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Book Review: David Helm's One-to-One Bible Reading

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During the last EQUIP session on Discipling One Another, Pastor Eugene Low recommended a book by David Helm, titled One-to-One Bible Reading: A Simple Guide for Every Christian. Here, we re-published a review of the book by Pastor Oliver Chia written for Grace News in 2012.

“The church often puts its creative energy into initiating events, programs and classes specially designed to win people to Christ and help them grow in the faith…. And yet...we might still be missing out on something more dynamic... that returns gospel growth to the everyday fabric of personal relationship, rather than relying on church-run programs” (8-9, emphasis mine), writes David Helm as he sets out to introduce Bible one-to-one—a deeper, more meaningful activity of cultivating discipleship relationships.

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What exactly is Bible one-to-one? Bible reading one-to-one is a variation on reading the Bible but done in the context of reading with someone. Due to its emphasis on relationships, Bible one-to-one can be for non-Christians, new Christians and for Christians ready to lead or serve.

Helm goes on to give simple steps on how to get started on Bible oneto-one and how to conduct a meeting. He also explains simply how to read and interpret each genre of the Bible. He ends by sharing the story of how his friend came to Christ. He writes, “was it an event geared toward ‘winning’ him to Jesus? No, it really wasn’t. Neither was it a program or a class. It was something more organic, more relational. It took more than a year, but my friend became a Christian. It was the power of the Holy Spirit uniting this man’s heart to the truth of the gospel found in God’s word, in the context of a simple relationship in which we gave ourselves to reading one-to-one” (38, emphasis mine).

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This book is recommended for Christians who want to be involved in discipleship relationships but are either apprehensive of what it requires or are unsure what to actually do. If you are thinking of being involved in discipleship relationships, pick up this book, read it and start doing it. It is really that simple. And in doing so, you are obeying and delighting in following Christ’s call to make disciples of all nations (cf Matt 28:19-20).

[This book review was first published in the January-March 2012 issue of Grace News.]