Monday, April 29, 2013

Methods for studying the Bible

2 Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.

Over the years I have heard various tools and methods for getting into the study and application of God's Word - the Bible.  The opening verse of today's blog commands the Christian to be a diligent student of the scriptures. Below are some Bible study methods that I have learned from others or have found in my own study of God's Word.  A recent statistic reveals that only 16% of people in American churches read their Bibles everyday.  Please feel free to use any of them, since the main goal is to see people get into their Bibles. 

Method #1  S.P.E.C.K.A Bible study method
I heard this method recently from a wonderful Bible teacher and have over the years heard variations of it from other pastors and Bible teachers.  The acrostic s.p.e.c.k.a stands for six diagnostic questions you can ask of any Bible text, namely is there...

Sin for me to confess?
Promise to live by?
Example for me to follow?
Committment I need to make?
Knowledge of God to learn?
Application for my life?

Method #2 Six Questions
I have found the following six questions (or interrogatives) helpful in studying the scripture:

Who is God speaking to, believers or unbelievers?
What is the main point or big idea?
Why did the author write what he wrote?
When did this take place?
Where is the setting of the passage in question?
How shall I live out the truth of this text?

Method #3 Repeated words
This third method is one I use often in Bible study.  If you want to discover the main point of a passage, simply note the main word or idea in the chapter or Bible book.  For example, in 1 John 4, you will find reference to the word "love" around 25 times.  1 John 4 is obviously unfolding to you the Biblical concept of love.  Now the question to ask is: is this talking about God's love, human love or both?  Repeated words can be every effective in zeroing in on what the Lord was intending through the author when the scripture was originally composed.

May God bless you today dear friend as you employ these methods. 

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