The Oxford Dictionary defines “post-truth” as “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Do we live in a post-Bible study world? Increasingly sermons are heavy with stories and emotional appeals and light on critical explanations of the author’s intent. But good Bible study methods haven’t changed.
After you’ve done your observation, word studies, outlining and answered the questions you generated, it’s time to start putting it all together. In this step, you want to collect, refine and organize all those details you observed into a coherent meaning.
Biblical writers also used figurative language and vivid imagery. How are we to understand it?
An analytical outline is a way of displaying a text of Scripture so that the flow of thought and the relationship between the grammatical parts become clear. It is my favorite study tool and one of the first things I do. Learn how to make one.
You may have been taught to create a list of questions, using the “5Ws and H” (who, what, when, where, why, how). If you need some help learning how to use the “5Ws and H”, here are some questions to get you started.
When learning how to study the Bible, you’ve probably heard the expression “context is king”, meaning context is the arbitrator that rules a particular interpretation valid or not. But how do you use context to decide between possible interpretations?
Now is a great time to improve your Bible study skills. Follow this series to learn how to study the Bible, where to find the tools you need to study and how to use them.
Word studies are one of the basic tools of Bible study. With today’s tools, you don’t have to know Greek and Hebrew to do a good word study. Here’s how.
Wondering how to put all the tools and pieces of Bible study together so that you can tackle a specific passage of Scripture? Here’s the overall procedure.
The first step in Bible study is observation. The goal is to slow down your reading and generate a list of questions that must be answered to understand the passage. I tend to break observation into the following 4 steps which generally correspond to my first few readings through the passage.
Over lunch recently a friend confessed: “I know an essential step of any Bible study is observation. But what am I suppose to observe?” So glad you asked! Sometimes we take this step for granted when teaching on how to study the Bible, but observation is a skill we learn and practice like any other.
How do you know if you’ve successfully understood a passage of Scripture? Start by understanding and embracing these basic interpretative convictions.
How do you evaluate whether a particular interpretation hits the mark of authorial intent?