Reading The Bible Regularly Is Good for You

The Rule of 4

I recently came across a survey that suggests reading the Bible 4 times a week brings about massive changes in your life, including better spiritual and mental health. The survey is available at

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A survey of 4000,00 people in 1996 conducted by Edward Cole and Pamela Ovwigho found that even among people who identify as christians the Bible is rarely read. Less than 40% read the bible at least weekly. Those who claim to be born again read the Bible more frequently, but even here only about 25-40% of adults read the Bible more than 3 days per week.

When it comes to lifestyle choices, a startling picture emerges. For christians who read the bible at least 4 times per week the incidence for various harmful or sinful behaviours changes:

  • Getting drunk = 57% lower

  • Sex outside marriage = 68% lower

  • Pornography = 61% lower

  • Gambling = 74% lower

  • Any of these habits = 57% lower

What is remarkable is that for those who read the Bible 1,2, 0r 3 times a week there is no discernible difference in these behaviours between christians and non-christians.

When it comes to positive christian practices, those who read the bible more often are much more likely to engage in things like discipling other believers or witnessing.

  • Sharing faith with others = 228% higher odds

  • Discipling others = 231% higher odds

  • Memorising scripture = 407% higher odds

There is also anecdotal evidence in the same study that shows feelings of alienation from God, loneliness and so on radically decline in those who read the Word 4 times or more per week.

It is clear that it is not enough to read the Bible occasionally. We need to develop the habit of engaging with it at least every second day, and preferably daily to allow God to impact our hearts and minds.