Bible Reading Programs 2016, 2017 and 2018
Posted by January 11, 2018on
The 2018 Bible Reading Program has begun. Here are some lessons I learned from the past two years and a preview of this coming year of readings.
Just when I think, “Whew, I made it through another year of the Bible Reading Program,” I download the upcoming edition and realize I have another opportunity to learn something new about God, His family, the purpose for mankind and my human nature.
Like watching your favorite movie over and over, or rereading a good book again, you realize there was something you missed the first time.
So let me share with you some lessons I learned from the last couple of years’ Bible Reading Programs and look at what this year has in store.
During 2016, two distinct lessons seemed to come out of the readings:
The first lesson I noted was God’s consistency in how He deals with us. He is totally committed to our good and wants us to be in His family. On the other hand, our occasional lack of commitment reminds us of the weakness we face as humans to the seemingly magnetic pull of sin.
I cannot count the number of times I have gotten excited about a project only for it to wind up on my back burner, collecting dust and frequently “tapping my shoulder” to remind me of its unfinished state.
If our spiritual life becomes like an abandoned project, we are in trouble. Before baptism we were admonished to “count the cost” of our commitment to God’s way of life. That commitment must be stalwart and unfailing—just as God’s commitment toward us is.
The second lesson I saw was the powerful effect that leaders can have.
The assigned readings ended with 1 and 2 Chronicles, where we saw king after king making the choice to live and lead in a way that was good or evil. When the former was chosen, the nation flourished and was protected miraculously.
One event that was inspiring was in 2 Chronicles 20. King Jehoshaphat beseeched God and inspired the nation to have faith that God would fight their battles. They were required to meet the enemy armies and watch God destroy the enemy without their having to raise a finger.
This past year’s Bible Reading Program took a different approach by weaving together seven different themes, one for each day of the week.
Sunday took us through the apostles’ letters to the New Testament Church. Monday and Tuesday took us from creation through the history of Israel and Judah. On Wednesday and Thursday we enjoyed the richness of the Psalms and the rest of the Writings. Friday was reading the Prophets. The Sabbath readings led us through the Gospels and finished with the book of Acts.
Here is the introduction to the 2018 plan on the members’ website (called the Advanced Bible Reading Plan on the Life, Hope & Truth website):
“This year’s Bible Reading Program takes you to four sections of the Bible each day. Robert Murray McCheyne, an early 19th-century pastor and preacher in Scotland, created this well-known reading program. During this year, you will read the Old Testament once and the New Testament and Psalms twice.”
I look forward to the lessons I’ll glean from God’s Word this year!
See additional Bible Reading Plans in the Life, Hope & Truth “Learning Center Reading and Writing Plans.”