Resolve to Read the Bible—How Do I Get Started?


My last post talked about Bible translations. In this post, let’s look at the second most asked question when someone wants to read the Bible more—How do I get started?

Fortunately there are several ways you can begin reading, enjoying and learning from the Bible. The good news is there is no set or prescribed way to begin. You are free to start any way you want. The key is to start. That’s usually the bump in the road. The book looks intimidating, people have told you it’s difficult to understand (see my last post for some more good news about translation). So you want to do it but the idea is daunting and you get caught. Please don’t feel you can’t do it.

Here’s the deal—Try it for 30 days and I guarantee you’ll never stop reading it. It’s a life changer. And, unlike most books, you can read the same sections or passages over and over. Each time you do, God reveals new Truth and insight. It’s an amazing book.

So, how do you get started? Let me suggest three ways:

  • Book of John and the Gospels. This is one of the best ways to begin reading your Bible. The book of John gives you a unique view of Jesus. Written by the Apostle John it’s focus is on what Jesus said, rather than what He did. You can learn so much of His character from what He said. The book is an easy entry point to the other Gospels (Mark, Matthew and Luke). It will give you context. Once you finish John, go to Mark or Luke. Once you finish the four Gospels, read the historical book of Acts. Then begin to read the Psalms (very worshipful) or Proverbs which are practical. Don’t start with Leviticus or Deuteronomy. Begin with God’s good news and gift of Jesus.
  • One or Two-Year Reading Plans. Many Bibles either offer one or two-year reading plans or they are set up in the one-year format. This is a wonderful way to read a variety of Scriptures at one time. Typically one-year bibles feature a daily choice from the Old Testament, one from the New Testament, a Psalm and a Proverb. Each day you can get many glimpses of God’s Word. One caution: Don’t get caught in the trap of just reading and checking it off your “to-do” list. Don’t get competitive with the program. Scripture is something you want to enjoy and savor. Read it at your own pace and if you miss a day, don’t worry. Keep going, don’t skip Scripture. The goal is to hear what God is saying and teaching you, not getting through it in a prescribed time frame. There are many good one-year Bible available.
  • Chronologically. The books of the Bible are not laid out chronologically and there is some duplication within the book. One way to read through the Bible is from a chronological perspective and there are two excellent Bibles that do this—The Chronological Study Bible from Thomas Nelson and F. LeGard Smith’s Chronological NIV Daily Bible from Harvest House Publishers. Both of these products give you a unique way to read the Bible. You’ll get an idea of the flow of the story from beginning to end.

Whichever method you choose, I encourage you to get started. The Bible is an amazing book. You’ll never regret the time you spend hearing from directly from God through His Word!

Are you planning on reading the Bible more in 2012? Or are you planning on getting started reading the Bible? I’d love to hear from you and help you any way I can.


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Trust is the winsome wedding of faith and hope.

Brennan Manning

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