Here’s some food for thought: Most people’s view of God is not completely accurate because they have only listened to other people’s opinions about God. What people have heard about Him may come from family, philosophy books, T.V., radio, movies, etc., but oftentimes conclusions have been made based on inaccurate information and the traditions of men instead of the Word of God. One problem is that God has often never been given a chance to speak for Himself. People may have read bits and pieces from the Bible, but it must be the "whole counsel of God." For example, in Matthew 4:6 when Satan misquotes scripture, Jesus responds with scripture and says "The scriptures ALSO say…." i.e., the WHOLE counsel of God.
Common sense has it that none of us would want to spend time with someone if we have heard things that would make that person less than desirable. Unfortunately many people have the wrong view of God, and so they don’t want to spend time with Him in His Word. Therefore, when they finally go to the Word, the God that they are about to meet, may not at all be the same God they think they are going to meet. So…let me introduce you now to the True God and His awesome character…let’s let Him speak for Himself!
If Someone is a new believer, we suggest they complete the following for the first six days, then begin reading John, and continue as outlined in "The Big Four"
- Day One:
- Read Psalm 103 and underline each word or phrase that speaks of God’s character.
- What is He like?
- Day Two:
- Read Isaiah 40:25-31, Romans 8:31-39, Psalm 145
- Underline each word or phrase that speaks of God’s character.
- Day Three:
- Read Psalm 139 & underline each word or phrase that describes:
- What God knows about me,
- What He does for me
- What you discover about Him
(You may want to underline in three different colors for future reference).
- Day Four:
- Read Daniel 3 and meet three men who believed what God said in Psalm 103 and Psalm 139. What words come to your mind to:
describe the three men and
- What words come to mind to describe the King?
- Day Five:
- So, What’s next?
- Have you ever read a novel before, or known of anyone who has? Would you say that the Bible is the same size, if not smaller than most novels? Well, then couldn’t we agree that it is a possibility to read through the Bible? O.K., now that we have that settled, let me help you get started.
- The following books together will give you an overview of the entire Bible: Genesis - Exodus 20 then Matthew then John then Romans. Please read these books first. ( Refer to the sheet entitled "An Overview of the Bible - The Big Four"). Get started today!! Begin in Genesis 1!
- Day Six:
- Each day following, continue reading as much as you feel comfortable with (perhaps a chapter a day; other days you may delight in meditating and studying on just a verse or two).
- We all like to accomplish a goal so, for example, when you read chapter one of Genesis, put a "check mark" next to the chapter reference for chapter one. Do the same for the rest of the chapters in Genesis. Then, when you complete the book of Genesis, go to the table of contents in the front of your Bible. There are 66 books listed there. Put a check mark beside "Genesis". Now, how many books do you have left to go? That’s right! 65! You should read the books included in the Overview of the Bible first and then proceed on to the rest of the Bible. When you are finished reading the entire Bible, let someone know and celebrate your victory by doing something special like going out to dinner!
- Now what in the world are you going to do now that you have finished reading the entire Bible? That’s right! Start over! It is most assuredly the "Book without Bottom!!!" You’ll never tire hearing His voice!
A Few Words of Encouragement
- Don't Just Read, Listen...Remember to not just "read the Bible" but desire to "listen to God speak to you" as you read. Be sure to ask Him to do just that….He is just waiting for you to ask and He loves that you want to! How will you know God is speaking to you? Will a bush catch on fire? Will a thundering voice peal through the heavens? No, it’s not that mysterious. It’s really as simple as a verse that seems to "jump out" at you, or as you’re reading a verse seems to "speak" right to an issue or situation in your life. It’s truly that easy! This is a personal relationship, not a course in Bible knowledge alone
- Underline...Please be sure to underline anything you sense the Lord speaking to you about. Remember, this is no ordinary Book! This Book is "the Word of God" written to you, "up close and personal.
- Find Out What God is Like...Let me encourage you now on your FIRST TIME reading through the Bible to make it a point to find out what God is like…what His character is like. If you read the Bible and search for God’s character daily, you will come to know Him in a deeper way. This will give you a balanced view of what He is really like, and you will find Him irresistible, kind, patient, loyal, a "Man of His Word", forgiving, long-suffering and serious about what He says to you.
- On the Other Hand...You will also learn that He can have righteous anger and that, in EVERYTHING He says, He is always motivated by love because we are His children and He longs to protect us. He even has a sense of humor and this list could go on and on, but I’ll let you add to it!
- Trusting Becomes Easier...I find that after reflecting on these few things it is so much easier to think about Trusting in Him, instead of myself. I cannot even begin to tell you how important this is. Why? Because, most likeIy, we are not going to trust someone we don’t know. And walking with God is all about trusting Him. Again, work through the Bible daily…taking note of what He is really like……, with whatever passages or chapters you have read.
When we meet together in Salt & Light each week we will share with one another the Treasures that God has impressed on our hearts and minds. In addition to underlining verses as you read, it will help you remember what He said by recording His word to you in a journal.
For our meeting time together: Ask God: out of ALL you read and of ALL the verses He impressed on your heart, what would He want you to share with the other members of your group. Also, each week from your reading, ask God what verse He wants you to remember, write it on an index card, and we will practice memorizing our verses with each other each time we meet!
One Final Note:
The Bible was penned by over forty men, through the inspiration of God’s Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Many of these men never knew each other, yet all these books fit together perfectly! Did you know that this Book has been burned more than any other book in the world? Did you also know that more people have died for this Book than any other book? What is it about this Book that people would die for It, as well as burn It? You’re on a journey to find out just that!
May you be richly blessed and changed as you meet with Him each day! Hang on for the ride of your life! He is anything but boring!