Top 11 Best Bible Reading Plans

Want to pick a Bible reading plan that you won’t regret committing to for the next season?  We have done all the work for you digging deep to find the top 11 ways to read the Bible.  We don’t only have your traditional 1 year read plans but have plans created from the early 1800’s all the way to the present time.  Each reading plan has a description that will help you identify what kind of commitment it will take and its pros and cons.  The plans vary widely, and you will likely be surprised by all the different approaches people have to help you read the Bible.

#1 Bible Reading Plan

Chronological Cross-Reference Bible Reading Plan

Key Features: OT Chronological, Cross-Referenced NT Readings, Daily Questions, Maps, Videos
Duration: One or Two Year
Format: App, PDF Journal, Booklet, Online, and Printed Journal

Have you ever tried a Bible reading plan and walked away saying that it just didn’t work for you? Most of the reasons that people address why they struggle with Bible reading plans has been dealt with when this plan was created.  The Chronological Cross-Reference Bible reading plan is more like doing a daily Bible Study than just reading through the Bible.  It put the Old Testament in Chronological order so that you can see how the story of the old testament fits with the Psalms and the Prophets.  Then it combines parallel New Testament passages with the Old Testament readings while being careful not to break the flow of the Books of the Bible.  The result is a beautiful weaving together of Scripture that allows reader to see how the New Testament was fulfilled the Old.  The two year plan takes less than 10 minutes to read each day, so you have plenty of time to dig deeper into what you read.  This Bible reading plan comes in all sorts of forms: App, Online, Booklets, Printable PDFs, and Study Journals.  If you are looking for extra study resources to go with your Bible reading, then this plan is for you.  The app and study journal have daily open-ended questions and with the app you will find several hundreds of maps and many videos including the ones from Bible Project.  This plan comes highly recommended for anyone who wants to read the whole Bible.

#2 Bible Reading Plan

5x5x5 New Testament Bible Reading Plan

Key Features: 5min Daily Readings, 5 Days a Week, NT Only
Duration: One Year
Format: Printable PDF, Apps

If you are just getting started reading your Bible and spending 15 to 20 minutes a day for a year sounds intimidating this plan might be for you.  It only takes 5 minutes a day with two days off each week to make it through the New Testament in a year.  This plan might also be good if you’re an avid studier since it should give you extra time to dig into what you are reading and this is the hope of the navigators who made this plan.  The last 5 in their 5x5x5 is five ways you can dig deeper.  These five are as follows: underline/highlight, put it in your own words, ask/answer questions, get the big idea, and personalize the meaning.  These five things are what we all should do using whatever reading plan we choose, but since the reading only takes five minutes it does fit good with this plan.  If you are looking for a whole Bible plan you need to look elsewhere, but if the NT is all your looking for this might be perfect.  This plan can be printed via their PDF or it can be found in many popular Bible reading apps.

#3 Bible Reading Plan

Robert Murray M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan

Key Features: Daily Variety of Reading, Interwoven Themes and Parallel Passages
Duration: One or two Year
Format: It’s Everywhere!

If you are looking for Bible reading plans this is one is hard not to come across. M’Cheyne lived in the 1800’s and his reading plan has far outlived his short 29 years on the earth.  It was greatly popularized by D.A. Carson the founder of the Gospel Coalition who has written companion books to go along with this reading plan.  This Bible reading plan has two sets of readings for each day taking people through the New Testament and Psalms twice and the Old Testament once.  Many times, the days reading might be from 4 different spots in the Bible and they often create connects between parallel passages.  The only complaint that people tend to have doing this plan is if their time is tight, they often can’t do all the reading in one sitting and still have time to think about what they read.  If you have time and like to read, this plan will give a good walk back and forth through the Bible each year.

#4 Bible Reading Plan

52 Week Bible Reading Plan (Daily Genre Bible Reading Plan)

Key Features: Different Genre of Bible Reading Each Day.
Duration: One Year
Format: Printable PDF, Online

Have you ever tried to read straight through the Bible and ended up stopping because it got hard to read the genealogies for days or prophecies against the nations around Israel?  Well, this plan might be great for you.  It is a one-year plan that breaks the Bible into several different Genres: Epistles, The Law, History, Psalms, Poetry, Prophecy, and Gospels.  Each day of the week you read a different Genre.  The method reading gives a lot of variety each week but it might not be for everyone.  Since you are only reading a particular book of the Bible 1 day a week it takes 8 weeks to get through 1 Corinthians.  This could make it difficult for some to follow the flow of Paul’s letter.  However, for those who like variety and are good at tracking from week to week where they left off this reading plan could be a perfect fit.

#5 Bible Reading Plan

5 Day Bible Reading Program

Key Features: Flexible Schedule, Chronological OT, Daily NT and OT Readings
Duration: One Year
Format: Printable PDF

Have you ever tried to read straight through the Bible and ended up stopping because it got hard to read the genealogies for days or prophecies against the nations around Israel?  Well, this plan might be great for you.  It is a one-year plan that breaks the Bible into several different Genres: Epistles, The Law, History, Psalms, Poetry, Prophecy, and Gospels.  Each day of the week you read a different Genre.  The method reading gives a lot of variety each week but it might not be for everyone.  Since you are only reading a particular book of the Bible 1 day a week it takes 8 weeks to get through 1 Corinthians.  This could make it difficult for some to follow the flow of Paul’s letter.  However, for those who like variety and are good at tracking from week to week where they left off this reading plan could be a perfect fit.

#6 Bible Reading Plan

The Bible Project Bible Reading Plan

Key Features: Book Introduction and Topical Videos, Traditional Reading Plan
Duration: One Year
Format: Printable PDF, Apps

Are you a visual person and would like to watch videos while you read?  This reading plan takes you straight through the Bible but provides you with videos to accompany your reading.  The videos include themes, word studies, and overviews of books of the Bible.  If you want a more traditional 1 year plan that has extra resources and flexibility of using a nice app this plan could be for you.  The Bible Project has graciously made their videos publicly available on YouTube and so you can find them integrated into all sort of tools now, including other reading plans.  Even your choice of reading plans doesn’t include these videos directly, they are worth checking out!

#7 Bible Reading Plan

Thematic Bible Reading Plan by Craig DesJardins

Key Features: Cross-Referenced Bible Reading, New each year.
Duration: One Year
Format: Printable PDF

Each year Craig puts together a new thematic Bible reading plan.  His goal is to make as many scriptural associations as possible while keeping individual books of the Bible intact.  The only thing broken up is the Psalms. The result is a masterful weaving together of NT and OT reading that allows you to see the Bible in a whole new way.  Since the books of the Bible are intact it makes it so that not every day can have a cross-reference, however, it is estimated that he still manages to get over 100 connections through the course of a year.  The biggest challenge with this plan is it might be harder to find this year’s version of it.  If you can’t find a link to the current year’s PDF here, then you will need to try to email Craig.  His email address is usually on old versions of his plan.

#8 Bible Reading Plan

Chronologically Thematic Whole Bible Plan

Key Features: Chronological OT, Thematic NT and Psalms tied to OT.
Duration: One and Two Year
Format: Printable PDF, Software

This unique plan put the Old Testament in Chronological order and then breaks up the New Testament books according to themes in the Old Testament and connects them to the OT daily reading.  The result is that you are reading New Testament and Old Testament passages every day.  This plan is a six day a week plan, so you have one day to catch up each week if you get behind.  The only big disadvantage to this plan is how the NT gets all broken up.  Many books of the Bible get scattered throughout the year making it impossible to capture the flow of the New Testament books.  Even though this plan might not be for everyone, it does offer a truly unique experience reading through the Old Testament show very deeply how the New Testament fulfills it.

#9 Bible Reading Plan

Chronological Bible Reading Plans

Multiple Authors (see below)

Key Features: Captures the Story of the Bible, Places Psalms, Prophesies, and Letters in Context.
Duration: One and Two Year
Format: Printable PDFs, Online, Apps, and Printed Bibles

When you hear Chronological Bible Reading plan you might think at first that they are all the same.  But this is far from the truth.  Some Chronological plans are made based on the order the books were written.  Other plans are ordered based on when events occurred. Still other chronological plans are hybrids that combine multiple different kinds of plans together.  So what is the big deal about chronological and should you try one of these plans.  If you have never read the Bible chronologically, it is worth it.  Few things can help you understand how the Bible all fits together more than reading it chronologically.  Reading prophesies in the context of the history which they are written grants a better understanding into what they are communicating.  Likewise, reading Psalms in the context of who wrote them can give you much more understanding into the experience of the Psalmist while they wrote.  The only real downside to some chronological Bible reading plans is that they can break books of the Bible into such small parts that you might lose flow of a particular book (this varies with different chronological plans).

The ONE YEAR Chronological Bible Reading Plan

Key Features: Detailed reordering of Books, Multiple Versions in Print
Duration: One Year
Format: Online, Printable PDF, Print: NIV, NLT, NKJV

Crossways Chronological Bible Reading Plan

Key Features: Available in popular Bible Reading Apps
Duration: One Year
Format: Printable PDF, Popular Bible Reading Apps

#10 Bible Reading Plan

Overview of the Bible Reading Plans

Multiple Authors (see below)

Key Features: Quickly Read Highlighted Passages of the Bible
Duration: Less than One Year
Format: PDFs (see below), some are available in popular Bible apps

Don’t want to commit to a long-term Bible reading plan, but just want to capture an overview of the Bible.  These reading plans can be a good place to start.  They capture key verses or chapters from the Bible and allow you to get a flavor of what is in the Bible.  This form of reading has it pros and cons.  If you have never read the Bible before this might be a good approach to getting an broad tour of the Bible in a relatively short time period.  However, this type of reading can also lead to taking passages out of context and prevent readers from catching what the Biblical writes were trying to communicate.  Anyone who has not read the Bible before should consider doing these short plans with a seasoned Christian who has read the Bible several times.  If you do want to try something shorter, it might be good to pick a shorter book from the Bible and read it.

#11 Bible Reading Plan

Visual Bible Reading Chart

Key Features: Looks nice, Provides a way to mark off chapters completed.
Duration: Choose Your Pace
Format: Printable PDF

This one isn’t really a Bible reading plan.  It is more of a Bible reading checklist, but it is one way that you can mark off chapters of the Bible after you read them and keep track of your progress.  The chart was created by Mark Barry, who has created tons of cool visual Bible infographics and charts in several different languages.  Even if you are looking for an actual reading plan, you might enjoy or find some of his Bible charts useful.

Find Even More Bible Reading Plans

Find even more Bible reading plans online with below.  Each link is full of more Bible reading plans.

Navigators

(3 reading plans)

Crossway

(7 reading plans)

Bible Gateway

(18 reading plans)

YouVersion

(too many to count)

Blue Letter Bible

(7 reading plans)