How Long Does It Take to Read the Bible?

How Long Does It Take to Read the Bible? August 8, 2018

My post about the One Hour Bible, an edition of highlights designed to be read in 60 minutes, got me thinking:  How long does it take to read the whole Bible?

I stumbled upon these calculations posted on the website of the The Village of Euxton in Lancaster, England, which perhaps gave it a try:

It takes just 70 hours and 40 minutes to read the Bible through “at pulpit rate,” and aloud!

It takes only 52 hours and 20 minutes to read the Old Testament, and just 18 hours and 20 minutes to read the New Testament.

The longest book, Psalms, will take just 4 hours and 28 minutes.

It takes a mere 2 hours and 43 minutes to read Luke.

One could read the Bible through in a year by reading less than 12 minutes a day!

So if the New Testament takes 18 hours and 20 minutes (1100 minutes), you could read the whole thing in a year in only 3 minutes a day.

When you read, though, you should really attend to meaning rather than a timer, and such small snatches of time might not let you finish the thoughts.  In just 36 minutes per day, you could finish the entire New Testament in a month.  Or take some time off and read the entire New Testament in two days.

Bad habits are hard to break, but so are good habits.  I don’t think I could get to sleep now if I didn’t follow my custom of doing some Bible reading before I go to bed.  I’ve followed different schemes, based on reading chapters rather than minutes.  In general, if you read three chapters a day–I’ve broken it down as one from the Old Testament, one from the New, and a Psalm–you can get through the whole Bible in a year, including several times through the New Testament and the Psalms.  Some years I just read one chapter a day.  Sometimes I read through the whole text, and sometimes I take on particular books.  Sometimes I have read a chapter, then a commentary on that chapter.  I have also done things like read the entire Lutheran Study Bible, notes and all.  Having taken some Greek in college, I have also, with the help of lexicons, worked through the Greek New Testament, which has been especially rewarding.  Although that started with just a verse or two, with experience I worked my way up to longer passages.

Anyway, my daily Bible reading fix has been invaluable to my spiritual and personal life.  I recommend it.  It doesn’t take all that long.  Less than an hour.

Do any of you have Bible reading plans that you could tell us about?  If you don’t, I urge you to try one.  Start small.  Don’t let yourself get bogged down in the  genealogies and Levitical laws, so I’d begin with the New Testament.  Give yourselves some dispensations, so that if you miss a day or two, you don’t give up the whole project.  You just take up where you left off.  And if you are taking on more than you can handle, don’t be afraid to revise your plan so that you can actually pull it off.  You’d be surprised what a mere 10 minutes a day in God’s Word can do for you.  And what it can do to you.


Illustration via Pixabay, CC0, Creative Commons


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