HELPFUL TIPS FOR READING THE BIBLE

1 . OBSERVATION

7 STRATEGIES TO FIRST-RATE READING:

1. Read Thoughtfully – don’t be afraid to put your thinking cap on
2. Read Repeatedly – read it over and over and over and over till you get it
3. Read Patiently – good bible study does take time and we need to be patient with it
4. Read Critically – ask: who?, what?, where?, when?, why?
5. Read Prayerfully – this is key – pray, “Lord, teach me through you Word.”
6. Read Meditatively – reflect on the text, chew on it, dwell in it, so that you can act on it
7. Read Purposefully – purposeful reading looks for the aim of the author

6 THINGS TO LOOK FOR:

1. Things that are emphasized
2. Things that are repeated
3. Things that are related
4. Things that are alike, and unlike
5. Things that are true to life
6. The big picture perspective

2. INTERPRETATION

5 KEYS TO INTERPRETATION:

1. Content – if you have correctly done the work of “observation”, this will be easy
2. Context – look for the literary, historical, cultural, geographic, and theological context
3. Comparison – in short, we compare scripture with scripture
4. Culture – does the cultural setting have any effect on the meaning of the text?
5. Consultation – this involves the use of secondary resources

3. APPLICATION

8 QUESTIONS TO ASK:
1. Is there an example for me to follow?
2. Is there a sin to avoid?
3. Is there a promise to claim?
4. Is there a prayer to repeat?
5. Is there a command to obey?
6. Is there a condition to meet?
7. Is there a verse to memorize?
8. Is there a challenge to face?

Adapted from Howard Hendricks’ book “Living By The Book”

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