I was raised in a religious home, but did not personally become a believer until my freshman year of high school reading the Left Behind series. I went to a contemporary church dominated by church growth philosophies and so I never received much teaching or bible study. In college I began looking at bible studies online as a way to stay involved as I knew the campus was very hostile to religious beliefs of any kind. The Lord had me find the study of Ruth by Dr. Dean, which was my first real exposure to solid biblical teaching. I had never seen anything like that before, so I ended up spending over a year going through multiple videos every day. That was about 7 years ago now, and I still watch a video a day (I've finally caught up to the 1/2 Samuel series). I have found a bible church that teaches the word faithfully (thanks to the Lord's leading) in an area where that is almost non-existent and have been going for several years now. I am thankful to the Lord for raising up pastors such as Dr. Dean who are able to faithfully proclaim the word, and Dean Bible Ministries is the source of much of my formative doctrine and inspired my own bible studies. Thank you for all that you do to get the word out to a dying world that lacks it.
2020 Bible Reading Challenge
A new year is about to begin. Why don’t you make it a personal goal this year to read the Bible through from Genesis to Revelation?
The benefits are tremendous. First, you will begin to understand the historical flow of God’s revelation to you. Second, you will clarify the relationships of different people and events. Third, you will begin to discover many of God’s promises that relate to challenges you are facing. Fourth, it will enhance your understanding of references and allusions made during Bible class. And fifth, it will provide you with a more focused understanding of God’s character.
To accomplish this I recommend picking a specific time of day and always sticking to that time. This might be early in the morning, during your lunch break, on your commute to or from work (or both). You can read or you can listen. Many Bible reading apps are available online for your laptop or smart phone or mobile device.
Bible Gateway; Bible.com; Logos; Faithlife; Bible.is are some of the online Bibles you can read. Bible Gateway, Bible.com, and Bible.is have audio Bibles which you can listen to while driving or being mobile.
There are 1,189 chapters in the Bible. If you read 4 chapters a day, 6 days a week, you can read the Bible in a year. But how long will that take? Based on the average reading speed in the US you can do this in about 14 minutes per day. You probably spend more time than that checking emails, or texting, or reading news reports, or reading Facebook posts. Certainly reading the Bible ought to be a higher priority.
- Here's a Bible reading plan by Dr. Ray Mondragon of Chafer Seminary to help you systematically read through the Bible in a year with only 100 minutes per week (or ~15 minutes per day).
- Check out Dr. Wendell Bell's Bible Reading and Scripture Memorization Schedule.
- One of the 2020 Chafer Conference speakers, Dr. Scott Anoil, has put together a Bible Narratives Reading Plan as well.
- Or, if you prefer, here's a Bible reading check list.
BibleGatweay.com has a couple of two-month reading plans that provide a solid overview of the Bible:
- Bible Chronological Reading Plan—If you would like to read through the key stories of the Bible in chronological order, tracing the development of God's plan from Adam and Eve to the church of the New Testament. This reading plan introduces you to the major people and events of the Bible in chronological order, beginning with Creation, moving through the birth and history of the Israel nation, and ending with Revelation's prophetic words. It's all broken down into 61 easily-readable segments.
- Bible Survey Reading Plan—If you want to read highlights from every book of the Bible, it doesn't take long. The advantages of this approach include simplicity, comprehensiveness, and brevity. As you read, ask the Lord to help you understand, personalize, and apply his Word. Then be sure to thank God for what he's going to do in each area of your life.
Take up the Bible reading challenge this year and take your spiritual life to a new level.
Another idea is to start memorizing some promises. A great place to start is with the promises in my God’s Wonderful Promises book which you can order from Dean Bible Ministries.