A Word about The Word
by Rev. Tom Gray
“I think I’m going to read the Bible all the way through next year.” I’ve heard (and used) that new year’s pledge before. Almost always, it fails. I think it is good, even vital to read the Bible, but it needs to be done properly.
When most of us start reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, we get bogged down somewhere around Leviticus. It is better that we resolve to read what we can, each book in its entirety. The Bible wasn’t written to be read cover-to-cover. While the various books of the Bible reflect on the others, each is also meant to be read on its own.
I suggest that you start with the Gospels. Mark is the shortest, John is the most “polished” literarily. Matthew and Luke are the more detailed biographies of Jesus. Moving on, you can read more New Testament history in Acts (which was written as the sequel to Luke).
Other great books to read as you start are Romans, Philippians or any other of the apostles’ letters. These are just suggestions, there is no hard rule to follow but this: just read.
Don’t be afraid to mark up your Bible. Underlining key ideas, or favorite passages, helps you remember more of what you have read. A good rule for underlining is to do so with verses you particularly like, or ones that create questions in your mind. It’s also good to write short notes in the margins. It is not sacrilegious to write in your Bible.
If you begin reading the Bible this way, success will build on itself as your Biblical knowledge increases.
The point is to read your Bible.