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Bible Reading Plans: Super Simple, Chronological, Audio, and Intense

How Words Are Distributed in the Bible

Holy Books

The Bible is the most important book in Christianity.

The Bible is a collection of 66 books (for protestants) and 73 (for catholics) written by 39 authors over a period of 1,500 years.

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Other religions have their holy books:

  • Islam has the Quran
  • Mormonism has The Book of Mormon
  • Buddhism has the Tripitaka
  • Judaism has the Torah
  • Hinduism has the Vedas

Christians (of the Protestant flavor) hold the Bible as their ultimate authority in all maters of faith and practice. Roman Catholics also hold to a high view of scripture but alongside it they place the authority of the church.

How Words Are Distributed in the Bible
How Words Are Distributed in the Bible

Because the Bible is so important to Christians there is a lot of emphasis on reading and studying.

Bible Reading Plans

Picking A Bible Translation

If you’re looking for a short list of solid Bible translations, here’s mine:

  • NASB
  • ESV
  • NIV
  • KJV

But as long as you stay away from the few bad Bible translations you can’t go wrong.

When I say “bad” I mean those done by individuals or small groups. These translations lack the sorts of checks and balances that come from a large diverse team.

Related Reading: How a KJV-Only Pastor Picks a Bible Translation

Divide and Conquer the Bible in One Year

This plan is simple and popular.

The reading plan breaks down like this:

There are 1,189 chapters in the Bible and 365 days in the year.

Read four chapters a day (technically 3.26) and you’ll get through the whole Bible in one year.

The One Year Chronological Bible

The One Year Chronological Bible is organized in two ways at once:

  • The order in which the events happened in history
  • Into chunks long enough so that you’ll get through the Bible in a year

It doesn’t get much easier than this.

I was able to find an NIV and NLT version. There’s also an audio version as well which is a nice segue into the next section.

Audio Bibles

The book is so much better than the movie. Or so they say.

For audio learners there is no shortage of Bibles.

From Alexander Scourby’s sonorous tones reading the King James Bible to the fully dramatized NIV with orchestrated soundtracks.

I would recommend that you get an audio version that’s available in AAC format (this is common for audio books). The AAC format allows you to pick up where you left off which is really useful when you’re trying to get through the whole Bible but want stop and start on your own time.

The Intense Plan

For those who really want to take their Bible reading plan to the next level this is for you.

This plan consists of reading 10 chapters a day.

Here are the details:

  • 1 chapter in Proverbs every day of the month. In the months that have fewer than 31 days double or triple up on the first day of the month. This will get you through Proverbs twelve times in one year.
  • 5 chapters in the Old Testament per day. This does not include Proverbs. This will get you through the OT twice in a year.
  • 4 chapters in the New Testament per day. This will get you through the NT six times in a year.

How Bible Reading Plans and Diets Are Similar

There are a lot of diet plans. Many (maybe most) work. But the reason why the people who get on those diets aren’t fit and trim is because they don’t stick to the diet.

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Pick one of the plans above or come up with your own and then stick with it for the entire year.

After all, whether you read the Bible all year or not the time is going to pass.

You might as well put it to good use.

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Christian Education: 7 Biblical References to Consider (Infographic)

Christian Education Involves Loving God With Your Mind

Updated: 2015-04-20

Christians sometimes feel that dedication to their faith relegates them to an intellectual backwater. The media reinforces this idea by painting Christianity as a kind of intellectual laziness. They make it seem as though Christians want to return to a cultural dark age. Is this true?

Let’s consider what Christianity’s founding documents have to say. We’ll examine seven passages that emphasize the importance of Christian education and explain why a Christian education is the only kind there is.

Further Reading: Why You’ll Never Outgrow the Study of Theology

1. Loving God with Your Mind Is the Purpose of Christian Education

In Matthew 22:37, Mark 12:30, and Luke 10:27 Jesus alludes to Deuteronomy 6:5 when he says:

And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.

– Matthew 22:37 (ESV)

As the founder of Christianity, Jesus has ultimate authority to declare what is important. When we put all three passages side-by-side we see the following:

Christian Education Involves Loving God With Your Mind
Christian Education Involves Loving God With Your Mind

 

2. Jesus Is the Very Embodiment of Truth

Christians are those who follow Christ (no surprise there). Christ claimed to be the essence of truth. He didn’t claim to be the essence of illusion, mystery, or the unexplained.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

– John 14:6 (ESV)

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Christians need not fear pursuing the truth because all truth points back to God. There are times when we can’t seem to reconcile natural revelation with special revelation. At least, we don’t see how we can. Christians take this as a sign that we’ve made a mistake in understanding one or the other. A strong adherence to Scripture allows for only potential contradictions, not actual ones.

3. Knowing Truth Results in Freedom from Sin

We all want to make good choices. The raw material needed to make good choices is knowledge. Just as important though, is the ability to choose what is right. In the Gospel of John, Jesus says the following while interacting with some Jews:

31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples,

32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

– John 8:31–32 (ESV)

The CIA adopted John 8:32 as their motto while under the guidance of Allen Dulles1. We presume that Dulles had political freedom in mind. That’s what the Pharisees thought Jesus was speaking about. Christ made it clear though that he was talking about freedom from sin. Who could argue against Christian education if it spells freedom from sin?

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Christian Education: 7 Biblical References to Consider (Infographic)
Christian Education Infographic

4. Christian Education Is Specifically Commanded by God

After Moses delivered the ten commandments to the children of Israel, God said:

You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

– Deuteronomy 6:7 (ESV)

The ten commandments are, of course, moral laws. Few would deny that Christian education should include instruction about morality and ethics. What about education in general? It turns out that the Bible encourages this as well:

An intelligent heart acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

– Proverbs 18:15 (ESV)

Scripture is full of admonitions to live lives full of learning, wisdom, and knowledge.

5. Jesus Is the Treasury of Wisdom and Knowledge

Christianity is not a religion of blind leaps of faith. Christianity places enormous value on wisdom and knowledge. The Apostle Paul tells believers what the core of wisdom and knowledge is:

1 For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face,

2 that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ,

3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments.

– Colossians 2:1–4 (ESV)

Study is hard. Good study is really hard. If you knew that the end of your study is Jesus, what greater motivation could you ask for?

6. An Educated Mind Can Discern Between Good and Evil

In his sermon “Growing in Christian Maturity,”2 Dr. James White covers Hebrews 5:11–14. These verses talk about the maturity that comes from consistent and purposeful Bible study.

But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.

– Hebrews 5:14 (ESV)

Christian growth, like physical growth, has a natural progression. If a baby didn’t seem to be growing, we’d get it to a doctor. Growth is natural. For a Christian growth is the ability to discern between good and evil, right and wrong, truth and error.

7. Jesus Is the Intellectual Atmosphere of Christianity

Paul quoted a Greek poet when addressing those at the Areopagus. In doing so, he demonstrated that Christ is the intellectual atmosphere we all breathe:

‘In him we live and move and have our being’;

– Acts 17:28a (ESV)

It’s not just that we live in a world that God created and than left to run on its own. The Christian worldview encompasses all areas of life, including education.

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An education may be labeled Christian due to its focus or methodology.

  • Focus: A Christian education focuses on the person of Christ (in particular) and the Christian worldview (in general).
  • Methodology: A Christian education methodologically speaking is one which adheres to the principles of Christianity but which may be focused on any topic.

Conclusion

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Christians, of all people, should be the most educated. There is nothing in Scripture (rightly interpreted) that would compel or encourage a person to be willfully ignorant. If anyone has a corner on ignorance, it’s not the Christian worldview.

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  1. “Headquarters Virtual Tour.” Central Intelligence Agency. March 17, 2013. Accessed February 28, 2015. https://www.cia.gov/about-cia/headquarters-tour/virtual-tour-flash/index.html.  ↩
  2. White, James. “Growing In Christian Maturity.” SermonAudio. January 1, 2010. Accessed February 28, 2015. http://www.sermonaudio.com/playpopup.asp?SID=6281001226. ↩