Choosing the best place to start reading the Bible can be a bit overwhelming. After all, there are 66 books in the Bible, and knowing where to start reading the Bible can be daunting. Do you start at the beginning and read straight through, or do you start at the end and work your way backward? There there is the middle! Where to start reading the Bible really depends upon your purpose for reading.
Many people pick up their Bibles to start reading when they are anxious or afraid. Other people are searching for truth or a specific story or verse from their childhood. This article will look at where a beginner should start reading in the Bible and finding a reading plan that works for you. It will help you find the best place to start reading the Bible.
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Before Starting to Read the Bible
The most important thing to do before you start reading your Bible is to pray and ask God to speak to you through the words you are reading. Invite the Holy Spirit to help you understand and speak to your heart through the words you are reading.
If you are starting on a Bible reading plan, make sure that you are doing it for the right reasons. It can be easy to start a new plan and just check off the box each day without really letting the words settle into your heart and mind. Reading the Bible should draw you closer to God and help you understand His infinite love better and not just become another thing you have to do each day.
If you don’t have a Bible, you can get a beautiful Bible here. While you don’t need any specific tools to read the Bible, you may also want to get a Prayer Journal to keep track of what you are learning and praying for. There are many options online, or you can start with this free one below.
Where to Start Reading the Bible?
If you are brand new to reading the Bible, one of the best places to start reading the Bible is in the Gospels. The Gospels are in the New Testament (during Jesus’ life and afterward) and they contain the stories of Jesus’ life, miracles, interactions with people, and his death on the cross. There are four books considered a part of the “Gospels” and they are Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
All four books in the Gospels include the stories of Jesus, but they are written from different perspectives and to different audiences so the stories are unique to each book. Each writer, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John encountered Jesus in a different way and therefore the way they wrote the story is slightly different.
Just like if three people watch an event and then a news reporter interviewer asks them what happened. They will all have a slightly different perspective based on where they were in the event, and how it impacted them. They might also share their story in a different way if they were talking to an insurance adjuster, and little child, or their mother.
So it is with the Gospels. Different perspectives and different audiences result in slightly different stories about Jesus.
So if you’re wondering where a beginner should start reading the Bible, or what to read in the Bible when you don’t know where to start, begin by reading the book of Luke. Luke begins the book with the story of John the Baptists’ birth predicted and then the birth of Jesus. This is where the birth of Jesus is explained and detailed. Read about His miracles and the way he loved people.
As you read the stories about Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, you will have a picture of what the message of the entire Bible is about. God’s outrageous love to all of humanity. The best place to start reading the Bible is where Jesus is front and center in the story.
How to choose a Bible reading plan?
Now that you have the best place to start reading the Bible figured out, you may want to consider a Bible reading plan that will guide you as you read through different sections and parts of the Bible. There are a number of different Bible reading plans, so knowing what you are looking for will help you find the plan that fits your needs and is the best place to start reading the Bible for you.
- Chronological Bible Reading Plan – A chronological Bible reading plan is designed to guide you through the books of the Bible in the order of the events and when they were written down. This is much different than reading straight through the Bible from cover to cover and some of the books of the Bible were written much later than when the events actually took place and how they were arranged in the physical book of the Bible.
Bible Study Tools offers a free chronological Bible reading plan that you can download and print today.
- Bible in a Year Reading Plan – This can also be called a one-year Bible plan. This simply means that you are working on a plan to read the entire Bible, from cover to cover, in one year. If you are new to reading the Bible, this may feel a bit disjointed as you read a bit in the Old Testament and a bit in the New Testament. In this case, you may want to look for a topical Bible reading plan that will focus on specific topics as you read such as faith, God’s love, giving your worries to God, etc.
The Navigators site has a number of Bible reading plans to choose from here.
- Bible Reading Plan for Beginners – If you are looking for a Bible reading plan for beginners, you may want to start with a shorter reading plan like a 30-day plan or a plan to read about a specific topic. This way, you can take the time to really dive deeply into the scriptures and learn as you are reading. Then when you’ve completed that Bible reading plan, look for the next one. There is no trophy or badge of honor for reading the entire Bible in 365 days. But there is a heart change if you read to learn about Jesus.
Bloggers for the Kingdom has a 12-month Bible reading plan that includes additional printable resources to help you in your Bible study.
A Faithful Step has three Bible reading plans specifically for beginners.
Bible Verses for You has a great 15 minute Bible Reading Plan
Daily Bible Reading Plan
As you decide where to start reading the Bible and you begin your new daily Bible reading plan, remember, the goal is to develop a deeper understanding of God’s love. Reading the Bible isn’t a marathon or a sprint, but a long walk along the path to understand and love God more. When choosing where to start reading the Bible, ask God for direction and to open your heart to His messages of love. Ask for help with discernment as you choose the best place to begin reading the Bible.
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. ~ Psalm 119:105 ~ NIV
Ask God to be the light for your path and the light for your feet and lead you as you start reading the Bible.
You may also like these posts…
- Praying Moms – Using Scripture to Pray for Others
- Remain in Me – Lessons from John 15
- 3 Lessons of Courage from the Life of Joshua
- Creating a Self-Care Life
- Praying Circles Around the Lives of Your Children
- 31 Bible Promises to Pray for Your Children
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