Friday, April 5, 2013

Faithful Friday - "Studying the Bible"

Our Life Groups began last night at church to cover a series called 40 Days in the Word, which will be done over a period of 6 weeks.

There were just a few ahah moments for me that I'd like to share with you today for Faithful Friday.  It was such a simple idea but yet loaded with so much umph.

First of all have you ever thought about what the purpose of the Bible is?  I mean I know I've thought of it as God's wisdom and guidance for us.  But what's the purpose

The ultimate purpose of the Bible is to change our lives.  That's a powerful thing....something that can change our lives!

Then we talked about the 5 basic priniciples of Bible Study.  Now I wonder how many of us have been guilty of just opening the Bible randomly and pointing to a scripture (first one it fell open to) and seeing what God had to say for us? I've done it!   Now, I'm not saying that doesn't work because God works in many ways, and He's given me something I needed at that moment.  But, we should study the Bible much more systematically than that to get the most from God's Word and to really grow spiritually. 

In our family, and also personally, we've/I've read the Bible usually a chapter or two at a time.  Right now, our family is reading through the Old Testament and we are just beginning Deuteronomy.  One of us reads it aloud, then we discuss it afterwards.  There's nothing wrong with that method.  That's good.  And we learn alot like that together.

But back to those 5 basic principles of Bible Study.  Here's what we talked about last night and I like this guideline:

1)  Ask the right questions.
2)  Write down your observations.
3)  Don't just interpret it, apply it.
4)  Study it systematically.
5)  Read it over and over again.

And then this:  You can summarize the devotional study method in one word: Meditate.

Now that's not like new age meditation, but it's more like the cow chewing its cud.  You know how they bring it back up later and enjoy it over and over?  (Kind of gross I know, but it's a good analogy).  Meditation of the scripture is like that - reading a passage over and over again, then thinking about it and concentrating on it in different ways until you have digested its meaning.  And then you can apply it to your life!

And the very first method of Bible Meditation that we talked about I just love!  Its called the "Pronounce it!" Method.  So I just have to share this with you.  Maybe you already do this, but studying a scripture in this manner just awed me because I love words and doing this gave made God's Words such simple yet special meaning to me.

Here's how it works:

Take this scripture.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.  Colossians 3:16(a) NIV

Now you read the verse over and over again, but each time you emphasize a different word in the verse one at a time.  After each word, you stop and write down your thoughts, even if it's just a word or two.

For example, here's mine.  (My thoughts are in parenthesis afterwards).

LET the word of Christ dwell in you richly.    (Allow; make a choice)

Let the WORD of Christ dwell in you richly.  (wisdom; guidance)

Let the word of CHRIST dwell in you richly.  (Jesus; not culture or society)

Let the word of Christ DWELL in you richly.   (take residence in;  move in; live in; inhabit)

Let the word of Christ dwell in YOU richly.     (just for me personally!)

Let the word of Christ dwell in you RICHLY.  (extravagantly in a way that brings beauty)

So when I take a look at that scripture now, I see:

Make a choice to allow the wisdom and guidance of Jesus (not culture) to take residence in me personally in such an extravagant way that it brings beauty to my life and others! that's something to take and use, isn't it?   And we were asked to take which word from that verse had the most meaning to us personally.  I liked them all, but for me it was LET.  And that's because it all starts with me making the choice to allow God to do those things in me! 

Oh, and one more many folks do you hear say that they believe the Bible?  Well it's not enough to SAY that I believe it because actually....... I only believe the parts of the Bible that I actually do.  Now just think on that!  :)  For example, if I say I believe in tithing (giving God the first 10% of our increase) but I don't give my tithe, then I don't really believe it.  If I do it, then I believe it.   That's the applying it part.  :) 

I was just so excited today that I wanted to share this simple, but wonderful way to study the Bible and make its great wisdom and truths come alive to you so you can apply it to your life!

It's easy and you can do this with a scripture in just a few short minutes.  So I'd like to challenge you too.....try taking a favorite verse from the Bible....and use the read it over and over method, meditating, emphasizing, or pronouncing a different word each time and write down your thoughts on that word.  Then see what it has to say just for you!  :)


Be sure and check out other Faithful Friday posts by clicking on the button above. 

I hope you all have a beautiful weekend!  :)  Thanks for stopping by!

♥ Tammy ♥


Joy ~ Doodlebug ~ said...


I love that method! I had kind of heard of doing that before, but this was a good reminder. Very cool.

I'm really liking what we're learning! :)

I love you! 8! Thanks for participating in Faithful Fridays!

Joy :)

Laura Lane said...

Oh goodness, this is eye opening. I never thought of or heard of the "Pronounce it!" method. That's incredible. I'm going to choose a verse and do it today.

I'm going to jot a quick post and refer my readers to your post.

Blessings to you,
Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

Susannah said...

Hi Tammy...This is an exceptional post! I never thought about picking the words apart on certain verses. I am going to do this. It makes common sense.Thank you for sharing.


Beth said...

Excellent post Tammy!

Liz said...

Thanks for sharing. What a great way to read and feel the scripture. I really enjoy Rick Warren.

Jennifer Ellis said...

Thank you for sharing this method. I love this. Laura from Harvest Lane Cottage recommended I stop by. So glad I did :)



Allison said...

Hi Tammy-- Our small group did this last fall, it was a good bible study. We are doing Unglued and I really like it.

Lorita said...

I am new to your blog. I really like your explanation of studying the Bible and the method of stressing each word in turn and defining that word. I have never done this study, but I have been doing Precept Ministry series from Kay Arthur that I just love.