BIBLE STUDY METHODS
- Check out Christian Bookstores for study guides.
- Choose a book of the Bible, say Galatians, and read and absorb one chapter of Galatians every day. Then read all the chapters of another book of the Bible. And so on.
- Use a daily guide like Jesus Calling to focus on several Bible verses for the day.
- Use a Bible Study guide like Invitation to Romans by Pamela M. Eisenbaum to learn how to interpret a book of the Bible. Read it daily, answer the questions to ponder, learn what the Book is all about.
- Practice Lectio Divina, a method suggested by Ignatius of Loyola as a way to enter into the message that God has for you today in a given Bible passage. It’s better to choose a shorter passage. Lectio is pronounced like lexio. There are four steps to the process:
- Lecitio: Read it three times each time looking for the word or phrase that resonates for you.
- Meditatio: Meditate on the word or phrase that struck you.
- Oratio: Pray to God that you would hear what He is revealing to you in this passage.
- Contemplatio: Contemplate what you’ve heard from God with an open and willing heart.
ENTERING INTO THE STORY
Choose a Bible story like the Parable of the Prodigal Son, the Good Samaritan or the Loaves and Fishes, for example, and enter into one of the characters in the story. In the Prodigal Son, you might want to be the returning son or the father or the angry other brother. In the Parable of the Good Samaritan you could be the priest or the rabbi or the one who needs help or the Samaritan—whichever appeals to you. In the story of the Loaves and Fishes you might be one of the disciples who sees how little food there is or one of the 5000 beneficiaries of the feeding or Jesus himself.
Whoever you choose to be, walk through the entire story as that person noticing what you are thinking and feeling. It’s a way of making the story come alive. See what you learn about the story that you didn’t know before.
The benefits of Bible Study are numerous, but the most important one is that we get to know God and Christ through a study of His Word.