Are You Prepared to Study the Word of God
One of the things that new believers will quickly learn is that they are ill prepared to study the Word of God, they may not be in the proper state of mind, they may not be studying at a level they can comprehend or they may not be able to find the proper information from religious leaders and get discouraged. However all of these things are not excepted by God as reasons that a person could not study his word. Instead he prefers for his own to be prepared to learn his word, to be discerning of all teaching it to them, and to be serious about learning it so that they can be teachers and to go out and make disciples.
Learning proper techniques to prepare you for study of the word of God is very important to your overall understanding of the Word. Scripture can tend to be hard to understand but there are so many different ways to prepare yourself to find the things you need to know.
The Proper State of Mind for Bible Study
The first thing that anyone who is going to study the Bible will want to be is in the proper state of mind. This means are you prepared mentally to read, understand and interpret what the Bible has to say. Many people read the Bible for the wrong reason, some may only read it with the intent to prove it wrong, others read it to answer theological questions that they may have, and still others only keep their Bible around as a decoration in their house. However, for the true Christian, reading the bible is for several reasons, to prove yourself, to learn what God said, is saying and will say in the future, until his Son comes back.
Therefore, if you really are serious about your studies, if you have your mind on Jesus Christ, and if you are diligent in your biblical studies you will find that bible study will be easy, your understanding will be outstanding, and the best thing is the Holy Spirit will come to you and help you understand what God means by whatever is being said in the Bible.
Pray For Understanding
If you are having trouble with the Bible, or you are not sure if you will be able to comprehend everything that the Bible has to say, the best and most important thing that you can do is pray for understanding. You can ask God, in James 1:5, the bible tells you that if you ask God for wisdom, that he will give it to you. So if you are ready to study, then you should definitely take the time to pray for understanding.
Choose Your Version of the Bible
One thing you will need to do is choose the Bible you will study, there are many different versions or translations of the Bible, so you will have to choose the one that will give you the best study. For many people the New International Version, King James Version and the New King James Version, are the primary versions of the Bible and the most accurate of the versions or translations.
For me the King James Version is the very best of the versions, however the language of the time is very confusing. So I have found that having the NIV and the KJV together that I have a better idea of what I am learning and how these fit into the context of the entire chapter.
Know What to Ask for in Your Study
After you get into the proper state of mind and pray about the study you are going to do, the next state is to know what to ask.
"Who?", should be first, know who wrote the book, chapter or verse you are about to read, know who the subject of this particular section is of, know who God is talking to, know who the letter is being written to, know who the commandment applies to. By knowing who you are reading about, you will be able to have a better understanding of the scripture, and you have a better idea about whatever event is occurring.
The next question should be "What?" You should know what is going on, what it is talking about, and what the people are doing in the reading or study that you are doing. Know what people are thinking, what the rules for whatever they are doing is. When you ask What, you get an answer that may give you more understanding or at least help you figure out what that character or that situation did and how it furthers God's plan.
"When?" It is really important for those doing an in-depth study to know when something happened. Christianity is a religion of historical happenings, the ability to prove many of the claims made in the Bible has made Christians stronger in their belief that the Bible is inerrant and inspired by God. When having a bible study, know when it happened.
"Where?" You knew I would say to know where it happened, Jesus was born in Bethlehem, Patmos was a prison, Babylon was a place of great evil. Know where things happened when you are doing a bible study.
Next thing you will need to know is "How?" some of the things happened, such as how did the people in the desert get food and water, the answer would be that God provided. Know how something happened so that you know more about what is going on in the Bible.
Last, but certainly not least, the last question and quite possibly the hardest of all the questions you should ask when having Bible study is "Why?" you should be able to understand why something happened, why God chose this particular place, why this place was important, why the Virgin Birth. It is definitely important to our understanding of the Bible to know why things happen.
Bible Study Aids
One of the things that there is no shortage of is Bible study aids, there are bible dictionaries, bible lesson books, commentaries, bible study bibles, manuals and articles that will allow you to get the best education that you can find and that will help you to understand the scriptures. You can find books on the subject, smaller ebooks which include outlines to help you get an idea of what you should be studying, online videos and bible lesson plans, as well as free bible schools. Before your study you may want to have all of your bible helps close to your so that you can reference them while you are studying.