2023 Bible Reading Plan: A Year with God
How can we come to know God better? What if we read a unique part of Scripture that emphasizes the mercy and justice of God, and shows His patience and faithfulness? Further, in the same books of the Bible we would find discussion of how God feels about sin and shows His wrath and judgment. Even more, that part of the Bible teaches us that being in covenant with God means living God’s way in every facet of life.
In short, reading the Old Testament prophets is an incredibly powerful way of improving our relationship with God. This special reading schedule, working through all the minor prophets and including selections of the major prophets while supplementing the readings with the historical sections of the Bible to set their messages in context, will help you draw near to God. The prophets reveal God and His nature, preach His will, stress the concept of covenant, call for lives to be changed by a relationship with God, and speak messages of judgment and hope. This is where to read to know the Lord!
You will not find the daily readings very lengthy. That is intentional because an essential part of this year’s reading plan is that you ask and answer the key questions (see the back of the Reading Schedule) every day. This will keep you on track with our purpose: coming to know God. Keep your reading focused on God — that is our goal! All you need is your Bible, a notebook, a pen, and a desire to spend time with God because you want to know Him. What a special opportunity this reading plan affords us. Let’s draw near to our God in 2023!
Questions for the Historical Readings
- What is the physical situation in Israel or Judah in our reading, and how does that contrast with the people’s spiritual condition?
- What is God doing to influence, teach, and discipline His people? Who or what is God using to teach His people?
- What does our text teach us about sin and its influences and effects?
- What characteristic of God is our text stressing today? For example, God’s sovereignty, redemption, wrath, patience, judgment, hope, love, mercy, etc.
Questions for Reading the Prophets
Not every question will fit the text of the day. Pick out 4-5 that “work” and use them for the day’s reading. Do more if you can. Always keep the focus on knowing God.
- How does God feel in our reading today? What is the emotional mood and temperature of our text?
- Is today’s text criticizing (a word of judgment) or energizing (a word of hope)?
- What is unexpected or shocking in our reading?
- What figures of speech or metaphors are employed in the text to make the prophet’s point?
- What characteristic of God is our text stressing today? For exam- ple, God’s sovereignty, redemption, wrath, patience, judgment, hope, love, mercy, etc.
- How does the reading challenge the persistent notion that God is a constantly enraged deity who only wants to judge and condemn people?
- What is God saying in our text about justice, oppression, right- eousness, helping the weak, or compassion?
- What does our reading say about arrogance and pride?
- What are we seeing about God’s expectations of His people and what covenant means? What does this text say about God’s covenant patience and faithfulness?
- Does this prophet point to Jesus and ultimate hope? If so, how?
Looking for other reading plans the church has used? Check the complete list.