to do so.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is 2 Corinthians 10-13, and today’s post is on 2 Corinthians 10:5.]

Read more in Peter’s book, Love is Patient (book 7 in the Dear Theophilus series).

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

7 Tips to Form a Bible Reading Habit

Be Intentional About Spending Time in God’s Word Each Day

I read Scripture every day and have for most of my adult life. I’ve formed a Bible reading habit. It’s become an essential part of my life, just like eating and sleeping.

Reading God’s Word has become natural and normal for me. And I encourage everyone to develop a daily Bible reading habit too. Yet I understand this is a struggle for many. A friend recently asked for any suggestions I might have to help form a Bible reading habit.

Here are my seven Bible reading tips:

1. Select a Time

Pick what time of day will work best for you to read the Bible. For many people this is first thing in the morning, as a start to their day. Others like to end their day by reading Scripture. Or there may be another time that works best for you.

As you figure out what time each day you give to God to read Scripture, be sure to give him your best time slot. Don’t give him what’s leftover. Avoid trying to squeeze Bible reading between other aspects of your life. Just as God desires for you to make him a priority in your life, the same applies to when you read his Word.

The important thing is to decide on a time to read the Bible each day. Then do it.

2. Start Small

Don’t make a grandiose plan. Start small. Just as it would be foolish for a runner who only runs short distances sporadically to decide they’re going to run a marathon the next day, the same applies to Bible reading. Don’t commit to reading the entire Bible in one year if you scarcely read it at all now.

Set a low goal that will be easy for you to achieve. This will allow you to find quick success and encourage you to press forward.

If you’re just starting out, I suggest you commit to read one verse a day. Just one. It will only take a few seconds.

I recommend that you read from your favorite book in the Bible. Make it easy to do, keep it simple, and make sure it’s enjoyable.

3. Set a One-Month Goal

Read one verse every day for at least a month. This will establish a habit of regular Bible reading. Though one month is often enough to form a regular routine, it could take two or three months for a good habit to develop.

The goal is to get to a point where you automatically read your Bible at the time you picked each day. The intent is for Bible reading to become an essential part of your daily practices.

Just as we would never forget to eat a meal or skip sleep, reading the Bible deserves the same perspective.

4. Keep the Momentum Going

After one month, build upon your success and keep the momentum going.

If keeping a streak will help motivate you, make a chart to track each day you read your Bible. The goal is an unbroken chain of daily Bible reading. Keep your streak going.

Or if you can motivate yourself through rewards, set a small prize for yourself each week. Do this on a specific day. Pick an incentive that means something to you and will motivate you. Then choose a larger reward for the end of each month.

5. Expand Your Practice

Once you’ve established a habit of daily Bible reading, you can then consider reading more than one verse each day. You might want to move from one verse to one paragraph.

Later you might want to move from one paragraph to one section. Just as most Bibles put the text in paragraph form, they often group similar related paragraphs together in the section, often with a subheading.

6. Consider Setting an Annual Goal.

Once you’ve done this for a full year. You’ll have surely formed a regular Bible reading habit. It’s perfectly acceptable to continue what you been doing over the past year into the future.

Yet if you want to read more, consider reading a chapter a day. Here are some ideas to guide you in this, with both monthly reading options, as well as reading the New Testament in one year.

Regardless of how much of the Bible you decide to read each day, remember that it’s not about the number of verses you read but the impact your reading has on you. Click To Tweet

I encourage everyone to at some point read the entire Bible in one year. This is a commitment which will take 12 to 15 minutes every day, so don’t start with this right away. It would be like trying to run a marathon before you trained, so build up your Bible reading skills, just as a runner would build up to a marathon.

7. Pursue Balance in Your Bible Reading

Regardless of how much of the Bible you decide to read each day, remember that it’s not about the number of verses you read (quantity) but the impact your reading has on you (quality).

May God bless you as you read his Word and form a Bible reading habit.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

How to Meditate on God’s Word

Discover How to Get More from Your Time Spent with Scripture

Reading and studying the Bible is a great start to better understanding Scripture and the truth in holds. I highly recommend daily Bible reading and encourage everyone to do so—both those who follow Jesus and those who are curious about him. But to get even more from a passage, the key is to meditate on God’s Word.

Though I read the Bible every day and study Scripture most every day, I don’t meditate on it as often as I should or as often as I’d like to. But when I do, the insights I get are profound.

That’s why I wish I’d spend more time to meditate on God’s Word. Emphasize the word time. It takes time to meditate on Scripture.

Though I schedule time to read the Bible—and relish my investment in learning more about God and myself, meditating on the passage requires more time and—though the reward is sweeter—the results aren’t as vast, just deeper.

Here are my tips to achieve the best outcomes when we meditate on God’s word:

Read Slowly

The first key is to slow down. I learned this when studying the gospel of John while researching and writing my book Living Water. To grasp meaning from John’s poetic writing required that I slowed down from my regular reading pace to allow the words to sink in.

Decreasing our speed is even more important when we meditate on God’s Word. We must slow down and be deliberate. Focus on each phrase of each sentence, even each word.

Consider its significance and what its presence may teach. This is how we get insight we’d normally miss reading at our normal pace.

Read Over and Over

The second key is repetition. This is not a rote reading to log a certain number of reps but an intentional rereading to get more from the text.

Though when reading slowly, I sometimes reread a sentence to make sure I haven’t missed something, this rereading is different. It’s examining the same passage on multiple days, with each pass revealing more insight into the text.

Some people recommend rereading the same text seven times, one day each week. Yet seven isn’t a magic number when we meditate on God’s Word. It’s more of a guideline.

Sometimes new truths emerge on my fourth or fifth read, while other times I gain a deeper understanding on my tenth pass.

This requires patience, which may be the reason few people invest the time to meditate on God’s Word.

Pause to Reflect

Next, don’t rush from one phrase or sentence to the next. Instead, pause to consider the words. Yes, we may have already determined our primary understanding of the text, but consider a fresh perspective, a secondary meaning, or a deeper truth.

The Bible is multilayered with significance buried within, but it takes digging to find it. This is why we must be willing to pause from our reading and consider carefully what we’ve just read.

Write Observations

Record the insights we uncover as we meditate on God’s Word. This may be in a journal or computer file. Having spent several decades immersing myself into Scripture, I have a computer document for each book of the Bible and have notes for each chapter of each book.

Don’t let my lifetime of results, however, intimidate you from beginning. Remember, I once started with nothing.

Instead, let my outcome encourage you to envision what you can achieve if you commit yourself to meditating on a regular basis.

When we seek direction from the Holy Spirit, our insights become much greater. Click To Tweet

Seek Holy Spirit Guidance

My parting tip is not the final one but instead an overarching principle. Each step for meditating on God’s Word requires seeking Holy Spirit guidance if we are to achieve the best results.

Yes, these first four tips do produce results if we rely on our own intellect, but when we seek direction from the Holy Spirit, our insights become much greater.

Whether we’re reading, studying, or meditating on God’s Word, the Holy Spirit can amplify what we’re doing. Jesus told his disciples that the Father would send them an Advocate, the Holy Spirit, to teach them all things (John 14:26).

Just as the Holy Spirit taught Jesus’s followers 2,000 years ago, he can teach us today. All we need to do is ask him to speak to us and guide us when we meditate on God’s Word.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

Quantity Bible Reading versus Quality Bible Reading

Two Options for Daily Scripture Consumption

I’m a huge advocate of daily Bible reading. I encourage people to develop the habit of regularly reading God’s Word. It’s as important as eating. Just as we wouldn’t go a day without eating (unless we’re fasting), we shouldn’t go a day without reading Scripture. The question is quantity Bible reading or quality Bible reading.

Quantity Bible Reading

ABibleADay.com offers resources to guide readers into doing just that. There’s a plan to read the New Testament in the year, read the Old Testament in a year, and read the entire Bible in the year.

For those who aren’t ready to commit to a long term-plan, there are also monthly reading guides to help people ease into developing the practice of regularly reading God’s Word. A benefit of the monthly reading plans is that you can easily start anytime you want to throughout the year.

Each of these approaches involves reading at least one chapter a day up to about three or four, depending on the guide. The goal is to cover a lot of Scripture each month and each year. This is a quantity Bible reading approach.

The quantity perspective of reading God’s Word has much value, allowing readers to encounter large swaths of Scripture. This is ideal for giving an overview and methodically covering large sections of the Bible. It’s a great practice to pursue.

The quantity approach to reading God's Word allows us to cover large swaths of Scripture. Click To Tweet

Yet this pace makes in-depth studying a challenge. For that reason, I switch back and forth between this quantity Bible reading approach to a quality mindset.

Quality Bible Reading

With a quality approach to reading the Bible, the emphasis changes from how much Scripture we cover to how well it’s internalized. To read for quality requires slowing down. It means immersing ourselves in a passage or even a verse. In doing so, we seek to gain as much insight as possible without feeling a need to rush on to what follows it.

In this way we take time to meditate on what the Bible says and internalize it to make it part of our lives. (Check out this post for some ideas for how to meditate on God’s Word.)

Balance

Neither approach to reading the Bible is superior to the other. Both have their merits, and both have their limitations. The key is to use whichever method works best for us for the season of life we’re in.

We may want to spend a year pursuing quantity Bible reading to absorb as much Scripture as possible. Then we may switch to a quality Bible reading approach to dig deep and mine truths buried within.

The goal is to know which approach is right for us at any given time and to have the freedom to pursue it. This means that if we’re going for quantity, we don’t feel guilty about missing nuances. Likewise, it means if we’re going for quality, we don’t feel guilty about not covering a lot of ground.

God honors both methods and both have merit. May we wisely choose the best approach for us at any given time.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

Meditating on God’s Word

Our Actions Are Birthed Through Our Thoughts

It’s essential to read the Bible, but beyond that we should also study Scripture. Even more important, however, is meditating on God’s Word. This is because when we meditate on what the Bible says, it changes what we think about, which affects what we do.

Read the Bible

As followers of Jesus, we learn more about him and how to be his disciples through Scripture. By reading the Bible we get a glimpse into the life of Jesus to see what he said and what he did. Then we can emulate his actions and obey his teachings to become more Christlike.

Study Scripture

Reading the Bible is a great start. I do it every day and encourage everyone to do with as well. Yet beyond reading God’s holy word is to examine it. We should study Scripture.

In the Old Testament we see Ezra devoting himself to studying the law, that is the Jewish Scripture—the Old Testament of the Bible—specifically the Torah, the first five books of the Bible (Ezra 7:10).

In the New Testament, Jesus commends the Jews for their diligent study of the scriptures, which testify about him (John 5:39). Today we have both the Old and New Testaments for us to read and study so we can learn more about Jesus—and about God.

Meditating on God’s Word changes what we think about, which affects what we do. Click To Tweet

Meditate on God’s Word

Studying scripture is a rewarding endeavor, but we must make sure we don’t do it to amass knowledge but to inform our understanding of God. Paul warns the church in Corinth to pursue love over knowledge, saying that knowledge puffs up (1 Corinthians 8:1).

Though the context of Paul’s instruction is about food sacrificed to idols, his warning to not allow ourselves to become proud over our knowledge is a warning we should all heed. We don’t want to take pride in our knowledge about the Bible, to become puffed up by what we know.

Instead, we should take the next step and meditate on it. We should hide God’s Word in our hearts (Psalm 119:11). We do this as we read, study, and meditate on the Bible.

Studying Scripture puts the Bible’s words in our minds; meditating on God’s Word puts it in our hearts. This is where it needs to be; this is where it must be if we are to apply what we read in the Bible to what we do and say.

Drive Our Actions

As we meditate on the Bible—as we hide God’s Word in our hearts—the desired outcome is that we won’t sin against God (Psalm 119:11). Though meditating on God’s Word won’t make us sinless, it will help us to sin less.

This is because what we put into our minds influences what comes out of our mouths and what our body does. Meditating on God’s Word changes what we think about, which affects what we do.

The old computer saying is GIGO—garbage in garbage out. What we enter into a computer is what we can expect to get out of it.

The same is true in our lives. If we fill our minds with junk—with the thoughts of the world, evil, and ideas contrary to the Word of God—that’s what we can expect our minds and our bodies to produce.

Yet if we fill our mind with the thoughts of God, by meditating on God’s Word, we can expect a positive and God-honoring result.

May it be so.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

Start Each Day with God

Make Spending Time with the Almighty a Priority

God deserves our best, not whatever’s left over at the end of the day—if anything. This may be why he told the Israelites to give to him their first fruits, the first of their harvest (Exodus 23:16). That’s why we should start each day with God, with a focus on our Lord.

Here are some ideas to start each day with God.

Seek Him Before You Get Up

Before I leave my bed each morning, I turn my focus to God. I thank him for what happened yesterday, for the sleep that rejuvenated me, and the potential of the day ahead. I begin my day with a focus on him, which sets the foundation for what happens next.

Give Him Your Day and Invite Him into It

Before I arise, I thrust my arms into the air in a physical display of worship, giving the Almighty my day and inviting him into it. And the days when this feels the most difficult to do are the days when I need it the most.

Thoughts of trying to navigate the day without my Lord’s help are foolish.

Morning Prayers

At this point I’ve thanked God and prayed for my day. I’m up and have used the mindless task of shaving to shake the slumber from my soul. I’ve done some basic exercises and am (mostly) alert.

I now ask for God’s blessings on my family, for future generations of my family, and those closest to me. This prepares me for what follows.

Read and Study His Word

Next, I spent time reading and studying his Word. Sometimes this is part of a regular reading plan. I often make notes about key insights the Holy Spirit reveals to me from that passage. Though most people do this in a journal, I do it on my computer, organizing my observations by book, chapter, and verse. This way I can merge my thoughts for the day with observations from prior readings.

Other times my Bible reading and studying is in preparation for the book I’ll be working on that day. If I intend to write about a certain passage, I want to first fix my thoughts on it and meditate on it.

I’ve been doing morning Bible reading the longest and it’s ingrained into my day. It’s a lifelong habit that I formed. Only rarely do events distract me from it. I invest about fifteen minutes—though sometimes more—each morning focusing on Scripture.

This action is essential for me to best start my day with God.

Then Take Him Throughout Your Day

With these prerequisites complete, I feel ready to move into my plans for the day. But when I skimp on them, it’s not the best way to start each day with God.

End Your Day with Reflection and Thanksgiving

Though the focus of this post is about how we start each day with God, in some respects this effort begins the night before on how we end each day.

As I snuggle into bed my goal is to thank God for the day and what he enabled me to do. I pray for his blessing on my sleep and that even in my dreams I will hold every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5).

This is what I struggle with the most. This isn’t because of a lack of will, but because some nights I fall asleep before I can take this step, or I slip into slumber halfway through.

In case I missed doing this or fell short, that’s why I try to begin the next day by thanking God for the prior one.

We should start each day with God and give him our best. He deserves nothing less and there’s nothing we need more. Click To Tweet

Start Each Day with God

We should start each day with God and give him our best. He deserves nothing less and there’s nothing we need more. Though I don’t always do this as fully as I’d like to, this is how I try to start each day with God.

I pray that you have a regular rhythm for your day that begins with and focuses on our Lord. And if not, use these ideas to encourage you to move forward and place your focus on the Almighty as you begin each day.

Do you like this post? Want to read more? Check out Peter’s book, Bridging the Sacred-Secular Divide: Discovering the Spirituality of Every Day Life, available wherever books are sold.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Christian Living

Listen and Obey

Be Doers of the Word and Not Hearers Only

I write a lot about the importance of reading Scripture and studying God’s Word. But reading and studying the Bible is not enough. We must apply what the Bible teaches to our daily lives for it to matter, for it to change us and impact the world. We must listen and obey what Scripture teaches.

If we hear the Word of God and don’t apply it to our lives, we’re deluding ourselves. Paul, a most knowledgeable man himself, writes to the church in Corinth that knowledge puffs up (1 Corinthians 8:1).

Today’s church focuses on knowledge and rarely mentions putting that knowledge into action. Often this knowledge righty focuses on the Bible, but if we don’t do what it says, if we don’t obey, it accomplishes nothing. Instead, through our knowledge, we become puffed up people.

James writes that merely listening to the Word of God isn’t enough. If we only listen, we deceive ourselves. His prescription is clear: do with it says (James 1:22). The requirement is obedience. Action should be the outcome of our Bible study.

Over the years, many people have told me they want to join a good Bible study. That’s a God-honoring desire, yet for most of these folks, they think that merely reading and studying and talking about Scripture is enough. They don’t realize that they must listen and obey.

Their Bible study, they reason, will honor God. And it will, to some extent. But what God wants us to do is to read his word and apply it to our daily living. He wants changed lives more so than informed minds.

Read God’s Word and then do it. Listen and obey. Click To Tweet

We can read about loving our neighbor, but until we actually do it, what does it matter? If we know we need to love others and don’t follow through, what good is that to them? And what good is it to us? Knowing and doing are two different things.

I think it was Joyce Meyer who said that most Christians already know more Bible than they’re putting into practice.

Don’t be one of those Christians. Read God’s Word and then do it. Listen and obey.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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The Two Most Influential Books I’ve Ever Read

Study Scripture and Then Use Other Resources as Needed

My book Jesus’s Broken Church was about a decade in the making, perhaps longer—maybe even a lifetime. When I sensed something wasn’t right with how today’s church functioned, I begin praying and searching for answers. Over time, piece by piece, God’s Holy Spirit revealed the answers to me. And they all came from the Bible.

This took years, but eventually a full picture emerged. That’s when I began writing, first in various blog posts and eventually a book.

Two Most Influential Books

Along the way, two additional sources opened my eyes to prepare me to hear what God would tell me. These came in the form of two books. Aside from the Bible, they are the two most influential books I’ve read in my entire life.

They provided insight and a firm foundation for me to stand on as I considered building on these works to determine what would happen next, of what should happen next.

Pagan Christianity?

The first book was Pagan Christianity?: Exploring the Roots of Our Church Practices by Frank Viola and George Barna. (Check out my review of Pagan Christianity?)

Pagan Christianity? looks at the past. It delves into what was to uncover the influences of our church practices today. Much of what we do today at church is a result of our predecessors’ taking practices from secular society and adapting them to church. In short, many of our Christian traditions don’t have a spiritual origin but one that is more so pagan in nature.

The result of realizing these many shocking revelations was that I begin to ask why, a lot. I looked at every faith practice to examine its relevance and see how scripturally germane it was.

The result was a nagging feeling that our church practices today are far off base from what Jesus intended.

That’s why Pagan Christianity? is one of the two most influential books I’ve ever read.

The Great Emergence

The second of the two most influential books I’ve ever read is Phyllis Tickle’s The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why. (Check out my review of The Great Emergence.)

Whereas Pagan Christianity? looks at the past, The Great Emergence explores the future. Building on a history of semi-millennia religious shifts, Tickle posits that we are on the precipice of another grand transformation.

She envisions what this reformation will look like and its impact on today’s church. Spoiler alert: today’s church will be much less relevant in the future, with other forms of spiritual community and connection supplanting it.

That’s why The Great Emergence is the second of the two most influential books I’ve ever read.

Today’s church — for all the good it does — isn’t functioning as it should, as Jesus intended. Click To Tweet

Jesus’s Broken Church

Standing on the firm foundation of the two most influential books I’ve ever read emerged a biblical prescription and how to move forward. I dared to suggest that today’s church—for all the good it does—isn’t functioning as it should, as Jesus intended it to.

Building on Scripture, Jesus’s Broken Church advances a new vision of what church could be and should be. But claiming that it’s new is incorrect. In truth, this isn’t a new understanding, but the reclaiming of an old one, one that’s nearly two thousand years old.

Read more about this in Peter’s new book, Jesus’s Broken Church, available in e-book, audiobook, paperback, and hardcover.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Do You Plan to Read the Bible?

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.

Develop a habit of regular Bible reading. Click To Tweet

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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Read the Bible in 2022

Daily Scripture Reading Guides Available Now from ABibleADay

Every year I intentionally explore the Bible, reading a few chapters each day. Some years I focus on the New Testament and other years, the Old Testament, but usually I read the entire Bible in a year.

Will you join me this year?

To guide us, the 2022 Bible reading guides are now available. Get your 2022 Bible reading plan today.

Chronological Bible Reading Guide

New last year was a chronological Bible reading plan. This year it’s tweaked and improved, based on feedback from the inaugural offering.

Though a comprehensive chronological reading of the Bible requires a lot of details that won’t fit on a concise handout, it is possible to make an approximate chronological reading guide by putting the books of the Bible in order.

Following this Bible reading plan only takes 12 to 15 minutes a day. And each Tuesday throughout 2022, I’ll blog about a passage from that day’s reading.

Download your own chronological 2021 Bible reading guide.

Other Reading Options

If reading the entire Bible in a year seems too big of a task, scale back to a more manageable goal. I have a series of other Bible reading plans to guide you. Pick the one that works for you:

Form a habit to read the Bible. Download your 2022 Bible reading plan today and be ready to start reading this January.

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. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.