Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Read the New Testament for Lent


Day Day of Lent New Testament Portion
1 Ash Wednesday Matthew 1-7
2 Thursday Matthew 8-12
3 Friday Matthew 13-17
4 Saturday Matthew 18-21
5 1st Sunday in Lent Matthew 22-25
6 Monday  Matthew 26-28
7 Tuesday Romans 1-8
8 Wednesday Romans 9-16
9 Thursday 1 Corinthians 1-9
10 Friday 1 Corinthians 10-16
11 Saturday 2 Corinthians 1-10
12 2nd Sunday in Lent 2 Corinthians 11-13, Galatians
13 Monday  Mark 1-5
14 Tuesday Mark 6-9
15 Wednesday Mark 10-12
16 Thursday Mark 13-16
17 Friday Ephesians
18 Saturday Philippians, Colossians
19 3rd Sunday in Lent 1 & 2 Thessalonians
20 Monday  1 & 2 Timothy
21 Tuesday Titus, Philemon, Hebrews 1-7
22 Wednesday Hebrews 8-13
23 Thursday James
24 Friday Luke 1-4
25 Saturday Luke 5-8
26 4th Sunday in Lent Luke 9-11
27 Monday  Luke 12-16
28 Tuesday Luke 17-21
29 Wednesday Luke 22-24
30 Thursday Acts 1-5
31 Friday Acts 6-9
32 Saturday Acts 10-14
33 5th Sunday in Lent Acts 15-19
34 Monday  Acts 20-23
35 Tuesday Acts 24-28
36 Wednesday 1 & 2 Peter
37 Thursday 1, 2 & 3 John, Jude
38 Friday Revelation 1-7
39 Saturday Revelation 8-15
40 Palm Sunday Revelation 16-22
41 Monday in Holy Week John 1-5
42 Tuesday in Holy Week John 6-10
43 Wednesday in Holy Week John 11-16
44 Maundy Thursday John 17-21
45 Good Friday Spare Day
46 Holy Saturday Spare Day

Schedule Rationale

This reading schedule is designed to be used in the context of the ecclesiastical season of Lent. Lent is 40 days long, not including six Sundays that are not days of fasting. Two days have been set aside as spare days to provide for the occasional emergency. The schedule was designed with several objects in mind. First, Gospels and Epistles are alternated in order to break up the synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke) which have so much material in common. It was felt that it would be more edifying to read these in alternation with Epistles rather than in strict canonical succession. Further, Luke and Acts have been placed together in order to point out the unity of these two documents, which are essentially two parts of one book. Finally, the Gospel of John has been reserved for Holy Week. John, whose traditional symbol is the eagle, traces not only the events of the life of Jesus, but suggests the implicit meaning in those events. He is, as it were, the eagle giving us a broad perspective. John's Gospel is really a sustained reflection on the person and mission of the Son of God. As such it was thought to be the ideal complement to Holy Week.

Tips for Reading

§      Pay attention: Try to maintain your concentration as you read. If you find your mind wandering, refocus back on the text. Paradoxically, the more you concentrate, although the reading will be more mentally taxing, the easier and faster you will read.
§      Read in one sitting: Try to read the day’s portion in one sitting. The first and last five minutes of a sustained period of reading are the times in which one reads the slowest and with the least comprehension. If you break up a day’s portion, these inefficient periods will be multiplied.
§      Preview the reading: Try to get a sense of the day’s portion before reading it. Look at the Bible 101 handout for a brief summary and outline of the book; read the introductions to the books in a study Bible, or simply look at the chapter headings in your Bible. If you have a mental map of where you are going and what you are about to read, you will retain and comprehend more.
§      Eliminate distractions: Try to remove any distractions that might arise during the reading time. Turn off electronics; silence cell phones; pick a time when interruptions will be minimized.
§      Create a space: If you do not have a good reading space, pick a place that can be used daily, that is comfortable but not too comfortable. For most people, this will be in an upright position. Make sure there is good lighting.
§      Timing is everything: Pick a time of day where you will be able to concentrate. For most people, reading before bed will not work. Try to schedule a piece of your day for reading, and read the daily portion at that time every day.
§      Prioritize the day: For most people tasks that get done in a day are the first things on a list. Decide that your reading is going to be a first thing, and stick to that decision even if busy days crop up.
§      Pray!: These tips could apply to any type of reading, but we are going to be reading the Scriptures which can makes us “wise to salvation.” Ask the Spirit of God to give you understanding, and to give you ears to hear God’s Word to you. 

BLESSED Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning; Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

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