3 In Faith

He Is Risen Bible Reading Plan

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.” Romans 3:23-26

It always amazes me how you can read a familiar scripture countless times and yet, God can always highlight something new within it. As I came across this passage in Romans, the words “passed over” stood out to me as if they were written in bold. By taking all of our sins unto Himself on the cross, Jesus became our spotless Passover lamb. No other sacrifice would ever be needed again. Because of His sacrificial death, after we repent and accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, God remembers our sins no more, and we enter into a right standing with God.

I think you will be blessed by reading about the first Passover in Exodus 11-12, both before you start this reading plan, and after you finish it. It’s not a coincidence that Christ was killed during Passover. When the Passover was instituted back in Moses’ day, it was pointing God’s people to their future Messiah, and what the shedding of His blood would accomplish for the world. God ordained Christ to be our sacrificial lamb so that we could be redeemed and set free.

This month’s bible reading plan, He Is Risen, celebrates the cross and the Resurrection. We’re going to look at the plotting that led to Christ’s death, the suffering our Lord had to endure on the cross, His Resurrection, and the spread of the gospel after Jesus ascended to the right hand of God.

As I was preparing this reading plan, it was difficult to choose which accounts from the four gospels I would use, they are all so good! I was blessed by studying each individual account at the same time, and I encourage each of you to do the same. It adds so many layers, and gives you a complete understanding of the days of Jesus. Since the He Is Risen Bible Reading Plan focuses more on Christ’s experiences leading up to the cross, than on His actual teachings, I encourage you to additionally read as much of Jesus’ teachings in the gospels as you can this month.  I just want all of us to soak up as much of Jesus as we possibly can this Easter month, so that on Good Friday and Easter Sunday we’ll be overwhelmed with gratitude, and overflowing with love for the One who loves us so much that He gave His life for us! Rejoice this month, and every month after, He is Risen!

Get The Most Out Of Your Bible Reading Plan

  1. Everyday before you start reading, ask the Lord to speak to you, draw you closer to Him, and for Him to reveal Himself to you through His Word.
  2. Below the bible reading plan you’ll find summaries of all four sections of the reading plan: The Plot, The Crucifixion, The Resurrection, and The Gospel. Although you’re free to read all four summaries at once, I recommend reading one section overview at a time before you begin reading that section’s scriptures.
  3. Share this month’s bible reading plan with your friends and family on Facebook and Instagram (with the #organicchristianliving) so you can discuss what you’re reading and learning with one another.
  4. Download the 30 day He Is Risen Scripture Writing Plan.

Before We Get Started: Download The 30 Day Scripture Writing Plan

It includes 30 different scriptures that compliment, and reinforce the He Is Risen Bible Reading Plan. PLUS 5 outlined journal pages to write each scripture on AND 4 hand picked scriptures you can print out, meditate on, and memorize throughout each section of the study! Sign up below and I’ll send everything straight to your inbox! Already a subscriber? No need to sign up below, just head over to the Subscriber Only Free Resources Library to access the He Is Risen Scripture Writing Plan + exclusive content created just for subscribers!


The Plot (Days 1-8)

“The reason the Father loves Me is that I lay down My life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of My own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.” John 10:17-18

Before we begin reading about the events that led to the cross (starting on day 2), we’re going to look at an excerpt from one of the letters the apostle Paul wrote to a church in Corinth. At this time, Christ’s death, burial, resurrection, and ascension have already taken place. In the letter, Paul compares the saving power of the foolishness of the cross, to the decieving foolish wisdom of the world. The religious leaders who plotted Jesus’ death trusted in the knowledge of their man-made religious traditions and system so much so, that it created within them prideful and arrogant hearts, and a hypocritical nature. These characteristics not only falsely represented God, but also blinded these men to the arrival of the Messiah they had been waiting generations for.

The very people who should have recognized Jesus as the Christ, are the ones who maliciously plotted His death. However, as we see on day 2, this was not a surprise to the Son of Man. He knew exactly what was coming, and what needed to take place. Even when He knew that the Jews wanted to stone Him in Judea, it didn’t stop Him from traveling there to raise His friend Lazarus from the dead. He knew the time and the hour of when He would be handed over to die. He never feared those who wanted to kill Him because He knew who was in ultimate control (John 19:11).

Now, while the religious leaders plotted how they might destroy Christ, Mary (the sister of Martha and Lazarus) began preparing Jesus’ body for burial. She anointed His feet with an expensive bottle of spikenard oil worth 300 denarii, the average annual wage of a worker. Today, the worth of that bottle would be just under $22,000! The next day (day 3), Jesus makes His triumphal entry into Jerusalem for the Passover feast. As the people openly receive and declare Him as their promised Messiah they shout, “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! The King of Israel!” (John 12:13). It is only one week after this, that Jesus will die on the cross.

Although it is not part of the reading plan, I want to share a quote that John records from the Pharisees during Christ’s triumphal entry: “You see that you are accomplishing nothing. Look, the world has gone after Him!” Let’s take this hate-filled and worried statement, and turn it into a loving and hopeful prayer! Let’s pray that the world we live in today would passionately run toward the true Messiah, Jesus Christ, and declare Him the King of their hearts and lives!

On day 4, we will read of Jesus driving out the money changers from the temple, who were taking advantage of the Jewish worshippers. The Jewish people had to pay a temple tax, fees to exchange their currency for special temple coins, and often even if they brought an animal to sacrifice, some imperfection would be found during the inspection, forcing them to have to buy another animal at an outrageously inflated price. The temple of God was being used as a means to exploit God’s people for material gain, and Jesus did not take that lightly.

It is in this temple, where Jesus speaks the parable of the wicked vinedressers against the Pharisees (with the landowner representing God, the vineyard Israel, the vinedressers the Pharisees, the servants being past prophets, and the beloved son as Jesus), and also where three different sects of Judaism: the Pharisees, the Sadducess, and the scribes test Jesus with questions they hope He won’t be able to answer, or that may enable them to catch Him in His own words. What these men failed to realize however, is that nothing it too hard for God (Jeremiah 32:27). God can effortlessly answer the craftiest question (even if it was thought of from the most intelligent man on earth) because the “foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1 Corinthians 1:25).

As we draw closer to the cross on day 5, we read that the Lord’s soul was troubled (John 12:27). However, He knew that the cross was the Father’s purpose for Him, and that everything that was going to happen was the fulfillment of prophecy, including Judas’ betrayal. On days 6, 7, and 8, we focus on Jesus’ last night with His disciples, which included washing their feet before the Feast of the Passover, instituting the Lord’s supper, identifying His betrayer, giving a new commandment, predicting Peter’s denial, comforting them, giving the promise of the coming Holy Spirit, and prayer.

This is the night our Lord’s suffering would begin.

The Crucifixion (Days 9-15)

“But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5

With Judas’ betrayal of Jesus, the wheels were set in motion for the religious leaders to carry out their evil scheme against Christ. Jesus was not unaware of what would befall Him after dinner, and on day 9, we will see that He takes His disciples to Gethsemane, not to hide from His accusers, but to seek strength from God in prayer. In Luke 22:39-46, we are given more detail about Christ’s prayers in the garden. We are told that “an angel appeared to Him from heaven, strengthening Him. And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.”

Our Lord was sorrowful, in agony, and deeply distressed as He prayed to the Father to take this cup from Him (Luke 22: 44, Matthew 26:37). He knew that God would make “Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Corinthians 5:21). After Christ finishes praying, He is arrested and all his disciples flee. Although it appears as though He is all alone, forsook by those whom He taught and loved, He is not alone because the Father is with Him (John 16:32)!

Do you want to learn more about the cross and Jesus’ love for you? Get the Finding True Love Bible Reading Plan here!

As we continue reading, keep in mind that the next six days of the reading plan (and the past two days) record what happened in the course of less than a 24 hour period. Jesus was sentenced, executed, and buried in one day. When He faced the Sanhedrin (the Jewish high court), false witnesses and testimonies were sought so that they could put Him to death, but none were found (Matthew 26:59-60). When He was presented to both Herod and Pilate, they found that nothing deserving of death had been done by Him (Luke 23:14). Jesus was innocent of both any crime against the Roman government and of any sin against God, yet He was still sent to the cross.

The chief priests, scribes, and elders wanted Christ to be crucified because He was a threat to their power, prestige, and influence. Their intent for sending Jesus to the cross was evil, but God meant it for good (Genesis 50:20). When Christ hung on that cross beaten and bruised, His enemies thought they had defeated Him, but they didn’t! The death of Jesus was God’s everlasting plan for the salvation of the world. We are able to live eternally justified by the blood of Christ because Jesus fulfilled the righteous requirement of the law by becoming the ultimate offering for sin on our behalf. Our Lord was not defeated by man, but victoriously defeated sin and death so that man might be saved from the wrath of God.

Jesus went to the cross for the entire world, even for those people who mocked and ridiculed Him while He was suffering. He took every sin that has, and that will ever be committed onto Himself. He became sin, and in doing so made Himself the only acceptable offering for sin man would ever need. During days 12, 13, and 14, we focus on what happened to our King as He hung on the cross for us. We will read of what others did and said to Him, the suffering He endured, and what His last moments and words were. Take a moment to give the Lord thanks and praise for what He did for you on that day, He deserves it, and SO MUCH MORE!

Then, on day 15, after reading of His burial, we take a look back at when Peter first confessed that Jesus is the Christ. This passage leads us to Matthew 16:24, a beautiful scripture to reflect on after we’ve mediated on the cross of Christ: ” If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” Jesus gave up His life for us, are we willing to do the same? Let’s pray that all believers would fully devote their lives to Christ, not just in word, but also in deed.

The Resurrection (Days 16-22)

“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.” John 11:25-26

Every Easter Sunday, we are able to wake up rejoicing that He is risen! We are also able to live in hopeful expectation of the return of our King because of the Resurrection. However, this was not the case the morning of that very first Easter Sunday. The women who made their way to Jesus’ tomb were in mourning over the death of their Lord, teacher, and friend. On day 16, we will read two accounts of how their mourning was turned into rejoicing when the angel declared, “He is risen!” (Matthew 28:6). If you read carefully, you’ll notice some seemingly major differences in both Matthew’s and John’s account of the women at the tomb.

In the gospel of Matthew, it says that the angel appeared to both Mary Magdalene and the other Mary, and that they both ran to tell the disciples of what they saw. In the gospel of John, it is recorded that Mary Magdalene went to the tomb alone, saw that it was empty, ran and brought Peter and John to see the empty tomb, and then the Lord appeared to Mary Magdalene alone. In fact, all four accounts of the women at the tomb differ in one respect or another. Is this a mistake, or a contradiction found in the gospels? Absolutely not!

Here is a wonderful article that will clear up any confusion you may have about what happened early that morning.

I highly recommend that you first read all four accounts of the women at the tomb (Matthew 28:1-10, Mark 16:1-11, Luke 24:1-12, John 20:1-18), and then read the article in it’s entirety. It’s well worth your time!

After gaining a complete understanding of Christ’s appearance at the tomb, we will read of Jesus’ other appearances to both the disciples and other brethren on days 17, 18, and 19. Personally, my favorite account of one of Christ’s appearances, after His resurrection, is the one we read about on day 19. As Peter and the disciples are fishing on a boat, the Lord appears to them for the third time since His resurrection. When Peter hears that it is the Lord speaking to them on the shore, He jumps off the boat and swims to Jesus as fast as he can.

I have always loved Peter’s heart and zeal for the Lord throughout the gospels, whether He is rebuking Jesus for washing His feet because he couldn’t fathom his Lord doing so (John 13:3-12), wholeheartedly pledging His loyalty to stay with Christ to the end (Mark 14:27-31), defending and trying to protect Jesus with a sword in the garden (Matthew 26:50-54 + John 18:10-11), running to see the empty tomb (John 20:4), or jumping off a boat in order to get to his God as fast as he could (John 21:7-8). Peter made mistakes, just as all of us do (and will) in our own walks with Jesus. But, He loved the Lord with all his heart, soul, strength, and mind; just as much as I hope all of us do!

On day 20, we read of the Great Commission Christ gave to His disciples, and of His ascension to heaven forty days after His resurrection. It’s amazing to think that the spreading of the gospel began with twelve men. Don’t ever underestimate the effect that just one believer (YOU!) can have on this world! The Spirit of the living God lives within you!

Then, on days 21 and 22 we look to scriptures that not only proclaim what Christ accomplished on the cross, but also what we have been given through His death and resurrection. Because of the cross:

  • We are no longer slaves to sin, but daughters of the King (Romans 6:6, John 1:12).
  • We will never experience condemnation in Christ (Romans 8:1).
  • We are free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2).
  • The Spirit of God dwells within us, allowing us to have an intimate relationship with our Father (1 Corinthians 3:16, Romans 8:15).
  • We have been given a new life in Christ (Ephesians 2:1-10).
  • We have received the Spirit of adoption, which has made us heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ (Romans 8:17).

God is so good to us, and has given us so much! Praise God! He is risen!

The Gospel (Days 23-30)

“The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into His harvest.” Matthew 9:37-38

Over the past 22 days, we’ve focused on Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. During the next 8 days however, we’re going to turn our attention to the spreading of the gospel by the early church, and how we today can bring people to Christ just as they did. We begin by looking at the book of Acts, where we will see the coming of the Holy Spirit, hear a powerful sermon from Peter that not only deeply convicted the people who heard it, but also led to their repentance and salvation, and we will also witness the exponential growth of the early church.

On days 23, 24, 25, and 26 we will see that after the apostles are filled with the Holy Spirit, they immediately begin proclaiming the gospel. Through the outworking of signs and miracles they give glory to the risen King, while declaring the saving power of Christ. On day 24, we read that while on the way to pray, Peter heals a man who is unable to walk. In doing so, not only does the man get saved, but his healing also opens the door for Peter and John to begin preaching the saving grace and power of Jesus. This event leads to the arrest of John and Peter, and their subsequent persecution by the same religious leaders who murdered Christ.

When Peter and John are brought before the Sanhedrin, they are warned not to speak or teach in the name of Jesus. However, they continue preaching the gospel, and pray that God would grant them boldness to speak the Word of God. When an angel of the Lord releases them from prison, they don’t run and hide, but instead go back to the temple and preach the gospel. When they’re seized again, beaten, and told not to speak in the name of Jesus, they leave rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for Jesus’ name. And “daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not ceae teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ” (Acts 5:40-42). What an inspiration and example to follow!

The apostles’ obedience to Christ’s calling on their life, and their boldness to share the gospel, led to multitudes coming to Christ. The church today needs to be praying daily for not only boldness, but opportunities to share the gospel in their everyday lives. We can’t bring other’s to Christ in our own strength or power, we need the Holy Spirit to not only lead, but empower us. I pray that the scriptures we read on day 27 will encourage all of us to be more bold for Christ.

If you’re not naturally a bold person, or if telling others about Christ terrifies you, don’t lose heart! God will answer your prayers for boldness and courage, just like He did for the apostles! Take a moment to read Struggling With Boldness.

If you’re not exactly sure what you’re suppose to share about Christ, study the scriptures on day 28. You might even want to memorize the following verses, which proclaim the gospel and how one can come to salvation:

  1. “For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4)
  2. “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9).

I pray that the Lord would use His Word, and this bible reading plan, to increase our knowledge of Him and the good news of the gospel! I also pray that we would represent who He is by the way we live our lives, and that when we do proclaim the gospel, that we would do so with the right attitude and spirit. I exhort each of you to meditate on the scriptures for days 29 and 30, then to pray for the characteristics needed to win people to Christ.

Just as the apostles were sent out to proclaim the gospel, we have been called to do the same. As you tell others about the redemptive power of the cross make sure to always be gentle, loving, and patient. Pray for God to give you eyes to see the lost how He sees them, and to give you a heart to love them how He does. Remember, we are not only servants of the Most High God, but also His  ambassadors here on earth to those who are perishing. The harvest is plentiful, let’s all get to work!

Don’t Forget To Download The 30 Day Scripture Writing Plan

It includes 30 different scriptures that compliment, and reinforce the He Is Risen Bible Reading Plan. PLUS 5 outlined journal pages to write each scripture on AND 4 hand picked scriptures you can print out, meditate on, and memorize throughout each section of the study! Sign up below and I’ll send everything straight to your inbox! Already a subscriber? No need to sign up below, just head over to the Subscriber Only Free Resources Library to access the He Is Risen Scripture Writing Plan + exclusive content created just for subscribers!


A Few Reminders/A Little Encouragement

This reading plan is by no means meant to replace your own study of the bible, take the place of your women’s bible study, or even church. If you want a deep meaningful relationship with God, you will need to be in His word for more than 10-15 minutes a day. These mini topical studies are meant to be added to your current study of God’s word, not a replacement.

Also, don’t give up or feel bad if you fall behind a day or two of the reading schedule! You’ll quickly be able to catch up and get back on track by bundling two days together. You can even bundle every two days together, and make this a 15 day reading plan instead of a 30 day one!

Make sure to come back next month when we’re going to start a brand new bible reading plan! If you’re afraid you might forget, become one of my subscribers, and I’ll send you a little reminder when May’s Bible Reading Plan is posted (sign up on my sidebar under “Become a Subscriber”→).

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3 Comments

  • Reply
    Ashley Foote
    May 23, 2017 at 8:39 am

    If i am already signed up but didn’t receive this reading plan how do i get the printable version?

    • Reply
      kristy
      May 23, 2017 at 10:13 am

      Hi Ashley! I’m so sorry you didn’t receive it right away. I just sent you an email with the He Is Risen Bible Reading Plan. I’m working on fixing this problem so it doesn’t happen again to anyone else. It will be fixed by the end of the day 🙂 Thank you for letting me know!

      • Reply
        Ashley
        May 23, 2017 at 11:24 am

        thank you so much for your help

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