Posted by: Philip Rushton | January 2, 2013

Finding The Right Bible Reading Plan

As a new year approaches many people resolve to spend more time reading the Bible. However, sometimes our plans don’t work out very well. A lot of us start in Genesis every January, but by the end of the month we’ve fallen behind on the schedule or simply lost interest.

The reality is that we all have different schedules, personalities, reading styles, and needs. Some of us don’t do well with a regimented schedule. Some of us may need to slow down our pace of scripture reading so that we can meditate on it. Others of us might need to read through scripture in bigger sections so that we can grasp the bigger picture.

I came across a website that provides a variety of different reading schedules. You can go to this site by clicking here. You can print any of these reading schedules out and place them in your Bible. I’d encourage you to browse through these plans and find one that works for you.

I prefer Bible reading plans that are not tied to specific dates. If there are dates involved I tend to give up when I fall behind. On the link I provided there are two plans that are very flexible. One simply provides the “Bible Reading Chart,” which allows you to check off chapters as you read them. The “Legacy Plan” also gives a lists of books to read in any given month but does not attach dates for you to follow so that you can read at your own pace. The “Two-Year Reading Plan” makes reading a bit more manageable and has built in catch-up days.

The other thing I have appreciated is plans that do not jump around too much. Some plans have you reading out of 4 different books each day. I prefer plans to stick to one book at a time so that I can understand the context of scripture better and focus on one thing at a time. The “Every Word of the Bible Plan” encourages you to read the bible one book at a time but alternates between the Old and New Testament so you do not get too burned out with some of the long Old Testament books. The “Bible Reading Chart,” and “Two-Year Reading Plan,” and “Chronological Plan” also help you focus on one book at a time.

This year I personally feel the need to read at a slower pace. I’ve read through the entire bible at a fast pace before, but at this point in my journey I feel the need to be able to meditate on smaller portions of scripture. I think I will be using the, “Every Word in the Bible Plan,” which aims at reading a chapter a day and alternates between Old and New Testament books.

Whatever you choose to do, I’d encourage you to be reading scripture regularly. Research shows that this is probably the most formative thing you can do for your spiritual journey. Willow Creek conducted an extensive 10 year study on discipleship in the church, and one of their biggest conclusions is that personal scripture reading is one of the most formative thing people can do to grow.* It is funny that it took hundreds of thousands of dollars of research to figure that out. We get the same conclusion by simply reading 1 Timothy where it says, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” Or Psalm 119:105 where it says, “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.”

May you be blessed by the reading of God’s word in 2013!

* (Greg Hawkins, Move: What 1000 churches reveal about spiritual growth, pgs 219-227)


  1. Good New’s Year stuff, both blogs,keep our feet to the fire but be gracious with with our failures.

  2. Thank you so much for this post. This past month I have been feeling the need to slow down in my reading as well so I can learn more of the historical context. Like you I have done the bible through a year (4x) and just don’t like the jumping around to different chapters. I feel very rushed etc. I will be checking the link you posted.

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