Friday, May 8
There are a lot of different approaches as to how to study the Bible. Too many of us stop short of meaningful study. We read a passage, get an idea of the core idea and “move on.” Many times the context is not considered, and we don’t always get the right meaning of key words, particularly if we are using older versions. I want to suggest a method that has been very helpful to me. It’s simply raising a lot of questions. To illustrate, take the statement that “Grass is green.” Not really hard to get the core message here. But let’s raise a few questions anyhow. Why is grass green? Why not blue or red or yellow? There is a grass called “blue grass.” Is it really blue? Why is it blue when most grass is green? What difference does the color make? Does the color indicate other characteristics of the grass? Is blue grass more useful than green grass? Does blue grass have more nutrient than green grass? There are hundreds if not thousands of different kind of grasses. Why? They all produce seeds, but some of them produce seeds that we eat, i.e., rye grass. Do all grasses have a designed purpose for man? Are there some grasses that we call “weeds?” Are we missing God’s purpose when we relegate a grass to a weed? What causes grass to become green? Why do grasses tend to turn brown? How do grasses survive winter even though they turn brown and appear to be dead? How cold does it have to be to kill a particular grass? Does it take a long freezing spell to kill it? Will grass survive when it is under water for a time? How long a time? What if it is in water and the water freezes into ice? Why are some grasses clumpy and others not? How are the root systems different from grass to grass? What does clipping the tops (mowing the grass) do to the plant? OK, you get the picture. I could raise many more questions about grass and so could you. I don’t really expect you to do this with grass or any other plant. I want to apply the process to studying the Bible. I am in the process of studying the transfiguration and I raised a number of questions and ended up trying to find the answers. After several hours I don’t have all the answers, but I learned a lot. God’s ways are “past finding out,” but He has given us the Bible for a reason. No matter what system you use, STUDY of the Bible is much more rewarding than merely reading it. When I really get into a passage, I don’t want to quit—even when supper is on the table. The next few blogs will give you some of my findings.