As Believers, we all know that Bible Studying time (also known as, quiet time with Abba) is one of the most important times of the day.
Over the past few years I have changed up how I study to get a more in-depth study, or if I was in a hurry; just enough fuel to keep me running through the day. It’s not about how much your in your word, rather how much word is in you. There is a difference between reading the Bible and studying [meditating on the Word] the Bible, and then actually living it out; applying it to your daily life.
Today, I want to share with you the different methods of Bible studying that I have used, and some have been shared with me. Some worked for me, and others didn’t, but that doesn’t mean they won’t work for you.
1. S.O.A.P. Method (Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer):
- Scripture: Slowly and carefully read through the passage. Imagine what the people in the passage were experiencing. Write down a verse that stands out to you.
- Observation: Write down your observations about the passage. Summarize the passage and think about what God has to say to you.
- Application: Write down how the passage applies to your daily life. Do you see similar situations in your life? How can you respond in the way Jesus taught?
- Prayer: Write down an honest and heartfelt prayer. Remember that God always listens and already knows your needs.
2. Ignatian Method:
- Prepare: Find a quiet place and quiet yourself. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you. Open the Bible to the passage you are going to study; narratives are the best passages for the Ignatian method.
- Picture: As you read the passage, create a picture of the scene in your mind. Place yourself in the scene. Ask the following questions: What do I see and hear? What do I smell, taste, or touch? Who are the characters and what are they doing? What emotions do I sense?
- Ponder: What does this mean to you? What are you really longing for in your own heart?
- Pray: Convert your reflections and considerations into prayers to God. Ask God for help, guidance and blessing.
- Practice: Make a specific commitment to apply what you have learned from this passage. Rest in God’s love.
3. The PR3 Method: (Pray, Read, Reflect, Respond):
- Pray with focus and openness to see what God has for you. God, connect with me here, as I see you in your Word.
- Read the selected section of Scripture slowly. Take note of intriguing words and phrases. Read them a second time.
- Reflect on what strikes you as you read. What does this passage of Scripture teach you about God’s values?
- Respond to the passage. Speak to God directly about what’s on your mind and heart. Look for ways to live out what you’ve uncovered.
4. The F.I.R.E. Study: (Fact, Insight, Response, Evaluation):
- Fact: What does it say? Write down the verse or phrase you want to focus on.
- Insight: What does it mean? What is the main point of the passage?
- Response: How can you apply this to your life and church?
- Evaluation: What did you do about it? Write down your response to God’s Word within the next day or week.
5. Inductive Bible Study:
- Pray: God, guide me as I study your Word.
- Observation: What does the text say? Ask questions such as: Who is speaking? What’s happening? Where does the passage take place? When do the events take place? How did people respond? Identify repeated words.
- Interpretation: What does the passage mean? What is the significance of my observations? What is the main point of the passage?
- Application: What does the passage mean to me? What are the implications of the passage for my life? Is there a central truth that I need to put into practice?
Trying to figure where to begin studying in your Bible. Try our Bible Challenge below. Read through the entire New Testament using the different bible study methods above.
- January: Matthew; Use the Ignatian Method
- February: Romans, 1 Corinthians; Use the S.O.A.P Method
- March: Mark; Use the PR3 Method
- April: 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians; Use the F.I.R.E. Method
- May: Luke; Use the Ignatian Method
- June: Philippians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians; Use the Inductive Bible Study Method
- July: John; Use the S.O.A.P. Method
- August: 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon; Use the S.O.A.P. Method
- September: Acts; Use the PR3 Method
- October: Hebrews, James; Use the F.I.R.E. Method
- November:1 Peter, 2 Peter, 1 John, 2 John, 3 John, Jude; Use the Inductive Bible Study Method
- December: Revelation; Use the S.O.A.P. Method