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Joined: 2009/1/16
Posts: 319

 How to "study" the Bible, looking for help

I'm looking for help on how to properly study God's word.

Right now I'm just reading it like a book, getting the word in my mind and heart but I really want to take things to a new level and "study" it, but really don't know how to...

My 'fear' is studying it correctly so I don't fall into some Biblical error and take verses out of context or other incorrect study methods.

If anybody has read a book they could suggest please help.

Thanks for adding to this thread.


Doug R

 2012/3/6 14:36Profile

 Re: How to "study" the Bible, looking for help

Hi Brother. If you don't mind me giving my opinion, I'd say that if you have a computer and you download and then download as many Dictionaries as you can - and get as many Bible versions that are numbered to the Strong's and a few in the Commentary Section - such as Robertson's Word Pictures, Vincents, JFB, K&D and any others that focus more on individual word studies rather than just opinionated commentary and Definitely - Torrey's Treasury of Scripture Knowledge that cross-references every verse with as many as he could fine [excellent] - then you'd have more than some Bible College students get in these days.

We know that GOD never wastes one word of His Word, so that's how we should read His Words - Word by Word.

Examples -

Rom 8:1 There is thereforeG686 nowG3568 noG3762 condemnationG2631 to themG3588 which are inG1722 ChristG5547 Jesus,G2424 who walkG4043 notG3361 afterG2596 the flesh,G4561 butG235 afterG2596 the Spirit.G4151

Torrey's TSK -

Rom 8:1
no: Rom_4:7-8, Rom_5:1, Rom_7:17, Rom_7:20; Isa_54:17; Joh_3:18-19, Joh_5:24; Gal_3:13

in: Rom_16:7; Joh_14:20, Joh_15:4; 1Co_1:30, 1Co_15:22; 2Co_5:17, 2Co_12:2; Gal_3:28; Phi_3:9

who: Rom_8:4, Rom_8:14; Gal_5:16, Gal_5:25; Tit_2:11-14

Word study on "condemnation" -

Thayer Definition:
1) damnatory sentence, condemnation
Part of Speech: noun neuter
A Related Word by Thayer’s/Strong’s Number: from G2632

KJ Concordance - shows where else that particular Grk word is used ...

Total KJV Occurrences: 3
condemnation, 3
Rom_5:16, Rom_5:18, Rom_8:1

Robertson's and others will give the grammar of the words - etc.

Before computers - one would have to spread all of these books all over a table.
Word-by-word study with cross-referencing related verses elsewhere in the Bible and finding where-else that particular word is used and how it's used, is the best form of "study" that I know of.
"Study" has to include knowing the meaning and context [and sometimes grammar] of each word from the original language and though that used to be difficult to do - anyone can now with the Bible Programs available.

Hope you get fired up with your studies. I've spent whole days doing just this process to one verse. I Love it - because as you cross-reference a verse - the cross-reference you go to will have more cross-references for that one and the next and the next. Easy to spend a whole day on just one verse :)

GOD Bless you!

 2012/3/6 15:10

Joined: 2009/1/16
Posts: 319


wow, thank you brother for sharing these suggestions.


Doug R

 2012/3/6 19:58Profile

Joined: 2005/5/2
Posts: 3777


You can likely get these used for a reasonable price:

"How to Study your Bible" by Kay Arthur (~150 pages)

"Grasping God's Word" by Scott Duvall (~460 pages)

"The New Joy of Discovery in Bible Study" by Oletta Wald (91 pages)

I like them all - especially the first two. They are well worth owning.



 2012/3/6 20:07Profile


A word of caution regarding commentaries. In your post you said that you didn't want to get into error or miss translate a word or what have you. Do what your doing now, read the bible and as you read it your going to see words lift off the page as if God is highlighting them and He wants to show you something. Mull them over in your mind and begin to speak out what you've just read and you'll be surprised as to what comes out of that. What you do get out of that write it down. What you write down doesn't mean it's set in stone, you have to compare scripture with scripture. As for commentaries, use them only as a guide to the thought that you have already garnered from your current study, don't let them replace the Holy Spirit leading. Remember, just because they are old and those men are dead doesn't mean they have cornered the market on truth, they too can fail.

Reading the bible is study in itself. All the New Testament saints had were the Old Testament writings and the testimonies of men who claimed that Jesus was alive. We have much much more but the whole idea of study is revolved around knowing Jesus Christ in the scriptures. If what we draw out of the scripture don't point to Him and the knowledge of Him, it's not a true study. Abandon all studies that lead away from Him. For example, the study of "Where did Cain get his wife" has absolutely no bearing on the Lordship of Christ. It only leads to frivolous knowledge and wives tales.

God Bless you in your studies man.

 2012/3/6 20:29

Joined: 2008/1/11
Posts: 375
Minnesota, USA

 Re: How to "study" the Bible, looking for help

On YouTube, John MacArthur has a two part message about how to study the Bible that I found very helpful. You can search for the videos (15 min. each) called:

How to Study the Bible, Part 1 (John MacArthur)
How to Study the Bible, Part 2 (John MacArthur)


 2012/3/6 21:10Profile

Joined: 2011/8/14
Posts: 1089

 Re: How to "study" the Bible, looking for help

Dear Brother,

First of all,I am not saying,the things that are being offered here,is not
Good material, all.
But if one is just starting out with the Lord,..then ...

I feel like I might need to share a testimony on your subject ?

Many years ago, when the Lord started woo-ing me by His Grace,
This is how He delt with me about this :

* As He was drawing me unto Himself,...His Spirit drawed me to NOT
get any material, ..just get the WORD,and He would teach me,...

* He wanted to teach me,..
(He is the plumb line in all things.) Also He wants us to be able to decern,
what is His interpretation, of the Word,...How He sees it.)
I guess He did not want me to be all mixed-up.
(He said, ' The Words that I speak unto you,they are
Spirit,and they are Life.'... (Jn,.) ......and I did not even know,at that time,about this next verse,. In 1Jn.2:27,that the anointing will teach ...are you familiar with that verse,? maybe you might want to read that ?
So if they are are Spirit(and they are) then they need to be Spiritually decerned ?

I was VERY hungry for His Word, I would read, ..a lot,
And if anyone would come in,I would stick my Bible under something,
and hide it,...I didnot want them to be worried about me,..they loved me.

At that time,(in the beginning) I was searching ,...concererned about my sins, because my sins had become 'excedingly' sinful, in my heart.
The Lord was showing me how much I needed a Saviour.

If we will,not be afraid and give our whole heart to Him,..He will open up our
understanding,..not that we will know all things, is so vast,..we could
never learn all about Him,..but we all know,it is so rich,..good Bread,..Food,for us to eat.

Bless you, as well as all here,

 2012/3/7 10:08Profile

Joined: 2004/7/7
Posts: 7504

 Re: How to "study" the Bible, looking for help


Back in 1967 I took a course at Bible School titled "Inductive Method of Bible Study". This was so good I think it should be mandatory to every BS student! (But then, if it were it might put the Bible Schools out of business??)

I have used these methods in my reading and studying of the WORD where it has become first nature. It has even taught me how to think!

I suggest you go online and read all you can about it and then go at it. All you need is to do is pray for illumination and then you need the Bible, paper, pen, Bible dictionary. No commentaries allowed until you are done with a book...then you may feel like you could write your own.

God bless..


Sandra Miller

 2012/3/7 10:32Profile

Joined: 2011/8/20
Posts: 1803

 Re: How to "study" the Bible, looking for help

The best method that worked for me is this. I used to read 1 chapter and then meditate on it. Read it carefully to find exactly what the spirit behind each verse is. Then I listen to Brother Zac Poonen's Bible study audio that has 1 hour on every chapter. I see the revelation that he gets out of the same verses that I just skipped unknowingly, because of negligence. Also how he pictures each verse and then have a practical application to it. Then I read it again the way he read focusing every verse. I did this few times and after that I got the same spirit of carefully analyzing the scriptures and how to compare scripture with scripture automatically. It is more a gift of God, but to get this gift you need to know what this gift is, and I got it by listing to Zac Poonen. Once you understand this gift you can seek it and believe that you are blessed with it.

You can find his verse by verse study here:-


 2012/3/7 12:18Profile


Brother Sree, I'm not trying to pick on you personally, but the method you describe is not the way to go and not because of the man that you mention. But "reading" The Word so that we KNOW it is wonderful - but "studying" The Word is something much more intensive and we should never depend on a man - any man - to 'teach' us what The Word is saying.
When we stand before Jesus [The WORD of GOD, Himself], we'll give an account for ourselves and will not be able to say to Him that we learned a faulty belief that He's questioning us on, from a man or woman.

He holds us to this - Joh 16:13,14 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

We need to draw from The Spirit of Truth, when just reading The Word to know it and when Studying as well.
I mentioned above that I don't depend on Commentaries - only those books that define the original languages when 'studying'.

I agree that prayer must go hand-in-hand with reading The Word - asking that GOD remove all or any preconceived notions that I may have and anything that I've believed that someone has 'taught' me and then ask that HE Alone lead through every verse.
I was saved in the mid-70's when there weren't as many "teachers/authors/preachers" out there teaching 'junk', so I was very open to be taught during the first 9 yrs that I was saved - but once I went to studying on my own - I did find that I had been taught things that weren't quite accurate. I was like a dry sponge wanting to be saturated but I thought that I HAD TO BE taught by men. I regret it now and am still finding a crumb here and there of things that I had picked up from some good man that I had allowed to 'teach' me. Very convicting when I find that no man is 100% innerant and that I hadn't known enough when young in Christ to trust those verses above and hadn't yet learned back then, how to actually 'study hard' on my own with HIM alone.

I don't listen to sermons to 'learn' - but am benefited now when I hear something that aligns itself with the truth that I first learned alone and that expounds on those same truths.

I don't want to be found "lazy" when I stand before Him and giving Him any excuses for whatever errors I've believed, saying, "Well LORD, _________ taught me that error."
He won't buy that excuse. He'll ask me, "What did you do with The Word that I left for you and MY Spirit of Truth that I gave to lead you?"
I don't want to be found lacking because I was too lazy to study and search out every Word He left for us and I see that depending on others to teach me is laziness on my part.
I went to Bible college - not to be taught "doctrine" or what the Bible says - but to learn how to 'study' the Bible for myself - because I know He holds me personally responsible for what I personally believe - with no one else to blame for what I believe.

Blessings to you!

 2012/3/7 13:19

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