When I ask you to do something hard with me.

Lent starts on February 10 this year.  I usually try to do something to observe Lent in some way.  I don't always or even usually give something up but I usually try to devote myself to some kind of reading plan as a way of anticipating Easter. 

This year I'm going to spend the 40 days before Easter reading through the Bible.  The whole Bible.  So, that's approximately 30 chapters per day.  It takes about 45 minutes in an audio Bible to get through that many chapters so I'm guessing that the average reader could do it in about 1 hour.

1 hour.  That's not too bad, right?  You could find an hour in your day by cutting back on your Facebook time or skipping a couple of Friends reruns.  And I think you gain a lot in reading the Bible straight through like this.  You gain an understanding of the whole arc of God's story.  You gain some perspective: did you know that if you read the Bible straight through in 40 days, you'll be reading Old Testament for all but 9 days of that time!  What does that tell you about the Old Testament?  I also think reading through the Bible like this can give you a new understanding of who God is. 

So, here's what reading through the Bible in 40 days is not about.  It's not about deep study.  This will give a broad understanding.  You are going to run across things that you want to go deeper on, that's part of what this is about.  I recommend that you do this with a journal right beside you.  Make notes, write down questions that you have and passages you want to return to.  Hopefully this broad exercise will inform your deeper study for the rest of the year!  You may want to attempt this reading in a different version than your usual study version...maybe try the NLT or The Message for some different perspective.

I'm including my Lenten reading plan here.  Notice that it doesn't include any readings on Sundays.  You can use those days to rest or, if you need to,  catch up.  I hope some of you will join me.  I'm praying that God reveals Himself to you in a fresh way through this reading.  (Also, if you want a printable version of this reading plan, send me an email.  I'm not awesome enough to figure out how to include that on this post, sorry.)

 

 

40 days through the Bible - a Lenten Reading Plan

  • February 10 - Genesis 1-27

  • February 11 - Genesis 28 - end

  • February 12 - Exodus 1 - 34

  • February 13 - Exodus 35 - Leviticus 15

 

  • February 15 - Leviticus 16 - Numbers 13

  • February 16 - Numbers 14 -  end

  • February 17 - Deuteronomy

  • February 18 - Joshua 1 - Judges 10

  • February 19 - Judges 11 - end; Ruth; 1 Samuel 1 -13

  • February 20 - 1 Samuel 14 - 2 Samuel 10

 

  • February 22 - 2 Samuel 11 - 1 Kings 6

  • February 23 - 1 Kings 7 - 2 Kings 5

  • February 24 - 2 Kings 6 - 1 Chronicles 10

  • February 25 - 1 Chronicles 11 - 2 Chronicles 2

  • February 26 - 2 Chronicles 3 - end

  • February 27 - Ezra and Nehemiah

 

  • February 29 - Esther and Job

  • March 1 - Psalm 1 - 50

  • March 2 - Psalm 51 - 100

  • March 3 - Psalm 101 - 150

  • March 4 - Proverbs

  • March 5 - Ecclesiastes and Song of Songs

 

  • March 7 - Isaiah 1 - 40

  • March 8 - Isaiah 41 - 60

  • March 9 - Isaiah 61 - Jeremiah 18

  • March 10 - Jeremiah 19 - end

  • March 11 - Lamentations; Ezekiel 1-20

  • March 12 - Ezekiel 21 - end

 

  • March 14 - Daniel and Hosea

  • March 15 - Joel; Amos; Obadiah; Jonah; Micah; Nahum

  • March 16 - Habakkuk; Zephaniah; Haggai; Zechariah; Malachi

  • March 17 - Matthew

  • March 18 - Mark

  • March 19 - Luke

 

  • March 21 - John

  • March 22 - Acts

  • March 23 - Romans and 1 Corinthians

  • March 24 - 2 Corinthians; Galatians; Ephesians; Philippians; Colossians; 1 & 2 Thessalonians

  • March 25 - 1 & 2 Timothy; Titus; Philemon; Hebrews; James

  • March 26 - 1 & 2 Peter; 1, 2 & 3 John; Jude; Revelation