Ed Stetzer is an American author, speaker, researcher, pastor, church planter, and Christian missiologist. Stetzer is Billy Graham Distinguished Chair of Church, Mission, and Evangelism at Wheaton College and Executive Director of the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College. The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily represent those of BCNN1.
I am glad to welcome Nick Hall to The Exchange today. Nick is founder of a new initiative called Year of the Bible, which is calling people to engage with the Bible more.
Ed: Talk to me about The Year of the Bible movement. How did this idea begin in your heart?
Nick: Year of the Bible is an effort to see more people in the Bible, more. The campaign is taking place in over 100 nations around the world, with hundreds of organizations and thousands of churches involved.
It’s important to note that while this campaign is launching in 2020, it has much more to do with calling people to have a year where the Bible becomes foundational to every area of their lives. That said, a person’s Year of the Bible starts whenever they are ready to dive in!
As we all know, Bible engagement isn’t nearly as high as we would hope it to be. I think I’m like many church leaders in that Bible engagement is something that I care deeply about, but have never really prioritized in my public ministry. I’m not sure it’s commonly a goal for churches, but I’d say it’s the one thing that changes everything.
Even in Willow Creek’s Reveal Study, getting people in the Word was the single factor that had the greatest impact on discipleship, evangelism, generosity, and more.
This idea was born in my heart out of a personal longing to have 20/20 vision come from the Word of God, rather than the latest and greatest ideas. Growing up in the church, I never actually learned how to read and prioritize the Bible, and for much of my life it wasn’t a priority.
I know what it’s like to feel guilty of not getting in the Word, yet feeling stuck when I get in it. Today, there are better tools and resources than ever before to help people fall in love with God’s Word.
Hearing about God is great, but hearing from God is even better. Let’s get people to the Source!
Ed: What does it look like to practically be part of this movement?
Nick: Year of the Bible has very practical on-ramps for individuals, churches, and organizations to get involved. You can find more info about all of these at www.YearOfTheBible.com.
First, we are asking people to make a commitment to get in the Word this year. Rather than this simply be something people do on their own, we are hoping for a viral and community effort. We are asking as many people as possible to post a picture of themselves with their Bible to social media, share what the Bible means to them, and use the hashtag #YearoftheBible
Second, we have numerous Bible tools and resources we are pointing people to. The goal here is to make it as easy as possible for people to get in the Word. The goal isn’t perfection, but presence… just you and God, in the Scriptures.
We have amazing plans on YouVersion with the Bible Project and The Bible Recap. Some are 10-day plans, others are efforts to get through the entire Bible. We also have some incredible audio and video resources from Streetlights, Spoken Gospel, American Bible Society, Alabaster, Museum of the Bible, and more.
Click here to read more.
Source: Christianity Today