At the start of a new year, lots of resolutions are made, including the commitment to read through the Bible in one year. And I have a few suggestions along those lines.
First off, consider how much time it actually takes to read through the entire Bible. There are 1,189 chapters and approximately 31,102 verses. If you read faithfully all 365 days of the year, you would need to read about 85 verses every day.
Another way to look at it is to consider how long it takes to read a passage. The average reader with a reasonable comprehension rate should be able to read 200 words per minute. Reading aloud, you could read Genesis in about 3 hours and 45 minutes. The book of Malachi would take about 8 minutes and you could zip through the New Testament book of Philemon in just one minute.
Clearly if you are willing to set aside 15 minutes every day, you will definitely be able to read through the entire Bible by next December. So now the issue is where to start. Lots of people just dive into Genesis and peter out about the time that Joseph is thrown out of Potiphar’s house. So maybe a reading chart would help.
There are many tools to help you keep track of your progress. There are printed charts that you can throw into your Bible and just check off each chapter as you make your way along. But online, there are even more electronic choices available (including apps) that can be tailored to your specific life style.
At www.biblestudytools.com you can record your progress on a chart like the one that only has you read on weekdays and you use the weekends for catch up. Or on www.BiblePlan.com you can choose to only read the “red letter words” of Jesus (there is a plan that cycles you four times through that material in one year). Or you can get a bit more New Testament by reading through a different plan that has you cover the New Testament and Psalms twice and the Old Testament once.
Or you might choose to read following a chronological approach. There are Bibles printed in that format or you can look at the “Robert Murray M’Cheyne Plan” that outlines daily readings for the whole family and lists other verses to be read privately.
The bottom line of course is just to read…read for understanding, read for inspiration, read for encouragement, read for comfort, read God’s Word!
“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path…”
By His Grace and for His Glory,
Sherry L. Worel