5 Books of the Bible to Read First
Knowing what book of the bible to read first can be a little intimidating. After all there are 66 books within the Bible: the Old Testament has 39 books and the New Testament has 27. So which book do I start with first? Should I read from the very beginning all the way through like any other book? Maybe I should read the New Testament first?
Let me ease your concerns right now! You aren’t the only one who struggles with what book to read in the Bible. Even if you have read through the entire bible, you can still get stuck on what to read next.
I want to give you the top 5 books I recommend you read first. Rest assured though, there is no right or wrong answer. All of God’s word is “useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). Therefore, wherever you start, God will use it in your life! But as a general road map to start you on this life long journey, here is my top 5.
5 Books to Read First
1. Gospel of Mark-
The entire Bible points to Jesus as our only hope and means to a Holy God. Whether you are reading the OT or the NT, it all points to Jesus. So logically, the best place to start would be the story of Jesus in the gospels, the first 4 books of the New Testament. The Gospels- Matthew, Mark, Luke and John- tell of Jesus and his life. Each book is written by a different author, telling many of the same stories from their unique perspective.
I chose Mark specifically because you won’t get bogged down with a lot of detail. Mark gives a concise and powerful picture of Jesus, his ministry and a general overview of his life. Therefore, when you move on to read the other gospels you will have a better picture of who Jesus was/is and can take in more details as you read.
Genesis is the very first book in the Bible. It tells of creation, the beginning of man, the fall of Adam and Eve, the establishment of Israel- God’s chosen people, and so much more!! Genesis is an action packed book that will excite your reading and draw you back again and again!
3. 1 John-
Written by John the apostle, the book of 1 John helps Christians rest in the assurance of salvation in Jesus Christ. “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (1 John 5:13) It is a book full of opportunities to use your highlighter and thank God for his Son Jesus!
We all need comfort, assurance, and peace- Psalms gives us all of that! It is a book written by King David. He writes his feelings in the form of poetry that relates to the human heart in a deep impactful way. When I feel exhausted and down in spirit, I run to the Psalms!
David was a musician, so many of these Psalms have been sung throughout history.
I am adding the book of Acts to our list because; well I just love this book! It is the formation of the church and the beginnings of the Holy Spirit. The stories tell of brave men and women who stepped out in faith and trusted God with everything they had! They are true faith heroes.
So there you have it! My 5 top picks for where to start in your bible reading journey. The important thing to remember is just do it! Just start! Disappointment and discouragement are expected- we are all human. But don’t let that stop you altogether! Get back on the horse and ride again. In fact, you can start right now!
Where do you start? Mark 1:1
And remember- you won’t regret any time you spend reading God’s Word!