Basic Interpretation - Disciples Path Ministry

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A Basic and Intermediate Guide for Productive Bible Study
We are all called to help fulfill the Great Commission
I never suggest anyone solely depend on what I say or anyone else says about anything. I believe the only way a person can come to believe anything is to prove it to themselves. Proving something to one’s self is especially true when trying to grow in Christ Jesus and becoming more Spiritually mature. Let us dedicate or rededicate ourselves to study the Word of God more intensely. We must Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature (Mark 16:15). I pray the following will be a helpful guide.
Start with prayer for understanding His Word. Trust God will lead you with His Holy Spirit. The Bible will then come alive for you!

Choose a translation/version to use during your study. Avoid bibles translated from Latin rather than the original Koine Greek and Hebrew. Next, I find it helpful to begin my research with easy to understand Scriptures.
1)        Write down who the author was, why it was written, and for whom it was written.
2)        Do your best to learn as much background as possible, like dates, key people, geographic locations, and so on.
3)        Remember to let the Bible interpret and prove itself. Keep an open mind because rushing or taking shortcuts causes misunderstandings. The Apostle Peter wrote, 20“[K]nowing this first, that no prophecy of  Scripture is of any private interpretation, 21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:20-21).
4)        Context is vital. We must understand the verses and chapters coming before and after what we are studying.
5)        If you can, study the original language, Koine Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic. If this is not feasible now, continue, but with the knowledge, not all words can be translated correctly. A more in-depth study at a later time may well be necessary.
6)        If possible, start with the first chapter and write out each verse or section of verses in your own words. We can do this by asking: what does the Scripture clearly say What does the Scripture not say?

Example using Hebrews 5:1
The original Verse:
“For every high priest chosen from among men is appointed to act on behalf of men in relation to God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins” (KJV).
My Paraphrase:
High priests are human just like me, so they understand all my weaknesses. They will present sacrifices for my sins, their sins, and the sins of other people.
7)        Write down any question(s) you have about the passage, including any term(s) confusing your understanding.
              Why does it say high priest instead of merely priests?
     A position of high priest (Greek word archiereus) was conferred on Aaron by his brother Moses. Being a high priest was usually hereditary, and the appointment was for life. Only the high priest could enter the Holy of Holies. He was the lead ordained priest among all the priests who were mostly his staff. The hereditary appointment changed and corrupted in the 2nd century, and high priests were appointed by government officials or chosen by lot (,
8)        After those steps are completed, it is often helpful to consult a Bible commentary or other Believer’s insights about the passage. Many times this will provide a broader, more robust understanding of the passage. Remember not to take what someone else says about a topic, except as a general guide. We must do our work before we go to another’s work.
9)        If anything about the passage seems to “linger in your thoughts,” be sure to write it down.
10)     At this point, write down how the verse might be applied to you personally. If nothing seems to speak to you personally, that is fine. The particular passage may have a personal message for you after continuing a little farther or at another time.
11)     Be sure to keep track of what chapters and passages you have covered. It is helpful to title and further organize your work as you go. Include any lessons you have learned from each.
Studying the Bible is such an incredible journey, and it is a journey…not a race. As God reveals more and more to us, we grow in our Spiritual maturity — Praise God! Have fun, and please contact me if you believe I can help you on your journey! Amen.
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