A Bible Reading Plan for Slackers

by Dec 30, 2009

When you truly see the greatness of God’s incredible holiness along with the greatness of your own ugly sinfulness, you’re driven to desperate dependence on God’s grace. And this naturally leads you to hunger and thirst for his wisdom in the Bible. You start to think like Job, who realized he was more dependent on God’s words than even the most basic necessities of life, like bread and water: “I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my portion of food” (Job 23:12).

But in our fallenness, we don’t always (or even often) think that way. We grow satisfied with ourselves and dissatisfied with God’s wisdom (usually around the time we hit the book of Numbers). That’s where the crutch of discipline comes in. There are many great Bible-reading plans that will take you methodically through the Bible to help you avoid the flip-your-Bible-open-to-a-random-page-and-read-for-a-minute-or-two trap many of us fall into. And the New Year is a great time to start.

But we’re still sinners. And so we miss a day. Or ten. And when we finally get back on track, we discover we’ve got 40 chapters of reading to catch up on. So many of us will just quit.

That’s where the Bible Reading Plan for Shirkers and Slackers by Margie Haack comes in. Andy Perry explains it:

Advantages to this plan include:

  1. Removing the pressure to ‘keep up’ with getting through the entire Bible in a year.
  2. Providing variety throughout the week by alternating genres.
  3. Providing continuity by reading the same genre each day of the week.

In a nutshell, here’s how it works:

  • Sundays: Poetry
  • Mondays: Penteteuch (Genesis through Deuteronomy)
  • Tuesdays: Old Testament history
  • Wednesdays: Old Testament history
  • Thursdays: Old Testament prophets
  • Fridays: New Testament history
  • Saturdays: New Testament epistles (letters)

The advantage of this plan is that it provides guidance as we read each day but does not put us on an internal guilt trip if we miss a day – we just pick up with the next reading on the day it happens to be. Also, this plan allows us to see the many interconnections between sections of Scripture. So, as Margie puts it, on the same day you may be reading about God’s covenant with Abraham in Genesis and a few days later read Paul’s commentary on the Abrahamic covenant in Romans.

Many Bible reading plans are good, but I find this one unusually helpful, for it combines two biblical values which seem to diverge in most plans: discipline and grace.


You can download an interactive PDF of the plan.