Old Testament Chronological Reading
Over the summer I was challenged to read the Bible in 90 days, chronologically. A group of us used the Chronological reading plan on YouVersion for this challenge. Reading the entire Bible in 90 days seemed like a very aggressive goal, and it was, but each days reading can generally be completed in 30-60 minutes. After several weeks, I was still on track and even read ahead some days. Eventually I fell several weeks behind and only completed the Old Testament in the 90-day window. I lost my sense of urgency for a while, but I’m still working through the New Testament with the goal of finishing by Thanksgiving. Since I write occasional book reviews and took time away from those to read the Bible this summer, it seemed like I should write a review to summarize my experience.
A few different times I’ve set my sights on reading through the Bible in a year, but I would typically get bogged down in parts and never completed the task. I’ve always used a sequential reading plan, so the idea of a chronological plan was intriguing. It ended up being very interesting, and definitely a plan I would recommend.
Chronological Bible-Reading Plan
Using the chronological plan is a unique approach to understand time-lines of events, prophets and apostles. There are occasions when the plan has you reading the same story in 2 different books back-to-back, sometimes with identical wording and sometimes with a slightly different perspective.
Reading through the Bible in 90 days is a challenge, so there was no stopping to research anything. YouVersion has the ability to store Notes and Bookmarks along the way, so that’s what I used when I was tempted to stop and investigate a specific topic. That enabled me to read the Bible as a story and to gather a better time-line of Biblical events.
YouVersion has a wide variety of Bible translations and works to some extent on a variety of computer devices, although functionality is greatly limited on some phones and tablets. Reading plans default to a specific length, but the start and end dates can be customized. The web site also offers the option to listen to the Bible as well. While I’m keeping my eyes open for an alternative site with similar features, this is the best I’ve found so far. If you decide to use YouVersion, be prepared for the loss of your selected Bible translation, the inability to advance to the next day on certain devices, very different features and options on each device you use, a tedious task of finding your list of chapters to read for the day if you get more than a few days behind, and sometimes even losing or mis-marking your reading plan progress. I recently found a 2-page PDF summary of the Chronological reading plan on the plan-creator’s web site, Blue Letter Bible that I would be inclined to use it instead of trying to track everything electronically with the inconsistent and often-irritating YouVersion.
There’s been talk about doing it again next year…perhaps they’ll make it 120 days?