How To Study Your Bible Effectively

Many Christians will stand wide-eyed and at a loss of what to say on judgment day when accounts will be settled. The most common phrase then may be, “Oh no, had I known!”

Unfortunately, “I didn’t know” will do nothing for you.

“Why didn’t you know?”

“Well, you know I was a student…a worker…”

“You were too busy to learn God’s words?”

Okay. Let’s not go as far as judgment day.

What about now? Your life here on Earth?

What about the demons and battles you will face in your walk with the Lord?

Where will you draw strength when you have refused to eat the bread that gives life – the Word of God?

No one has ever pulled out their schoolbooks, or degrees to hold up against the devil, “In the name of (name of course of study or profession), depart from me!” It has never happened.

There are many reasons why a Christian should study the Bible, especially one who wants to be in the army of God. Intimacy with the Lord is built in the place of communion and fellowship with Him – privately and corporately – with the word and prayer.

In the beginning was the word,

He upholds everything with the word of His power


Why Should You Study The Bible? #

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. (Jos 1:8)

There are several reasons to study God’s words. Your Christian journey depends on it.

1.     God’s Word Is the Milk You Need For Spiritual Maturity #

Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up to salvation– (1Pe 2:2)

2.     God’s Words Instill Godly Wisdom in You #

See, I have taught you statutes and rules, as the LORD my God commanded me, that you should do them in the land that you are entering to take possession of it. Keep them and do them, for that will be your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples, who, when they hear all these statutes, will say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’ (Deu 4:5-6)

But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

(Jas 3:17-18)


3.     God’s Words Will Make You Holy #

To be ‘holy’ means to be ‘set apart’. It is from this word the word ‘sanctification’ is derived. Salvation is of the spirit, soul and body. While your spirit is renewed at new birth, the soul will be renewed with constant washing of the water by the word.

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. (Eph 5:25-27)

Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. (Joh 17:17)

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. (Rom 12:2)

But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. (2Ti 3:14-15)

Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. (Jas 1:21)

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. (Php 2:12-13)

4.     Learning God’s Words Brings Intimacy With The Lord #

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. (Joh 15:7)

So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (Joh 8:31-32)


5.     You Will Gain Hope & Examples Through God’s Words #

For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. May the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus (Rom 15:4-5)

Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come. Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. (1Co 10:11-12)

6.     Your Whole Armour As A Christian Is From The Word of God #

In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God (Eph 6:16-17)

7.     The Mysteries of God Are Revealed In His Word #

It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out. (Pro 25:2)

Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of your law. (Psa 119:18)

8.     God’s Word Is An Apparatus For Testing Spirits #

The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue. Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. (Act 17:10-11)

9.     God’s Words Heals #

Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD, and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones. (Pro 3:7-8)

Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction. (Psa 107:19-20)

10.You Will Learn How To Please God From His Words #

And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. (Heb 11:6)

So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. (Rom 10:17)

And so much more!

A Step-by-Step Guide for Effective Bible Study #

  1. Have Fixed Times

Having consecrated time is good practice. It helps you cut away, and focus. For many years, I would go aside every Sunday, after Church service to a secluded place to be with the Lord. It was in that place that He began to give me understanding and insight to things.

  1. Get Rid Of Distractions

Your cell phone, food, music – even Christian music – can be huge distraction.

  1. Have the Right Bible

It is preferable to study your Bible with actual translations and not paraphrases.

Translations are like translators. They take the original text, which was written in languages like Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic, and carefully convert it into another language, like English. The aim is to stay true to the original meaning of words, phrases, and sentences.

On the other hand, paraphrase are like storytellers. They take the heart of the original text and rephrase it in a way that’s simpler to understand and relatable to modern readers. It’s like someone retelling a captivating story using their own words. The aim here is to pass on the essence of what was said without necessarily using the exact words and phrases.

A reference Bible will help you compare scripture with scripture, giving you multiple approaches to a subject. Also, going through multiple verses gives context to whatever you may be studying in the Bible.

  1. Gather Your Writing Materials

The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth is always there to teach those who want to learn the will of God. But you must be ready to receive it. Get a sturdy notebook that can stand the test of time. Get pens and highlighters if you are the kind that likes seeing colours or you like highlighting things that pop out on your notebook. Do whatever will help you retain what you study.

  1. Pray for Understanding

Attempting to study the Bible without the Holy Spirit is as futile as building a house without a foundation. The Holy Spirit was given primarily to teach us the words of God. It is He who will take the words of God, breathe on them, and explain to you how they apply to your everyday life.

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. John 14:26

Here is a good prayer to personalize say before every study:

…that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might Ephesians 1:17–19 (ESV)

  1. Study!

Listen for the prompting of the Spirit, and note down things He brings to your mind as you go through the scriptures. In addition to this, you can study different books of the Bible – going through it chapter by chapter, and verse by verse. You could study characters or words and concepts such as giving, joy, etc. You could even study the Bible side by side with a Christian book or expound more on a sermon.

There is really no formula. You just have to be attentive and follow God’s leading per time.

  1. Take Down Notes

Some people expect to come out quoting 100 Scriptures on the first day they take the Bible to study. Thinking that will most likely leave you disappointed. As with any other thing, you get better with time.

The first time I started reading my Bible and taking notes, in June 1999, I copied out the Bible verse – word for word in red pen (that was the pen  I saw) with no notes attached. There was no ‘rhema’ or exposition. It was just Bible verses staring back at me in red ink. But as I continued the practice, I would gain understanding the word, and a time came I would fill up pages. Now, I could preach whole sermons from any part of the Bible I open.

You will gain more insight and understanding as you practice the word of God. More is added to the one who is faithful in little.

So, do not rush. Take the time to meditate and ask yourself questions:

“What’s happening here?”

“What’s the lesson to be gleaned here?”

“What are the characters commended or rebuked for?”

“What does the weight of Scripture from other passages say about this?” (this is where that center-reference Bible will come in very handy).

Suggestion: As a New Christian, the Gospel of John would be a good place to start. It’s like getting to know Jesus from the very beginning.

As you continue, you will come to a place where you are think faster than you can write. That is perfectly fine. Get as much as possible down; they will come in handy. Calm down and follow the rabbit trails. You may have to make side notes on things you will like to study some more when you are done with a particular trail. Keep pace with what the Lord is saying.

  1. Meditate On What You Have Down

Pause, and note how the things you have written down apply to you. You have the rest of the day to chew on that. Meditating the Jewish way actually means muttering to one’s self. That is you reinforcing the words you have heard again, and again. Take more notes if need be, on the practical things you need to imbibe the things you have learned.

  1. Pray About The Things You Studied

Talk to God about the things you have seen in His words, especially the areas the Holy Spirit convicts you of. Ask for His help to carry out the things written in His words. Do not worry; there is no need to playact. Just keep putting the word inside you. It will act like an internal force willing you to do the will of God:

…for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. Philippians 2:13

  1. Practice! Practice!! Practice!!!

Bible study is not a mere intellectual activity. No, it like opening treasure chests to get the treasure out of them. The word of God is to be your way of life. It will do you no good if you study the whole Bible and every single jot and tittle yet there is no change in your thought processes and actions:

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless. James 1:22-26 ESV

Remember, the more you do; that is practice the word of God, the more it opens up to you:

the more you do, the more revealed. He that is faithful in little, more will be given (Luke 16:10).


Should You Use a  Devotional? #

Devotionals are like little daily doses of spiritual inspiration and insight. Think of them as your morning coffee for the soul. They are short readings, often based on specific themes or verses from the Bible, designed to kick-start your day on a spiritual note.

While devotionals offer a moment to pause, reflect, and connect with your faith before going into the busyness of life, from what we have seen so far, it is much more fun to feed from the main source than pre-chewed nutrients. Don’t you think so?

We advise that you study the Bible directly. That way, you can distinguish false from true teaching.

But if you must use a devotional because of your life circumstances, make sure it is from a sound teacher/preacher. Cross-check statements made with what the Scriptures say, and provide for. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide/direct you. Also, seek the counsel of solid Christians who uphold the word of God. Their recommendation will most likely be from the best available options.

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Want To Know More About How To Study Your Bible Effectively? Check These Out: #

Books: #

  • How to Study The Bible by Watchman Nee:

Videos #

  • Bible Project:

–  What Is The Bible:

– How To Read The Bible Overview:

–  How To Read The Gospel:

Audios #

  • Ita Udoh

–          Study on Galatians:

❖      Part 1:

❖      Part 2:

❖      Part 3:

–          Food Sacrificed to Idols:

❖      Part 1: Food Offered to Idols —

❖      Part 2: Food Offered to Idols —

❖      Part 3: Food Offered to Idols —

–          Extra Oil For Dark Times:

❖      Part 1: The Price of Oil and Love  (Fri 01 02 2019)

❖      Part 2: Align With God’s Timing (Sun 03 02 2019)

❖      Part 3: Abundance of Rain: Giftings & The Prophetic Ministry  (Mon 04 02 2019)

Songs: #

  • GMT

–          Memory Verse on Deuteronomy 6:4-9

–          Memory Verse on John 1:1-5

–          Teach Our Hands To War: Teach Our Hands To War (Spontaneous) – w/Video || Ita Udoh || God’s Lighthouse Music

–          Shining Jesus:

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