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Bible Study Methods - Twelve Ways You Can Unlock Gods Word

Updated on July 1, 2020

About the book

  • Author: Rich Warren
  • Published: 1981 and 2006
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Number of pages: 269

The Book

Although I have been attending Church on and off for most of my life, reading the Bible is one thing I've always struggled with. I have been to Bible Study classes in the past, which always helps. But I think it's always good to have books to fall back on for reference and help. So I decided to buy Bible Study Methods - Twelve Ways You Can Unlock God's Word written by Rick Warren.

Basically, this book gives you 12 methods to study and understand the Bible in an easy to read way. Each chapter of the book is well laid out with bullet points on information he wants you to understand and pick up on. I like the fact that within each chapter, are short paragraphs, easily laid out so you pick up where you left off easily. The 12 methods are:

  1. The Devotional Method of Bible Study
  2. The Chapter Summary Method of Bible Study
  3. The Character Quality Method of Bible Study
  4. The Thematic Method of Bible Study
  5. The Biographical Method of Bible Study
  6. The Topical Method of Bible Study
  7. The Word Study Method of Bible Study
  8. The Book Background Method of Bible Study
  9. The Book Survey Method of Bible Study
  10. The Chapter Analysis Method of Bible Study
  11. The Book Synthesis Method of Bible Study
  12. The Verse-by-Verse Method of Bible Study

In the first chapter, for instance, Rick gives a definition of the devotional Method and why this method is important when studying the Bible. He gives an in depth explanation as to why this method should be applied and how it will help you with your studies. This is how he explains each chapter of the book and will give the reader a full explanation of why each method will work. Of course we are all different, and we all read the Bible in different ways. But Rick will point out certain aspects to think about. And he will also suggest extra reading material you may want to purchase to aid your Bible study. For instance, he recommends purchasing a Concordance Bible. You will find throughout the book that he will suggest extra books to buy to help with your journey. These books, however, can come at an extra expense which some people may not have for whatever reason.

At the end of each chapter is a study form and different assignments and activities to do. For example, in the first chapter, there is a chapter of the Bible to read, along with a meditation, application and a verse to learn by heart. There is also a study form which you can fill in yourself if you wish to. Personally though, I don't like filling the books in. If I want to make notes, I will do this separately in a notebook. You will find a lot of this at the end of each chapter. There are different forms, studies and personal notes to fill in if you so wish to.

Rick will give easy to read instructions on how to apply his methods to the Bible and there are tasks and assignments you and your Bible group can take part in. Yes, this book is suitable for Bible groups too. On the back of the book it says that it is suitable for individuals, small groups, Churches and seminary classes. I believe this is true. Rick will give step-by-step study guides on how to tackle certain parts of the Bible. In Chapter 7 for example, The Word Study Method, he gives 3 common difficulties in doing word studies. He explains, in the 1st example, that the word servant has 7 Greek equivalents, each one having a slightly different meaning. You can understand why some people will find the Bible confusing and difficult to follow at times. He suggests checking a concordance for the meanings of each word.

At the end of the book he gives a plan for studying the Bible systematically. He gives a 4 year plan in reading the Bible. This could prove helpful if someone wants to do this plan over the course of 4 years. He does note you can chop and change it to suit you though.

My Thoughts

I find this book really helpful and useful. It's one of those books you can pick up and go to a particular topic or chapter if you want to, and read about certain parts of the Bible that you're struggling with. The book is broken up into sections, so it's not one long read, which I find really handy. Each section is quite short and easy to follow and gives explanations and reasons into why this study guide is for you.

As I said, throughout the book he will suggest extra reading tools to aid your reading of the Bible. I'm sure some of what he suggests is available to read for free online, such as a Concordance Bible. But he does suggest books to purchase for further reading. For example, in the chapter, The Book Background Method, he gives 3 books you will need to purchase which, he notes, will provide helpful background material. I think these extra books are more relevant if you are part of a Bible Study Group or want to look more in-depth into the Bible. But I think this is all down to personal choice if the reader wants to purchase the extra reading material or not.

Personally, I'm really glad I purchased this book. It's easy to follow, and Rick gives easy explanations on everything he writes about. I love how interactive the book is too with the forms and assignments at the end of each chapter. I would suggest having a notebook ready though so you can make notes yourself. This book will certainly aid me with my Bible reading.

Bible Study Methods - Twelve Ways You Can Unlock God's Word by Rick Warren

© 2020 Louise Powles


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