Our church family has had the tradition of using a church-wide reading schedule. Up to the present day, our family of church has given a handout to aid in personal and family devotions. And they have used that topic for Sunday School.
I remember when I first saw the idea in practice how helpful I thought it was. But this idea was not original with our family of churches. In the Halley’s Bible Handbook, which sold over 5 million copies, Henry Halley states,
“The most important things in this book is this simple suggestion: that each church have a congregational plan of Bible reading and that the pastor’s sermon be from the part of the Bible read the past week thus connecting the pastor’s preaching with the people’s Bible reading….
Unquestionably, the most fatal weakness of the present day church is the lack of leadership in the pulpit on this one point of guiding and leading its people into the one habit that is the source and basis of everything that the church exists to accomplish in its people…
Preaching, even in its truest sense, and at its best, was never designed of God to be a complete and sufficient substitute for the people themselves reading for themselves the word of God itself….
Bible reading is the one habit, which, if done in the right spirit, more than any other one habit, will make a Christian what he ought to be in every way.”
Although connecting the reading to the preaching has proved difficult over the years, we have had great success tying it to Sunday School.
If you are a church leader or a family leader, consider having everyone read the same thing in devotions.
“Nobody every outgrows Scripture; the book widens and deepens with our years.” – Charles Spurgeon