How should I study the Bible?
All believers should turn to the Bible as our best source of information about God. The Bible is both a history of God's people and a guide to life for those who believe in Him. Here are three ideas that might help you as you seek to learn about God through Bible study:
1. Before you read, PRAY.
John 16:13 says, "But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and h e will tell you what is yet to come." The Holy Spirit guided the the writing of the New Testament, and He will also guide you in understanding Scripture. Remember, the Bible is God's book, and we need to ask Him what it means. If you are a Christian, the author of Scripture—the Holy Spirit—lives inside you, and He wants you to understand what He wrote.
2. Keep verses in CONTEXT.
The Bible was written in chunks, not individual sentences. So that means that you must always remember to read the verses around the one that you are studying in order to get the full meaning. Many, many misunderstandings of Scripture have been made over the centuries simply because people took one verse out of the book and ignored the rest.
An example of taking something out of context would be like picking up a menu, only looking at the drinks section, and saying, "This place only serves soda and tea! Where's the food?" Only looking at a tiny section doesn't give the full picture of what the restaurant is about; it's the same with the Bible. You have to look at it as a whole.
3. Study TOGETHER.
It's always best to make sure that you are studying the Bible with other believers. You can do it on your own, but try to also have people with whom you can talk and discuss the things you are studying and what God is telling you. Having that external perspective from a godly friend will help you get a better understanding of what God is teaching you through His word.
May God speak clearly as you read the Bible and learn more about Him and His love for you.
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