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MORE LESSONS TO CONSIDER; A GOOD STUDY GUIDE FOR SMALL GROUPS

28 Dec

How to Study the Bible (1)

INTRO:

1.  Illus.  A man said, “I want to do whatever the Bible says!”  Opened Bible and read, “Judas hung himself” … “go thou & do likewise” … “what thou doest, do quickly!”

2.  Illustrates not only that we need to study the Bible, but that we need to learn how to study the Bible.

3.  A person can know a lot of scriptures & not know the Bible (“Looking for a Preacher”).

4.  How can we effectively study the Bible to:

    a.  Know & abide in the truth ourselves?  (Jno. 8:31-32)

    b.  Teach it to others?  (2 Tim. 2:2)

 

I.  DEDICATE YOURSELF TO BIBLE STUDY1 Tim. 4:12-16.

  1.  Must respect the Bible as word/will of God Psa. 119:124-128.

      a.  God’s communication to mankind (2 Tim. 3:16; Heb. 1:1-2).

      b.  Must handle it properly – Soul depends upon it!  (2 Tim. 2:15)

      c.  Commitment that the Bible is the final word – cf. Rom. 4:3.

  2.  Must be devoted to learning word of God before you will develop good study habits1 Tim. 4:15 (true of learning in general).

      a.  Time1 Tim. 4:13

      b.  Study in order to use what you learn 1 Tim. 4:12, 14, 16; 2 Tim. 2:2.

        1)  Acts 17:11-12 – The study of the Bereans persuaded them!

        2)  Do not go to the Bible with your mind made up, but to learn what God’s will is for you!  (Example:  Jno. 5:39-40)

      c.  Keep the right attitude of heart.

        1)  Reverence 1 Ths. 2:13.

        2)  Love & humility 1 Cor. 13:2.

        3)  Faith in everything the Bible says (Rom. 10:17).

        4)  Desire to know & willingness to obey – Jno. 7:16-17.

 

II.  DECIDE WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO STUDY.

  1.  Topic?  Text?  Character?  Period of history?  Etc.  Sometimes ambition runs ahead of practical need in determining what to study.

  2.  What is needed at the moment:

      a.  For yourself – Jas. 1:22-25.

      b.  For the student (salvation of others) – cf. Acts 15:4-6; 1 Cor. 15:12.

  3.  Be practical in your study of God’s word.

    -[For our purposes, let’s use Baptism as our topic for study].

 

III.  DEFINE THE SUBJECT YOU WITH TO STUDY1 Pet. 4:11.

  1.  Proper definitions are crucial Isa. 5:20; cf. Matt. 22:23, 29-30.

  2.  Discover the Bible definition(s) & usage(s).  cf. “Baptism” —

      a.  “a Christian sacrament marked by ritual use of water and admitting the recipient to the Christian community (Merriam-Webster Online Dict.).

      b.  Matt. 3:11 – Did John’s baptism admit people to the Christian community? 

      c.  Baptisma (Matt. 3:11):  “Immersion, submersion.”

 

IV.  DISCOVER WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ON YOUR SUBJECT.

  1.  Determining the context is crucial.

      a.  Before & after the passage in question.

         1)  1 Cor. 1:17 – Some conclude, “baptism is not essential.”

         2)  Paul did baptize some (1:14-16).

         3)  Reason for 1:17 is found in 1:13, 15:  Lest some claim they were baptized in his name!

      b.  “A text without its context becomes a pretext!”

  2.  Observe who is speaking.

      a.  cf. Matt. 3:11 – “Baptism of repentance” – John.  But, Acts 19:4-5

      b.  Or again:  While all Scripture is inspired – doesn’t mean all statements are true & for our imitation – cf. Gen. 3:4; Job 2:9.

      c.  Establish the purpose of the speaker/writer.  Helps determine whether we should do the thing recorded.

  3.  Observe to whom each statement is addressed.

      a.  Alien sinner? Christian? Unfaithful Christian? Israel? Nations? …

      b.  Otherwise, false doctrines will result.

      c.  Illus.  Acts 1:4-5, 8 – Holy Spirit baptism – Apostles (1:1-3)

      d.  Illus.  How to be saved:  “Sinner’s prayer”?

         1)  Acts 8:22-23 – But, Simon was a Christian!  (8:12-13)

         2)  1 Jno. 1:9 – Confess sins in prayer, but said to Christians!  (1:7-8)

  4.  Consider all the Bible says on the topic.

      a.  Illus.  NT speaks of ~7 baptisms, but Eph. 4:5 says “one baptism.”

         -Must decide which one applies to us today by looking at each one in its context and the way it is applied therein.

      b.  Illus.  “Faith” in Jno. 3:16:  Must be more than mental agreement, because of Jas. 2:17-20 (many other passages).

Conclusion

1.  We must devote ourselves to study; to considering the Scriptures & understanding them – 2 Tim. 2:7; Acts 17:11-12.

2.  Our salvation & spiritual safety depends on it – Hos. 4:6; Jno. 8:31-32.

3.  To be continued…

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Posted by on December 28, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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