HOW TO STUDY THE BIBLE
INTRODUCTION: There is an effort in our society
to "dumb down" everything. "Dumbing down" is the process of bringing everything
down to it's lowest level, instead of raising all to excellence. If test
scores of some students are too low we make the test easier so all will
feel good about themselves, rather than helping the low achievers to excel.
If all cannot meet the requirements of the military, we lower the standards,
so all may "qualify." This phenomena has led to the lowering of standards
throughout our society.
There is a temptation to do such in the church.
Since there is so much biblical illiteracy in the church there are those
who think that we should never preach on anything other than "first principles."
What should we do about the woeful lack of Bible knowledge? We need to
go back to good old hard study of God's word.
I. SOME WRONG WAYS TO STUDY THE BIBLE.
A. Too many people simply refuse
to study the Bible.
1. They believe the Bible to be old
fashioned and outdated.
2. Many are like the Israelites who refused to
hear God's word.
a. Isaiah 30:9 - "That this is a rebellious
people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the LORD:"
B. Some engage in haphazard study.
1. They will pick up the Bible and read
it some when they find themselves in trouble, only to discard it when the
C. Others practice close minded study.
2. Some will go here and there in the Bible not
know where they are going, and not knowing where they have been after they
1. Too many make up their minds before
they even study.
2. They know what they think the Bible says,
and then go to the Scriptures to "prove it."
a. 2 Peter 3:16 - "As also in all his
epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard
to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as
they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction."
3. These close their eyes to the truth
of the word.
D. There are some engaged in speed study.
a. Some will so close their minds to
the truth that they will react angrily to the teaching of the word.
b. They are like King Jehoiakim, who cut the
word up and threw it into the fire (Jeremiah 36:23-25).
1. This is the "how much can I cover"
2. There is a place for "through the Bible" studies
in a given time, but this does not take the place of real study.
II. WHAT THEN IS THE PROPER WAY TO STUDY
A. We should study with a prayerful
CONCLUSION: The Bible is a limitless spring, bubbling
forth with life giving water for all. It is understandable to all, yet
deep enough for the ripest scholar to plunge in it's depths for a lifetime.
Study from God's book. You'll be eternally grateful you did.
1. We need to pray for wisdom.
B. We should study submissively.
a. James 1:5 - "If any of you lack wisdom,
let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not;
and it shall be given him."
2. Isaiah 66:2 "For all those things hath mine hand
made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will
I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth
at my word."
3. Is it any accident that those who realized
their spiritual poverty most in the days of Jesus' ministry were most ready
to accept his word while the proud and haughty could not be convinced concerning
1. We need to have the attitude of Samuel.
C. We should study reverently.
a. 1 Samuel 3:10 - "And the LORD came,
and stood, and called as at other times, Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered,
Speak; for thy servant heareth."
2. We need to have the attitude of the Bereans.
a. Acts 17:11-12 "These were more noble
than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness
of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
12 Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were
Greeks, and of men, not a few."
3. We must have the attitude of being willing to
have the word work in our hearts and change our lives.
4. James 1:22 "But be ye doers of the word, and
not hearers only, deceiving your own selves."
1. While it is a commendable thing to
translate the Bible where all will be able to understand, we should ever
keep in mind that we are not reading a comic book, the sports page, or
the National Enquirer.
D. We should study diligently.
2. What we are reading is the Word of God.
a. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
3. Psalms 119:161 "SCHIN. Princes have persecuted
me without a cause: but my heart standeth in awe of thy word."
4. Isaiah 66:2 "For all those things hath mine
hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this
man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and
trembleth at my word."
1. Bible study is not a hit or miss
exercise. There has to be effort put into it.
E. We should study systematicaly.
2. 2 Timothy 2:15 - "Give diligence to present
thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, handling
aright the word of truth." (ASV)
3. Acts 17:11- "...and searched the scriptures
4. 2 Peter 1:10 - "Wherefore the rather, brethren,
give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these
things, ye shall never fall:"
1. We need to have a plan for our study.
What will we study? Will we study a book of the Bible? A topic? A character?
We will never make any progress in Bible study if we do not have some plan.
KNOW YOUR BIBLE QUESTION SHEET
1. How many books are in the Bible?
2. What are the two major division in the Bible?
3. What does the following words mean?
4. Who led the children of Israel out of Egyptian
5. Give the book, chapter, and verse for the
"He that believeth and is baptized shall be
"except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish"
"If we walk in the light, as he is in the
"the churches of Christ salute you"
"study to shew thyself approved"
"upon the first day of the week let everyone
6. Give the plan of salvation ( five parts) and
at least one scripture where it can be found.
7. Give the parts of worship.
Copyright 1999 by Grady
Scott may be reproducted for non-commercial purposes at no cost to others.