The Bible

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All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.  Psalm 119:105

When was the last time you went to the cinema? You know the drill… you’ve stocked up on popcorn, found a comfy seat, the lights are dimmed, but before the film starts invariably you’ll first be entertained by those trailers for upcoming movies. Editors who create these trailers have to cram in all the best bits of the movie so as to explain the story and excite you enough to come back and see it in its entirety. It’s surprising that you can condense a couple of hours entertainment, action, intrigue and story into a 1 minute trailer! Surely the greatest story ever told is in the Bible. Written over a period of 1600 years by approximately 40 authors, it contains the story of creation, God’s people Israel, Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, the birth and growth of the church, revelations of the future, and stories of love, hate, greed, loss, grief and joy. Rising to the challenge of creating a trailer for the Bible’s great story, an unknown author wrote this poem called ‘The Bible in 50 words’…

God made, Adam bit,
Noah arked, Abraham split,
Joseph ruled, Jacob fooled,
bush talked, Moses baulked,
Pharaoh plagued, people walked,
sea divided, tablets guided, promise landed,
Saul freaked, David peeked,
prophets warned, Jesus born,
God walked, love talked,
anger crucified, hope died,
Love rose, Spirit flamed,
Word spread, God remained.

 

Click here to see an aminated version...

Like all good trailers this poem should captivate us to want to explore the whole story… but the Bible seems such a big book, the question is where to start? Setting aside time to read God’s word can seem a real struggle – yet did you know that it’s estimated that if you spent just 12 minutes a day reading your Bible you would have read the whole book in a year. Many people wonder if they will achieve that in a lifetime?!

 

So here are a few tips to help us engage with God’s word:

  • Remember the Bible is not a single book but a library of 66 books, roughly shelved by type, age and topic.
  • As in a library don’t start at the beginning and try and read to the end but browse the different sections - history, law, the prophets, poems, wise sayings, eyewitness accounts of Jesus, letters and apocalyptic visions of the past and the future.
  • Read a whole book or letter - Mark’s Gospel of the good news of Jesus is full of details and drama and can be read in about an hour.
  • Buy a version you’re comfortable with, there are many more readable and contemporary translations available today, or download a copy or a Bible app for your mobile phone.
  • Get some help and use a Bible Study Guide so you read a little each day - there are loads of different daily guides out there from Christian bookshops or on-line retailers.
  • Read with someone else: a partner or a friend or come to one of our Exploring Groups.
  • Lastly, pray before you read, that God will open up the words and speak to you.

Bible Resources

Some links to Bible reading resources you might find helpful...

WordLive
WordLive from Scripture Union is a free, online guide, helping you meet with God devotionally - through the Bible. Each day uses a new Bible passage with great resources to refresh your quiet time with God.

Bible Study Tools
Grow deeper into God's word with this comprehensive collection of Bible study tools and resources including daily readings, customisable Bible reading plans and audio Bible to listen to.

        Bible Gateway
A gateway to easily access any Bible passage in many different translations, both traditional and modern as well as tutorials, exercises and applications to help your own journey through the Bible.