At the start of 2020, our church family launched an endeavor to read through the New Testament in 100 days. There were just about 100 days between January 1 and Easter. We used that time to immerse ourselves in the life and work of Jesus, the growth of the early church, and what it means to live as a Christ follower as discussed by Paul, Peter, James and others. But of course, you can start this any time!
For starters, most of us just aren’t in Scripture enough. Only 45% of church attenders read their Bible more than once a week and almost 1 and 5 say they never read it at all! As a church body, we want to set down the distractions and immerse ourselves in the Word of God in order to build unity across our campuses.
If you do regularly study the Bible, you know the importance of disciple making in Jesus' ministry. Use this opportunity to lead someone else through the New Testament! Read it with your children or grandchildren. Invite a new Christian to join you. Branch out from your typical pattern of slow and diligent study to get the panoramic view of Jesus and the early church and share it with someone else who is new to it.
To help you pace yourself, we've created a reading plan card to keep you on track. You can download the reading plan here. Just ignore the dates and start whenever you are able! At the end of your reading or at the end of each week, take some time to reflect and pray--ideally with your small group or at least another person. Use these simple, memorable questions to guide you:
1. What did the Holy Spirit say to you?
2. What does God want you to do?
3. How can we help and pray for each other?
All you need is a Bible and the reading plan card. You can read the New Testament in any translation you like! A study Bible is an excellent resource because it contains helpful historical background and footnotes for the Scripture, but it's not necessary. If you don't own a Bible, you can download the Bible App for free on your smartphone or tablet. If you want to supplement your reading, check out The Bible Project. The Bible Project produces short animated videos to help you better understand what you are reading.
For four months, our weekend teachings focused on the reading plan for that week. As you read, go back and watch the sermons to find out what to look for in your reading and to learn more about the context for each book.