HOW TO STUDY THE BIBLE WITH PURPOSE
When I was younger, I thought I knew everything there was to know about the Bible and Jesus. Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m a firm believer that to accept Christ as our Saviour you don’t have to have a degree in biblical studies. No matter where we are in our faith, we are all equal. No one has more of a right to God’s grace than the next person. Now, I know that even though my faith was strong, it didn’t mean I knew all there is to know about God’s Word.
Something was tugging at my heart, pleading with me to open my Bible and dig deeper. I wanted a more personal relationship with God, I wanted to get closer to Christ. Looking back, I wasn’t walking with Christ or hand-in-hand with him. Truthfully, I was lagging behind and just stumbling along. And every difficult obstacle was causing me to fall further behind.
At the time, I had been following an amazing Christian blogger whom I have mentioned on my blog quite a few times, Jordan Lee Dooley, creator & writer for The Soul Scripts. Jordan was inspiring and she was the first person I saw who wrote in their Bible. I was shocked that she was writing in the sacred text, but it captured my interest. Jordan is super inspiring and was vibrantly expressing her beliefs. She sparked my interest in this “Bible Journaling” and the rest is history.
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I want to share with you how I went from struggling in my faith to growing my relationship with Christ– and you can too!
1) Find a Journal or Journaling Bible. I have linked the exact one I use and love at the end of this post. If you don’t have a journaling bible just use a simple journal or notebook.
I decided to personalize mine with washi tape. I marked the first page of each book with the washi tape. It adds color and makes it unique to me, just like my relationship with God. I also plan on using tabs to mark each chapter I have completely read through for even easier reference.
2) Grab a pen and some highlighters. At first, I was super nervous about writing in my Bible in pen, but after a while, I got over that fear. And as a HUGE pen fanatic, I am SUPER picky about my pens I use. Mostly because I don’t want the link to bleed through, so I have linked some of my favorite pens below as well. They don’t bleed through and they have a very small point so I can cram more notes onto each page.
As for highlighters, I stick to the Sharpie brand because they don’t bleed through as long as you don’t go over the same words more than once.
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3) Use devotionals and other resources to aid you. We are so blessed to live in a time when information and knowledge are tucked away in our back pocket, at the disposal of our fingertips. And the Bible was written in a completely different time period for a totally different audience, so it’s not the easiest to understand.
I use devotionals to inspire and give me direction as to what to study next. Then I use commentaries to help me gain a better understanding of the context of some of the harder to understand passages.
Here is a list of all the resources I use + how I use them in my studies:
Logos app (Download on the iPhone here and download on an Android here) I use this app to help me make connections from different books/verses. I also like to read some of the verses in different versions of the Bible (NIV, NKJV, ESV, etc.).
The Soul Script Sisterhood (You can join by going here) I am a member of the Soul Script’s Sisterhood, and for $7.99 a month, I get access to her monthly Soul Sessions and Mentor Meetings. Can’t forget the community of amazing women who I get to connect with on our Facebook page.
I also downloaded her ebook Brighten Your Bible Study (linked below) which helped guide me on what to highlight and take notes on.
BibleGateway (free online resource right here) I recently discovered this site and use it for a passage by commentary. The commentary is so insightful and truly helps me to understand to context of a lot of the passages
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4) Dig in and have fun! I honestly didn’t know where to start, at first. But for some reason or another, I started in Ephesians. I know I had a reason then, but now, I can’t tell you. What matters is I started. Doesn’t matter where you start, what matters is when. “There is no time like the present” has never been truer. I heard that John is a great place to start, probably because it talks mainly about who Jesus is and His purpose. It’s the book I’m working on now and I have never learned so much.
Start at chapter one, verse one of whichever book you want to start with. I started by highlighting verses that stood out to me and using Logos to find other verses that repeat the same message. Commentaries then help to pull out key information that might not be clearly expressed in the passage.
Most importantly, I take notes on what speaks to my heart. Messages that I need to hear and understand better. That’s my true secret. Make this about your relationship with God. For some reason, I always stumble across passages that pertain to whatever tell me what I need to hear. When I am down, I find strength and hope. When I am up, I find thanksgiving and joy.
Now you know how to study with purpose! And remember that it is important to have a deep, meaning relationship with God. Having that connection with God is the only way you will ever be fulfilled in life. And studying the Bible shows you how to place God in the heart of all that you do. Whether it is at work, in your friendships, or in your love life.
Comment down below if these tips helped you or share any of your bible study tips! If you liked these tips and use them, post a photo to Instagram and tag me in it and use the hashtag #studywithpurpose.
xo, Rachel Nicole
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