We believe that scripture is God’s Word, and the unique and authoritative witness to Jesus Christ. As God’s Word speaks into the lives of people, God transforms hearts, minds, relationships, and entire communities of people. As followers of Christ, we need scripture to continue to enlighten our paths forward, to convict us of where Jesus is calling us to change and grow, to inspire us to serve in his footsteps, to shape and renew our minds, and to show us Jesus day after day.
At Park Church, we intend to be a community continually formed and re-formed by God’s Word to us in scripture in order to fulfill the mission that God has called us to. Thus, it’s mission critical that we’re all reading scripture regularly.
2018 is the right time to embark on this as a community as together we listen to God’s Word for what’s next, for stepping out into the world in fresh ways to share the good news of Jesus, and to serving him in new ways. We have big plans (or, actually – we believe God is giving us big plans, a renewed vision, a fresh new pathway out into the world to share his love), and the only we can be faithful to the mission God’s giving us is if we are continually living under the authority and direction of God’s Word to us.
So in order to kick-start this, we’ve put together this scripture reading plan for 2018. It doesn’t cover the entirety of scripture, but takes us through almost all of the New Testament and through many key moments of the Old. The reason it doesn’t cover the whole bible is that, in our experience, when most people set out on “bible in a year” plans, they give up by mid-February because it’s just too much to handle. So to avoid that, we’ve limited the readings.
It starts out with Luke and Acts, which provides a great theological and historical foundation for the New Testament. It asks us to read six days a week, with Sundays off (or to catch up/get ahead). You’ll need time to catch up. Some days life will get in the way. Some weeks will be lost weeks. We know that. If you miss some time, we invite you to jump in where we are and catch up where you can. Reading sporadically, missing some readings, and/or jumping in mid-story is better than not reading at all!
We encourage you to read along, to discuss it with others who are reading too, to ask questions, and most importantly, to listen to God’s voice to us as a community.
Occasionally, we’ll do blogs (like this), Facebook posts, etc. to help explain things, give you tools to read, questions to ask, context and insights, etc.- and we encourage you to share your thoughts and questions in the comments. And always feel free to email a pastor, Community Group leader, ministry leader, or an elder.
We hope that you will develop an appreciation and a hunger for God’s Word, a practice of reading it regularly, and continue to understand it deeper. If you’re someone who has never really read the bible for yourself much, it might be a little tricky to get the hang of. That’s ok. It’s ancient literature from a different culture. It takes some getting used to. Some of it you might fall in love with immediately, and some of it you may never love! But you won’t know until you read, and re-read, and re-re-read.