How do I study the Bible?

Reading the Bible is the best way to know God better and it is essential for you to grow as God’s child. There are many ways to study the Bible, so the key is to find a way that works well for you.

Before you begin, quiet your heart and ask God to teach you. Psalm 86:11 says, "Teach me your ways, O Lord, that I may live according to your truth! Grant me purity of heart, so that I may honor you.” Before studying the Bible, take time to pray. Ask God to help you learn.

Studying the Bible is like a conversation. God wants to explain His Word to you, but you need to be ready to listen to Him. The Holy Spirit is walking with you as you study. Listen to His voice and learn from Him.

"Holy Spirit, teach me as I read these verses. What do you want me to learn? Direct my thoughts. Protect my mind from distractions and help me understand Your Word.”

How to study the Bible comes down to some simple elements — What does it say? What does it mean? And How does it apply to me?

What does it say?

• Read the verses. What is the main theme?

• What style are the verses in? Since the Bible is literature, it is important to understand if the passage is a speech, a story, a poem, a prayer, etc.

• Who wrote it and what was their purpose for writing it?

• What was the culture and how would they have understood the passage?

What does it mean?

• Ask yourself questions like: What does this passage teach me about God or Jesus? What is happening in the passage? What does it mean?

• What is the context of the verses I am studying? When did it take place?

• Write the verses in your own words.

How does it apply to me?

• How does this affect my relationship with God or other people?

• How do these verses apply to my life today?

• Does this passage encourage me, correct me, or teach me?

The purpose of Bible study is to learn and grow. God never intended our Bibles to be put on a shelf and left for Sunday morning. So, get your Bible out—whether it is a printed Bible, and online Bible, or on an app—and read it. When you have questions about what you are reading, ask someone you trust. Perhaps you have a Christian friend, pastor, or church leader who can help you learn from God’s Word.

Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.”