January 2, 2013
As we shortly approach this next New Year of 2013, whatever our plans are for the year ahead, can I encourage you to commit yourself to reading God’s Word regularly. It is clear in a world of much distraction, with many voices constantly battling for our time and attention- to have a disciplined life in the study of God’s Word, as well a life of prayer can often be pushed to the back of our minds.
At this time of year, as we look forward to what lies ahead, it is also a time when Bible reading plans and study notes are plugged for us to get into. In a way this is what I endeavour to do with this message, but I believe we should be seeking to get stuck into the Bible all year round! Saying that, it does help to keep on track by following the days and months of the year.
Over the last few years, I have been doing a chronological plan known as the M’cheyne Reading Plan, that was devised by the scottish minister Robert Murray M’Cheyne. Is it available online at youversion, who also have an app for mobile devices. I have found that the plan is fantastic for taking you through the whole Bible that gets you stuck into every one of the 66 books, which may otherwise be over-looked for more easier or familiar passages! Sometimes this can prove a challenge, which is why reading with others can be a great help as you make the journey through scripture together. To this end, the Facebook group Fourchaptersaday was set up to encourage each other to keep going, but also an opportunity to post up what has struck or challenged us as we discover the riches of God’s Word. It has 4 tracts, which when read together takes you through the Old Testament once and the New Testament & Psalms twice. Each one also functions on their own, depending on which section of the Bible you wanted to focus on. (see below)
Tract A: Genesis – 2 Chronicles
Tract B: Ezra – Malachi
Tract C: Matthew – Revelation (Including Psalms)
Tract D: Acts – John (Including Psalms)
If you use the full plan, it can be hard to catch up if you miss a few days and so, this year, I would like to introduce ‘Restart Days’ when new books come up that will help us to get back on track. This may also be useful for those wanting to dip in and out of the plan. Otherwise to go at your own pace is fine as well!
So then, we will be making this journey again come January the 1st and we’d love for you to join us. The group has many members at different churches across the UK and at different stages in life. You can download a copy of the plan from the Facebook group which can be used as a bookmark. There are also resources and links available at the Facebook group – e.g. Don Carson’s study guide which is based on the plan, that points you in the right direction to focus on the things that matter in each passage. If you would like to join us this year, you are more than welcome to join the Facebook group. Alternatively, you can email me directly to sign up or for any other information about the plan. Please invite friends and family to join who either read through the plan already, or who you think might like to start it this year.
Yours in Christ,
P.S. For alternative Bible study notes please visit the GoodBook Company for great Bible-centred material, that opens up the Bible each day.