Tuesday, December 20, 2005

'Know His Voice' project (part 1)

"In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe." (Hebrews 1:1-2 TNIV)
Of course, our two year Get InTwo It! Bible reading project here at MoSt Church will come to an end in just a few days (Dec. 31). If you're like me, you found this slower-paced reading through the entire Bible helped you not only establish more consistency in your reading habits, but also increased your quality of understanding.

What lies ahead in our reading program for 2006? I'm glad you asked! As Christians, our lives revolve around what God our Father has told us through his Son, Jesus Christ. To come to thoroughly know what Jesus said is, in a word, imperative. And so, our 2006 Bible reading project will focus entirely on what Jesus has said to us as revealed to us in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John (and Acts 20:35). The title for this church-wide reading program is quite simply Know His Voice and is based on Jesus' own words:
"The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice. . . . Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep." (John 10:2-5,7 TNIV)
We'll listen to our Master's voice in three ways through the course of this coming year's reading project. Part one is foundational for the rest of the year's reading. From Jan. 1 until Feb. 11, roughly the first forty days of the calendar year, we'll read all four Gospels. With this reading that follows the canonical order of the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) we'll gain a good overview of all the Gospel material at a very doable pace of two to three chapters per day while allowing each Saturday as a day "off" in the reading each week for "make up" purposes. For example, following is the first week's reading schedule:
Sun., Jan. 1: Matthew 1-2
Mon., Jan. 2 - Matthew 3-4
Tues., Jan. 3 - Matthew 5-7
Wed., Jan. 4 - Matthew 8-10
Thur., Jan. 5 - Matthew 11-13
Fri., Jan. 6 - Matthew 14-16
Sat., Jan. 7 - make up day
The second part of our reading will begin on the seventh Sunday of the year, Feb. 12, but I'll post about it and the third component tomorrow.