Bible Reading Plan for 2017

New Year is traditionally a time where many of us make New Year’s resolutions, in one form or another.  The majority of resolutions quickly fall by the wayside, and in many ways, there is nothing to stop us resolving on a particular course of action at any point in the year. However, there is something about a New Year that can give us more of an impetus than at other times, as it provides us with a blank slate. Depending on your character, perhaps you are more likely to achieve something substantial if you set goals for the year.

One of the best resolutions we could make at the beginning of 2017 is to become more familiar with the Bible, “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). 

Tim Challies has observed that there are two approaches to daily Bible reading, intimacy & Familiarity. Intimacy comes through slow meditative reading of smaller portions, whereas familiarity comes through faster reading of larger portions.

There are many Bible reading plans which take us through the whole Bible in a year. For a number of years now, I have been using the Robert Murray M’Cheyne reading plan, where you read the Old Testament once and the New Testament and Psalms twice each year, by reading four chapters a day. I’ve found it beneficial in to become more familiar with the Bible as a whole.

This year I have decided to follow the 5 Day Bible Reading Program. Again, the plan allows you to read the whole Bible between 1 January & 31 December. However, it differs to the M’Cheyne plan as it works through the books in a more chronological order, as the events occurred, and in 5 days as opposed to 7. The benefit of working on the basis of 5 days, rather than 7, is that it gives you a chance to catch up if you missed any readings and it gives you the opportunity to focus on other areas of the Bible for the rest of the week.

If you haven’t read through the whole Bible in a year, it may sound like an onerous task, but you might surprise yourself to find that it is both an obtainable and a rewarding goal. Why not try it for 2017?