Beginning on Ash Wednesday of this year (2022) our congregation will begin our spiritual practice of reading the Bible in a year. If you want to know more about why we are doing this process you can read past issues of the Grace News here or you may contact our Assistant Program Director, Angie Rabbe, at email@example.com.
Below you will find a number of resources to help you on this journey…take what you need and leave what you don’t. If there’s a resource that you love and it isn’t listed below please reach out to Angie. We suggest that you use the NRSV translation of the Bible because it is what our denomination uses…but we understand that we all have our personal preferences.
There are many ways to read the Bible over the course of a year. Our staff weighed the pros and cons of a variety of reading plans and decided that reading the Bible in chronological order would work best for us. What this means is that we will be reading the Bible in the order of the events as scholars can best determine they occurred…don’t get too caught up with the timeline if you see a different chronological order somewhere else. The Bible isn’t a history textbook and Biblical scholars don’t agree on everything.
As we read through the Bible, I encourage all of us to pay attention to the way(s) in which God interacts with humanity. Three weeks ago Pastor Verkouw touched on what different denominations look for when they read scripture. One of the biggest hangups that folks have when reading the Bible is that they want it to simultaneously be a history book and an ethical guide that contains all of the answers to all of their questions. I want to caution us away from that approach and instead guide us to read the Bible as a story that begins with God creating and never ends. As we read the Bible we need to be open to coming across some stories that will seem impossible, while other stories might make us uncomfortable because of their violent nature. Our gut reaction might be to stop reading the Bible the first time we come to one of these stories, but I would encourage all of us to sit with our discomfort. If we can’t talk about the hard parts of the Bible in church, where can we talk about them? There’s a reason these stories made it into the canon in the first place and why they remain there centuries later.
We made a quarterly journal for you with prayers, blank pages, and readings for each month!
We made a calendar for the year that has the daily readings!
Hard copies of the journal and calendar are available in the Narthex.
Enter the Bible is a new resource from Luther Seminary. It contains videos, podcasts, breakdowns of each book of the Bible, and so much more! You can sign up for a free account here.
If you want to compare translations of the scripture or need a Bible in a language other than English, Bible Gateway is a wonderful resource. If you want to do a deep dive a certain passage Bible Hub offers Hebrew and Greek inter-linears and a lexicon. Both Bible Gateway and Bible Hub are available as websites and free apps.
Click here for a detailed list of the May readings, links to podcasts, and thought-provoking questions.
Click here for a detailed list of the April readings, links to podcasts, and thought-provoking questions.