In May of 2009 I went on a journey; a long, almost daily, journey that involved a bunch of thought provoking reading and thinking.
Last week, May of 2011, I completed a journey every believer should take when I read the Bible from front to back, just 2-3 chapters a day, underlying key words, phrases and verses all along the way.
And these are my simple, non-theologian thoughts on this amazing book.
Certainly throughout my life I have read every book of the Bible and many Christians have read God’s word through the “One Year Bible” method. But honestly, after years of reading and loving God’s word, I realized I had never truly read it like a novel; starting at page one and reading until the end all the way through. Add taking the time to read it slow and highlight various aspects to each verse, and it’s a journey that can take a while.
It was worth every minute.
After a business tragedy hit my family in May of 2009 God laid it on my heart to get into His word for strength, peace and comfort. I wasn’t sure how books like Leviticus would do that, but frankly one of the key verses I discovered in this process came right out of that book! God is always full of surprises.
Now I know there are thousands of people who have spent their life studying the Bible – breaking it down into every small detail and part imaginable. Theologians, Pastors, Bible scholars, and even Bible critics have all spent much more time than I have for sure in such study.
But the thematic breakdown for me was quite simple. The Bible is a collective play of many stories depicting the stubbornness and ill ways of Man within the back drop of the grace and judgement of a holy God.
It just doesn’t get much easier than that. Really.
Man continues to think he has it all figured out…turns away from God in pride and sin….something tragic happens in which Man needs God to bail them out….God comes to the rescue…Man turns back to God out of thankfulness and the cycle repeats over and over again.
Over the last two years this repetitive story line was always right in front of me, from Genesis through Revelation.
In short I would say this:
– man is sinful, disloyal, weak, inconsistent, small, arrogant, and yet creative
– God is forgiving, jealous, holy and loving
In the end we can only be the best God made us to be by realizing that without the Creator we are doomed to be the above.
All God wants is for us to ask forgiveness, never forget Him, be thankful for all He has and continues to do, and live a good life as a way of showing Him how much we care.
Like the ones before me, I am far from doing all of the above. Without His grace I would be certain for Hell.
I’m just thankful God gave me 2 years worth of reading to see that I’m not the only one…