Robert Murray M’Cheyne (1813-1843) is know among Christians worldwide as a holy man of God and a faithful preacher of the gospel of Jesus Christ. He was a native of Edinburgh, Scotland and studied under the legendary Thomas Chalmers at the University of Edinburgh. He then went on to serve as a minister in the Church of Scotland from 1835 until his death in 1843.
M’Cheyne’s first ministry appointment at age twenty-two was to serve as the assistant pastor under John Bonar at Larbert and Dunipace, near Falkirk. M’Cheyne was close friends with both John and Andrew Bonar, the well-known Scottish evangelical leaders. After serving at Larbert and Dunipace, M’Cheyne was called to served as the minister at St. Peter’s Church in Dundee until his death at age twenty-nine.
M’Cheyne is known to contemporary Christians, not only for his personal godliness and prayerfulness, but also through the influence of his famous Bible Reading Calendar, which was compiled by the young Scottish pastor for the people of his church, as a reading calendar designed for reading through the Bible once every year. The plan entails reading the New Testament and the Psalms through twice each year and the Old Testament through once. This calendar, though slightly modified, is included in D. A. Carson’s excellent two-volumes, For the Love of God, which makes a marvelous companion devotional read daily along with the calendar, as one follows M’Cheyne’s calendar through the Bible.
It is one thing to read the Bible; it is another thing to read it somewhat consistently. But it is altogether a different thing to read the Bible through every year. The benefit that comes from this is only known to those who experience it. No Christian can grow properly who does not soak in the whole counsel of God in Scripture regularly. If you or a family member do not have a systematic method for reading through the Bible each year, I heartily recommend M’Cheyne’s calendar to you. It will benefit any Christian who will obtain it and use it faithfully.
– Mack Tomlinson