A Guide For Studying The Bible

Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed,
rightly dividing the word of truth.
2 Timothy 2:15

Set aside a period of time each day for study. If it means getting up early or lengthening
your day, do it. Study is serious business as it concerns the well-being of your soul.
Nothing is more important than your soul! Have a positive attitude.

We study to show God that we respect His word as direction for our life. Study done correctly
and reverently will gain His approval. It is necessary to study the word correctly.
We are given instructions by the apostle Paul to rightly divide the word of truth, ignoring
empty chatter, foolish and ignorant questions and disputes which cause strife, (2 Timothy 2:16, 23).

First, if our interpretation of a passage contradicts other scriptures, we are in
error and confused.
Second, we must read the passage and relate it to the context, (the paragraph and chapter),
in which it falls and make sure that the interpretation harmonizes with other similar scriptures
and the total purpose of God.

In reading a passage of scripture, be sure you understand the meaning of the words and ask yourself
the following questions:
(1) Who is speaking or writing?
(2) To whom is it spoken or written?
(3) What is the context of the message, command, parable, etc.?
(4) When was the message given?
(5) What kind of message is it? Prose, poetry, history, prophecy?
(6) Are the words to be taken literally or figuratively?
(7) Where was the writer? Where were the recipients?
(8) Why was it written or spoken?
(9) How does this passage fit into the theme of the book?
(10) How does this harmonize with other scriptures?

Read, Ask Questions, Consider the Context, and Harmonize.