Monday, May 11, 2009

New Testament in a Month

Now that I am done with seminary, I have the freedom to read WHATEVER I want to. I cannot begin to express how excited I am about this! However, one of the first things I want to do is get back into the Word more intentionally and more deeply. Not that I was not encouraged to study the Scriptures in seminary, but now I can read them with the sole purpose of enjoying God and preparing my heart and mind for ministry. Should be the same, but in my mind and heart it is different. If I'm off on this, please pray for me.

Early in my seminary experience I had the privilege of taking several classes with Dr. Rodney Woo (Pastor of Wilcrest Baptist Church). This man is the epitome of a perfect combination of scholarship and a pastoral heart. There is much I have learned from him, both in content and by his example that I am eternally grateful for.

I still remember the day in class when he was sitting on the edge of the table with his intense stare and he said, "Gentlemen, if you are going to preach the Bible, you had better know it!" This statement hit me like a ton of bricks. I mean, on one hand this statement seems to be obvious, but as this pastor-scholar sat there with the fire of God in his eyes, I realized that he was not talking about 'knowing' it, but to KNOW it.

One thing I loved about being in his classes was that when he brought correction or exhortation, he always provided a way forward. On this occasion he told us how he stays sharp in the Word. He shared with us that He read through the New Testament each month for 9 months out of the year and then took 3 months to read through the Old Testament. At first, I thought this was impossible, that it would take too much time. However, Dr. Woo shared that it only took about 30 minutes-a-day and that he would just read. No note taking, no word studies, he would just read it and enjoy it as it was. He then challenged us to try it.

By God's grace, I was able to do this several times. This experience helped me to see the grand picture of God's redemptive story through the entirety of the Scriptures. Unfortunately, it has been quite a while since I have enjoyed this discipline and am now resolved to re-institute this life-giving exercise.

If any of you out there would like to give it a try, here's the schedule:

1. Mt. 1-10
2. Mt. 11-20
3. Mt. 21-28
4. Mk. 1-8
5. Mk. 9-16
6. Lk. 1-8
7. Lk. 9-16
8. Lk. 17-24
9. Jn. 1-7
10. Jn. 8-14
11. Jn. 15-21
12. Acts 1-10
13. Acts 11-20
14. Acts 21-28
15. Romans 1-8
16. Romans 9-16
17. 1 Cor. 1-8
18. 1 Cor. 9-16
19. 2 Cor.
20. Galatians – Ephesians
21. Philippians – Colossians
22. 1 & 2 Thess.
23. 1 & 2 Tim.
24. Titus – Philemon – Heb. 1-3
25. Heb. 4-13
26. James
27. 1 & 2 Peter
28. 1-2-3 John / Jude
29. Rev. 1-11
30. Rev. 12-22

Let me know if you're going to give it a shot. I'd love to hear about your experience!

7 comments:

Mandy said...

Hey! So, I will take this "challenge" - I have been reading the NT again, but have been very scattered about it and don't think I have ever read it in it's entirety. So, On Day 1, I do #1, day 2, #2? So, it should take a month? Is that right?

Casey Cease said...

Mandy,

Yes! This is correct. Just read, it is not a 'study time', but a reading time. Enjoy the broad landscape. If you miss a day, pick up where you left off. Don't be legalistic about it, just enjoy it.

Let me know how it goes!

Casey

Steph said...

Hey...I think I would like to do this with you, honey!

I was just about to go do some reading and I decided to check the computer real quick before I got started. Glad I did.

Matthew 1-10 it is!
Love you.
Hope your retreat is proving to be fruitful.

Casey Cease said...

Steph -

Looking forward to doing this with you!

Love,
C-

RenegadeTech said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RenegadeTech said...

This is great! Do you happen to have a similar schedule for the old testament?

Casey Cease said...

RenegadeTech,

10 Chapters/day for the OT in 3 Months.