How do you study the bible?


All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

I recently studied the Gospel of John and found it fascinating and learned many things I was unaware of or unclear about and in the process, bringing me closer to the Lord Jesus Christ. I used Ray C. Stedman's book "Exploring the Gospel of John: God's Loving Word" which I found very good.  We all study the bible in different ways—each of us have found ways that work for us and its important to note that our leaning is likely to vary to other ladies. What works for me, may not work for someone else.  

Some women attend bible study groups and find them very useful. Other women find them less so.

Some women undertaken online study groups or courses.

Some women study along with their husband. 

Some women study alone and may select a number of authors in their learning. 

Some use DVDs, CDs, books, online . . .

Some women take lots of notes and keep bible journals, others don't.

None of these ways are wrong and we shouldn't discourage women who, i.e. attend a study group, just because someone has had a bad experience.  What is most important is that we are all studying our bibles daily and through reading the bible are grew closer to God, increasing our understand of Him and learn to become more godly women.



Reading the bible: To study the bible requires reading the bible. This might sound strange, but many people read books about the bible, blogs about Christian living or devotional material, they may even nibble at the text—but they don't read the bible. Christian literature is great and there is many great authors to read, but NONE are a substitute to the reading scriptures. Make reading the bible the main part of your studies s and everything else support materials.

The next question you might ask, what version of the bible—I stick with two that I have been brought up with—the King James and the New King James. I know very little about the others and I would suggest you do your research before deciding on the one you want to read.

What should I study? Everything from Genesis to Revelations—the entire bible is for ALL women. Some women tend to focus on the parts of the bible written for women i.e. about being a homemaker, modesty, submission, caring for our children etc.. Whilst these are very important and should be part of our study, women need to understand and learn from the entire bible and not only these select parts. No one part of the bible is more important to any other part of the bible.  In time, we should read the entire bible and in our lifetime—we should read it many times.

The bible can be difficult to understand, especially if you are studying alone or your husband is not a believer so you can't ask for help. This is one of the reasons why some women give up on their studies, its just too hard. I find studying with a guide is very helpful— in my current study of John, Ray Stedman provides commentary verse by verse and breaks it down to the simplest language—something I need. Look for a study guide that works for you—or perhaps use a number of books along with your bible to help understand.

Set your own pace: For those chapters that are hard—take notes, write questions to ask others, put down your thoughts on how you can use these verses in your daily life, but most importantly—this isn't a race, don't hurry, perhaps only read a few verses at a time and spend time pondering what you have read. Why not read the chapter more than once, underline your bible (its yours to use) so you can revisit those verses that are important to you. Take a microscope to the text, break it down to understand it better. Read and study at your pace and don't compare your study to others.




Selecting authors to read along with the bible needs to be done with care—not all interpret the bible in the way I was taught, some have a very modern loose way of interpreting the Bible that I strongly disagree with. I tend to read those books that have been recommended to me by people I trust (i.e. my brothers and other close Christian family members). I tend to avoid books that are considered popular and come with a lot of hype as many have been a disappointment as they tend to be aim at the popular rather than the simple word of God. I tend to not stick with only one author and try and have a variety of authors as I don't want to raise one author above all others and make them almost an idol. I read books by both men and women, there are a number of female authors I enjoy reading and they have been most helpful to me. But always remember, these authors are human and only God's word is true and the one we need to fully understand.

If in doubt, ask for help. If your bible study gets bogged down, making you stressed, becoming a chore causing you to become upset—ask for help. If you have a older female mentor she is perfect to help, ask your church leaders, other Christian friends, family, even a trusted blogger. But never sit alone and struggle. Studying the bible should be a pleasure, something you look forward too, not a unsavoury task you want to avoid. 

Don't make up your own interpretation. Somethings are not completely clear in the bible but that doesn't stop women from making things up to suit their own augments. One example springs to mind— is the woman in Proverbs 31 a business woman? I don't really know, she might have been, but getting bogged down in this one verse misses the whole point of Proverbs 31. God never intended us to argue over His Word, if in doubt ask the scholars, read a number authors, if may not become clear until God wants it to be clear to you. Its also important to think about the historical context that people like Paul were writing in. Perhaps learn more about the times so it makes more sense. How were women living (rich and poor)— how was it different to modern day? What opportunities were there for women?




Be a doer of the word: If we don't learn from what we have read and studied and put it into action— it really is a waste of time. Women who spend hours in bible study but then go and behave contrary to God's teachings has learnt nothing. When we read our bibles, study God's word, we need to absorb it, take it into our hearts and turn words into actions—this is how we become godly women. 


But He said, “More than that, blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it!” (Luke 11:28)


Comments

  1. Excellent! Brilliant! Loved it =)

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  2. From Monica (Facebook)

    Since I can't figure out how to leave a comment on your blog page I'm leaving it here. This is a wonderful blog on studying the bible. It is so thorough and has a very godly perspective. You are one of the best writers I have ever read. Have you ever considered writing to publish? Anyway, this helped me a lot. Recently I have decided to study alone. For many years of my life I have been in various bible studies and some were great but many weren't as helpful as I would have liked them to be. Thank you for the reference of the bible study that you use. I will research him. I want to do a bible study with my fourteen year old daughter and I'm thinking that I may look into a study guide that is good for her but there are so many to choose from. I may look into the christian bookstores. I think it would be great if you incorporated more of your blogs in you facebook posts because they are so rich in content.

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    1. http://ubdavid.org/advanced/advanced.html#practical has been a great bible study material you can look at x God Bless

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  3. Great post, thanks for sharing this at good morning Mondays. When i study i just a note pad and write out each verse and what the words mean and how to apply that in my life. I'm doing ephesians at the moment. Thanks again and blessings

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    1. It is interesting how everyone does it differently but as long as it works for each of us then it doesn't really matter :))

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  4. My blog is all about Scripture study tips and the discoveries I'm making as I spend time in God's Word. Here's a post regarding my favorite Bible-study method. I highly recommend this to everyone. It has transformed the way I view my time with God. https://journeyoftheword.com/2016/04/17/my-favorite-bible-study-method-in-7-easy-steps/

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  5. Love it! I always recommend studying the Word over reading Christian devotionals, because as you mentioned, they really just take small chunks and scratch the surface. There is so much to be learned from the Word. THanks for sharing!
    https://aboutachik.wordpress.com/2016/01/13/are-you-feeding-your-soul/

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    1. I think it takes a lifetime to learn the Word of God and even then we will still not be scholars :)

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  6. Far too many Christians think they are too busy for prayer and the Word of God. This really is backwards thinking - much better if we intentionally spend time with the Lord and miss out on reading a novel, watching TV/DVDs, going online, etc!
    I've tried various methods of studying the Scriptures, but this year I've found the way I enjoy and find most applicable for my life, which has been so refreshing! :)

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    1. Or they take the easy route and choice something simple to read that doesn't challenge them - quick and easy :(

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