Dear Friends in Christ,
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105)
Welcome to 2019: The Year of Scripture. Our focus this year will be on God’s gift of Sacred Scripture. The Old and New Testaments are the written Word of God. Inspired by the Holy Spirit speaking through their authors, they record and announce God’s revelation centering in Jesus Christ. Through them the Holy Spirit creates and sustains Christian faith, life, and fellowship for service in the world.
One of the best-known Bible verses related to the Word of God is Psalm 119:105, and this will serve as our 2019 Year of Scripture memory verse. “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105). This powerful verse affirms that sacred scripture will serve as a trusted guide along life’s journey. I encourage you to commit Psalm 119:105 to memory.
During this Year of Scripture, we will aspire to grow as Christian disciples through three distinct practices:
1. Bible Reading to form us through daily discipline and habit.
We have put together a Daily Bible Reading Schedule to help you read through the entire Bible in One Year. This week our Daily Bible Readings include:
- Jan. 7 Genesis 22-24
- Jan. 8 Genesis 25-26
- Jan. 9 Genesis 27-29
- Jan. 10 Genesis 30-31
- Jan. 11 Genesis 32-34
- Jan. 12 Genesis 35-37
- Jan. 13 Genesis 38-40
2. Bible Reflection to help us to become fluent in the language of sacred scripture. Again, we are providing resources to help. One of my favorite websites is the Bible Project. Their mission is to show how the Bible is a unified story that leads to Jesus. They produce great videos, posters, and even a weekly podcast. Check out some of these awesome resources to help you and your parish to become fluent in the language of sacred scripture.
When you get to the Bible Project website, scroll down, and click on the Genesis 1-11 video and / or the Genesis 12-50 video
3. Bible Study to lead us to know who God is and what God does. The 2019 Year of Scripture Bible Study is will soon be available on the Northwestern Ohio Synod’s website. This year’s 6-session study will focus on the Sermon on the Mount from Matthew 5-7. Learn how Jesus reads and reflects on Scripture. Hear Jesus’ call that as disciples we are to be readers, hearers, and doers of God’s Word.
Download the 6-session Bible study on the Sermon on the Mount below. Open your Bible, gather with a group of friends, get outside the 4 walls of the congregation, and learn what God desires to teach you. But, be careful. Be very, very careful, because God’s Word has the power to transform people and communities from who we are into the people and communities that God longs for us to be.
Let us pray: Blessed Lord God, you have caused the holy scriptures to be written for the nourishment of your people. Grant that we may hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that, comforted by your promises, we may embrace and forever hold fast to the hope of eternal life, which you have given us in Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen. (Evangelical Lutheran Worship pg. 72)