Reading God's Word in 2020
If we want to hear God’s voice in 2020, 2 Timothy shows us where to find it. It also shows us how essential God’s word is for equipping us to be and make disciples of Jesus Christ: “All scripture is breathed out by God and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that he man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16).
Reading God’s Word
As part of our church family, let’s each commit to daily rhythms of reading and meditating on God’s word. Even better, grab a friend or a group and do the same reading plan or meet regularly to discuss what you’re reading. Here are three options to consider:
- Bible Read-Through
You can read the entire Bible in one year if you read 3–4 chapters each day. If a Bible-reading plan would help, consider using the classic Robert Murray M’Cheyne plan (you can read it with The Gospel Coalition in 2020), the Discipleship Journal plan, or one of these other plans.
- Bible Immersion
Immerse yourself in one book of the Bible by studying and re-reading it for a period of time. For example, read and re-read a book like Ephesians every day for a month, then choose a different book for the next month. Or read through 2-4 chapters of John each day until you get to the end, then re-read it again and again. Consider memorizing parts of the book you’re immersed in. Consider blocking off a longer block of 2 hours each week, like Wednesday evenings, to study the book more in-depth.
- Bible Rhythm
Establish a rhythm of reading 15-30 minutes each day, picking up where you left off from the previous day. As you finish a book of the Bible, move to the next one or move to one that is of particular or interest to you.
Approaching God’s Word
We come to God’s word aware of his presence, we depend on him to make us open to what he says. Here are a few prayers to make before reading:
- Humility: Make me humble and open to whatever you say in your word (Isaiah 66:2)
- Understanding: Open my eyes to see wonderful things in your word (Psalm 119:18)
- Satisfaction: Satisfy me with your love and goodness (Psalm 90:14)
- Transformation: Transform me into Christ’s image by showing me your glory in Christ in your word (2 Corinthians 3:18)
Responding to God’s Word
After reading scripture, we can meditate on it further and turn our reflections into prayers. Here are four questions Tim Keller provides questions that serve as way to respond to the reading in prayer:
- Praise: What does this text show me about God for which I should praise or thank him?
- Repentance: What does this text show me about my sin that I should confess and repent of?
- Request: What does this text show me about a need that I have and how shall I petition God for it?
- Transformation: How would this change my life if I took it seriously—if this truth were fully alive and effective in my inward being?