Having been sick most of the week, I have actually been able to read a bit ahead in the Bible in 90 Days reading. I am enjoying the chronological plan, especially since I have a chronological Bible that has the plan we are doing so I can read straight through instead of flipping back and forth.
So far I have completed Genesis and Job and am now into Exodus. Genesis was a pretty quick read for the most part as it is mostly in story format and easy to read like a novel. Job is a little more difficult with all the speeches. But for both books it is quite interesting to read the whole book in just a few days, really getting a better overview of what the book is about.
To see how others are doing on this, you can check out the Check-In post on Mom’s Toolbox.
I am quite concerned with the number of Christians that seem enamored with some big-name Christian celebrities that upon closer examination teach very unbiblical teachings. For example, a very popular Christian speaker and author is Joyce Meyer. I had tried reading some of her books in the past and didn’t get very far into them, but didn’t see anything blatant other than “positive thinking” mentality and boosting your self-esteem to give me cause for concern. However, in reading Hank Hanegraaf’s Crisis in Christianity I was appalled at a closer look at some of her teachings and theology.
She teaches that our words create reality (you can speak things into existence). She also teaches that men are created as ‘little gods’. Using the example that cattle birth cattle, we are created in God’s image, thus we are ‘little gods’. It sounds like if I’m reading it right, that she teaches that in order to be saved we have to believe that Jesus took our place in hell. And she is also a big proponent of the prosperity gospel movement/health and wealth gospel.
These teachings are blatantly unbiblical and even heretical in my opinion. As believers, we are to be discerning and not just take things at face value but study the Scriptures for ourselves to see if what we are being taught is true.
“Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily, to see whether these things were so,” (Acts 17:11).
I fear we have reached these times that Paul talks about to Timothy (emphasis mine).
“preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction.For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths.” (2 Timothy 4:2-4, NASB)
It is an awesome task/responsibility to be a teacher. James 3:1 states, “Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment.” Those who teach are held to a higher standard as they are responsible for leading others. And many teachers today are leading others astray.
Here is an article detailing more information on the teachings of Joyce Meyer:
There are other teachers in today’s Christian circles that are popular and well-spoken. But is what they teach truly Biblical? We need to examine what they teach against Scripture and see if it lines up.
Well, I have actually switched to a different Bible for the Bible in 90 Days. There was a problem with the original chronological plan and they had to put together a new one. The chronological plan that is being used is the same as what is in the One Year Chronological Bible by Tyndale. I have this Bible in the New Living Translation so decided to use that so I wouldn’t have to keep switching between books to do this chronologically. The Bible is already set up in chronological order so I can just read straight through it and still be reading chronologically.
Here I am, the night before starting, ready to go!
When embarking on a venture of this magnitude, it is good to know the reasons behind why we are doing it. Then when the difficulty sets in or discouragement tries to raise its ugly head, the reasons for why we are doing it can be a reminder and encouragement to keep going. Mom’s Toolbox is hosting this next read-through of the Bible in 90 Days going from August 20 through November 17. They’ve asked us to think about why we are doing this.
For me, I have been interested in doing this since I first heard about the idea. I love the idea of being thoroughly immersed in God’s Word. And reading large chunks of Scripture at a time, getting the big picture of God’s Story in a way that isn’t as possible when reading the Bible in a year (or longer). While I have read through the Bible several times in the course of my life, it’s always been over the course of a year or longer so reading it in a shorter amount of time allows me to see the flow much better than when it is spread out over the course of a year or more.
Why am I doing this? To better know the Bible and to see the big picture more clearly. I will be reading through it chronologically and using the Bible in 90 Days Bible in the NIV version. Most of the Bibles I have are study Bibles and would be too distracting with the notes and commentaries. So I am using this one as it is perfectly designed for the purpose.
In order to share with others the gospel, we often must first confront their presuppositions or where they are coming from. A person’s worldview affects how they view all of life. It used to be that most Americans viewed the Bible as true and talking about God often meant starting from common ground. Now with the secular, postmodern view so prevalent, Christians must first establish the reliability of the Bible and who God is, before moving ahead with the gospel message. It is similar to witnessing to someone in a different religion. When sharing the gospel with a Muslim or Hindu, one needs to know what they believe to be able to answer their questions. In the same way, the postmodern culture of America has become a new “religion” or way of viewing the world that is not the same as the biblical worldview.
Defending your faith requires not just knowing what you believe and why, but often what the other person believes. Being able to counter the claims of the secular culture that we live in is a necessary part of reaching others with the truth of the gospel in this day and age we live in.
So much of our identity these days seems to be wrapped up in what we do. In either our jobs or the ministry we are involved in, even the roles we are in can be used to shape our identity. What is one of the first questions that we ask someone when meeting them? “What do you do?” As if what we do is what determines our identity or defines who we are.
This is something I struggle with regularly. When I make a mistake or fail at something, I get discouraged and feel like I am no longer valuable or worthy. My identity and worth gets wrapped up in how I perform or act. I think this stems back to growing up in a conservative Baptist home and growing up on the mission field and being a missionary kid. During our furloughs, we would travel around to supporting churches to report on my parents’ ministry and the idea came across to me that I had to behave and to be a certain way to be acceptable and to not make things difficult for my parents. I don’t think I was ever actually told this (my parents would be appalled to think that I thought this) but that was the impression I had as a young child. Then I went to a conservative college with a lot of rules and my early impressions continued. My behavior determined my worth.
I know intellectually this is not true. My worth is totally based on God and His view of me. Because of His love and Christ’s death, I am a worthy person, a child of God, loved not based on my performance but on Christ’s work on my behalf. Nothing I do or say can change that. But early impressions often live on into adult years and I must fight against the idea that my worth and identity are wrapped up in what I do or how I act.
God has brought me so far. The unconditional love that I receive from my husband has helped me to better grasp God’s unconditional love for me. God is the One who made me and He accepts me, not based on anything that I can do for Him. The freedom in that is refreshing and exhilarating!
I have been wanting to do this for quite a while but haven’t been quite brave enough yet. As it is, the timing is not the best for me to do this now as I’m quite busy with my job during this time of the year. But, I figure there will always be an excuse or a reason for me to put it off, and as I would really prefer to do this with another group doing it at the same time rather than attempting it on my own, now is as good a time as any to participate.
Now I’m trying to determine which translation/paraphrase to use for this read. There will be both a straight through cover-to-cover and also a chronological plan to follow. I’m going to attempt the chronological plan. With the many Bibles and translations/paraphrases that we own, I have narrowed down my choice to 2 different versions. One is called the God’s Word version and the other is a New Living Translation. Anyone want to chime in with thoughts about which of these I should use? Keep in mind that I will be reading this without spending time in in-depth study. For in-depth study of the Bible, I recommend versions such as the New American Standard, the NET Bible or English Standard Version. But for general reading of the text, other translations can be useful, though they might not be as accurate of a translation.