So You Want To Start A Bible Study?
Congrats! You’ve made a big decision. You’re going to start a Bible study.
But how do you even go about starting one? It’s a bit more complicated than just picking up the Bible and talking about it with friends.
A lot of devout followers try their best to practice their faith daily, but sometimes studying the Bible alone doesn’t cut it.
There are a few super important things to keep in mind when you create your Bible study group.
This goes for an in person group or also an online group – the fundamentals stay the same.
At a bare minimum, you need to figure out who will be in the group, what the format will be, and how frequently you will run it.
We recommend using the King James Version of the Bible for all Bible studies.
You could also sign up for a daily Bible verse text message. At the start of each session, you could go around and have everyone say what the Bible verse of the day meant to them. The daily Bible verse is perfect because it sends the same verse to everyone. So everyone in your group would have the same Bible verse to discuss.
How Do You Make It Run Smoothly?
We’ve found that smaller groups are a crucial aspect of any Christian congregation or society.
Almost every Church offers a small group Bible study these days. It is not a recently discovered notion.
For example: Jesus had his small group of 12 followers, and although having a much broader community of followers, he spent most of his time and energy on these few people.
One of the most exciting and fulfilling experiences you can have as a Christian is leading small groups. You have a lot of power over the people in your organization.
So make sure to keep your group on the smaller side for proper engagement!
Leading A Bible Study
These ideas apply whether you’re leading students, married couples, men, women, teenagers, youth, or any other age group – it doesn’t matter.
While not everyone will be on the same page with their knowledge and engagement in the study, as a leader – they will feed off of your energy. So try to make it fun whenever you can.
If you’re leading, you will have a slightly different role than everyone else. People will be looking to you, to guide the session and set a timeline for the study group.
So, here are some of the crucial guidelines for leading a small group bible study.
1. Be familiar with your bible study group:
- Everyone in your small group should be familiar with each other.
- Show genuine concern and interest in them.
- The importance of names cannot be overstated. Nothing is more appealing to the ear than our name.
- You must know the names of everyone in your group.
- If a new member or visitor joins the group, make sure to welcome him and introduce him to the others.
- You can devote some time to an introduction that includes some fun questions or games if you have more than a visitor (For example, what is the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?)
- The most crucial aspect of conducting a bible study group is preparation. Nothing hurts more than seeing a bible study leader who isn’t prepared. I’m always shocked at how people spend so much time on assignments or jobs at school or work yet unprepared to lead a group!
- Plan ahead of time and spend a lot of time in God’s Word.
- Don’t think that you don’t have to put in the same effort as if you were preaching because it’s a discussion!
- Jot down your ideas, notes, questions, and replies… I’m not sure about you, but I have trouble remembering everything. Taking notes will be beneficial in future bible studies as well.
- Make a list of the questions. “What do you think about this verse?” isn’t enough. Make a question out of the verse. Reply to the original question.
- If you’re going to utilize a study guide, only use it as a guide! You are not required to follow them to the letter. (They are, after all, just recommendations!)
- You can use a Bible dictionary and commentary, but you should also utilize your intuition.
3. Be Imaginative and Creative:
- Be imaginative and creative in your conversations and queries.
- Make a mental image of the incident.
- Use maps, whiteboards, games, and timelines to help you learn.
- Keep the group involved by giving them a little project, quiz, or entertaining group activity.
4. Facilitator, Not Preacher:
- Keep in mind that you are not a preacher but rather the discussion group’s facilitator. Make sure you don’t go on and on.
- Be clear in your queries, and rephrase them if necessary.
- Don’t let it silence for lengthy periods; give suggestions and inquire of individuals.
- Make sure that everyone has an opportunity to engage in the debate.
- There will always be a select group of folks who are more responsive than others.
- However, don’t limit the discussion to just two or three people. Ask each person; remembering names will come in handy here.
- People who are normally silent will often surprise you with their insights.
- Keep in mind that quiet does not always imply an absence of participation.
- You’ll often discover that the conversation gets sidetracked or diverted to a different issue.
- Make sure you continue to or bring the group back to the primary topic or passage, use your judgment.
- If there is an essential point of contention, continue the discussion. But, again, the concept is to learn here and not stick to the passage.
- Setting aside 25-30 minutes for bible study is ideal. Make it as short as possible.
- Maintain the group’s concentration.
- If there is a significant theological debate going on, you can end bible study but continue the discussion so that those who have to leave can do so.
- If you run out of time, don’t try to finish the passage. You’ll be able to continue next week. (I’ve seen leaders complete the passage or topic quickly so that they don’t have to lead the following week.) But, again, thoughtful planning will be beneficial.
If you’d like a more concrete example as to what questions to ask, we’ve provided some for you.
Here is a defined list of questions you can ask to the Bible study group to get the conversation flowing:
What is the objective of this chapter and this book?
Are there any significant phrases that keep coming up?
Any verses in the Bible that are repeated continuously refer to topics that are very significant to God?
What are the implications of these verses for the study’s audience?
The Word of God should constantly be included in the Bible study.
After each reading, ask the audience what this verse or these verses mean to them.
Why You Should Start A Bible Study? What Are The Benefits?
Here are a few more topics of discussion for your Bible Study along with related verses.
1. The Bible convicts of sin.
Because God’s word is living and surface, sharper than any double-edged sword, it cuts through soul and spirit, joints and marrow, and assesses the heart’s thoughts and attitudes. (Hebrews 4:12)
If you’re in search of a unique way to express yourself,
Am I allowing God to use His Word to call me to repentance regularly?
2. The Bible cautions about sin.
Furthermore, they have forewarned your servant. Psalm 19:11
Do I listen to Scripture’s warnings, or do I have to learn the hard way?
3. God’s Word arouses confidence in preparation for salvation.
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing comes through God’s word. (Ephesians 10:17)
Because of the living and eternal word of God, you have been born again, not of a perishable seed, but an imperishable seed. Peter (1 Peter 1:23)
Is my goal in reading the Bible to gain knowledge or to transform my heart?
4. God’s Word enlightens us for redemption.
But as for you, keep doing what you’ve learned and believing because you know who taught you and how you’ve known the Holy Scriptures since childhood, which can make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.
Do I hope to be saved by religion or tradition? Do I understand God’s grace via faith?
5. God’s Word sanctifies us.
By the truth, sanctify them; your word is truth. (17:17) (John 17:17)
God desires for me to be as holy as He is. Do I allow Scripture to chisel me daily?
Wrapping Things Up
There’s no one way to run a Bible study – this is just an outline of what has worked for us in the past. With modern technology, we feel strongly that a Bible Study can also be done remotely on a Zoom call successfully.
We hope you’ve found this post inspiring and provides guidance.
Let us know how your Bible Study group is turning out below!