History of Bible Reading Marathons


          Dr. John Hash, founder of Bible Pathway Ministries, loved to spread the Word of God.  He initiated the first Bible Reading Marathon (BRM) on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem on January 1, 1990.  “It is such a great time to let the testimony of God’s Word reach out to a world that is continually questioning and looking for answers to life’s problems.  It’s an opportunity for many to join in speaking out for the Lord,” said Hash.

          That same year the International Bible Reading Association was chartered and marathons spread quickly throughout the world – Russia, New Zealand and India to name a few countries. 

          In May 1990, a BRM was held on the steps of our nation’s Capitol and has been an annual event, marking its silver anniversary in 2015.  Since 1993, the majority of the State of Ohio’s 88 counties have held annual marathons.

          Georgia’s first BRM was organized by the Cochran-Bleckley County Ministerial Alliance in 2004.  Marathons, like God’s Spirit are spreading.  Upson County started their annual marathon in 2013 after Dwain W. Penn urged the local association over several years to consider the event.  Mrs. Jerri Tuck from Cochran met with the Upson County Ministerial Association in January 2013 and within three months the event was organized and held.  Just days before the marathon was to begin, the reading schedule was far from being filled.  However, God blessed as individuals walked up during the event and asked to be allowed to read anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour.

          Penn, a resident of Pike County for over 20 years and preacher at a rural church near Concord, wanted to initiate a BRM in the county.  His first obstacle was the local library refusing him to use its meeting room for a Christian event – the planning of the marathon.  Only recently did Penn read in the local paper about the Prayer Power of Georgia group, led by Ben Maxedon.  Almost immediately, the Spirit urged Penn to step out in faith, have his church purchase a generic BRM banner (indicating no sponsorship) and fill out a request with the county to use the south portico of the courthouse in Zebulon.  From there, God would do the rest.


The 2015 Pike County Bible Reading Marathon


          The first annual Pike County Bible Reading Marathon is scheduled for September 7 – 13, Monday through Sunday.  The Hebrew New Year, Rosh Hashanah, will occur just a few days after the marathon closes.  Since 1985, Dwain W. Penn has had a tender heart for the nation of Israel and all things Judaic, the fertile genesis of Christianity.  Yes, September 7 is Labor Day, but Penn is convinced that a few local volunteers will be led to help fill those first seven hours.  Hours for the marathon are:

3 p.m. to 10 p.m., Monday, September 7;

7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, September 8 – 12;

and 2 p.m. – 10 p.m., Sunday, September 13 for a total of 90 hours.

          All versions of the Holy Bible may be read at the marathon.  Use of the Amplified Version may create slight problems with the material that is to be read each hour.  If a reader finishes reading early, he or she may read on until the time is up.  The next reader will simply back up and start, using the scheduled text.  At the end of each day, the last reader(s) must stay until they finished the text for that hour and day.  Bilingual Christians may use a foreign language Bible.  It all comes down to being God’s Word, whether it’s read in French, German, Italian, Spanish, etc or English.  The Word will not return void!

          To make the marathon successful, clubs, organizations, individuals, pastors, deacons, elders, Sunday school teachers and churches need to volunteer and accept from one to a few hours to supervise volunteer readers and to fill in open time slots as needed.  Once a individual experiences the anointing of reading God’s Word in public, he or she will want to return later to help make the marathon schedule and event a success.  Employees working in the Zebulon area are welcome to stop by before or after work and read for 15 minutes as space is available.

          Volunteer readers and marathon supervisors may contact Penn at 770-567-4113 after inspecting the schedule by the link found below.  [Penn doesn’t have internet at home, so keeping the online schedule updated during this inaugural year may be a challenge.]

          Penn is donating a portable PA system and a small table for use with the marathon.  The following items may be needed: A portable podium or music stand*, a microphone stand*, and three folding chairs.  Donations to cover this year’s expenses and carry over for the 2016 marathon may be sent to New Hebron Baptist Church, P. O. Box 101, Concord, Georgia, 30206.  Write “Bible marathon” in the check’s memo line.

          Visitors are welcome anytime during the marathon.  Stop by to say "hello."



   Marathon Schedule                     Bible Reading Proclamation