Why is the Bible hard to read?

I always give up after 10 pages

How are you reading it? Which book(s)? Are you using a study Bible or a commentary? Are you spending time chewing on each verse or trying to read it like a novel?

novel style

Perhaps then you should try reading it slower then. Only a few verses at a time and use a commentary along side it to provide some additional information. It’s the Word of God, after all, and should be approached differently than the average book.


Are you reading the Old or New Testament? As far as NT I found the easiest to read with notes is The Ignatius Catholic Study Bible notes and commentary by Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch. I can read this for longer than I could other Bible editions. I hope they release an OT Bible someday.

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It isn’t a novel.

Try starting with the Gospel of Mark, not Genesis. It is probably the easiest "“narrative” book to read.
Another possibility is to read the Gospel of Luke followed by the Acts of the Apostles, which reads like “The Gospel of Luke II: Ascension and Beyond”


Try to find a Bible with commentary on the books in it if you aren’t familiar with scripture. The books of the Bible fall in to different genres and styles. There’s love poetry, books of wisdom, prophecy, letters, and even narratives. It helps to have the context behind which particular book you’re reading in order to understand it better. You can’t just pick up scripture and immediately understand and interpret it.

Consider an audible version. I’ve got this version: https://www.audible.com/pd/The-Listeners-Bible-Audiobook/B002V8L3RS

Because it’s 2,000 years old at least!), and translated from another language. Those are always hard to get through. The same is true for the Iliad, and it’s straight up poetry! The text of scripture is meant to be translated as literally as possible, and all artistry tends to be lost at first glance.

Slow down. Take your time and chew over the words, one line at a time. Absorb them, paraphrase them, and meditate on them. It’s not an easy job, but it’s worth it. :slight_smile:

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I propose that you should be happier that the Bible draws you into it. There is much to learn in it and much to learn about it.

Don’t know your situation of course. But, I suggest that you look for commentaries that help you to understand what the Bible is saying. But, there, too, no commentary is exhaustive, there’s still more to be gained in building up your faith by looking at more commentary books.

I’ve stated that every Catholic should read the Bible, in agreement with what the Church advises, too. I think it’s also good to store up your questions and look for answers that the Bible gives and what the Church gives.

Like law or medicine or chemistry or computer science, the Bible involves lifelong learning.

This is why the Bible needs an interpreter, and what better interpreter than the Holy Mother Church? Pay close attention to what the Church teaches us about the Holy Scriptures.

Unlike the Protestants who believe in “the Bible means whatever it means to you”. Each passage can mean something different to each in Protestant denominations.

This is why Protestants are very disjointed in what they think the Bible means.

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I like the Lectio Divina method when I’m reading the Bible.
Also, I like to pick a chapter in the Bible and read it carefully. I cannot understand too many things at once so I try to keep it short.

There’s an overarching theme to the Bible that isn’t always clear when one attempts to read through it. Many of the connections are easily missed and the relation from one event to the next can be difficult to follow.

The thing that helped me the most was reading a book that laid out the entire salvation story in a way that made the Bible come alive and make more sense.

The book is called Walking With God: A journey through the Bible.

I read the book straight through the first time, The I read it again a chapter at a time, but after I finished each chapter, I read the section of the Bible that it pertained to. This made a huge difference in helping me to understand scripture.

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  1. It is not a novel. Read it one line at a time, maybe one paragraph at a time, then ponder and reflect on that. I think you are overloading yourself.
  2. As to the Old Testament, look at the Book of Tobit. You can read that in a single sitting, as it is a running narrative.
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Some parts of the Bible are easier to read than others. Take your time. There is no timeframe. Sometimes, it helps to read the same part over and over a few times.

If you can attend the Great Adventure Bible Study, it is literally made just for you.

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Ten pages of the Bible is a huge amount to process. Try a chapter or even a few verses at a time. Start with the gospels as they are more narrative. Read a psalm at a time. EWTN’s app has read through the Bible or read through the New Testament, etc. in a year or in X number of days (depending on the chunk of the Bible you want to tackle). Its a good app. I’m not thinking that even their most ambitious plan had people attempting 10 pages. So much meat in 10 pages of that book! It also helps to pray first and ask the Holy Spirit’s help,

I just had a lesson in organ playing. Even a simple hymn can have tricky fingerings. No wonder people give up playing keyboards.
You need a director to guide you how to read the Bible. I was told by a Priest that he could see me in Jacob. Both of us wrestled with God. Make the text personal.
The story of Abraham is very personal. Just make it personal and deep.
There is a website Studylight that can help you. Just be aware that most commentators are protestant and have strange false ideas of the Eucharist. Haydock is often included.

I like this awesome book: https://www.amazon.com/Walking-Valleys-Darkness-Benedictine-Troubled/dp/0819227390

Also read this: http://faithandenterprise.org/lectio-divina-and-guigos-ladder-for-monks

I’ve never found it particularly hard to read. It can be dull when it repeats the same story 2 or 3 times or gets into long geneaologies, but it’s not hard to read. I would read about 3 chapters at a time.

Because it is NOT a story book. It is a living account of God’s connection with His people then, now and always.

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