The importance of Daily Bible Reading
For many of you, the corona-virus has meant that you have spent a lot more time at home. The internet is full of ideas of how you can keep yourself physically fit and mentally sharp as you prepare for weeks of boredom and isolation. Have you given some thought to how you might use this time to grow as a follower of Jesus?
Just as athletes have workouts and musicians practice scales, there are spiritual practices that disciples of Jesus can use to develop spiritually. There are two central spiritual practices: daily Bible reading and prayer, but this week we will focus on daily Bible reading.
The Connect: a guide to daily Bible reading
Pacific Union provides daily Bible readings along four tracks:
- a Psalm
- an Old Testament reading
- a New Testament reading
- a Gospel reading (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John)
You can find the daily readings here: https://pacificunionconnect.com/daily-bible-readings/
(The posts can be viewed easily on your computer and smartphone, you can also leave comments and questions — which is strongly encouraged).
We recommend that you use the Psalm track for prayer (more on that in another blog) and that you pick one of the other three tracks (Old Testament, New Testament or Gospel) to follow each day.
Listen. Respond. Share.
Reading the Bible as a disciple is a three-step process:
- Listen. What is God saying through this passage?
- Respond. If this is God’s word to me, how will I respond?
- Share. What is something simple that I learned that I can share with someone else?
Here is the process in a little more detail:
- Select a passage from one of three Bible reading tracks (Old Testament, New Testament or Gospel).
- Pray and ask God to help you, through the Holy Spirit, to understand what you are about to read.
- Read the Scripture passage several times through.
If you need help understanding what you are reading, the Bible Project has an incredible resource on Youtube. They have created 10 minute videos that summarize the themes and background for each book of the Bible. For example, if you are reading from James, simply search in Youtube for “Bible Project James”. Here is a link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qn-hLHWwRYY&t=47s
- Now work through the three major questions (listen, respond and share). I like to journal my responses to each of these questions:
- Listen. What is God saying to you through this section of Scripture? Write out the main points of the passage in your own words. (If you have any questions or insights, feel free to share them in the comments section on the blog.)
- Respond. If this is God’s word to you, how will you respond? Use these prompts to help you think through this (pick one or more of the following prompts; not all prompts will apply to you; make sure your answers are personal and specific):
- Will I obey God in a specific way? Will I do something? Will I stop doing something?
- Am I moved to worship God? Is there something specific that I am thankful for?
- Is the Holy Spirit moving me to repent of a specific sin?
- Am I being challenged to trust God with a specific area with my life?
- Am I being called to pray in a certain way?
- Share. What is something simple that I learned that I can share with someone else? Who will I share this with?
- Close your time by praying that God gives you the courage to respond to what you have read and the joy to share what you are learning.