How To Study the Word

19 03 2014


First and Foremost:  Read it!  It doesn’t matter where you start or how much your read in a day, but read it and keep reading it.  Plan on a specific time of day that you will read the Word of God.  What you don’t plan for will never happen.  A habit only takes 21 days to establish.  Reading the Bible on a daily basis will be the best habit you ever start.  (A relationship is only as good as the time spent together.)

  • A one-year Bible is a great way to begin a reading habit.  It gives passages from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs for each day of the year so that the entire Bible is read through in one year.
  • Read about three chapters a day and finish the Bible in a year.
  • Read five Psalms and one Proverb every day and you’ll finish all the Psalms and Proverbs in a month.
  • Choose a particular book of the Bible to read and study.

How to Study:  Study just implies a deeper look than a casual read.  As we read and continue to read the Word of God, we become more familiar with its contents.  As we study, the familiarity becomes part of our store of wisdom and knowledge, so that it a more permanent part of who we are.  Make a specific plan of study:  what and when you will study, as well as a method of recording what you learn.  (Intimacy in a relationship develops by sharing a deeper level of communication than casual time together.)

  • Prepared Bible Studies:  There are excellent online resources, as well as a plethora of written resources to help you study the word of God.  Some authors to consider are:  Kay Arthur, Beth Moore, Warren Wiersbe, Chuck Smith, Charles Stanley, A.W. Tozer and C.H. Spurgeon.  Always keep in mind, however, that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, while Bible Studies (and/or commentaries) are written by fallible men.
  • Topical Bibles:  These break the Word of God into specific topics of study, so that it will list quite a number of verses that relate to whatever topic you have chosen to study.  Consider looking up some of the specifically Christian words so you know exactly what they mean from a biblical perspective:  Sanctification, Glorify, Praise, Holy, Love, Joy, Redemption, Truth, Peace, Righteousness…   Or look up specific attributes of God to increase your faith and your knowledge of your Savior:  Love, Holiness, Sovereignty, Omnipresence, Justice, Omniscience…
  • Group Bible Study:  Participating in a study of the Word of God with others makes the experience all the better.  It provides a measure of accountability, but also a forum for discussion so that the concepts learned are retained to a greater degree.
  • Practice Inductive Study on Your Own:  Whenever you read the Bible, always ask yourself, (1) What does it say? — Who? What? When? Where?   (2)  What does it mean?  — Why?  (3)  What does God want me to do with what I just read? — How do I apply it?

Words of Caution:

  • Always read in the context it was written.  The Bible was written in various forms of literature, including History, Narrative, Poetry, Prophecy, Parables and Letters.
  • Keep it simple.  Great theologians aren’t born in a day.  You won’t know everything there is to know about everything in the Word of God.  The Holy Spirit will reveal His Truth over time.  Take the time and don’t rush through it.
  • Always pray as you study and read.  It is God’s Word.  Let Him be your teacher, and you’ll do just fine.

(John 14:26, 16:13-14) But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you… But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you. 




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