Meet your Bible study guide.

We'll get to the point of all this. I am your Bible study guide.

We're going to take a journey. It won't be a long one. But it will be the most fulfilling experience you've ever had. So let's take a tour. Let me be your guide to the world of Bible study.

On this trip, I, your Bible study guide, will take you on a tour through proper Bible study habits. We'll visit each "location" on our "map" for correct study. So let's board the Bible study tour bus for an exciting trip with me, your Bible study guide.


Final Check

As we board the bus, we need to make a final check to make sure we have everything we need. Your Bible study tour bag should include a copy of the Bible. We can take no Bible study tour until we have that. No other book will do.

Only the Bible is our passport to the world of proper Bible study. I guess you could say it's our Bible study guide book. Also, we hope you remembered your paper and pencil. These indispensable tools will provide an excellent way of recording any thoughts that come to you during your trip. If you prefer, you may use your laptop and a good word processing program.

Although not necessary, you should also carry a good concordance in your travel sack. You can use the one in back of your Bible. But those don't always have what you're looking for. Find a good concordance, and get acquainted on how to use it.

You might want to have your dictionary handy. This is useful when unfamiliar words "pop up." A Bible dictionary is even better.

I, your Bible study guide, will now make the last call...

"All aboard the Bible study tour bus!"

Fasten your seatbelt. It's time to go...


Our First Stop

As we rumble down the Bible highway, on our left we see our first destination. We call this stop "Bible Passage Pass." Let's disembark and view the scenery.

Here we choose an appropriate passage to study. We need to spend more time at this stop than some of the others. If we get it wrong here, our time on the Bible study tour bus could be a real drag.

There are a couple rules regarding choosing a Bible passage. They include...

1. Make sure you choose a passage appropriate to your level of learning. If you're a beginner, start in the New Testament. That's near the back of the Bible, starting in Matthew and going to the end of the Scriptural text.

The first four books, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, better known as the gospels, would be a good place to start. These reveal the life of Jesus in detail.

Many Bible "experts" say start in John. But it's teachings can be a bit deep. So, start in one of the other gospels and then go to John to get a more in depth idea of Christ's life and His salvation. More about this later.

If you've been on the Bible tour bus before, you might want to try something a little more exciting. The Old Testament holds many treasures any weary traveler would cherish. We'll get into this in a little more detail at another stop.

The Pauline Epistles, or Letters of Paul, also hold refreshment for the thirsty Bible study pilgrim. It depends on what you're looking for.

2. Choose a passage that appeals to what you want to learn. As we said before, the life of Christ is found in the Gospels. Start there if your interest in His life is most intense.

But it would be foolish to start in Genesis if you want to learn of Jesus. Your studies might eventually lead you there. But starting in the Gospels has more application in this situation.

The same goes for just about any passage you choose. Another variation of Bible study includes choosing a topic that interests you first. Then choose a passage that has to do with your interest.

Let's board the tour bus and continue our trip.


Next Stop

Here comes our next stop. This is a scenic overview we call "Pondering Peak." Here we read the passage through carefully noting important points and ideas it presents. This is where pen and paper may become important.

As you read, write down any ideas that may occur to you. You don't have to find any "deep thoughts" at this point, just what strikes you as you read. Focus mainly on the simple reading of the text for understanding.

Look up any words you don't understand in the dictionary. A Bible dictionary might help here if you bothered to bring one. But if not, a normal dictionary can give you basic, generic meanings of words. Writing down these meanings may be useful later.

If you're done here, board the tour bus and let's go to our next destination.


Lunch Stop

Time for lunch. I wouldn't be a good Bible study guide if I didn't remember to stop the tour for the meal.

We'll stop for this break at the "Interpretation Tourist Center." Here's where we get into the meat of the subject. (Yes! Pun intended!)

We'll dine on fare fit for kings taken from the Book of the "King of Kings." The Bible remains the greatest Book ever written. So we need to be careful in preparing to dine on it's passages.

Interpretation really isn't as difficult as it sounds. For those who have accepted Christ as their personal Lord and Savior God has given His Holy Spirit to help lead the believer along the way. If you haven't met Jesus yet click here to spend your break with the Creator of the Universe. It could be the greatest lunch appointment you've ever had!

Don't worry I, your Bible study guide, won't forget about you. We'll wait right here until you're finished.

For the believer, take time in prayer to thank God for what He has done. Also, ask Him to guide you as you dine on the biblical delicacies only He can provide.

Now, let's chow down. This part takes a little doing.

You need to be careful at this point. When interpreting the Bible, study what it says and take it at face value. Too many times people "read into" what the Scriptures say.

Take it for what it's worth. Don't try to find analogies in places they don't exist. Be careful to pay attention to the context of a word or verse. Make sure what you find agrees with the greater part of the passage and book.

And most importantly...

...let Scripture interpret Scripture. The best commentary on the Bible is cross references from God's Word. Make sure what you find about the passage squares with the rest of the Bible.

If what you find does not agree with another passage, study the cross reference passage and it's context to make sure the subjects and main idea are similar to what you're studying.

If they are, try to find differences between the two that might explain why they seem to suggest different conclusions. Chances are there may be a different practical idea the author is trying to get across.

If you just can't figure it out find a good, trustworthy commentary to help you out. But keep in mind...

...commentaries are fallible books written by fallible men and women.

God's Word is infallible. It's perfect. Never give a commentary or author the same place you give the Author of the Universe, God.

More about interpretation in another lesson. So...

...shove down the last of your food, get out motion sickness medicine...

...and let's get back on the road.


Last Tour Stop

The last stop on our tour leads us to "Application Point." Here we "view" the whole reason why God has given us this Book...

...to teach us how to live better lives.

If we don't apply God's Word, we miss the point (yes, pun intended again) of the whole study method. God wants us to live better lives. He desires us to do better at honoring and glorifying Him.

Try to find application in what you study. But don't force it. Once again, too many times people find things in Scripture that aren't there. Make sure you check your interpretation thoroughly before you make any applications.

I wouldn't be a good Bible study guide if I forgot to tell you this...

...God has a message for you. He tells us everything there is for our profit (II Timothy 3:16.)

Time to go home. Let's board one last time.


End of the Line

Here we are at the end. I hope I've been a useful Bible study guide to you.

Don't forget to pick something up at the "Scripture Souvenir Shop." You should always "take something with you" when you finish with your Bible study.

This is more than just mere application. This is where we live it! Obey God's Word, and people will notice. Perhaps your change might inspire someone to change as well.

Remember...

The Bible is your Bible study guide book for all of life.

Well...

This is the end. I, your Bible study guide, will give the last call...

"End of the line! Everybody off!"

At least, until we do this again!


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