On to less frivolous topics…
Today marks the halfway mark for my reading the Bible in 90 Days journey. And it does feel like a journey. One that started with marveling at God’s creation in Genesis and is currently gaining wisdom from Proverbs.
In some ways, I could simply sum this up by saying I read an average of 12 chapters a night and I’ve been doing that for 44 days now (the plan is actually for 88 days!). It sounds so simple and yet it’s been so much more. And unless you’ve actually done it, it’s difficult to describe the impact but I’ll try to come up with some highlights.
Some random facts about the logistics of this that a couple people had questions about:
- I’m reading the NIV
- 9 times out of 10 I read in bed at night right before I go to sleep
- At the advice of our leader, I’ve stayed away from reading any commentary on what I’m reading
- I mark anything that I have questions about or stand out to me either with a post-it note or underlining something
- It takes 30-45 minutes a day
Some random facts about what I’ve learned
- I posted it on it before, but I finally understand the history of Israel.
- I didn’t realize there was so much about David. I want to post more on him later but he is much more of a military man than I realized.
- I didn’t realize there was so little about Samson. And I lost some respect for the guy after reading the story. Not sure if I can explain it.
- Leviticus really is the most boring book ever followed closely by 1 and 2 Chronicles which were a replica of 1 and 2 Kings and weren’t too exciting either. In fact, Deuteronomy wasn’t so fun either since a lot of it was just summary although it would be a good summary book if you hadn’t just read the first four books.
- I think I could read Genesis over and over. There is so much packed in that book!
- There are a lot of phrases repeated through many chapters that I didn’t realize. Such as “His love endures forever” “He is compassionate and slow to anger, abounding in love”
If I were to summarize each book I’ve read so far:
- Genesis: That one about Creation, Noah, Abraham and the Covenant, Sodom and Gomorrah, Isaac, Jac0b and Joseph.
- Exodus: That one about the Moses and the Israelites
- Leviticus: The laws
- Numbers: That one where they count everyone and then create the Ark of the Covenant. Isrealites do lots of evil stuff and also fight lots of people
- Deuteronomy: That one where Moses rehashes everything you just read.
- Joshua: That one where Joshua leads the Israelites into Canaan
- Judges: That one about all the judges in Israel after Joshua as well as the story of Samson
- Ruth: That one about Ruth, Naomi and Boaz.
- 1 & 2 Samuel: That one about Samuel being the judge of Israel and then Saul being anointed king and then David coming up and Saul chasing him everywhere and finally David being king.
- 1 & 2 Kings: That one about Solomon, Elisha and Hezekiah and the rest of the kings of Israel
- 1 & 2 Chronicles: See 1 & 2 Kings
- Ezra: That one where Ezra got the people back on track with God
- Nehemiah: Nehemiah goes back to rebuild the Temple and tell people to keep the laws.
- Esther: That one about Esther saving the Jews. That girls rocks!
- Job: That one about all the bad stuff that happened to Job and Job still praised God
- Psalms: Yay God!
- Proverbs: That one about wisdom
Of course I left out so many details but that gives you an idea.
If I were recommend you reading just a few books to understand more, I would read Genesis of course and then Deuteronomy and Joshua. I really never thought I would say that.
And I have to say, I really have a respect for the Jews at that time. I actually like, or at least respect, the reverence they had for God and all the rituals they went through. I think we are so flippant about how we treat God and pray to Him.
My biggest problem right now is meshing the God of the Israelites with Jesus. There was so much jealousy and anger and war and deaths in the Old Testament and that is not at all who Jesus was while on Earth. I realize that God showed a lot of mercy and love as well it’s just Jesus was so different that that. And if Jesus is supposed to be God then what gives? I’m not questioning that Jesus is God, I’m just looking for a lightbulb moment or that piece to the puzzle that makes it make sense.
I feel like I’ve rambled on about nothing but if I could say anything clearly to you, I would say take the time and commit to doing this for 90 days. I can’t believe I’m already halfway through reading the ENTIRE Bible. It seemed like such a daunting task when I first heard about it but it really is no different that sitting down reading a book every night for 30 minutes. Heck, I’m used to reading for hours on end every night when I’m really into a book.
One thing I’m certain I learned is that the Bible is true, God is real and BIG and amazing and most of all, He loves us and all He really wants us to do is listen and obey.
If you want more info, you can check out the Bible in 90 Days site. I have a copy of the reading plan if you’d like me to email one to you.