“How do I study the bible?”
If a preacher were to make a list of the 10 most asked questions, certainly that one would be near the top. The bible tells us to study (2 Tim. 2:15) and meditate (Ps. 1) on God’s word on a regular basis. David said “Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee” (Ps. 119:11). Bible study is the lifeblood to faithfulness; therefore, it is important for us to know how to study it to the best of our ability. Here are suggestions that may help us to that end.
Be convinced of the need to study. It is possible for us to spend time in God’s word that is completely fruitless. If our heart is not in it then it will be completely unprofitable. We must be convinced and convicted that studying God’s word is vital to spiritual success; otherwise we will never devote ourselves to it as we should. We must remember what God told Israel in Deuteronomy 6:6-15. We must be like Ezra, who “prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments” (Ezra 7:10).
Make it a daily habit. Those in Berea were more noble than those in Thessalonica because they “received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11). In order to truly be a diligent bible student, we must invest ourselves in studying it every day. Designate a time during your day to open the scripture to read and meditate. Turn off the TV, silence your cell phone, and concentrate on God’s word. Make it a non-negotiable priority. One who is truly blessed is one who “meditates on God’s word both day and night” (Psalm 1).
Memorize scripture. The only way to truly hide God’s word in our hearts is to memorize it. Admittedly, memorization is easier for some than others, but everyone can do it. Start by memorizing one passage per day. Write it down on a piece of paper or an index card and take it with you wherever you go throughout the day. Read it routinely and recite it aloud. There are a number of different methods and even websites and phone apps that will help with this process. Remember, the key to memorization is repetition.