Whether you are leading a small group bible study or facilitating a large one, the first few steps to Bible study are the same: read the Bible with reverence and respect, balance teaching and group interaction, consider cultural context, and select the study material. The following are some do’s and don’ts in bible study:
Read the Bible with reverence
The Biblical term reverence has two definitions: awe and fear. The former refers to a deep emotion, whereas the latter is an expression of honor and respect. In Bible study, reverence is a way of approaching Scriptures and a sense of awe is also present. The words are often used interchangeably and are often akin. Regardless of how you choose to interpret them, there are certain principles you must keep in mind.
First, you need to have an earnest desire to understand the words of the Bible. Don’t read isolated verses, for example. Instead, concentrate on large sections of the Bible and the books themselves. That’s how God intended the Bible to be read. In the Old Testament, Moses gathered the people of Israel to hear his words. And once you’ve heard what the Lord has to say, you should want to obey Him.
Balance teaching and group interaction
When leading a bible study group, it is crucial to balance group interaction and teaching. Too many teachers approach the teaching role as a one-sided lecture. They spend weeks studying biblical passages and pour their knowledge into the minds of the group members. This method often leads to low interaction. The key is to balance the two! Here are three ways to balance group interaction and teaching in your Bible study group:
Consider cultural context
When you read a passage in the Bible, you may want to take a look at its cultural context. Historical-cultural context helps you understand the original context of a biblical text, as well as its intended audience. Understanding the culture surrounding a passage can help you better appreciate what it is trying to say. There are several ways to do this. Let’s examine five of the most important ones. Here are three ways to do so:
Use a Bible dictionary, encyclopedia, or atlas to find the cultural context of the text. Old and New Testament histories are excellent sources of historical-cultural context. The biblical author’s own cultural context can help you better understand the story. When you use a bible dictionary, you can also make notes about historical events in the book. And you can also look up Bible dictionaries to learn about other people’s cultures.
Select study material
When selecting study material for your Bible study group, be sure to carefully choose your participants. It should challenge the participants to read passages multiple times and engage with the text directly. In addition, your material should ask questions that come straight from Scripture, rather than simply introducing new concepts. You’ll want your group to learn more about God’s Word, not just memorize it. Listed below are some helpful tips when selecting study material for your group.
You should also choose a guide that provides background information and historical context. While there are many different Bible study guides to choose from, one of the most important factors to consider is whether or not the Bible study guide is relevant to your needs and preferences. While some Bible studies can take a large amount of time to complete, others may not require as much time. You may need to take your time if you don’t want to put too much emphasis on one subject.