Start the New Year off right with daily Bible reading

baby-in-old-persons-handsHappy New Year!

January first is, to many people, a fresh slate. Why not take advantage of a brand new year to spur your children, your mate and even…yourself…into making daily time in God’s word a priority?

Here’s a novel idea. If reading through the entire Bible in a year sounds daunting, how about just the New Testament? Perhaps you have a young reader who can’t handle the typical “3 chapters a day and 5 on Sunday” approach to reading the entire Bible through in one year…or maybe dyslexia or hectic schedules makes it difficult for you to comprehend reading that much each day…think about this New Testament reading schedule, courtesy of my mom. The rest of this post is in her words. (Thanks, Mom!)

There are 260 chapters in the New Testament…reading one chapter a day would get you into September (if I figured right!) before you finish the book of Revelation.  That would leave you with 105 days left to start over again.  With each reading, God’s message becomes clearer.

When you read a portion that is mostly names, don’t worry about their pronunciation.  Here’s what to look for as you read:

1.  Passages that help you understand just who God is and how He thinks about various things

2.  Instructions from God about living a godly life

3.  Facts about the events happening in the passage

4.  What God says (He’s the author of the whole book) about sin

5.  What He says about prayer

This will become second nature to you as you read.  Just as you focus on various areas of interest as you read about training horses or dogs or whatever subject fascinates you, so you will see that this becomes second nature to look for various ideas as you read each chapter.

When reading any of the Word of God you must remember that the words you read are ‘God-breathed’.  (In the original giving of the words by the Holy Spirit).  Let the following Scriptures become truth to you for they are truth.

1.  2 Timothy 3:16-17

2.  2 Peter 1:20-21

You can see where faith comes in.  Faith is just believing that what God says, IS SO.

As you read through the New Testament you will find verses you want to remember.  They might be promises God makes and you want to claim.  They might be verses that tell how important the Bible is and that it is truly the Word of God.  Make a note of them and read them again.

Here is the plan:

January 1-31,        read Matthew 1-28 (Note chapter 4:4)  Matthew tells the story of Jesus and emphasizes how He fulfills all the Old Testament prophecies.  Jesus is portrayed in this book as the King.

Mark 1-3       (one chapter per day)  Mark also tells the story of Jesus and presents Him as the conquering Servant.  The miracles spotlight His power as God.

February 1-28        read Mark 4-16

and Luke 1-16   Luke gives us another aspect of the life of Jesus.  He is presented in this book as the Son of Man.

March 1-31            read Luke 17-24

and John 1-21 and Acts 1-3  In the Gospel of John Jesus is presented as the Son of God.

April 1-30                read Acts 4-28

and Romans 1-5  (Important verse in this portion  3:23)

May 1-31                read Romans 6-16 ( note 6:23 and 10:5)

and 1 Corinthians 1-16

and 2 Corinthians 1-5

June 1-30               read 2 Corinthians 6-13

Galatians 1-6

Ephesians 1-6

Philippians 1-4

Colossians 1-4

1 Thessalonians 1-3

July 1-31                1 Thessalonians 4-5 (4:13-18 tell us about the rapture of believers when He comes again)

2 Thessalonians 1-3

1 Timothy 1-6

2 Timothy 1-4

Titus 1-3

Philemon (only 1 chapter)

Hebrews 1-9

August 1-31             Hebrews 10-13

James 1-5

1 Peter 1-5

2 Peter 1-3

1 John 1-5 (Chapter 5:10-13 is where God assures us of our salvation)

2 John

3 John

Jude

Revelation 1-6

September 1-30       Revelation 7-22

Begin at Matthew again.

14 thoughts on “Start the New Year off right with daily Bible reading”

  1. We encourage our church to do this every year, and provide reading schedules to help with accountability. We add a Proverb a day for dessert. Since there are 31 chapters in Proverbs, you read the chapter that corresponds to the calendar date. So, you read through Proverbs once per month and 12 times per year, along with the New Testament, or whole Bible if you are doing that. If Christians would read through their Bibles every year since they were saved, it would work like this: if you’ve been saved for 20 years, you would have read through your Bible 20 times (minimum). But as we tell our people, “it’s not how much of the Bible you’ve been through, it’s how much of the Bible has been through you.” Amen.

  2. Love the photo or is it a painting of the babe in the arms of praying Grandpa. Is this available to purchase as a poster or print?

  3. So glad, Colleen! We got our chap in Matthew read today! I didn’t get on here in time to plan to add a Proverbs in for dessert, Farmer John! 😉 Great idea…I’ve done it before but it’s been a while…

    I like your quote about “how much Bible has been through you”…very good!

    This picture…boy I wish I could tell you where I got it. I have used it on my blog before, and it’s been SO long ago I thought for sure I got it from stock.xchng…but I just visited their website and did a search, and it didn’t bring anything up. I also went to Allposters.com, because being affiliated with them, I’m able to use their posters freely here at the site. Couldn’t unearth it there either. Wish I could give credit where credit is due. I, too, LOVE this picture!

  4. Mary,
    Thanks for the Happy New Year!

    I tried following reading schedules for years and would get so discouraged when I would fall behind. Several years ago the Lord put it upon my heart that the most important thing was to be in the Word everyday, whether it was meditating on one verse or several chapters. I began praying for God to show me where to read each day and when I finish an entire book, I put the date at the top of the intro page for that book.

    It’s interesting to see where God has led me over the years and which books I end up reading more often than others. He also took me on a very interesting journey though old testament books and I have learned so much. His timing is always perfect too. What an amazing God He is!

    May you continue to shine in 2009!

    Elizabeth’s last blog post..Filthy Rags

  5. Hi again, MaryAnn! Glad you like the idea. I’m especially liking it…my 8 year old, who doesn’t– ah-hem–*value* reading as the rest of us do, actually read the whole second chapter of Matthew to us tonight! (She got a new Bible for Christmas and is enjoying it so much!)

    Hey Elizabeth! Thanks for coming by! I know what you mean about scheduling leading to discouragement. I’ve been there too. I think we all have different seasons and different ways God ministers. Sometimes I just need the kickstart of having a “plan” and then it dovetails into reading more in different passages. I hope we can all stick to a regular devotional schedule this year! Thanks for the best wishes!

  6. I have this saying about doing anything worthwhile, especially when it comes to spiritual things like the discipline of daily Bible reading. “You always have time for the things you put first.”

    I believe it was John Wesley who said something to the effect that he had so much to accomplish each day, he knew he couldn’t begin to get it all done unless he spent the first four hours of the morning in prayer (from 4-8 a.m.). Today, with all our technological advances, with our houses filled with every imaginable “time saving” device, we are a nation that can’t find time for God. Did John Wesley have more hours in the day back in the horse and buggy days, before running water, indoor plumbing, telephones, and air conditioned vehicles? We all still have the same number of hours each day, it’s really a matter of what we put first in the day that defines what true priorities are.

  7. We’re in! Thanks for the inspiration! I recruited the girls and we are doing it together and holding one another accountable. L made up a chart for us to mark down each day and we summarize the chapter to each other. At the end of the month, we will do something to celebrate and keep it up through the whole NT!

  8. That’s a good saying, Farmer John, and so pertinent to this discussion. And that story about John Wesley is especially good for me right now, after having read Henry and the Great Society…more time indeed, with all our time-saving devices we grow more and more busy.

    Jana, my girls will be so glad that you are doing this as well. We’ll have to use that to our advantage somehow, maybe the girls can keep in touch and keep accountable!?! We should do a chart, maybe I’ll sic my oldest on that using L as an example! 😉 Thanks for letting me know! Btw, we prayed for your sis in church today!

  9. So glad, Mary Ann! It’s a helpful trick. I think I’m going to try “Unkers” when I get my hands on some. It’s supposed to do the same job as Vicks, but is more natural. Sounds good, huh!

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