Zondervan’s The Bible in 90 Days: Cover to Cover in 12 Pages a Day (Old Testament)


Jorie’s Store – The Bible in 90 Days: Cover to Cover in 12 Pages a Day

* Through the Bible

Zondervan’s The Bible in 90 Days: Cover to Cover in 12 Pages a Day (The Bible in 90 Days) 

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As I mentioned late February 2013, I have taken on The Bible in 90 Days challenge. Thankfully, I decided only that I’d just read the whole Bible rather than try to do this in 90 days.

I am pleased to announce that I’ve read the Old Testament (OT)! I’ve even finished 2 gospels in the New Testament so I can see the finish line! Woot!

I’ve been impressed by the cast reading the books of the Bible to me these past few months. Also, I’ve been clued in as to how to pronounce many names and words. A huge bonus was hearing a talking donkey!

The OT is composed of 39 books and is often divided into 5  sections:  the Pentateuch, the Former Prophets (or Historical Books), the Writings, and the Latter Prophets.  They relate the devotion of God to His chosen people, the nation of Israel.

What impressed me most was His devotion. I also liked the numerous references to stars. This helped me realize God’s love, like those stellar beauties, endures.

The Book of Proverbs


Scroll of the Book of Proverbs | Wikipedia

Proverbs – NIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

Proverbs is the first book I read under the heading of “Poetry” in the Read through the Bible Challenge. Many say that this is the oldest book in The Bible.

Attributed to Solomon, Proverbs offers wisdom and direction for one’s conduct. Since this book has thirty-one chapters, Proverbs is ideal monthly reading.

8 Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves,
for the rights of all who are destitute.
9 Speak up and judge fairly;
defend the rights of the poor and needy.

For more onProverbs and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links:

The Book of Job


Job restored to prosperity by Laurent de la Hyre | Wikipedia

Job – NIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

Job is the first book I read under the heading of “Poetry” in the Read through the Bible Challenge. Many say that this is the oldest book in The Bible.

Job was the son of Uz, who was the son of Nahor, the brother of Abraham. The book relates Job’s trials at the hands of God. He lost everything and his friends come to pull him out of his party party. However, they don’t offer much in the way of Godly direction. Job, while downcast, doesn’t doubt God much. The main theme asks “Why do bad things happen to good people?”

Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” (Job 1:8)

For more on Job and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links:

Francine Rivers’ Redeeming Love: A novel


Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers | LibraryThing

Rivers, F. (2005). Redeeming love: A novel. Sisters, Or: Multnomah. 9781590525135

A number of my friends enjoy Christian Fiction. This is a genre I haven’t explored deeply. When I heard that Redeeming Love paralleled the Old Testament book of Hosea, I placed a request on it through HCPL.

Set during the California Gold Rush of the 1840s – 1850s, Rivers writes the story of Angel (Gomer), a beautiful prostitute, who is saved from a bordello by Michael Hosea, an honest farmer. Angel suffered much as she was sold into the trade as an eight-year old girl and trusts no one, especially not men. However, Michael hears God tell him he is to marry Angel. While he doesn’t exactly want to marry a “soiled dove,” Michael does as instructed. Although Michael treats her with love and respect, Angel can’t resist the depravity of her “previous life.” Michael relentlessly brings Angel back to his farm.

I wouldn’t call this a replica of Hosea but Rivers weaves the Gold Rush into the plot quite well. Also, Rivers paints her version of Gomer with living color. Through Angel, Rivers explores God’s grace and unfailing love. I could also detect Rivers’ previous experience as a secular romance writer. I also appreciated the expression of God’s love. Rivers nor her characters were preachy or sanctimonious and I thank God for that. Love scenes were present but so discreet that I didn’t even notice the first one – definitely for the Christian reader. This may not have been my favorite book for stylistic reasons (repetitive in words and events) but I did like the message.

Three and a Half Out of Five Pearls

Song: YouTube – Third Day – Gomer’s Theme

Places : New England, New York City, California

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For more on Francine Rivers’ Redeeming love: A novel, check out the following sites:

The Book of Genesis


Jacob blessed each of the tribes of Israel before his death. | The Tribes of Israel & Jacob's Sons

Genesis – NIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

Genesis was the seventh book I finished in the Read through the Bible Challenge. It’s the first book under the heading of “The Law” in this challenge. Not only is Genesis an Old Testament book, it’s the first book in the Bible and the Biblical book that most people have actually read. Genesis is the first book of the Pentateuch (Torah). Authorship is traditionally attributed to leader and prophet Moses.

Genesis easily divides into two major parts, the first being Primeval History (1:1 to 11:26.) Within Part I are “the Four Great Events,” – these being “The Creation of the Universe; Adam and Eve,” “The Fall and the Results of Sin,” “The Flood,” and “The Scattering of the Nations.”

Part II tells the Patriarchal History which presents “Four Great Characters” (11:27 to 50:26.) These characters are: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. They begin what we call Judaism today – the nation of Israel. 

Throughout Genesis, people fall into sin and God punishes. Yet, God offers redemption. This book in particular often shows God’s covenant with humans, though. He promises not to flood the world again, sealing His word with a rainbow. At another point, God starts a nation in the faithful Abraham. Ultimately, God promises via Jacob deliverance in the line of Judah:

 8 “Judah, your brothers will praise you;
your hand will be on the neck of your enemies;
your father’s sons will bow down to you.
9 You are a lion’s cub, Judah;
you return from the prey, my son.
Like a lion he crouches and lies down,
like a lioness—who dares to rouse him?
10 The scepter will not depart from Judah,
nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet,
until he to whom it belongs shall come
and the obedience of the nations shall be his.
11 He will tether his donkey to a vine,
his colt to the choicest branch;
he will wash his garments in wine,
his robes in the blood of grapes.
12 His eyes will be darker than wine,
his teeth whiter than milk. (Genesis 49:8-12)

For more on Genesis and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links:

The Book of Isaiah


Isaiah's Lips Anointed with Fire by Benjamin West (1782, Bob Jones University Museum and Gallery).

Isaiah – NIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

Isaiah was the sixth book I finished in the Read through the Bible Challenge. Also, Isaiah was the first “Prophecy” book I read this year. Isaiah is in the Old Testament.

Isaiah has 66 chapters. Chapters 1-39 predict doom and gloom for the disobedient land of Judah as well as the nations that oppose God. The latter chapters anticipate the restoration of the nation of Israel and a new creation in God’s glorious future kingdom; prophesying the coming of the Messiah.

This book is perhaps one of the most powerful in my opinion. I had much difficulty reading it, though, when I read about Egypt paying for its sins (history repeating itself?). The second part I took as the promise of a savior.

The verse choice from Isaiah seemed obvious to me:

but those who hope in the LORD
   will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
   they will run and not grow weary,
   they will walk and not be faint.                             (Isaiah 40:31)

For more on Isaiah and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links:

The Book of Ruth


Naomi entreating Ruth to follow Orpah by William Blake

Ruth – NIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

Ruth was the fourth book I completed in the Read through the Bible Challenge. Another “History,” this book comes after Judges in the Christian Bible. Ruth differs greatly from the other “History” books in that it seemed like a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. Also, I read the whole book in one sitting.

In the time of the Hebrew Judges, a famine drove an Israelite family from Bethlehem into Moab. They were Elimelech, his wife Naomi, and their sons Mahlon and Chilion. Elimelech died in Moab and both his sons took Moabite wives – Ruth and Orpah respectively. Then, Mahlon and Chilion died. Naomi embarked on a trip back to Bethlehem and her daughters-in law followed. When Naomi insisted these widows return to Moab, Orpah did so. Yet, Ruth eloquently stays with her mother-in law.

Upon their arrival, Naomi called herself Mara for the Lord has dealt with her bitterly. Ruth began gleaning the fields of Boaz, a cousin of the late Elimelech. Boaz permitted this due to Ruth’s loyalty to Naomi. From this point forward, Naomi pushes Ruth towards marriage with Boaz.

This book is part of the Hebrew Tanakh, more specifically the The Five Megillot. Ruth is remarkable in that this book relates a story of a non-Israeli woman who ultimately becomes part of the line of David and then Jesus Christ. While I may be uncomfortable with Naomi’s methods for ensnaring Boaz as a husband for Ruth, I did admire both Ruth and Boaz. Also, this book bears another one of my favorite passages from the Bible. The passage is often voiced during weddings but it began as something a devoted daughter-in law said to her mother-in law.

16 But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. 17 Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the LORD deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.” 18 When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her. (Ruth 1:16-18)

For more on Ruth and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links:

The Book of Judges


JudgesNIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

Judges was the third book I completed in the Read through the Bible Challenge. As it falls under the heading of “History,” this book follows Joshua in the Christian Bible.

This book is part of the Hebrew Tanakh. The introduction offers a summary of the Joshua. Beyond that, it entails the time that the judges ruled Israel. This period was rather bleak for the fledgling nation. Among the judges mentioned were: Othniel, Ehud, Shamgar, Deborah, Gideon, Abimelech, Tola, Jair, Jephthah, Ibzan, Elon, Abdon, and Samson. Judges ends with Israel’s decay – Micah’s idolatry and the crime at Gibeah and the War Against the Tribe of Benjamin.

This book isn’t for the faint of heart. Those Israelis just couldn’t get their acts together. God delivers them from Egyptian tyranny and to the Promised Land. Yet, this is how they behave. Humanity?! My favorite part was the part about Deborah assisting Barak.

On that day Deborah and Barak son of Abinoam sang this song:. . . (5:1)

For more on Judges and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links:

The Book of Joshua


Joshue, the first book of the Bible I completed in the Bible-Reading Challenge 2011

* Bible Log – 2011 « Jorie’s Reads

Joshua – NIV archaeological study Bible: An Illustrated walk through Biblical history and culture. (2005). Grand Rapids, Mich: Zondervan. 9780310938521.

This is my second year to attempt the Read through the Bible. Creator Michael Coley has a daily Bible reading plan outlined, helping participants to read in a year’s time. Throughout the week, I’ve been reading seven different parts of the Bible. Tuesday nights are for reading the Histories. Joshua was the first book I’ve finished in this challenge as well as a History. This year, I have resolved to do all this Bible reading in my Archeological Study Bible. This particular version possesses great side/margin articles, outlines, and beautiful pictures from the places.

An Old Testament book, Joshua is the first book of the Nevi’im, the second part of the Jewish canon. After Moses dies, his appointed successor, Joshua, son of Nun, is commanded by God to lead the Hebrews across the Jordan River. With Joshua, God holds up His end of the covenant with the Hebrews, regaining the Promised Land. The first twelve chapters, Part I, focus on Joshua’s heroic leadership of God’s people and the restoration of Canaan. Of course, this is when walls of Jericho come tumbling down as the song goes. Part II, (Chapter 13 – 22) focuses on the division of the land amongst the tribes of Israel. The Conclusion, Part III, holds Joshua’s farewell address, the covenant at Shechem, and the deaths of Joshua and Eleazer, a Levite priest and nephew of Moses. Throughout the book, Joshua’s devotion to God radiates from the pages. Oh, and God never fails!

Yes, I found some Joshua tedious, especially the division and distribution of Israel. However, the first part is pure marvel to me. One of the margin notes addresses Rahab’s the Prostitute’s house and it’s placement. It even contains one of my favorite passages

Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.7 “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” (1:6-9)

I’m proud I’ve gotten this far and please wish me well in this endeavor. Did I mention that this was my sole new year’s resolution?

For more on Joshua and Bible-Reading Challenge, check out the following links: