As 2019 comes to a close I’m sure many Christians are planning their 2020 Bible reading. In the past, we’ve shared links to several Bible reading plans, but today’s post is a little different. Perhaps the approach “quality, not quantity” should be considered when reading our Bible in 2020. In order to get the most out your Bible reading, here are a few suggestions that will help hide God’s Word in your heart:
Memorize Scripture. First, you can get the most out of your Bible reading by aiming to memorize chunks (whole books if possible) of Scripture. Scripture memorization is not merely for Awana kids or Christian school students. Rather, Scripture memorization should be a discipline we develop as we mature in the faith. This allows us to bring Scripture with us wherever we go. This is especially vital in the world we live in today where information is at our fingertips which can cause us to lazily meander through life.
Meditate on Scripture. Second, meditate on Scripture. It is possible to read a page and completely forget what you just read. Approaching Scripture with the mindset to meditate upon its content takes energy, effort, and focus that must be empowered by the Spirit. When accomplished, meditating on Scripture helps us fight sin, grow in grace, and love those around us.
Listen to Expository Sermons. Third, another way to get the most out of your daily Bible reading is to listen to a sermon the passage you read that. Utilize the time on your commute, while you exercise, or do chores around the house. The internet has opened the door for us to listen to faithful preachers and listening to good preachers is one way to get the most out of your Scripture reading. Also, please put your pastor on the list of preachers you listen to most often.
Pray Scripture. Fourth, you can get the most out of your Scripture reading when you saturate your prayer time with vocabulary from your daily Bible reading. Donald Whitney encourages this practice in several of his books. This helps the Scripture stick to our hearts and minds.
Share Scripture. Fifth, make an effort to share what you read on a regular basis. The most immediate application to this is to your family. Tell your parents what you read and learned. Share with your spouse what you’re thinking through in Scripture. Make sure you speak with your children about the truths you discovered in your personal time with the Lord. If you’re single, share with your roommate, accountability partner, or co-workers. Yes, you can even share what you’ve read and learned to unbelievers around you. This may help clarify their misunderstandings about Christianity.
Read Inductively. Sixth, read inductively. By this, I mean to make Scripture the main text of your devotional reading. Do not depend on devotional (although they may be helpful). Make sure you are working your way to reading as much of pure Scripture as you can. When you read inductively you are praying for wisdom and understanding (orientation), understanding what the text says (observation), understanding what the text means (interpretation), and connecting it to the larger picture (correlation).
Do Scripture. Seventh, make sure that you are a doer of the word. When presented with an opportunity to practice and live out your faith do not shrink back. The Christian life is intended to be lived out in public. Obedience to God yields the greatest joy a human being could ever experience. Therefore, do not hesitate to do properly express your love for God through obedience. If we love Him, we will obey His commandments.
How can all this be done in the 10–15 minutes we spend per day in Scripture? I’m not entirely sure, but I think ingraining much of these suggestions helps us live a word-centered, Scripture-saturated, God-honoring life. Blessings on your Bible reading in the new year!