The Book of the Twelve Reading Plan

 

The minor prophets (or the book of the Twelve) is a collection of books written by the Minor Prophets. The name “minor prophets” was not given because they are less important, or have less important things to say, but because their books and some of their ministries are shorter. Through this study of the book of the twelve, our prayer is that you will see the Lord’s desire for all to know Him, return to Him, and seek Him with all of their hearts.

 

In this reading plan, the goal is to give you chapters and sections of scripture to read that will give you some context as to what is going on in the time period where these prophets prophesied. On top of the reading plan, you will find a 50,000 foot view background of the time of the minor prophets as well as basic information for each of the books.

 


 

Background

 

1. From Solomon to Jeroboam II

Solomon, the son of David who built the temple of God, was given vast wisdom and knowledge, was led astray by his 700 wives and 300 concubines. As Solomon sought after these women, he would eventually follow after their gods. Solomon followed many other gods and his heart was turned away from the Lord. He is described as doing evil in the sight of the Lord. For the sake of David, whom he had promised to continue the kingdom in his family, God didn’t take all of Israel out of the hands of David’s family. Rehoboam (Solomon’s Son) took the place of his father as the king of Israel. He decided to show his power and pride and put harder work restrictions on the laborers. God ordained this and had already set Jeroboam in motion to take over the 10 tribes of Israel that would rebel. So, ten tribes went with Jeroboam to make the North kingdom of Israel and two tribes (Judah and Benjamin) stayed under the rule of Rehoboam in the capitol of Jerusalem as the Southern Kingdom of Judah.
Jeroboam was afraid for his people to go to Jerusalem to worship the Lord, so he set up golden calves and “high places” for them to worship without going back to Jerusalem. Rehoboam did what was evil in God’s sight and also led Judah to sin. Thus, in roughly 930 BC, the kingdoms split, and Israel, who had not obeyed the calling of Moses and Joshua had become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Under Jeroboam, Israel’s kings consistently fell short of God’s desire for Israel and took Israel deeper into sin. The worst of these is Ahab and his wife Jezebel. Even when some kings would make good decisions, there was still a deep spiritual idolatry that was going on as they worshipped and served other gods.

 

Judah and the southern kings were not much better. They consistently searched out other religions to try to mesh worshipping God with other religions. They were being led away in idolatry, incredible social injustice, and divided devotion to the Lord. Under these circumstances that we see the underlying background for where and when the book of the twelve takes place. Judah and Israel had followed the Lord but were in great need of the fulfillment of the Exodus, for a messiah to come and do what the law, rituals, and divided devotion couldn’t do – restore relationship with Yahweh and be a light for the nations.

 

2. The Assyrian Conflict

During this time, Assyria grows in power and sets its sights on Israel as an instrument for God’s justice. Assyria was a wicked nation and their questionable war tactics are the stuff of legend. King Jeroboam II pushed for religious reform and God used his reign to help restore Israel (northern kingdom) to more power, repelling the Assyrians, but ultimately Assyria conquers Samaria. Hosea, Joel and Amos are prophets during this time. Judah narrowly escapes this fate as Hezekiah takes over and leads Judah to repel Assyria from taking Jerusalem. A miracle of the Lord proves the Lord’s words true. Even though Jerusalem was spared, Judah still remained largely under Assyrian Control. Hezekiah’s religious reforms were overturned by his evil son Manasseh, who became a loyal vassal to the Assyrian empire over the Lord and Judah.

 

3. The Babylonian Exile

As bad as Manasseh was (Judah’s worst king), his grandson Josiah proved to be a bright spot. He overturned the evil that had been done and cast away the Idols. He returned Judah to the book of the Law as he sought God with all his heart. But eventually, seeking Babylon to the answer to his problems with a diminishing Assyrian reign, he acted contrary to the Lord’s plans and was killed in battle with Egypt. Eventually the Lord’s judgement came upon Judah as Babylon comes and takes over Judah. Many go into exile (10,000+) and for roughly 60 years Judah lives as exiles.

 

4. Post Exile Rebuilding

After this time (536 BC), led by Zerubbabel, Ezra, and Nehemiah, Jerusalem starts rebuilding. They rebuild the temple, the walls, and start over. While the temple and the city is rebuilt, it is only a fraction of the glorious temple that was built in Solomon’s time. The glory of Israel, the passion for the Lord has faded through all the time in exile. It is a solemn moment in time, but the prophets in this era remind the people that God’s ultimate restoration would soon come. Repent, turn back to the Lord, walk in obedience, the Messiah is coming. As Malachi, the last book of the twelve, is written we see 400 years until the coming of Jesus.

 


 

Book by Book Timeline

 

 


 

Daily Reading Plan

 

An asterisk after the daily passage denotes an introduction video is available with a link provided below, watch them before doing the reading on that day.

 

August 24 – 1 Kings 11
August 25 – 1 Kings 12
August 26 – 2 Kings 14
August 27 – 2 Chronicles 29 *
August 28 – Hosea 1, 2, 3
August 29 – Hosea 4
August 30 – Hosea 5, 6
August 31 – Hosea 7
September 1 – Hosea 8
September 2 – Hosea 9
September 3 – Hosea 10
September 4 – Hosea 11, 12
September 5 – Hosea 13, 14
September 6 – Leviticus 26
September 7 – 2 Kings 17 *
September 8 – Joel 1
September 9 – Joel 2
September 10 – Acts 2:1-41
September 11 – Joel 3
September 12 – Romans 7:14-25
September 13 – 2 Chronicles 26
September 14 – Amos 1, 2 *
September 15 – Amos 3
September 16 – Amos 4
September 17 – Amos 5, 6
September 18 – Amos 7
September 19 – Amos 8, 9
September 20 – Genesis 25:12-34;
September 21 – Genesis 27:1-45 *
September 22 – Genesis 36
September 23 – Numbers 20:14-21

September 24 – Jeremiah 49:7-22
September 25 – Psalm 137
September 26 – Obadiah 1 
September 27 – 2 Kings 14:23-27
September 28 – 2 Kings 16 *
September 29 – Jonah 1
September 30 – Jonah 2
October 1 – Jonah 3
October 2 – Jonah 4
October 3 – Mathew 12:38-41, Luke 11:39-42
October 4 – 2 Kings 15
October 5 – 2 Chronicles 6 *
October 6 – Micah 1,2
October 7 – Micah 3, 4
October 8 – Micah 5
October 9 – Micah 6
October 10 – Micah 7
October 11 – 2 Kings 18 *
October 12 – Isaiah 36
October 13 – Psalm 34:21-22, 2 Kings 19

October 14 – Nahum 1
October 15 – Nahum 2
October 16 – Nahum 3
October 17 – Psalm 24
October 18 – 2 Chronicles 33 *
October 19 – 2 Kings 23
October 20 – 2 Chronicles 34
October 21 – 2 Chronicles 35
October 22 – Habakkuk 1

October 23 – Habakkuk 2
October 24 – Habakkuk 3
October 25 – 2 Kings 23
October 26 – 2 Kings 24 *
October 27 – 2 Kings 25
October 28 – 2 Chronicles 36
October 29 – Zephaniah 1
October 30 – Zephaniah 2
October 31 – Zephaniah 3
November 1 – Ezra 1 *
November 2 – Ezra 3
November 3 – Ezra 9, 10:1-17
November 4 – Nehemiah 1
November 5 – Nehemiah 2
November 6 – Haggai 1
November 7 – Haggai 2
November 8 – Zechariah 1 *
November 9 – Zechariah 2, 3, 4
November 10 – Zechariah 5, 6
November 11 – Zechariah 7, 8
November 12 – Zechariah 9, 10
November 13 – Zechariah 11, 12
November 14 – Zechariah 13, 14

November 15 – Nehemiah 9
November 16 – Malachi 1 *
November 17 – Malachi 2
November 18 – Malachi 3
November 19 – Malachi 4
November 20 – Matthew 1:1-23
November 21 – John 1:1-30

 

 


 

Corresponding Videos

August 27 – Hosea
September 7 –Joel
September 14 – Amos
September 21 – Obadiah
September 28 – Jonah
October 5 – Micah
October 11 – Nahum
October 18 – Habakkuk
October 26 – Zephaniah
November 1 –Haggai
November 8 – Zechariah
November 16 – Malachi

 

 

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