How Long Does it Take to Read the Bible?

According to Crossway, it takes the average person 74 hours and 28 minutes to read the entire Bible. That breaks down to 56 hours and 44 minutes for the Old Testament and 17 hours and 44 minutes for the New Testament. If you want to read the entire Bible in a year, it would require around 12 minutes each day.

The Bible is a really big book – there are 1,189 total chapters in the Bible. Most Bibles (not study Bibles) have at least 1500 pages.

That’s a lot of words, right? How the heck do people read the whole Bible? And how long does it take them to read through the Bible?

Thankfully – we have some answers. Crossway performed a study in 2018 where they polled 11,000 Bible readers to compile some statistics on the average amount of time it takes to get all the way through the scriptures. They started by calculating how long it takes the average reader to read each book of the Bible. Here are their findings:

How Long Does it Take to Read the Old Testament?

It would take the average reader a total of 56 hours and 44 minutes to read the Old Testament of the Bible.

This might depend a little on what version you’re reading, but here’s how that breaks down if you wanted to read the Bible in:

  • One Week: 8 hours and 6 minutes per day
  • One Month: 1 hour and 53 minutes per day
  • Three Months: 38 minutes per day
  • Six Months: 19 minutes per day
  • One Year: 9 minutes per day

How Long Does it Take to Read the New Testament?

It would take the average reader a total of 17 hours and 44 minute to read the New Testament of the Bible.

Here’s how that breaks down if you wanted to read the Bible in:

  • One Week: 2 hours and 32 minutes per day
  • One Month: 35 minutes per day
  • Three Months: 12 minutes per day
  • Six Months: 6 minutes per day
  • One Year: 3 minutes per day

How Long Does it Take to Read the Entire Bible?

It would take the average reader 74 hours and 28 minutes to read the entire Bible.

Here’s how that breaks down if you wanted to read the Bible in:

  • One Week: 10 hours and 38 minutes per day
  • One Month: 2 hours and 29 minutes per day
  • Three Months: 50 minutes per day
  • Six Months: 25 minutes per day
  • One Year: 12 minutes per day

You Can Read More of the Bible Than You Think

At the end of the day, most of us can read a lot more of the Bible than we realize. It’s such a daunting book, but it’s so worth reading through it.

You can read through the entire Bible in just six months if you spent 25 minutes per day reading. That’s not too crazy, huh? What else do you spend 25 minutes per day doing? Here’s what Crossway found in the same study:

Here’s the thing: you don’t even have to cut out television or scrolling through Instagram forever. You just have to cut down on both. For example, let’s say you spend 30 minutes per day scrolling mindlessly through Instagram (a very generous estimate) and you spend about 45 minutes watching TV each day. You could put a time limit on your phone and cut down your IG time to 15 minutes, and cut down your TV time by 15 minutes, and boom – you’ve got 30 minutes to spend time in the Word.

If you’re not sure where to start, we share some thoughts on what order to read the Bible in. Hope it’s helpful.

Write the Word on Your Heart

Deuteronomy 11:18 tells us, “You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and you shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.”

The implication here is that the goal of following Jesus isn’t reading the Bible through as many times as you can in your lifetime. True transformation comes from meditating on the Word and allowing it to change us – which certainly requires reading the Bible, but we know that quantity of times through the Bible doesn’t equate to maturity.

Whether you spend 5 minutes per day reading the Bible or 30 minutes per day reading the Bible, read it humbly, with the help of the Spirit, and in a way that plants it deep in your heart.

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