Choose What You Will Study
When I first started to study the Bible, I was clueless on where to start.; Heres a hint: dont start at the beginning.; Instead, I love to start with the Gospels: Matthew, Luke, Mark, and John, which outline and describe the life of Jesus.; Its a great way to explore His life, His sacrifice, and what His free gift of grace means to all mankind.
Another great place to start is using a free Bible reading plan.; These Bible study guides will help you study a topic and are usually short enough for either a beginner or Bible study veteran to use with ease.
If youd like to receive a free monthly Bible reading plan in your inbox each month, join our Proverbs 31 Scripture Sisterhood. Its an email community for women who long to honor God in everyday life and to live on mission for the glory of God.; Join above for instant access to our vault of free Bible reading plans to jump start your quiet time.
What To Expect From Bible Study
Many new believers start studying the Bible with this belief that they will have an awe-inspiring and deep connection with God every time they open their Bible.
Those moments are awesome when they occur. But, every Bible study session will not end in some life-altering, awe-inspiring session with God.;
But even those mundane sessions are a chance for you to grow in your faith and your walk as a Christian.;
The Best Order To Read The Bible For The First Time
Now I am not going to make a blanket statement and say you HAVE to read this book first and then give you an order.
I am going to give you a few different book ideas since its your first time reading the Bible.
If you dont want options and are just ready to be told where to start reading the Bible, Ive made a seven day video course just for you. Join right here!
Go check your email now!
Before that lets dive into a few facts about the Bible so you can understand the book a little better.
Memory And Tradition In The Book Of Numbersyour Browser Indicates If You’ve Visited This Link
In Memory and Tradition in the Book of Numbers, Adriane Leveen offers a rereading of the fourth book of Moses. Leveen examines howthe editors of Numbers created a narrative of the forty-year journey through the wilderness to control understanding of the past and influence attitudes in the future.
Cambridge University Press
Note Big Theological Concepts
I also note big ideas that stand out to me theologically.
For example, many Jewish people walked around Samaria because of their disdain for Samaritans, so when the Bible says that Jesus had to walk through Samaria, it doesnt mean geographically maybe its because he knew he had to meet the Samaritan woman to give her this new beginning.
So what that teaches me is that God will out of His way, into the darkest places, to meet people and offer them rebirth.
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A Few Other Things You Should Know
I study one book at a time, instead of skipping around. This helps me to fully grasp the meaning of the book overall and how each chapter relates its message. I am currently studying the New Testament and have been doing so for about a year. I go in the canonical order and finish one book before going to another.
Also, I only study one chapter per day. Going slowly helps me to really take in and absorb the meaning and application of what I am studying.
Know That You Can Start A Bible Studyby Faith
Faith is the essential component of the Christian life. Followers of Jesus Christ are to live every day by faith. That is what Paul is communicating to us in Galatians.
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
The life you and I live every day is by faith in the Son of GodJesus Himself. Christ not only lives in you, He is living through you.
Jesus Christ gave His life for you, so that He could give His life to you, so that He could live His life through you.
If you are being prompted by the Lord to start a Bible study, just say yes Iwilldothis,Lord.Pleasehelpme. Jesus is with you every step of the way and in every situation. That includes:
- in your church, neighborhood, community, or workplace.
- at any age or stage of life. Someone around you needs to know Jesus or to know Him better through studying the Bible.
- with any size grouplarge or small.
- whether you have been studying the Bible for 2 years or doing it for decades. Share what you know and what you are learning.
You can start and lead a Bible study not because you are so great or smart or have been a Christian a long time or know the Bible really well. You can do this because Jesus is the one who enables you to do it. Say “yes” and jump in with both feet.
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Approach The Bible As A Life
Learn to enjoy the journey. Just as anything else thats valuable, itll take some patience and time. Along the way, you might have questions that go unanswered for a season, tensions about what the Bible actually says and what it means. This is all part of getting to know God and His Word.
In Luke 8:5-18, Jesus gives a parable about the farmer that goes out to a field to sow some seed. The seed is the Word of God. It takes time to grow and mature in your heart. It doesnt happen overnight. There are new people to meet, new places to see, new cultures to understand.
Bible Study is a life-long journey of knowing God more as He has revealed Himself throughout history.
The good news is that if you dont give up and keep listening and doing what God says, youll discover some of the richest treasure and pearls in His Word.
More to be desired are they than gold,;;;;even much fine gold;;;;;and drippings of the honeycomb.
Whenever the pressures of life pile up, let your time in Gods Word each day be a source of strength and stability for you. God will give you the wisdom and strength you need for today and for the seasons ahead. Hell also prepare you for things that you dont even know about yet.
As you begin to grow in your understanding of Gods Word, share with others what youre Learning. When you share with someone, your understanding of the Bible will be strengthened, challenged, and ultimately, enriched.
What I Learned From Reading The Bible In A Year
Since reading the Bible in its entirety in 2021, Ive found a new rhythm for Bible study. Im now much more comfortable picking up the text every day. Sometimes I use a commentary or guide alongside. I pray, I read, and then I reflect in the margins or on a post-it.
What I love about writing in my Bible as I learn is that the text becomes like a conversation between me and God, where I can record my thoughts and questions, and where God is speaking to me in my life and learnings. The physical Bible becomes a record of my spiritual growth, as well.
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Study A Verse By Looking For The Great Ideas Revealed In It
Let us look again at John 3:16 as our example. We might title this verse, The greatest verse in the Bible. The following ideas are found in it:
Godthe greatest Personso lovedthe greatest devotionthe worldthe greatest numberHe gavethe greatest actHis only begotten Sonthe greatest giftthat whoever believesthe greatest conditionshould not perishthe greatest mercyhave everlasting lifethe greatest result
Sometimes a combination of these various ideas applied to a verse will bring the richest results.
ThereforeThis verse depends on 4:25. Our justification is based on and is guaranteed by Jesus resurrection.justifiedmade righteous.by faithmethod of our justification .havenot future, but present tensewe have this now.peace with GodWe were enemies, but now there is peace between us and God because of what Christ has done. through our Lord Jesus Christthe way to peace with God is only through Jesus Christ.
Where To Begin Studying The Bible
Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved , a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing the Word of Truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 KJV
If youre new to Bible study, its hard to know where to begin. In my opinion, its best not to begin at the beginning, but in the middle, with the story of Jesus. Oftentimes, I will suggest people start with the book of John. All of the Old Testament points to Jesus and we cant really understand the Old Testament until we first understand Him.
Now, this can get a little confusing, so read this slowly. Even though Jesus initiated the New Covenant when He was observing the Lords Supper the night before His crucifixion, the Old Covenant all points to Him. It has 39 books; the first five are called the Torah (books of Mosaic Law and the origin of man and Israel. Then the next twelve are called the Historical books, telling about the history of ancient Israel. After that, you come to five books that are called Poetry books like Job, and Psalms and Proverbs. Then you come to the 17 Prophets of the Old Covenant. When you read the Old Covenant, think B.C. Before Christ.
The Bible begins in a garden and ends in a city and what a great city! Heres the key start with Jesus and when you read it, ask God to speak to you. After all, it is His Word.
Tomorrow, well talk about HOW to study the Bible.
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How To Read The Bible: Read A Little Every Day
Getting Gods Word into your life doesnt have to take long. Start smallfive or 10 minutes is better than none. Sometimes less is more, especially when reading less means youll actually remember more.
Chose a time and place thats convenient for you. Many people read their Bible first thing in the morning, choosing to spend time with God before daily distractions get in the way. But if mornings arent your thing, dont sweat it. That;you read Gods Word is more important than when;you read Gods Word. Personally, I love to read my Bible at a local coffee shop, but I once read through the entire Bible while waiting in carpool lines.;
Keys To A Thriving Quiet Time Routine
I used to stumble out of bed, throw open my Bible to a random verse, and call it a day. Yet a thriving Bible study isnt based on reading a quick Scripture passage just to check Bible study off your to do list.
Instead, to have a deep Bible study and fill the voids in your soul with the words of God, you need a quiet time routine to make it happen.; And I promise, once you find your rhythm and a routine that works for you, youll meet God with excitement each day.
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Unlike Most Books Dont Start At The Beginning
The Bible is the Word of God, and every word is holy. ;However, once you get into the book of Genesis, you will notice a lot of genealogy and it can be a little intimidating as a beginner.
Plus, unlike typical books, you dont have to read the Bible from cover to cover to get started. Honestly, you dont even have to start at the beginning!
Instead, choose a book of the Bible thats easier to understand, such as one of the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. When I first started reading the Bible I enjoyed the book of Luke for the way it described the life of Jesus.
Plus, starting at the Gospels will help you grasp the sacrifice of Jesus, identify with His time on earth and relate to Him in a more personal way.
Set A Regular Time For Bible Study And Guard That Time
The Bible promises: Come near to God, and He will come near to you . But we all know how hard it can be to set aside time in our daily lives. Even with the best of intentions, if there isnt a set-aside time committed to study, its a lot more difficult to keep up a consistent program. Find a time that works for you, schedule it on your calendar, and stick to it.;
Many have found success with studying the Bible first thing in the morning, before anything else has a chance to be a distraction. But everyones different! Pray about it, then be intentional about your time. This kind of study time is often called devotions because youre devoting time to God.
Here are some tips to staying committed with your schedule:
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Sweet Bible Study Method
This Bible study is a great way to help you process what you read and jump start your spiritual growth.; This simple acronym helps reminds us of Psalm 34:8.
Taste;and;see;that the;Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.
Read the Scripture verse twice. The more times you slowly read a verse or passage, the more youll notice about the verse.
W- Write it out
Write out the verse word for word.
E- Examine the text
Search the Scripture for actions of God, commands of God, truths about Gods character, how were to live, or other important components of these verses.
E- Exalt God through prayer
Spend time in prayer praising God for who He is and His rock solid character. Also, bring your requests before the Lord and humbly lay them before His throne.
Spend time processing how you can live these Scriptures in action or make a plan to be the hands and feet of Jesus through acts of service.
Bible Study Methods When Youre Just Starting Out
When youre just beginning to read the Bible, pick one method and stick with it for a bit. Dont get overwhelmed by all the different study methods out there! Try out a few and see what feels most natural for your learning style. I often rotate between methods, depending on a variety of factors, such as how much time I have, whether Im doing the study alone or with others, etc.;
Lets look at some popular Bible study methods for beginners.
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Find A Version Of The Bible You Can Understand
Theres no point in studying the Bible if you cant understand its basic language. Thats why its crucial for you to find a version you are comfortable with. Some recommend actual study Bibles, but keep in mind the Holy Spirit is powerful enough to give you insight and wisdom while using any version of the Bible.;
Whichever version you use, its important to educate yourself on the different versions available. Test out passages in different versions as see which ones you can best relate to.
Based on research done by the Seventh-day Adventists Biblical Research Institute, these 4 versions are recommended for accuracy and readability for the English language:
- New King James Version
- New American Standard Bible
Find Quality Bible Study Tools
Gods Holy Spirit will give you wisdom and knowledge about what youre studying, but He doesnt do the work for you. God knows doing the work of Bible study is part of how you internalize what you learn.
There are additional tools to consider, but at a minimum, its recommended to have these two resources available as you start your Bible study journey:
A reliable Bible Commentary: A Bible commentary provides input from experts who have studied the history and context surrounding various passages of Scripture that often require further study. Since this is a man-made resource, its true that expert opinions may vary. But with diligent study, youll be able to pick out the patterns and pray for the Holy Spirits guidance as you learn more.
Heres a reliable Commentary to try:
A reliable Bible Concordance:
A Concordance is like an in-depth index to the Bible. It keeps track of where certain names, phrases, and terms were used and lists the verse references for each of them. Concordances come in handy for topical studies, as it helps you find each place in the Bible the topic is addressed.
Try using this concordance:
Additionally, you can find even more free Bible study tools at:
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Start With Gods Promises And Truth
The best place to start is with Gods many promises and with the Truth. These dont change because you got busy or distracted.;
What did change if you are dealing with shame and condemnation is you are likely entertaining some lies and false beliefs. Thats why the first things first: lets replace the lies and unbelief with Truth and promises.
I think having a list of verses that point to truths and promises that resonate with you is a smart idea. I would read through those verses in a few translations or write them out in my favorite translation.
Here are some verses to start your list.;