Hi there. I’m Marcus Nelson, a pastor in Mankato, and I get the question a lot with students that I work with, I work with our campus ministry in Mankato and sometimes they just ask “where should I start reading the Bible?” I’ve tried starting at Genesis and working my way through and I usually get bogged down a couple of books in.
Well, what we’ve done at the campus ministry for our midweek services is just work through the Book of Mark. It’s one of the gospels that focuses on Jesus life, who he is, and especially what he does. Mark doesn’t spend a lot of time on Jesus sermons, or his parables, or his teachings, but it really just follows the action of Jesus. What is Jesus up to? What is he doing?
So we’ve followed this whole year with the theme Joining Jesus. Just being his followers and seeing where he takes us, what he shows us. And the things you get to see in the Book of Mark are… are remarkable. We get to see people who are broken and desperate coming to Jesus and asking for his help. People who are broken in body and in spirit getting lowered down to Jesus where he first of all recognizes their spiritual needs and takes care of those.
So I’d suggest reading through the Book of Mark and just watching to see what Jesus does, who Jesus cares about, and ultimately where he’s going. Because it is just a path where he runs across sinners and always stops to help them with forgiveness and with healing. But he ultimately goes to the cross where one of the last phrases in the Book of Mark is the most unexpected person finally realizing who this is. As the very person who is killing him, a centurion, a Roman soldier, looks up and he’s one of the first ones that finally sees it. Who is this man? And he says “surely, this man was the Son of God.”
It’s a great place to start.