I have just completed March (more months as I have time – hopefully to have entire year up before New Year dawns) on the “Daily Bible Reading Schedule” on line at Psalm 19 Ministries. I have needed to pull it all back and put it in another form that transfers well to the web. I thank my husband for suggesting the form I am using. I think it will be helpful to follow.
The discipline (or dance it could be called) of reading the Bible systematically every year is not difficult. In fact, it actually takes only 15 minutes or so by the average reader. I am very average in my reading skills and do not consider myself rapid at all. Yet, this small amount of time has paid mega dividends in my understanding the whole counsel of God.
As I see it, there are basically three disciplines associated with the Word and more or less expected from Scripture toward us who read.
The First is to read. That is simple. This is not study, nor meditation. I often find folk who say they want to do it “right” and study it all out as they go. The only problem with that is that I have yet to discover one of those folk with a good over-all knowledge of the word. The reality is, they never have time to do it “right,” so it never gets done at all.
The Second discipline is to study. Well, this is a different discipline altogether. Here one is not concerned with order, but with digging into a selected text and seeing what it unfolds in its data. It takes much more than 15 minutes and is involving only a small amount of Scripture. This is also commanded. But it is not the same as “reading.”
The Third is the discipline of meditation. The Biblical discipline is the action of mulling a passage over and over in the mind and allowing it to penetrate the depths of the mind and soul. This, too, is commanded and very needful, but can be done at any point with any passage. One needs to combine some method of memorization to be able to do this effectively.
So I guess, we should insert a Fourth discipline – that of Memorization. There are many technics around to help here. Pick one and memorize, or simply use the passage enough in your thought and/or teaching and you will find it comes up memorized.
As one can see, there is much to be done with the Word, our Scriptures. However, I am primarily encouraging us to read. That’s it — just read. When we do that every day in a systematic way, I find study follows, and meditation becomes more or less automatic.
So go to the site, or some other site with a systematic schedule, and begin and have a wonderful year doing so! If you have done this before, by all means, do it again. Fifteen minutes is a small amount of time in anyone’s schedule. Let’s do this!