Six Articles to Read

This week I am sharing some articles written by other Christians which I hope you might find helpful. I have included an extract from the article beneath each link to give an indication of the content of each one.

9 Practical Tips for Bible Reading

George Sinclair starts this article off by saying “You will never have enough time to read the Bible. If you wait until you have enough time to read the Bible, you will rarely read the Bible. The world, the flesh and the devil will help fill your day. This means that you have to choose to take time. You will have to sacrifice doing something else so you have time to read God’s word and pray to Him. You need to pray that the Lord will help you set time aside so you can spend time with Him. Here are some pointers.”

Why churches must never require Covid passports

Jesus did not put requirements on coming into his presence, and neither should we, argues Rev Dr Matthew Roberts, one of over 1,000 church leaders to have signed an open letter to parliament in opposition to vaccine passports 

Our Lord Jesus, for obvious reasons, never met anyone with Covid. But he did meet numerous people with another infectious disease, and one that was arguably much worse. Leprosy was, with good reason, feared by the people of Jesus’ day. It attacked the skin and living flesh, causing hideous wounds and often death, though not without years of suffering first. It also brought social isolation of the most miserable sort. To be a leper was to be cut off from society; God’s law required it.

Why should I read John Stott?

Chris Wright asks the question and supplies the answer: “Why should anyone in the 21st century read books by someone whose prime years of global evangelical leadership were fifty years ago in the 20th?  The answer could be summarized in three words that we use in Langham Preaching to identify what is required in good biblical preaching: Faithfulness, Relevance, and Clarity.”

A Royal Funeral with a message for everyone

Murray Campbell shares some thoughts on the recent funeral of the Duke of Edinburgh.

“As we viewed the royal funeral from our sofa, absorbing the sight of the ceremonial and the personal, the figure of a Queen in mourning and the sound of stunningly beautiful music, the common face death struck a note.”

It’s Far Too Easy To Buy A Tiger

Tim Challies says “We do hear about people who welcome big cats into their homes and we all have a pretty good idea of how such stories are likely to end. While we would be surprised to hear of a man being killed by his pet hamster or pet budgie, we are not at all surprised to hear of a man being mauled by his pet tiger. Why are we not surprised? Precisely because it’s a tiger!”

The Sweet Grief of Repentance

Greg Moore recalls “I can still see the moment clearly in my mind. At a Christian conference, a friend whom I had been studying the Bible with that semester shared with our group that he was ready to follow Jesus. He broke down in tears. We were football players. We didn’t cry. I honestly couldn’t believe it. He not only accepted my invitation to attend the conference, but he even repented of sin and believed upon Christ for the forgiveness of sins. I sat watching it unfold in absolute awe.”

Bible Articles

Psalm 119 is a wonderful passage of scripture where the psalmist glorifies God and His word. There are many verses that the reader could spend time mediating on to their benefit e.g.

I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you” (v11)

Turn my eyes from worthless things, and give me life through your word” (v37)

How I delight in your commands! How I love them!” (v47)

Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path” (v105).

I find this psalm very encouraging and am challenged by the writers love of God’s word and desire to live it out.

This week I wanted to share some articles on the Bible which hopefully will encourage you to read it more. I have included an extract from the article beneath each link to give an indication of the content of each one.

Bible reading good for you

You’d kind of hope it might be true, but it’s good to have it confirmed: Lockdown has seen an explosion in all sorts of activities, from learning languages to gardening, but it’s also seen Christians reading the Bible more, and finding hope and comfort in it.

According to our recent survey, a significant number of Christians have reported that reading the Bible had led to an increased hope in God (42%); 28 per cent said it had increased their confidence in the future, while 63 per cent said that it had enabled their confidence to remain the same, rather than dipping.

The Bible as one astonishing story

In this very informative 10 minute video clip Chris Goswami explains how:

“The Bible is a library of different books written by many authors over hundreds of years. Each one brings their own voice, their own story. But there is one story that reaches across the whole Bible from Genesis to Revelation, one unifying narrative.

Knowing this ONE story means you can understand the place of any book in the Bible”

Who wrote the bible?

John Piper answers this question and says:

“When Christians refer to the Bible as the word of God, they mean that — and I would say, I mean. I’m one of those people who believe this; I’d stake my whole life on it. So, I mean that the Creator of the universe, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who upholds the universe by the word of his power, was guiding and is guiding all things according to a great purpose. That God has chosen to reveal himself to human beings in human language. He has chosen to speak. Amazing.”

This Season of Lent

Today is the first day of Lent, which lasts for 40 days excluding Sundays. During this time Christians prepare to remember the death and resurrection of Christ at Easter. Lent is a time for reflection, study and repentance, and the 40 day period reminds us of the time that Jesus spent in the wilderness being tested by the devil.

Often when people discuss Lent you may hear comments such as: “I am giving up chocolate for Lent” or “I am giving up coffee for Lent.” When I hear someone say that I am often curious why they are doing that, especially if they do not appear to have a Christian faith. Obviously, all the money you save by not having chocolate or coffee could be given to a charity helping people who are less fortunate than you are. It might also be a good thing from a health prospective too! However, I do think if we limit our thinking on Lent to statements like those two ones we are missing out.

Instead of giving something up for Lent have you considered taking something on instead? What do I mean by that?

As Lent is a time for reflection then it seems to present a good opportunity to set some additional time aside this season to seek God. There are many different ways of doing this. For example:

  • Joining a study group for the Lent period. This might be one at your local church. Alternatively, it could be an inter-church one. A few years ago the churches in our parish used to meet together in small groups to study a Lent course.
  • Reading a Christian book in Lent. This does not have to be about Lent of course, it could be on any theme.
  • Spending some additional time studying the bible in Lent. This could be using a Lent study guide but does not have to be.
  • Committing to spending extra time in prayer during Lent. This might be by yourself or perhaps joining a prayer group with others.
  • Listening to some online sermons. These could be sermons that have been preached at your own church or maybe at another one.

If you are anything like me then you find it very easy to waste or fritter away time. Whether it is the television, Netflix, YouTube or social media we seem to spend a lot of time in these activities without too much effect.

The season of Lent presents us with a good opportunity to deliberately set time aside to get to know God better. To spend time listening to God and obeying Him.

One of our old church leaders used to use the expression “fasting and feasting in Lent” and I thought that summed up very well how we can use this time to grow in God.

It goes without saying that we do not have to wait until Lent to set additional time aside to seek God. but this season does present an opportunity for us to slow down and focus afresh on God. Paul tells the Galatians that we reap what we sow. If we spend time with God it will help us to develop our relationship with Him and also enable us to be a blessing to others. Whether you keep Lent or not use the time wisely to reconnect with our Father.

Reading through the Bible Chronologically in 2021


Have you ever read through the whole Bible in a year?

The prospect of reading through the Bible in a year may appear a daunting task when first considering this challenge. Many might think that it is impossible for them to do this. Perhaps you have tried in the past but given up after a couple of months. It might surprise you however, to know that it only takes between 15 to 20 minutes of reading each day to do this. Yes that is right only 15 to 20 minutes each day and you will read through the Bible in a year!

When we consider the amount of time we spend daily watching You Tube videos, Netflix’s or television, then surely such a small amount of time each day can be found to read the scriptures in 2021?

Now that we have seen that reading through the Bible in a year in not quite the impossible task we imagined, we can move onto thinking of the best way for us to do this.

There are many different ways of reading through the Bible. If you visit your local Christian bookshop or type “bible readings plans” into your favourite search engine, you will see a variety of options that can be used.

Reading the Bible chronologically

One of my favourite ways of reading through the scriptures in a year is to read through the Bible chronologically. The main benefit of reading the Bible chronologically is that it enhances our understanding of the historical context of the individual books of the Bible and the timeline of events.

I have personally found that to read the Bible chronologically is especially helpful when reading the Old Testament. This has helped me to see where books like Job, Obadiah, Joel and Malachi fit into the history of God’s dealings with his people. It is also interesting to see when the various different Psalms were written too (for example: Psalm 51 follows Nathan confronting David in 2 Samuel 12).

When reading the New Testament it is also useful for looking at each of Paul’s letters and seeing at which stage of his missionary travels they were written.

There are a number of plans available for those wishing to read through the Bible chronologically. The two below are ones you could use:

One Year Chronological Bible

This plan can be found both on the website and via the YouVersion app on either your phone or tablet. Thereby enabling you to carry the plan around with you at all times. And it is free!

Cover to Cover Through the Bible As It Happened

I personally have used this reading plan which is produced by CWR. This is an edition of the Bible that is split into 365 different readings with various helpful notes and maps that assist the reader as they read through the scriptures.

If you have not yet read through the scriptures this way, why not make 2021 the year you read through the Bible chronologically?