Well, a new year is upon us. And this year, I've decided to do something I hardly ever do - use a Bible reading plan. In years past, I've just largely read whatever I felt like reading. When I had plenty of time, it worked out well enough, and I generally got through the entire Bible at least once a year (several times through many books). But as my life has gotten busier (i.e. I got married and a real job), the "no plan" plan has proven to be grossly deficient. Some parts of the Bible have gotten short shrift, particularly the major OT prophets. So this year, it's time to get serious, and stick to a plan.
I looked at some different plans, and didn't really like the way a lot of them looked. So I decided to create one of my own, a bit more flexible than the "read these particular chapters on these particular days" plans. I decided to just divide the different books up by month, trying to get a blend of genres in each month (history, prophecy, etc), and just finishing those books by the end of the month. Psalms was split up into 12 sections of 12-13 each.
January: Genesis, Psalms 38-50, Hosea, 1 Corinthians, Song of Solomon
February: Exodus, Job, Psalms 13-25
March: Leviticus, Psalms 1-12, Isaiah
April: Numbers, 2 Corinthians, Psalms 126-137, Matthew, Joel, Colossians, Jonah
May: Deuteronomy, Psalms 88-100, Hebrews, Ecclesiastes, Amos, Daniel, Galatians
June: Joshua, Mark, Psalms 26-37, Jeremiah
July: Judges, Psalms 63-75, Obadiah, Ephesians, Proverbs, Ruth, 1 and 2Thessalonians, Lamentations, Micah, Philemon, Jude
August: 1 and 2 Samuel, Psalms 138-150, Revelation, 1 and 2 Peter
September: 1 and 2 Kings, Psalms 51-62, Ezekiel
October: 1 and 2 Chronicles, Psalms 101-112, John
November: Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Acts, Psalms 76-87, Zechariah, Philippians, 1 Timothy, Haggai
December: Luke, Psalms 113-125, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Malachi, 2 Timothy, Titus, James, 1 and 2 and 3 John
Now, this is just a plan. I do reserve the right to change the order of books, but the goal is to stay ahead of the chapter pace. This comes out to about 98 chapters per month, and that's frontloaded a bit, so that December only has 69 chapters of reading. Since late November and December are big travel times, the goal is to stay ahead of pace so I'm not trying to cram 150 chapters in at the end.
Astute readers may notice something missing from the list. I don't have Romans in there anywhere. Why's that? I've decided that Romans is going to be my focal book for the year. The goal going forward is to pick at least one book (two or more if they're short ones, like the Johannine epistles) and study it thoroughly for the year. Read it many times, read commentaries, write some bloggage about it, memorize it, that sort of thing. This year will be Romans, and we'll see how that goes. So it's not included in the rest of the plan; I'll be reading it at least once a month on top of the other reading. Like everything, this is subject to change based on how it goes; I could move on to a different book after six months, stick with Romans the whole year, or even go into next year with it. We'll see.
So, anyone else have a plan? How are you going to dive into the Bible this year?
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