Spiritual Reading as Transformation

Josh Reed is one of our brightest recent graduates from Southeastern Seminary. Josh has contributed an encouraging brief essay on the practice of lectio divina to December’s alumni e-newsletter. He notes,

To get to the point, there is a tendency to “flatten” the words of God when we approach them hurried. Within the atmosphere of busyness, our mindset as creatures tends to run towards “tell me what to do” so I can make sure I’m “good” and get on with other matters. But to feast on the Word made flesh, we must linger and respond thoughtfully and faithfully to God’s self-revelation.

Josh’s solution to this unfortunate trend is to recover spiritual reading for the sake of spiritual transformation. This is a helpful word for Southern Baptists and other evangelicals. To paraphrase John Piper, don’t waste your daily quiet time! I would encourage you to read Josh’s whole essay.

(Image credit)

Canonical Bible Reading Plan

“The New Testament is in the Old Testament concealed, the Old Testament is in the New Testament revealed.”

–St. Augustine of Hippo

Many Christians, especially evangelicals, try to read through the entire Bible over thecourse of a year. Many of us who hold to a high view of the authority and sufficiency of Scripture see this as a very beneficial spiritual discipline. There are a number of plans to help you read through the Bible in a year, several of which are mentioned in this post by Justin Taylor.

I have developed my own Bible reading plan for those who are interested in reading through the entire Bible, in canonical order, but with the Old Testament arranged according to the Tanakh (Law, Prophets, Writings). Unlike most plans, mine will not allow you to read both testaments simultaneously. But for those who are willing to spend about 3/4 of the year in the Old Testament (the Bible of the earliest church!), this plan will allow you to read through the grand narrative of Scripture as it unfolds. Even more important, you will read through the Old Testament in the same order as Jesus and the apostles would have done so before arriving at the New Testament.

If you are interested in using my Canonical Bible Reading Plan, check out the new Bible Reading Plan page on our website.