April 24th 2009

Here’s A Challenge For You!

“…of making of many books there is no end, and much study is wearisome to the flesh.
Ecclesiastes 12:12 (NKJV)

A visit to one of the booksellers in our high streets shows that Solomon was very wise indeed. Hundreds of new titles are published every year, and a very few writers, who make the bestseller list, make a steady living out of authoring books.

But often in those same booksellers you’ll have to hunt to find the Book of books-the Bible. Usually the small section is located well away from the popular areas.

On the other hand, most homes have a Bible somewhere. Perhaps inherited, perhaps once given as a prize at Sunday school. Usually it’s in a bookcase gathering dust, or being used to prop up a wonky table. What always amazes me is that even Christians don’t refer that often to the book about their Saviour. We’ll readily read Christian publications, ‘thoughts for the day’-even commentaries about the Bible. But so often the Bible itself is neglected and remains unread.

Here’s a thought. The Bible is about the same length as a classic novel. It’s only some 775,000 words. Reading a chapter or two (some are very short), it can be read in about a year. Pick a modern translation which does away with the archaic language we might otherwise associate with the Bible, and actually it’s quite readable.

You’ll find it to be full of drama, large-scale events of sci-fi proportions, and intimate details about family and individuals. It has larger-than-life heroes, who made similar mistakes in their lives as we do in ours, inspiring biography, helpful and insightful advice for hard times. So you might like to pick up on this challenge: read the Bible all the way through in a year. You can now actually buy versions of the Bible that set out to help you do just that.

Most merciful Father, thank you for preserving through fire and persecution the Book you have set before us as your Handbook on Life. Our prayer is to encourage each other, Christians and non-Christians alike, to read the Bible through in the course of a year. We ask your blessing on those who resolve so to do. In Jesus’ name.

Study by John Stettaford

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