Practical Tips for Daily Bible Reading

Hi, friends. Have you ever felt your toes being stepped on when the preacher talked about people reading their Bibles? Been there. We have our excuses, though. “I don’t have time.” “I don’t need to because I know what it says.” “We read the Bible at church.”

It may be tough to hear, but Christians should read and study scripture, point blank. We must engrave the Word upon our hearts. When I read the Bible, God’s presence feels close, and I am uplifted and empowered.

Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:4, NIV) [Jesus is referencing Deuteronomy 8:3]

In the last few months, I read the whole New Testament up to Revelation. I wrote a draft of this post soon after I started, and I’m returning to it now to evaluate how helpful these goals were and share this post with y’all.

Practical Tips for Daily Bible Reading

Set Goals

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I realized a big reason I procrastinated in the past was because I had no plan. Set a daily goal for your Bible reading, either in chapters or minutes.

I recommend reading the New Testament then the Old Testament, though I’d still sprinkle NT readings in with the OT readings.  Psalms and Proverbs can be read out of order. [If you read the NT before the OT, you’d read about Jesus first, then you’d see how Christianity spread and evolved, then you’d go back and see how the covenants of the OT led to the NT, observing everything before Jesus with the benefit of hindsight.]

Looking back, setting goals has been a great way to hold myself accountable. 

Find a Take-Away

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This tip pertains to the idea of “mindfulness” that’s pretty trendy now. Finding a take-away from your daily Bible reading means making the most of the time you spend in the Word (i.e. not reading robotically). Every time you read the Bible, find an interesting thought or idea you can mull over between readings.

Looking back, this seems like a great idea, but I have struggled with it because I am reading a lot every day. When I read the NT again, I should go slower and “smell the roses.” I recommend marking verses and passages that strike you along the way so you easily look back on them. A lot of people keep Bible journals to reflect on said verses and passages.

Force Yourself

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Ah, yes, good ol’ fashioned spiritual discipline. As the Nike motto says…just do it! At the end of the day, almost anything rewarding requires some effort…and what could be more rewarding to a child of God than growing in our knowledge of and connection with Him?

Looking back, I see how spiritual discipline develops as you nurture it. The more I read, the more I want to read. When I got in the habit of reading scripture, I truly began to understand its power.

It’s like a glass of ice cold water on a sweltering day; it’s like the warmth from a bonfire on an autumn night. The Word refreshes my soul.

Thanks for reading! Even when we mess up and miss days or weeks or months, don’t give up–God is good!

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14, NIV)

16 comments

  1. It helped me to read it as a whole: beginning with “The Greatest book ever written.” and then, “The greatest story ever told.” Once I could put the events together with some meaning,then reading the Bible didn’t seem so difficult. The King James versions at the time, 1611 was written in the ordinary vernacular. Personally, that’s how I think it should be presented, in common ordinary terms and language. Doing that, one would read it as any other instructional book to study. Afterwards most of realize this is a lifetime venture. Thank you for your post, as always. Fantastic and useful.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Great insight! Once again, you challenge me! I agree with reading an easy-to-understand version, for the goal is to become more knowledgeable and to be transformed. I am reminded of the mantra: Follow Jesus. Make Disciples, Transform the World. The change must begin within each of us, then ripple out. 🙂

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  3. I found the Discipleship reading plan on the Bible app. It’s helping me to read the Bible ins year. It’s very similar to RCL layout; a gospel, an epistle, a wisdom literature, and another OT reading. It seems to be helping my recall much more. I’m thinking eventually I need to read and do a SOAP bible study at the same time but homework has taken precedence lately. That’s also what has kept me quiet on the blog too.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. These are some wonderful tips! It is so important to read both OT and NT. I agree, the more I read the more I look forward to reading more. I’ve been slowly going through Psalms and writing out each verse I like. So I only cover about one chapter or read a few, highlight, and then next time write it the verses I liked. I am going to add this to the community spotlight on Inside Cup.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, T.R.! I’m always honored to be included in a community spotlight. It sounds like you are taking the time to smell the roses. I’m trying to read less each day now and make myself contemplate certain verses between readings. It’s just been an inner conflict between wanting to read everything ASAP vs. devoting adequate care and reflection to each reading.

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  5. I’ve been reading through the Bible yearly for over 20 years. One key to freshness is to change versions every time you start over. And of course, write down what God teaches you! It’s worth keeping for the future if it’s from God! Happy digging!

    Like

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