A One-Year Bible Reading Plan from the 1960s

A classic Bible reading plan for 1 year - this looks like a great way to stay in the Word!Henry H. Halley recommends in his book, “Halley’s Bible Handbook,” that Christians read through the Bible in its entirety at least once a year. And he has this to say about it:

Such a Plan would mean an average of 4 or 5 chapters a day, and would require something like an average of 15 or 20 minutes a day. Can’t find time? Well, it is important enough to make time. 1 minute a day, or 3 minutes a day, for religious devotion, is child’s play. If we are Christians, why not take our religion seriously? Why play at it? Let us not fool ourselves. We CAN find time for the things we WANT to find time for.

We can joke about how direct or pushy Halley is on the subject, but isn’t he right? Don’t you seem to find even a little bit of time to do your very favorite activities on a regular basis? Watching Netflix, playing basketball with friends, shopping for shoes, trying new recipes, napping… Endless things can get in the way of what’s really important.

I am immensely guilty of letting this happen in my own life. That is why I appreciate Halley’s strong words.

Further on in this section of his book, he lays out a particular one-year reading plan. In previous sections, he explains how the New Testament is more important to read than the Old Testament but that both are necessary for Christian growth and general Biblical study. Therefore, his plan includes going through the New Testament twice and the Old Testament once – all in 52 weeks.

…probably as good a schedule as any to follow would be that of Alternating by Weeks between the Testaments, having a Book, or group of the smaller Books, for each Week, covering the Old Testament ONCE, and the New Testament TWICE, each year.. Those who would like to spend more time on the Bible than the plan calls for could read each book an extra time or two, as they go along.

Week 1: Genesis
Week 2: Matthew
Week 3: Exodus
Week 4: Mark
Week 5: Leviticus
Week 6: Luke
Week 7: Numbers
Week 8: Luke
Week 9: Deuteronomy
Week 10: John
Week 11: Joshua, Judges
Week 12: Acts
Week 13: Ruth, 1 Samuel
Week 14: Romans
Week 15: 2 Samuel
Week 16: 1 & 2 Corinthians
Week 17: 1 Kings
Week 18: Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians
Week 19: 2 Kings
Week 20: 1 & 2 Thessalonians, 1 & 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon
Week 21: 1 Chronicles
Week 22: Hebrews, James
Week 23: 2 Chronicles
Week 24: 1 & 2 Peter, 1 & 2 & 3 John, Jude
Week 25: Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther
Week 26: Revelation
Week 27: Job
Week 28: Matthew
Week 29: Psalms
Week 30: Matthew, or John
Week 31: Psalms
Week 32: Mark
Week 33: Psalms
Week 34: Luke
Week 35: Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs
Week 36: John
Week 37: Isaiah
Week 38: Acts
Week 39: Isaiah
Week 40: Romans
Week 41: Jeremiah
Week 42: 1 & 2 Corinthians
Week 43: Jeremiah, Lamentations
Week 44: Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians
Week 45: Ezekiel
Week 46: 1 & 2 Thessalonians, 1 & 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon
Week 47: Daniel
Week 48: Hebrews, James
Week 49: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah
Week 50: 1 & 2 Peter, 1 & 2 & 3 John, Jude
Week 51: Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi
Week 52: Revelation

Halley believed “The Most Important Thing” in his book was the suggestion that each church have a congregational plan of Bible reading. I’ll tell you more about that in a few days.

Meanwhile, as the New Year arrives in just a few days, are you going to start a new Bible reading plan? This one, of course, can be started at any time of the year. I’d love to hear about other plans you enjoy, have enjoyed or are going to try! Leave me a note in the comments and I’ll be sure to check it out.


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