Friday, November 28, 2014

2015 Operation Deepen Faith Reading Challenge

January 1, 2015 – December 31, 2015

This challenge has multiple parts. (You wouldn't have to sign up for each part. But. Ideally participants would be interested in doing more than just one.) The challenge is from January 2015 through December 2015.

I. Wonderful Words of Life. Goal: Read the Bible. Usually I add the phrase "using a Bible Plan." But. The point is READING the Bible. Not on a specific plan.

Some people just are plan people. They like having a list or plan to refer to on a daily/weekly basis. They like knowing exactly what to read next. Other people just are not plan people. That doesn't mean they don't read the Bible, or read the Bible through in a year. It just means that they like to choose what they read and how much they read. If you're completely new to reading the Bible--and I do hope that some participants are new!--try a reading plan. See if it works for you. But know that if it doesn't, that doesn't mean the Bible isn't right for you. Reading does take commitment, but, it doesn't have to be commitment to a specific plan. (I've indicated which plans might be great for new believers or those struggling with reading the Bible.)

  • Back to the Bible's 21 Day Bible Reading Challenge (John only)*
  • Back to the Bible's 90 Day Bible Reading Challenge (Genesis, Matthew, Mark, Luke only) (link to pdf file)*
  • Back to the Bible's 6 Month Bible Reading Challenge (Acts through Revelation, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes only) (link to pdf file)*
  • 5X5X5 Bible Reading Plan (New Testament Only, 5 Days A Week, 5 Minutes a Day) (link to pdf file)*
  • Discipleship Journal Bible Reading Plan (25 readings per month) (link to pdf file)
  • Discipleship Journal Bible Reading Plan (Book-at-a-Time) (25 readings per month) (link to pdf file)
  • (Whole) Bible in 90 Days Plan (link to pdf file)
  • John MacArthur's NT Plan (read a book 30 days in a row)
  • Woodrow Kroll's Plan (read whole books at a time; read a whole book of the Bible in one sitting)
  • Professor Horner's Bible Reading Plan (link to pdf file)
  • M'Cheyne Bible Reading Plan (link to pdf file)
  • 52 Week Bible Reading Plan, Different Genre Every Day (link to pdf file)
  • Legacy Reading Plan (No set daily readings, but, set monthly readings) (link to pdf file)
  • Back to the Bible's Chronological Plan (lists readings month by month, the link to January)

II How Firm A Foundation. Goal: STUDY (Meditate too!) one book of the Bible throughout the year. Read it at least four times. (You might even challenge yourself to read it twelve times--one each month.) If possible, read the notes in a study Bible, or, read a commentary book about your book, or, read and listen to sermons on your book, or, doing an inductive (manuscript) study of your book. Consider reading it in different translations. Get to know that one book well. Let God speak to you through it. Online commentaries are available. Classic Bible Commentaries. Bible Gateway offers several as well: IVP New Testament Commentary Series; Reformation Study Bible; Asbury Bible Commentary. List of commentaries available through J. Vernon McGee's Thru the Bible sermons are also available. (Listen online through Oneplace.)

III. Deep and Wide; Goal: read multiple books of the bible in multiple translations.
For example that might mean reading four to six books of the Bible (OT or NT, whatever you prefer) in four to six different translations. The books wouldn't have to be long books. You might choose Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, and Colossians, etc. Or you might choose  John, 1 John, 2 John, 3 John, Revelation. Or Luke, Acts, Romans, Hebrews. You can choose a group of books that makes sense to you. Books that you want to explore further. You choose the books, you choose the translations. You choose the pace.

IV.  Meditate or Memorize. Note the OR! Not everyone is comfortable committing to memorize Scripture. (I'm one of them!) Goal: Choose about a verse a week--or a verse every other week--to reflect and meditate on. It might mean memorizing it. It might mean writing or journaling about it. (Or blogging about it if you like.) It might mean praying it. Or studying it. It's taking the reading of Scripture into something a little more--worship. These verses would not (have to) be chosen ahead of time. I'm not asking for a list. This is all about choosing-as-you-go, choosing as you read, let Scripture speak to you.

V. Christian Nonfiction. Don't be afraid to give it a try. Read some theology. You choose the number of books to aim for. A beginner might not feel comfortable committing to more than one book. And that's fine. I want to challenge you to start somewhere. This challenge is for everyone. Not just for people who want to commit to reading twenty!

  • books about God (his attributes, his character, his names, etc.)
  • books about the birth, life, death, resurrection of Jesus; the person and work of Christ
  • books about the Bible (how to read, how to study, why it's reliable, how it is translated, etc.)
  • books about Bible characters (Moses, David, Solomon, Abraham, Jesus, Peter, etc.)
  • books about prayer, fasting
  • books about worship or worship music 
  • books about church life or church growth or church leadership 
  • books about missions (evangelism, outreach, service)
  • sermon collections (sermon note collections), essay collections
  • biographies/memoirs of theologians, preachers, missionaries, etc.
  • books about pain, suffering, tough questions, etc.
  • books about apologetics
  • books about end times

This reading challenge is hosted by Operation Actually Read Bible. For more information and to sign-up, please see this post.