One week from today, on Sunday, April 24, all over the world, people who follow Christ will offer sincere thanks for the sacrifice he made for all of us on the cross. But more importantly, they will join together to celebrate the glory and awe of his resurrection. For many people, Easter offers a uniquely emotional opportunity for remembrance, reflection, and worship.
Prepared especially for the upcoming week, YouVersion is pleased to announce an all-new reading plan, “The Story of Easter.” This seven-day plan is purposefully designed to open our hearts as we approach the Easter celebration. Rather than dealing in the details of the historical events we will be remembering, The Story of Easter focuses instead on helping us evaluate the meaning and significance of the resurrection in our everyday lives.
Please consider joining with several thousand of us in the YouVersion community as we read through The Story of Easter together this week. You can find step-by-step instructions about how to select reading plans here:
(Note: If you like this plan, you might also enjoy the “Words of Jesus During Passion Week” reading plan this week.)
2011 marks the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. To commemorate this milestone achievement, which made the Bible available in the common language of the people, throughout 2011, YouVersion will roll out events and opportunities that will help you more easily access, engage and share the Bible. The first of these events is that Bible App™ users will be able to download the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible. Made possible through a special partnership with Biblica and Zondervan, this offer will only be available for a limited time.
Beginning THIS SATURDAY, February 12, at 8:00 PM U.S. Eastern Time (GMT-5), and lasting for 400 hours, you’ll be able to download the NIV to your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Android device. When you download the NIV, that means you’ll be able to read it even when you can’t connect to your service provider or to the Internet. This special promotion will end on March 1, at 12:00 PM noon U.S. Eastern Time (GMT-5).
Downloading offline versions:
When the NIV becomes available on Saturday, here’s how you’ll be able to get yours:
Make sure you’re connected to the Internet or to your service provider. Then, from the Bible reader:
- Tap the top bar, where the current translation is presently displayed.
- All versions display in alphabetical order by language. Any translation with a download icon (a green box with a white arrow pointing downward) means it’s available as an offline version. Tap that version’s download icon.
- Follow the instructions and tap the large Download button.
Make sure you’re connected to the Internet or to your service provider. Then, from the Bible reader:
- Tap the box at the top right that displays the version short code.
- All available Bible versions display. Any translation with a download icon (an arrow pointing down) means it’s available as an offline version. Tap that version’s download icon.
- After a few moments, a different icon displays next to the short code, indicating your download is complete.
Today marks exactly 100 days until Easter, the day when we, as followers of Christ, will reflect on and celebrate the resurrection of Jesus.
One of the more than 50 Reading Plans we offer to help you engage with God’s Word is called The Essential Jesus. This plan leads you through 100 carefully selected passages of Scripture, just one each day from both the Old and New Testaments, to introduce you to the person of Jesus. You’ll read prophecies foretelling His coming, see the things He said, observe His interactions with people, follow Him through His death and resurrection—even read about His inevitable return. Because it’s a very manageable amount of reading, it can even help you develop a daily Bible reading habit.
All you’ll need to start is a free YouVersion account. Then simply go to the The Essential Jesus plan’s description and select “Start This Plan,” either on your mobile device or at YouVersion.com. If you link your account to your social networks, you’ll be able to easily share what you’re reading with your friends on Facebook and Twitter, directly from the Bible App.
Best of all, if you start The Essential Jesus today, you’ll finish up exactly on Easter Sunday, just in time to celebrate Him!
Why don’t people read the Bible more? Most Christians say it’s because they don’t have enough time. This week, we’ve been talking about how you can use a Reading Plan in the Bible App™ or at YouVersion.com to genuinely engage with the Scriptures. Most of us probably don’t feel there’s any “spare time” in our busy schedules. But there’s actually lots of time each day we could reclaim. Have you ever considered how much time you spend in a typical day…waiting?
When your Bible’s always with you, you can read:
- Before anyone else you live with gets up (if you’re a morning person).
- While you’re having your morning coffee or breakfast.
- During your morning/evening commute on the train, the tube, or the bus. (Please: Not if you’re driving!)
- While you’re waiting for a meeting to start.
- As you’re eating lunch or taking a break from work.
- When you’re waiting in line. (This could be anywhere: the grocery store, the post office, a movie.)
- When you’re using the restroom. (Some of us get more time in the loo than others—some of us, much more time.)
- While you’re hanging out waiting for your kids at soccer, at dance, at football practice, at volleyball, to get out of school… (If you have kids, you know this list could be practically endless.)
- After everyone else you live with is asleep (if you’re a night person).
With the Bible App or another free tool, God’s Word is always as close as your phone. With offline versions like ESV and NLT (among many others), you don’t even have to be connected to the Internet or your service provider. If you don’t already have the Bible App, get it now. And start redeeming your time.
When we tell other people about our goals, we’re more likely to follow through and complete them. Even if you only mention it casually, it’s like making a check mark in your mind: “I need to do that.” Every time we talk to that person later, we’re reminded of our commitment. In this way, our relationships compel us to do the things we actually wanted to do in the first place.
Our friends and loved ones help us too, often without even realizing it, just by bringing it up: “Hey, remember you told me you were going to do that Bible reading plan this year? How’s that going? Where are you in it? How much have you read?”
Make your goal to read the Bible each day a part of your normal conversation. When you’re talking to your friends or family about everything else going on your life, even just casually mentioning it is enough.
Deuteronomy 11:18–21 says, “So commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these words of mine. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, so that as long as the sky remains above the earth, you and your children may flourish in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors.”
(New Living Translation)
There’s power in bringing the other people in your life…actually into your life.
Want a little extra help? Tomorrow, we’ll tell you how you can take this idea further.
Have you ever read the entire Bible? It seems like a pretty big book, doesn’t it? So where do you start? What’s a good way to begin? Most people, once they decide to read the whole Bible, try to approach it like any other book: They start reading on page 1, then try to just keep going…
But of course, the Bible’s not just any book. It’s much more than that: It’s God’s Word to us, a collection of inspired books and letters, given to His people, written across thousands of years. When we take them all together, the historical accounts, wisdom, and truth recorded in the Bible give us an overarching view of God’s overwhelming love for us.
To follow through on your desire to engage with the Scriptures every day in 2011, it makes sense to start with a plan. It’s our sincere hope here at YouVersion that we’ll be able to help people read 1 billion minutes in the Bible App™ just during January. Here are just a few of the 14 approaches we’ve brought together to help carry you through God’s Word:
- The One Year ® Bible. In as little as 15 minutes a day, the One Year ® Bible in the New Living Translation (NLT) gives you daily readings from the Old Testament, the New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs.
- M’Cheyne One Year Reading Plan. Robert Murray M’Cheyne (pronounced mick-SHANE) was a Scottish minister from 1835 to 1843. His unique Bible reading plan takes you each day through 2 passages from the Old Testament, 1 from the New Testament, and 1 passage from either the Psalms or the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). In just one year, M’Cheyne will help you read the Old Testament once and the New Testament and Psalms twice.
- Chronological. Based on recent historical research, this plan delivers your daily Bible readings in the order the events actually occurred. Reading the Bible this way helps you understand the progression of what things happened when.
- Bible in 90 Days. Make no mistake: This plan is a commitment. But the many who have gone through the entire Bible in just 90 days report that doing so helped them make lots of connections they had previously missed while in their Bible reading. You could consider it a challenge…or just a really worthwhile way to connect with God every day through His Word.
We want to help you love the Bible as much as we do. You can do this. Discover for yourself what a difference it can make to spend just a little time with God’s Word each day!
We’ve been telling you how Reading Plans can help you engage with God’s Word. A Reading Plan breaks your Bible reading into manageable chunks, making your time in the truth every day simple and straightforward. Whether you’re reading the whole Bible in a year (or in 90 days!), or just select parts, or even the most basic daily devotions, the Bible App™ by YouVersion has more than 50 plans to help you meet your goals.
Wherever you’re going to read, first you need a free YouVersion.com account (it only takes a minute). You might also consider linking your account to your social networks. If you have an iPhone, iPad, Android, or BlackBerry, click on your device or platform below for step-by-step instructions for starting and using Reading Plans:
Linking your free YouVersion account to your social networks makes it really simple to use the Bible App™ to share your thoughts about verses you’re reading. You always have control over what you share—no surprises in your Twitter or Facebook feed. Linking is an easy way to share your faith with your friends.
And setting it up is easy. It literally takes just about a minute. Here’s all you have to do:
- Go to the YouVersion.com website.
- Sign in to your free YouVersion account or, if you don’t have one already, sign up for one.
Note: If you have an existing Facebook account, you can sign up quickly with the “Sign up with Facebook” button.
- Top Right: Click your Username, then Settings.
- Right: Select the Connected Accounts tab.
- Select the Twitter tab.
- Click the “Connect to your Twitter account” link.
Note: If you’re not signed in, Twitter prompts you to sign in with your Twitter username and password.
- Click [Allow]:
- YouVersion connects your account to Twitter. (You can remove this connection at any time.)
- Select the Facebook tab.
- Click the “Connect to your Facebook account” link.
Note: If you’re not signed in, Facebook prompts you to sign in with your Facebook username and password.
- Click [Allow].
- YouVersion connects your account to Facebook. (You can remove this connection at any time.)
That’s it! You’re done, and you’re ready to let people know what you’re up to with YouVersion, anytime you feel like it, anywhere you are.
Good News: You are following a YouVersion Bible reading plan. Bad News: Some of you are having trouble accessing it.
If you are an iPhone/iPad user, you may be experiencing a problem when you try to access your reading plans from the app. This same bug is also affecting those of you that use the app to share Bible verses on Twitter and Facebook. We are very sorry and are working to make sure this does not happen again.
BUT, the good news is that we have a quick fix that can help get your Bible App working properly right now.
Simple instructions: Go to settings, sign out, and then sign in.
- Open the Bible App on your iPhone/iPad
- iPhone users: Tap on the “More” button in the menu bar and then tap on “Settings”. iPad users: Tap on the gear icon next to the search box
- Tap on “Account”
- Tap “Sign-out” (this will sign out of your YouVersion account)
- Tap “Sign-in” (this will ask you for your YouVersion username and password)
- Sign-in and the problem will be fixed.
We are very sorry about any disruption you may have experienced. We want to be sure you know about the fix right away so that you can continue to make the Bible a part of your daily life.