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How Often Do You Need To Read The Bible?

Christians everywhere are debating how much time we should spend reading the bible. Leave it to us Christians to take something as beautiful as reading the bible, only to turn it into a rules-based minimum quota we must strive to attain.

There’s not a single verse that calls Christians to invest a predetermined portion of time reading the bible. So how much time should we spend studying the bible?

I think we go very wrong when we put a ‘minimum amount’ of time into bible reading. It’s just another form of rules-based Christianity and legalism.

I am NOT anti-bible reading. In fact, I encourage it, recommend it, and personally read it on an ongoing basis. I agree that the bible is good for instruction, reproof, and correction. However, I am convinced that as believers we have Christ living in us and we don’t require meeting a minimum standard of bible reading to know what sin is, to know the Character of God, or to live upright godly lives.

Jesus, in us, is our counselor. Our guide. Our instructor. Our Spirit /His Spirit is not ‘starving’ because we don’t read the bible long enough each week. Where do we get this stuff from?

The early Christians didn’t have bibles. Some of them only had one letter (i.e. the Corinthians only had Corinthians). Also, many of them could not read and solely relied on someone else to read to them. Yet, as believers, they had Christ living in them, and while a bible would have been great,

‘God’s power has given them EVERYTHING they needed for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3). 

We have something that people before the cross never had. We have the Spirit of God living in us. The God of the universe has made his abode in us and given us all we really need. I think this is why in John 5:39 we see Jesus say to the religious elite:

‘You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me’.

I’m sure there are many poor believers across the globe that don’t have bibles, and far be it from me to imply that this somehow makes them less godly or lacking in spirituality.

Reading the bible is wonderful, and highly encouraged, but

  • Reading the bible for 10 hours vs 1 hour doesn’t make you more godly
  • Reading the bible for 10 hours vs 1 hour doesn’t get you more forgiveness
  • Reading the bible for 10 hours vs 1 hour doesn’t make you closer to God.

So yes. Read your bible. I am in no way implying that we shouldn’t read our bibles. It’s the greatest on the planet. It’s packed with wisdom. It’s the word of God (which is in you). Maybe you read the bible 10 hours a week. Perhaps 30 minutes a week. Both are fully acceptable to God.

Your bible can collect dust for 3 months and you could still exude the love of Christ and say no to sin and ungodliness. My advice is don’t give in to religious pressure demanding that you need to meet some minimum standard of bible reading time so that you can achieve some man-made quota to be more godly.


Author: Mike Cynar

Mike Cynar was raised in a church setting where he frequently noticed that many attendees would eventually drift away. The church labeled these individuals as ‘back sliders’ or ‘fake Christians’ just looking for ‘fire insurance’. However, Mike realized the issue was rarely with these individuals but instead with the church’s message itself. The teachings heavily emphasized behavior improvement and one’s flaws, with only a fleeting mention of one’s identity in Christ. It felt as though every sermon was tailored to the church of Corinth, who as we know or committing sins that even unbelievers don’t partake in. This trend was noticeable not just in one denomination, but across Baptist, Catholic, Pentecostal, and many other churches. Upon understanding the true essence of the gospel – that our righteousness comes from Jesus’ actions, not our own – Mike was inspired to liberate believers from lifeless sermons and reconnect them with the genuine teachings of Jesus. He believes that one can nurture a vibrant and growing bond with Jesus, unhindered by rigid religious practices. And thus, “Jesus Without Religion” was born.

It turns out that it is grace that leads to repentance. And if our heart is to get others to walk in the Spirit and live a godly life, then the best approach is not a beat down sermon, but rather to remind other that it is only when we understand our true identity in Christ that we will live it out. Yes, it’s true, if you’re convinced that God thinks you’re a dirty sinner, you will ultimately continue a lifestyle that mirrors that view, but if you truly believe that even on your worst day, you are called holy, sanctified, justified, and will be presented blameless in the end, well, it turns out this is the secret to living out on the outside what has been worked in to the inside.

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