David Green, pastor at First Baptist Church in Greeneville, Tennessee, was asked at a conference for Sunday School leaders, “What his church was doing in the area of discipleship?” One of the resources that they are presently using in their discipleship ministry is Read the Bible For Life. When David was sharing, I became excited because I believe that Read the Bible for Life is one of the most significant emphasis and resources ever released by Lifeway.
This resource was written by Dr. George Guthrie, Benjamin W. Perry Professor of Bible at Union University in Jackson, TN. Dr. Guthrie shares on his website, “Over the past two
decades I have become increasingly concerned about the state of biblical literacy in the church…biblical literacy has more to it than merely knowing Bible trivia. For instance, it concerns reading the parts of Scripture well and understanding the “grand story” of redemptive history.”
Read the Bible for Life initiative, seeks to foster:
- an understanding of how to read the parts of Scripture well,
- a perspective on the Bible as a grand story God has written on the world,
- a grasp of the themes of Scripture that thread their way powerfully and beautifully from the beginning to the end of this book of books, and
- sound application of the Scripture to modern-day life.
The Read the Bible for Life initiative is a whole-church initiative focused on growth in biblical literacy. As the Disciple-making Team Leader for the Tennessee Baptist Convention, I would strongly urge every church to join First Baptist Church,
Greeneville in offering Read the Bible for Life. Consider the following actions:
- Offer the nine-session group study (READ THE BIBLE FOR LIFE: LISTEN. UNDERSTAND. RESPOND) as a foundational experience for the whole
- As a church, read through the Bible chronologically in a year, as the pastor preaches through the highlights of the Bible’s grand story year.
Two resources are available to encourage every member to use day-by-day as the church reads through the Bible together: READING GOD’S STORY: A CHRONOLOGICAL DAILY BIBLE and/or A READER’S GUIDE TO THE BIBLE.
Call or e-mail me at the Tennessee Baptist Convention for questions about Read the Bible for Life or strengthening your discipleship ministry. For additional information, the Read the Bible for Life website is www.readthebibleforlife.org.