Read an entire gospel this week! Not as scary as it sounds!

At our recent Sunday service, Cathie Watson helped us think about the benefits of reading the bible. This is all ahead of our new teaching series that we are calling All things new.

The series will take us into Lent, through Easter and onto pentecost. In that time we are planning to cover the whole narrative of the bible and we will be using All Things New by Pete Hughes as a guide. We would really encourage everyone to get hold of a copy and read it as we go.

In addition, last week Cathie provided a prequel for the series as the lectionary psalm for the week was Psalm 1 which speaks of the value of meditating (hagaring!) on Scripture. She also challenged us to read a gospel in its entirety this week. Rather than always reading and studying short passages, reading a bible book as a whole helps us get a bigger picture understanding of who Jesus is.

The easiest place to start is probably Mark, as this takes about an hour and a half to read, shorter than a film. Alternatively if you struggle reading for a long time then you can listen to it here:-

How to read and understand the bible resources

Cathie also recommended a series of resources and they are available here, if you have any questions please do get in touch by emailing

Bible overview

  1. All Things New by Pete Hughes – this will accompany our sermon series this spring, covering the biblical narrative from beginning to end to new beginning! This in particular helps Christians read the bible better, understanding the wider context of God’s story and our story within his story (history). 
  1. Storylines by Mike Pilavachi and Andy Croft – very helpful starting place, easy and entertaining to read and has been looked at recently by our youth groups. There’s also a small group version for homegife groups to read and  study together. 
  1. The bible project on YouTube – great videos that give an overview of each book of the bible or each section and help us read each passage in its biblical context. Their more recent videos also consider different themes and Storylines throughout Scripture. 
  1. Tour of the bible with Rev. Dr Helen Paynter – Helen, a lecturer at Bristol baptist college, joined us for an episode of our church podcast to discuss the Old testament and violence, but has also produced a series of videos touring the bible in 80 days as well as recently a more in depth guide to one of the Old Testament’s trickiest books Leviticus

How to read the bible 

  1. Eat this book: the spiritual art of reading by Eugene Peterson – a great book by the author of the message version of the bible combining scholarship and real life experiences. 
  1. The bible by Paula Gooder – a very affordable, very easy starting point for anyone reading the Bible for the first time. 
  1. Rick Warren’s Bible Study Methods by Rick Warren – this gives 12 helpful methods for studying the bible as a daily practice. This is accompanied by a small group series for called 40 days in the word which, although slightly dated now 10 years on, is still incredibly useful and practical. 

Podcasts or Apps

  1. The bible binge – a fun lighthearted approach to the bible, grounded on good theological foundations. In each episode they take a biblical character or book and picture it as a film script, creatively imagining how it translates to today. 
  1. The bible in a year – As well as various resources out there with the same idea, HTB church in London have produced a variety of resources to support reading the bible through in a year or less, including youth resources. 
  1. The bible project podcast – In addition to the youtube channel above the founders of the bible project have their own youtube