Day #1: A Savior is Born

"... an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, 'Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.'"

Matthew 1:20-21, NIV


Thus begins the study that will hopefully take you through 260 consecutive days of reading the New Testament. Many of you have never actually read all the way through the New Testament, so this will be an excellent start for what will hopefully be a lifetime of study. Many others have read through the Scriptures on many occasions, but this type of study may be a bit different than ones you have already done. My recommendation to the first time student as well as the Bible scholar is this:


Read a chapter a day, each day from the New Testament. Read it in order, starting with Matthew 1 and ending with Revelation 22. This should take you about 5 to 10 minutes a day, and it would be best if you set apart a few minutes at the beginning of each day to do so, remembering to pray for guidance that God might help you to understand and get the most from what He has provided for you in His inspired Word. The reason for this is leads to my second recommendation:


Read your chapter first thing in the morning so that you might take the message with you throughout the day, and think about it. So many will just read a chapter, check it off of their "to do" list and then move on. This might be a great way to take vitamins or eat your vegetables or do your sit-ups and push-ups, but it is a poor way to handle God's Word. The Bible is worthy of your consideration! So read the word! Let its message sink deep into your heart and mind, and then think about that message throughout the day. It is not the morning news, which is rarely more than bad news or propaganda. It is the Good News of God's message of salvation to you and your loved ones! So, take it to heart and meditate on what it means and why God thought it important enough to have it passed along to you.


Why do all this? That answer is simple: At the end of this life each one of us will kneel before God to be judged. After the Judgment, you will then go onto your eternity. And make no mistake, this eternity will be the one that you have chosen, so choose wisely. Remember the words from the passage above, "He will save His people from their sins." If you can take that message from this first day of your reading, then you will have added something vital to your life. For God will really give us an eternity somewhere - either Heaven or Hell - and this eternity will indeed be the one we choose.


That is why you are reading the Bible!  Today's reading is the first chapter of Matthew. May God richly bless your efforts!