Over the course of a month, I want to help you appreciate the Bible more by helping you get a better understanding of the story the Bible tells.
As Tim Keller has written, “We usually read the Bible as a series of disconnected stories, each with a “moral” for how we should live our lives. It is not. Rather, it comprises a single story, telling us how the human race got into its present condition, and how God through Jesus Christ has come and will come to put things right.”
These Bible readings will help you write your own summary of that single story by taking you to various passages throughout the Scripture that clarify exactly how God is doing that.
Helps for Getting the Most from Your Study
* Review the story so far by looking at your summaries from the previous days
*Read the passages for each day out loud
* Get out a notebook and answer the following questions for each day:
- What stands out to you the most after having read through these Scriptures?
- If someone asked you what the passages you read that day were mostly about, what would you say?
- What do you think was the main point of what you were reading?
- What did these passages teach you about the character of God? What did they teach you about us as humans? What did they teach you about how God saves people?
- Write one paragraph that summarizes the part of the gospel story these passages tell.
12 They ask a piece of wood for advice! They think a stick can tell them the future! Longing after idols has made them foolish. They have played the prostitute, serving other gods and deserting their God.
4 Your deeds won’t let you return to your God. You are a prostitute through and through, and you do not know the Lord.
10 Listen to the Lord, you leaders of “Sodom.” Listen to the law of our God, people of “Gomorrah.” 11 “What makes you think I want all your sacrifices?” says the Lord. “I am sick of your burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fattened cattle. I get no pleasure from the blood of bulls and lambs and goats. 12 When you come to worship me, who asked you to parade through my courts with all your ceremony? 13 Stop bringing me your meaningless gifts; the incense of your offerings disgusts me! As for your celebrations of the new moon and the Sabbath and your special days for fasting— they are all sinful and false. I want no more of your pious meetings. 14 I hate your new moon celebrations and your annual festivals. They are a burden to me. I cannot stand them! 15 When you lift up your hands in prayer, I will not look. Though you offer many prayers, I will not listen, for your hands are covered with the blood of innocent victims. 16 Wash yourselves and be clean! Get your sins out of my sight. Give up your evil ways. 17 Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows. 18 “Come now, let’s settle this,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool. 19 If you will only obey me, you will have plenty to eat. 20 But if you turn away and refuse to listen, you will be devoured by the sword of your enemies. I, the Lord, have spoken!”