For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
If I were to ask any of you, when was the last meal you ate, it would not take long for you to pinpoint an exact time and location. If we were to skip a meal, our body would tell us immediately. If we skipped two meals, our body would really start to complain. What’s interesting is that we would always be able to identify what the problem is automatically, without the need to consult a friend or physician. However, if I were to ask you when was the last time you read your Bible, most of us would have a very difficult time answering that question.
The reason for this is because we are not as in tune with our inner man (Romans 7:22–23) as we are with our physical body. We have spent so many years eating both consistently and at a regular time. We notice when a meal time has gone by, but no food was taken. The truth is, it should have been like this with the reading of our Bibles, which is spiritual food for the inner man. We all remember what sustained the Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years, right? Manna. Jesus Christ told us that He is the Bread of Life (John 6:35). And when Jesus was tempted by the devil in the wilderness, what was Jesus’ response? “Many shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4) Natural food sustains the natural man. Spiritual food sustains the spiritual man (1 Peter 2:2-10; Hebrews 5:12-6:3). Imagine the problems we could overcome, just by setting aside a time to regularly feast on Holy Scriptures.
When we eat food, we usually take a small bite, then chew it in our mouths and swallow it. Once the food is in our stomachs, it is churned, broken down, digested and converted into minerals and nutrients that can be absorbed by our body.
This is a great example of how we should approach reading and studying our Bible. We take small portions and ponder on them for a while. We ask ourselves questions like, “What did I just read?”, “What does it mean?” and “What does it mean to me?” to help us thoroughly understand what we just read. Then we meditate on what God is teaching us by His Holy Spirit and let Him minister the truths into our lives. After that, we take time to pray so that we can, by the Spirit of God, be transformed into the image of Christ by letting God’s Holy Words take effect in our lives.
This year I’ve set a goal to read through the whole Bible at least once. I will also be reading at least 5 chapters from the Psalms every week. In fact, I plan on memorizing as much of the Psalms as I can throughout this year. This will greatly increase my prayer life and praise and worship time. I will also try to memorize the Gospel of John and one Epistle from the New Testament. I know it sounds like a lot, but I’m determined to feed on good food, in order to grow in godliness.
If you would like to find a good Bible reading plan, Tim Challies, who is a prolific blogger, avid reader, Pastor, and Speaker has a great article on how to begin a Bible reading habit here:
There are also links on this page that lead to other websites that provide Bible reading plans that you can use. You should bookmark his website as there is a lot that you can learn from him. It’s biblically balanced, thought-provoking and easy to read at the same time.
Another place you can look for Bible reading plans are at the Ligonier website found here:
and from the Bible Class Material website found here:
Ready for the challenge? Let me know in the comments below.