90 Days Thru the Bible: A Devotional Journey from Walk Thru the Bible by Chris Tiegreen
This book is for people who have read at least some of the Bible in the past and know some of the very basic ideas of Christianity, and terms we use and find in the Bible. I think anyone who is other than a brand new Christian or advanced theologian could benefit from it.
In the Introduction, the author writes about how “The pages of many Bibles are ruffled in predictable spots and pristine in equally predictable spots.” I’ve seen people chuckle at this regarding their own Bible, but I think it’s a pretty serious indictment on how low of a view many people have of the book that they claim to base their life on.
Tiegreen stresses how important it is to read the whole thing, but I don’t think he does this enough. I think it should be emphasized how imperative it is to read the whole Bible and not just use this book as ‘Cliff’s Notes for the Bible’, which I would be afraid that many people would. The reason I write this is because he does such a good job at summarizing the Bible and meeting his objective of the book being “an overview, but it’s designed to go much deeper than that–more like admiring the beauty of each piece of a puzzle and contemplating how it contributes to the whole picture. In the process, we will encounter the major characters, events, and themes of the Bible and discover a divine flow that connect them all.”
As he does this, it becomes inconsistent in how he goes about it–sometimes just writing an overview, sometimes giving Scripture references as “takeaways”, sometimes providing application for today, etc. This may not be a bad thing. Not every book of the Bible is consistent with each other either, and it may be the variety some people need. At the same time, the book is in a very pleasing and easy to read flowing narrative style, without information presented using bulleted lists, tables, etc.
I also wonder if someone would be wanting to add to their reading if they’re reading the Bible in 90 days. Why 90 days? This overview could be used with any reading plan. As it turns out, he does have a book titled The One Year Walk with God Devotional: 365 Daily Bible Readings to Transform Your Mind and at 720 pages (this one is 256), would give him more time to develop his objective plus it’s extremely highly rated. This may sound cynical, but it seems that it has become popular for publishers to put out condensed or abridged versions of other books. In this case that would be counter-intuitive though, because someone who would want to read the Bible in 90 days (I wonder how many people really will–cynical again) wouldn’t shy away from the 720 page book. I have no idea of the content of the other one.
I think the strength of this book, other than him doing a good job of what he set out to do, are the chapters on the Gospels. The author does a great job of describing what each one is focused on and it gives the reader a great picture of the differences between them.
He also gives a sense of the chronology when weaving through the various books which we know aren’t in chronological order of events.
I think this is a very good book, even if inconsistent and this reviewer wondering why a 90 day version was put out after a denser 365 day book. If you are looking for a good, short synopsis of the true story of Scripture, no matter your reading plan, this would be a good choice.
Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a free copy of this book for the purpose of my unbiased review.
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