As children of God we were designed to live on the Word of God and it can literally give life to our souls. If you are struggling in any area of life, I guarantee you that God’s Word has something to say about it! Our Heavenly Father loved us so much that He sent His son as the Word in flesh and died so that we could have all the promises fulfilled in the Bible.
How Will Studying the Bible Help Me?
Studying the Bible might feel tedious at times or unproductive, but we are promised that if we meditate on the Word of God it will change us from the inside out! We’ve put together a few tips to help you learn how to study the Bible effectively. We hope these methods of studying the Bible will encourage you to dive in and start learning and growing and letting God’s Word fill you!
Hebrews 4:12 - For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
Where to Start Studying the Bible?
Anywhere is a great place to start when learning how to study the Bible! When we are learning how to study the Bible effectively, we have to realize that God is always speaking to us through His Word and His Spirit is always ready to lead us to the right place in the Bible that we need to study.
Gather your Bible, notebook, pen, concordance or any other resources you want to use and find a quiet place. You may just need your phone and a few moments alone with the Lord. If you prefer to study and keep notes digitally, we’ve put together a list of the Best Bible Study Apps to help you on your journey.
Take a few minutes before you start reading and studying to stop and thank the Lord for His Word and ask him to reveal to you His truth and His comfort to you through the Bible. He has promised to draw near to us when we draw near to Him!
How to Interpret the Bible
There are many ways to interpret the Bible, and doing some separate research on your preferred method of interpretation is a good idea!
You can study the Bible by subject, by character or person, by event or by theme and gain something from all of them. Context is very important and will help you to accurately interpret the text that you are currently studying.
Again, lean into and listen to the Lord when you are interpreting a passage of scripture. God is always faithful to help us understand His Word.
Practical Ways to Study the Bible
1. Research Story Background and Genre
You’ve always heard that context is important when studying Scripture, and it certainly is.
It is so important to have a background knowledge of who is speaking, who is being spoken to, and at least a little knowledge of the cultural context and importance of the verse, chapter and book. This will give you things to look for as you study, to give you an understanding of the whole picture as you are reading.
2. Paraphrase Verses
Paraphrasing verses is a great way to make sure that you are understanding and comprehending what you are reading. Take a verse or a few verses that you have studied and write them out in your own words. This can also be a great way to keep track of what you feel the Lord is leading you to learn from a verse.
The Holy Spirit can guide you and speak to you as you are reading and give you insights into scripture that are specific to you and your heart. Paraphrased versions of the Bible are also a great way to understand difficult passages and are a great tool to use alongside other translations and study guides.
3. Cross References
While you are studying a certain topic or verse, take time to look at other instances it appears in the Bible. For instance, Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection have different accounts in each of the four gospels, and each account provides different perspective and information about the events.
It is also important to study both New Testament and Old Testament text on topics to give perspective of how Jesus’ death brought new life and new covenant to us.
4. Write Down Your Questions
It is always great to keep a notebook or a journal (or even a note in your phone!) while reading and studying the Bible to write down any questions you might have or thoughts you want to remember.
When learning how to study the Bible, it’s a great idea to look at the five W's - who, what, where, when, why, and also how, when studying to make sure you understand everything that is going on in the Scripture.
On the topic of journaling, we also think that keeping a prayer journal is a wonderful way to deepen your relationship with God.
5. Personal Insights
The Lord has given his Word to us for our benefit and for us to have an understanding of who He is and all of His promises to us. As you are reading, take time to ask the Lord how each scripture can apply to your life or what He has to speak to you through that verse. Put your name into all of the promises in the Bible! If you are a believer, then those apply to you as His child!
The Best Way to Study the Bible is to Begin!
It is best to remember that we shouldn’t be intimidated by studying the Bible, but feel free to jump right in and start learning and growing!
We serve a good God who has given us the Bible to be a lamp unto our feet and a light to our path. It gives Him great joy to see us seeking His wisdom in the Bible and He is always there to meet us where we are! Remember these tips as you are learning how to read the Bible to make the most of your time!
Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Check out our Free Printables and Downloads page for beautiful scripture cards, bookmarks and more that will help you keep the Word on your mind!
Set up an inspiring and beautiful study space with sofa pillows and wood signs!