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Studyin' the WORD | 8 Questions to ask

I am SO excited to talk Bible study tips today. Studying the Bible is one of my favorite things! { Can I confess something? It wasn’t always that way for me! It’s been a growing hunger that started in high school and has seeped into my bones. And now it makes me giddy!} I tell you that, so in case you’re saying, “that’s good for you and all...but not me"...don’t stress. Don’t leave it there. But don’t stress!

Like I said in my little confessional, my growth in this area has been a process. So in order to appeal to a wide range of Bible study habits, I’m going to focus this post on only one part of my study time. I realize that as a stay-at-home mom/work-at-home writer, I am not bound by the clock as much as others might be, so I don’t even want to talk time commitment. {BUT, I will challenge with this...find a time. Stick with it. Silence the excuses. Be obedient. Be committed. Be excellent with whatever time you have.}


A couple weeks ago, I read an article called “8 Questions to Help You Understand and Apply the Bible” by Matthew Harmon. It was totally up my alley, and I quickly sat down with a notecard and fancy markers to make a cheat sheet. I don’t want to summarize the article, since it is a great read by itself. I encourage you to head on over to the article when time allows!

So what DO I want to do?

I want to walk through a scripture passage using the 8 questions! {HAPPY DANCE time}

I am currently studying Romans and reading through Psalms. Because Romans is all inter-connected, I don’t feel like taking a snippet does the book justice. SO, we’re going to land in the Psalms...and what better place to start than the beginning? Psalm 1 it is.


First, let’s read the whole thing. Out loud is good. {Come on...I'll give you a high five 😉}

“Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law he meditates day and night.

“He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.

“Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
for the LORD knows the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.”

Now, let’s dig in! (please note that I am NOT the authority for interpretation/application. Check my words against THE Word! Also, know that these notes are definitely not exhaustive!)



QUESTIONS FOR INTERPRETATION

  1. What do I learn about God?
  • He knows the way of the righteous. He also knows the way of the wicked, and they will perish.
  • He is the ultimate decision-maker!
2. What do I learn about people?
  • Humanity is blessed by NOT...
    • walking in the counsel of the wicked
    • standing in the way of sinners
    • sitting in the seat of scoffers
  • Humanity is blessed by…
    • delighting in God’s law
    • meditating on God’s law day and night
  • A blessed man is...
    • like a tree with plenty of water to drink
    • Fruitful in its season with beautiful leaves
    • Prosperous
  • A wicked man is...
    • Like chaff driven away by the wind

3. What do I learn about relating to God?
  • The wicked will not stand in judgment (and that is all humanity without Christ)
  • Sinners will not stand in congregation with the righteous (and we are only righteous in Christ)
  • The LORD knows the way of the righteous (who are only righteous in Christ)
  • The way of the wicked will perish

4. What do I learn about relating to others?
  • DO NOT
    • Take counsel from the wicked
    • Stand with sinners
    • Sit with scoffers

QUESTIONS FOR APPLICATION

5. What does God want me to understand/think?
  • From other scripture I know that humanity is either an enemy of the cross or made righteous through the cross (i.e. Romans speaks of all this). It would be easy to allow pride to creep in, thinking myself better than the wicked, when really, left to me, I would always be God's enemy. I am called blessed ONLY in Christ.
  • The only way I can avoid perishing is through Jesus Christ and his death and resurrection.

6. What does God want me to believe?
  • That the wicked will disappear/perish but the righteous will be healthy and known by the LORD.
  • Righteousness comes by…
    • Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved (Acts 16:31)
    • Jesus is the WAY, the TRUTH, the LIFE and no one goes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6)
    • All humanity falls short...we cannot add or subtract from the cross (i.e. Romans 3: 19-31)

7. What does God want me to desire?
  • To be counted among the blessed
  • His law!
  • To be planted like a tree by streams of water
  • To bear good fruit
  • To not wither, but to prosper
8. What does God want me to do?
  • Avoid counsel of the wicked, standing with sinners, sitting with scoffers (and remember that I AM those things without Christ)
  • Delight in the law
  • Meditate on the law day and night

This is a pretty bare-bones outline, so if you like to expand (like me), feel free. You can include this as a section of your study time (I also do a lot of research/reading/writing) OR, I really think these questions can stand alone.

Prayer time is vital, so carve time in for that as well...remember, meditate day AND night! {A big goal, to be sure, but God is in the business of impossible things. He WILL COMPLETE the work He starts in us, and that is wonderful news! (Philippians 1:6)}

Be sure to let me know if you have any questions...leave comments on this post, or get in touch via my Facebook writing page!
Blessings in your studies! 💗







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