I decided to use the YouVersion chronological Bible reading plan as tool to enhance my pursuit of God in 2010. I’ve read the Bible in a chronological format before, using The Daily Bible, and really believe that it was very helpful. There are many valid approaches to reading the Bible (reading plans, devotional bibles, book studies, character studies, topical studies). The most important thing is to read it, regularly and deeply. I do truly believe that the Scriptures are “living and active” (Hebrews 4:12) and that they are “breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
As Jonathan Edwards wrote: “Consider how much it is worth the while to go often to your Bible to hear the great God Himself speak to you. There you may hear Christ speak. How much better must we think this is than the word of men. Better than the word of the wisest man of the world. How much wiser is God than man. Here all is true; nothing false. Here all is wise; nothing foolish. This is the GREAT LIGHT God has given to the world. To make use of this is the way to walk in the Light… to have our souls filled with Light. If we neglect this we shall walk in darkness. We should value this more than the light of the sun. We see the light of the sun does a great deal of good… gives light… pleasant to see… ’tis comfortable… it gives life. So Scripture gives light… gives life. Should hear the Word: come to meeting. ’Tis the way to have God’s mercy, to seek God in His Word. There we may expect to meet with God. God will respect His own Word for the good of men: what great good has been done. God has often made it a means of great good. Conversion of many souls. Great joy of many. Many have been comforted in affliction… in death. This will be the way to be wise with the most excellent wisdom.” (The Scripture Is The Word of God, by Jonathan Edwards)
So, I’m 21 days in. And so much has already happened, in the Scriptures as well as in life. I’ve read the first 30 action-packed chapters of Genesis and the entire 42-chapter book of Job. (If you didn’t know, Job most-likely lived during the time of the patriarchs – Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.) In my Scripture readings, the world has been created and man (collectively through the sin of Adam, as well as individually through all manner of murder, sexual perversion, family dysfunction, treachery and prideful arrogance) has already screwed it up – badly. But, fortunately, God has already set his redemptive plan in motion, and even foreshadowed it in the way he cared for Adam and Eve after the exposure of their sin and shame, and in saving Noah’s family in the ark, and in providing a lamb for Abraham to sacrifice instead of Isaac. In life, 2 earthquakes have wreaked havoc in Haiti, my pastor is being treated for brain cancer, my neighbor’s husband just left her and their 3 kids for a girl he met on Facebook, and a good friend’s 18-year-old daughter was killed in a car accident. And this is just three weeks into 2010. Just like in the Bible, a combination of the consequences of our own sins and the inevitable reality of living in a fallen world have sown tragedy, hopelessness and despair.
So, I will continue to pray for healing for this sin-wrecked, dark world. And I will put my hope and trust in the God of the Bible, meeting Him each day in the Holy Scriptures, which is the light He has given me.