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Posted 10/17/2023 in Christian Mental Health Tips

20 Bible Study Tips for a More Meaningful Journey

20 Bible Study Tips for a More Meaningful Journey

2 Timothy 2:15 New Testament Bible verse about studying God's Word that links to our disclosure policy

In church, we’re taught to read the Bible but not how to read the Bible. It seems daunting, but reading and understanding the good book is an essential part of Christianity. New believers and lifelong learners alike can struggle when it comes to being consistent and understanding God’s word, so these Bible study tips are for anyone looking to get a deeper meaning out of their Bible and draw closer to God.

Quote by Bryson Bernarde Bible study is a lifelong journey. God is pleased with the effort to learn His words, regardless of how clear your understanding isLike this Content on Facebook

What is Bible Study?

Simply put, Bible Study is the analysis of the Bible. It's the time you dedicate to learning the word of God. The meaning of the Bible may mean different things to different people, so it often depends on the intent of the reader as well as the perspective they have on how they interpret it. While two people may have differing opinions on meaning in the Bible, what's important is knowing that you are strengthening your faith by learning, and the more you show God you care, the more He reveals to you.

20 Tips for Studying the Bible For Beginners or Experienced Believers

I was introduced to the Bible as a child, but never read or studied it until attending a Christian high school. Even then, I remember struggling with the terms and style of writing that’s used. Some stories stuck, many didn’t. 

For years I was intimidated by the Bible, even overwhelmed. It just didn’t make sense to me! If you’re there, keep reading. Even if faith has been a part of your life for a long time, or you are a new Christian wondering where to begin, there’s always room to improve your Bible study habits, and here’s how to do it.

1. Get the Right Translation

Very few people will actually prefer the King James version over others. It’s the most difficult to read and doesn’t make as much sense to today’s modern English speakers. Many churches use the NIV, which is a well-respected translation. The ESV is often referred to as one of the most accurate translations.

Check out Bible.com where there’s many different translations of the same verses and get a feel for which you prefer. There are dozens of translations, so find the one that helps you learn the best.

2. Write in Your Bible

What?? Yes, you heard me. Don’t be afraid to highlight or take notes in your Bible. I know it is God's Word but mark the passages that are important to you, and it will be easier to find what you need when you come back to it later on.

3. Start Small

Some people like to start from the start and begin by reading the Bible right from Genesis. If that works for you, great. But for many, that’s a daunting task. Start with reading one chapter a day and once that becomes a habit, you can up your game.

4. Schedule Bible Study

Consistency is key here. When it’s planned, you do it. When it’s a wish, it doesn’t happen. Schedule time on a consistent basis to read and study the Bible. Make it the same time each day so you develop a routine, and pair it with events that trigger your brain into remembering. For example, open your Bible with breakfast each day.20 Tips to Study Scripture Pin It & Save for Later!

5. Pray First

Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law. ~ Psalm 119:18

Ask God for focus and understanding while you read your Bible. Use this time to build your relationship with the Lord. Open your heart to the Lord and ask to see and hear his message. It makes a difference.

6. Forgive Yourself

The Bible doesn’t say “Thou shalt read one chapter each day.” Some days you may only read a verse, and others you may miss altogether. Don’t fret, be easy on yourself. It’s a difficult journey, and to succeed in the long haul you’ll need to be forgiving of yourself.

7. Write Scripture

Everyone’s heard that writing things down helps you remember. Make it a habit to find one verse each day that you like and to write it down, whether on a notebook, journal, or whiteboard. Keep a log for this purpose because someday you’ll be able to look back at what you were thinking about during those times. It’s a record of your walk with God.

If you need a notebook to write the scripture, consider the below notebooks: 

Forgiven 1 John 1:9: Bible Note Taking JournalForgiven 1 John 1:9: Bible Note Taking JournalForgiven 1 John 1:9: Bible Note Taking JournalMy Bible Study Journal: A Simple Guide to JournalingMy Bible Study Journal: A Simple Guide to JournalingMy Bible Study Journal: A Simple Guide to JournalingChristian Art Gifts NotebookChristian Art Gifts NotebookChristian Art Gifts NotebookBible Study Journal: Bible Study Journal NotebookBible Study Journal: Bible Study Journal NotebookBible Study Journal: Bible Study Journal NotebookEphesians 6:11: Bible Note Taking JournalEphesians 6:11: Bible Note Taking JournalEphesians 6:11: Bible Note Taking Journal


8. Choose a Book

Certain books, like Philippians and the Gospels are easier to read, especially for beginners. Many of these verses are powerful and meaningful. Some also say the New Testament is easier to read than the Old Testament. Try it out for yourself and see what works for you.

A big mistake that beginners often make is opening the Bible and just starting to read. While this is great, having a solid plan of action will help you to be consistent and succeed with your Bible study in the long term. Bible study is rewarding, so create your plan today and get started on your journey of becoming closer to God.

9. Read the Full Context

Understanding the Bible goes beyond simply selecting verses that resonate with you. To gain a comprehensive comprehension of its message, delve into the historical and cultural context by examining the surrounding chapters and verses. Invest time in uncovering details about the author, the intended audience, and the purpose behind the text. Only through these efforts can you attain a complete understanding of the narrative.

It's a frequent occurrence to encounter isolated verses on the internet and social media, removed from their historical and cultural context. The Bible's depth goes far beyond individual verses, and it's essential to grasp the entire narrative to genuinely discern the intended meaning of a passage.

10. Have a Teachable Spirit

One thing I know for sure is just how much I don’t know. There are many concepts in the Bible we wrestle with. Stories, truths, theology- it’s hard. Sometimes we just want to understand a basic truth! Dig and ask questions, but remember that we can’t and won’t understand it all. Keep asking the hard questions and don’t quit!

11. Allow God to Speak

The Bible is not about, “what’s in it for me?” Read to understand, not to check off a list. The Word truly comes alive once you begin to soak in what you read. As you spend time in the Word daily, God begins to reveal more and more to you.

12. Choose a Character to Get to Know

Find someone in the Bible and get to understand everything about them. This is a fun way to read the Bible while diving into someone’s life. It’s almost like watching a movie about that character. Ask questions like, how do they know Jesus Christ? What’s their relationship like? What do I have in common with them? And, what can be learned from their life?

For other fun ways to study God's Word, check out this article about 40 different Bible study topics.

13. When You Learn, Write it Down

We forget 80% of the things we read and hear, so use a notebook or journal to write down important insights you gain throughout your readings. When we show respect toward the things we learn, God is willing to share more. Keeping a journal of your learnings also makes it easy to go back weeks, months, or years down the road and remember key points that were important to you.

14. Listen to it

Who says we have to read the Bible? Listening to it can be a good change of pace and can offer up a different perspective. Plus, it’s easy to listen while you drive, cook, or tidy up around your home. Some podcasts and websites will even break down passages for you and explain it to you in terms easier to understand.Ad to find a local Christian counselor and life coaches

15. Share it with Someone Else

Those around us can enhance our study. Read an interesting story? Share it with a friend or family member. When you share what you read out loud, you’re more likely to remember it and it opens up discussion to deepen your connection with the Lord Jesus Christ.

16. If You Don’t Understand it, Look it Up

Let’s face it; you’re not going to understand everything you read. There will be terms that don’t make sense to you and terms that are tough to fully understand. Don’t hesitate to hop on Google and search a word or phrase. Thousands of others have probably asked the same question and there’s an abundance of resources out there to help you gain understanding of the Word of God.

17. Pause and Listen

It’s great that you’re seeking out the word of God, but just as important is to slow down and listen. When we quiet our minds and meditate after reading the Bible, God can better work to enlighten us through the Holy Spirit.

Like how you prayed before reading the Bible, pray after as well. Ask God for understanding and the ability to remember what you read. Ask Him to clear up anything that’s still confusing to you and to provide you with the strength to continue on your journey of becoming closer to God.

18. Study with Others

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” — Proverbs 27:17

For some, sticking to a new habit may be difficult without help. However, if we dedicate times to study with someone else or with a study group, we now have accountability. The major benefit of studying with others is the addition of new perspectives. Stuck on a verse or not understanding a story? It might make perfect sense to someone else, and they’d be happy to share their thoughts on the subject

19. Seek Guidance

While some questions can be Googled, sometimes it’s best to reach out to your Pastor, priest, or Bible study teacher. These individuals have wisdom from years of Biblical study and have a much more mature understanding of what you’re reading.

20. Stay Positive

Learning the Bible is a lifelong journey. God is pleased with effort to learn His words, regardless of how clear your understanding is. With time and consistency, you will begin to understand deeper and God will show us more of His kingdom.

Final Thoughts on Tips for Studying the Bible

When you're first beginning your journey to biblical literacy, it may feel like you're sitting at the bottom of a mountain, ready to climb, wearing only Crocs. The beauty of this is that all that matters is that you start. The more consistent you are, the more consistent your learning will be. Pretty soon, you'll start connecting dots and before long it will be clear how much of the Bible is intertwined and how powerful God's message is. Take these tips and watch yourself grow on your journey of faith and soon you'll see your life completely change for the better.

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Bryson Bernarde Guest post profile pic for Bible study tips on therapy for Christians Bryson Bernarde is the author for Keep God in Life, a blog focused on providing helpful life tools to Christians to give them the strength, hope, and motivation to stick with Christ. As a lifelong entrepreneur who’s made it all and lost it all, Bryson pulls from his experience in struggles and hardship, understanding what it’s like to go from the very top to the bottom, quickly. This ignited his newfound focus on helping others to not lose faith as they climb to get to where they want to be in life.

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