TITLE: How To Study The Bible
By Tonya Pope
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Goal: For each person to be equipped to find solutions to problems, trials, and temptations, as well as to receive knowledge of the God they serve, and inspiration to encourage themselves in the Lord, instead of turning to “people” for the solutions to their problems and revelation. To equip each person to be dependant only on God, and not man.
Why should I study the Bible?
2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV)- “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of truth.”
It is a command.
John 5:39 (NKJV)- “You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me” (Jesus talking)
Acts 17:11 (NKJV)- “These were more fair minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the Word with all readiness, and searched the scriptures DAILY to find out whether these things were so.” (Emphasis added).
NOTE: this is for personal edification ONLY.
It is important for you to search the scriptures daily, not to look for error on the pastors part, because even the pastors are human. It is important to know if what you are hearing from the pulpit (any pulpit), or from your brother or sister, or what you are reading in that book or hearing on Christian Television, is correct. If you believe everything you hear, then you are gullible and you are also living in error.
With that being said, say the pastors teach something, then you go home and study it out, and perhaps you received a different revelation from it and you “perceive” that they are wrong….be VERY CAREFULL!!!!!
DANGER: 1 Corinthians 8:1 says “…knowledge puffs up, but love edifies.”
It is very easy for pride to step in when you start obtaining knowledge…remember Satan fell because of being puffed up with pride. Keep a humble spirit about you if you do find error in a teaching, sermon, etc….
Basic guidelines that must be followed if you perceive that something someone teaches is incorrect:
1. Check to be sure that you don’t have a critical spirit
2. Pray that God would either show them or show you the error of their own ways or your own ways on the subject.
3. Be Patient. God will reveal and the truth is always brought to light
4. DO NOT share you ideas or opinions with other brothers or sisters. This will cause division and confusion. God is not the author of confusion. You can easily cause others to stumble, and this gives place to the devil….again, this is for personal edification only
5. Regardless of what you have learned or had revelation of, the pastors always have the authority, and you must fall under that authority when dealing with situations or people involved with the church. Always operated under the authority of the leadership of the church regardless of what you believe. The pastors are the ones ultimately responsible for the doctrine of the church and for what is taught in the church.
Psalm 119:11 (NKJV)- “Your Word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against you.”
Joshua 1:8 (NKJV)-“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
2 Timothy 3:16 (NKJV)- “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for:
1. doctrine-that which is taught
2. reproof-act of censuring or rebuking
3. correction-punishment, chastisement, discipline
4. instruction in righteousness-knowledge or information in being morally right
Profitable-beneficial or useful
Hebrews 4:12 (NKJV)- “For the Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
Powerful-energes (Strong’s #1756)-energetic-denotes something at work, active, effective.
Isaiah 40:8 (NKJV)-The grass withers, and the flower fades, but the Word of our God stands forever”
Luke 21:33 (NKJV)-“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.
The Word is something eternal. We spend so much time pursuing earthly pleasures. Studying the Word is something you can spend time doing and the benefits are eternal.
Pray Before You begin to Study:
Dear Heavenly Father,
I thank You for Your word that You have given me. I thank You that You loved me enough to give your word to me for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction. Lord, I thank You that You have sent Your Holy Spirit to lead, guide and teach me into all truth, for He is the Spirit of Truth. I thank you for the revelation that I will receive by studying Your Word. I thank you for a deeper relationship with You as I get to know You better through Your Word. I thank you for releasing on me a teachable spirit. I receive Your knowledge and Your wisdom that I will retain from studying Your Word. I bind the spirits of slumber, confusion, error, and manipulation of the Word from manifesting as I study today and as I meditate on the Word of God throughout the rest of the day.
All This I pray in the Name of Jesus and in the authority that has been delegated to me. Amen.
Tools for Basic Bible Study:
The following is a list of basic Bible Study Tools. They are helpful in getting the fullness of the Word, but are not necessary for every study. Use what you have. You can study with a simple Bible. If you have internet access, there is a link on www.gracefellowshipoutreach.com under the links page that access most of these tools as well.
1. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible by James Strong
2. Smith’s Bible Dictionary by William Smith, L.L.D. (Includes important people and places of the Bible)
3. Dictionary (preferably an older larger version)
5. Various types and versions of the Bible.
a. King James Version (KJV)
b. New King James Version (NKJV)
c. New Living Translation (NLT)
d. Amplified Bible (AMP)
e. New International Version (NIV)
g. Spirit Filled Life Bible
h. Life Application
i. Nelson Study Bible
j. Thompson Chain
k. Macarthur Study Bible
How to Use The Strong’s Concordance:
The Strong’s Concordance is a valuable tool for finding the original intended translation of a word as well as finding the scripture reference for a verse you may know, but don’t know where it is.
1. Look up the word you want to study: for example love
2. There are hundreds of verses for this word, so find the scripture you want to look up. (For example: Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart. We see it is found in Matthew 5:44.
3. To find out the meaning of the word love in this particular verse look to the reference column. There you will see a number (In this example 25)
4. Numbers in the reference column are coded: If it is a regular number standing straight up, you will look in the back of the Concordance to the Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary in which all Old Testament verses are originally translated from. If the number is in italics, you will look in the back of the Concordance to the Greek Dictionary of the New Testament. All New Testament verses are translated from Greek. (in our example, we have 25 in the Greek translated agapao which means to love (in a social or moral sense.
NOTE: not every word in the new testament that is translated love has this same meaning.
Different Ways to Study:
Studying the Bible can be as diverse as the individual doing the studying. Following are some examples of ways to study. It is not an exhaustive list. You may discover something for your self that works better than any of the listed examples.
1. Word Study
a. Look up verses on one subject: example-Word Study on love
b. Look up verses that use similar words: you can use a thesaurus to find words that would fit into your word study: example-love, passion, adore, desire, cherish
i. Define the word in English
ii. Define the word in it’s original language
Find 3 types of Love in the Greek.
1. Strong’s #5360________________________________________________________________
2. Strong’s #5368________________________________________________________________
3. Strong’s #26__________________________________________________________________
Using the Strong’s you will learn Greek & Hebrew words and root words, which is good for deeper revelation during your everyday reading.
Compare the English Word with the original language Word to be sure that the English translation is correct as this may change (usually does) the way you interpret the verse.
Example: Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is the substance of things hoped Strong’s # 1679 for…
We usually think of hoped as a wish or desire
Hoped (dictionary)-desire accompanied by expectation
Hope-(Strong’s #1679)-elpizo from # 1680-to expect or confide
(Strong’s #1680)-elpis-expectation or confidence
2. Name Study-Names & Places
Example: define the each of the 12 tribes of Israel (these are also the Sons of Jacob)
Example: Genesis 29:35-“And she conceived again and bore a son, and said, “Now I will praise the Lord.” Therefore she called his name Judah. Then she stopped bearing”
Judah-(Strong’s #3063)-Celebrate; praise
Judges 20:18-“Then the children of Israel arose and went up to the house of God to inquire of God. They said, “Which of us shall go up first to battle against the children of Benjamin?” The Lord said, “Judah first!””
The revelation from studying this little bit about Judah is that Praise goes as the front lines in the battle against the enemy.
1) Look up Bethlehem: Strong’s Number_______________
2) Look up Bethel: Strong’s Number_____________
The names & places are very important because they give you a feeling of the atmosphere of the place or the personality of the person
3. Chapter or Verse Breakdown-Example 1 Corinthians 13 (see separate handout)
It’s good to start with a comparative of 2 or more versions of the Bible. In my example, I used NKJV; AMP & NLT
Pick out the key words and dissect by defining the key words in the dictionary, Strong’s, or a Bible Dictionary (if applicable)
*Strong’s comes in KJV or NASB- be sure to have KJV Bible if you are using the KJV Strong’s or NASB bible if you are using the NASB Strong’s. You can compare words in the other versions to get the true meaning.
4. Reference Study-I call this the rabbit trail study, because if you are not careful, you will be off on many rabbit trails. This uses just a regular reference Bible.
Example: John 1:1
In the beginning was the Word a, and the b Word was c with God and the Word was d God.
a. 1 John 1:1______________________________________________________________________
b. Revelation 19:13 _________________________________________________________________
c. John 17:5 _______________________________________________________________________
d. 1 John 5:20 ______________________________________________________________________
You can also do historic and Cultural studies. However, it is important that you are led by the Holy Spirit when reading cultural and historic books, as it is very easy to become entangled in false doctrines.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.