One of the early decision points on this blog was whether to include the Bible, and if so how and when?
Firstly, I am not going to start an argument about whether The Bible is fiction or not. This is a literature blog. The Bible makes inspiring and interesting literature, just as the other sacred works, science and history texts which i will be reading, and that’s good enough for me. Besides, I haven’t read much of it, so this is a good way to ensure I do cover it. It is obviously a major influence on Western literature and history, so reading it will provide the background and understanding of a wealth of references which I am only partially familiar with now.
Secondly, how to read it? There are many Internet sites that guide readers through the Bible-in-a-year, Bible-in -90-days etc, reading plans, so you may want to look at some of those and tackle the Bible a few verses at a time over a long period. I have decided I don’t want to read the whole Bible in one stretch, so I will read a group of ‘Books’ or chapters at a time, starting around October with the first five Books (also known as the Pentateuch).
Thirdly, like many ancient texts, there are differing opinions on when each Book was written, so my allocation against other works is a little arbitrary. Apologies to those even more orderly than I am. Also, I have decided to read the Books in their order within the Old Testament, as some scholars believe different Books were written down in different orders, but for me it makes sense to start with Genesis and move forward from there.