Thoughts on the Way Home

Monday, December 17, 2007

On Bible Reading Plans

I proposed reading through Robert Murray McCheyne's reading plan together in 2008. Let me mention a recipe for disaster with such an endeavor. Most people attempt too much with their reading plans. You want to do Bible study. You also want to simply commune with Christ through reading the Scriptures, allowing your soul to be nourished on the Word.

Both of these are good and necessary. The Christian needs rigorous Bible study. The Christian also needs to simply read the Scriptures, enjoying God through every line. But let me quickly add that if you attempt deep study on this reading plan, you will only end in discouragement. Here's what happens - Since you are going so deep in study, you began to fall behind. The next day, you allot more time for catch-up. After a period of time, you fall hopelessly behind. You aren't enjoying the time at all - you are only trying to get somewhere near the day's reading. In misery you eventually quit the plan.

Though Bible study is vital for the Christian, I would advise against using this plan as your study method. Use this plan to simply read the Bible. Let your soul be fed and nourished through each line. Yes, you will stop occasionally to look up a cross-reference or make a note in your margin. But your primary purpose will be to simply commune with God.

Bottom Line: Decide before you start what you want to do. You will not be able to accomplish both rigorous study and the simple reading of the Scriptures on the same plan. I would advise only attempting the latter on this plan.