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How To Do An Inductive Bible Study

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Author Topic: How To Do An Inductive Bible Study  (Read 626 times)
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« on: January 03, 2009, 08:50:27 pm »

Inductive Bible Study

1.  Paragraph Titles
   Read through each paragraph and select a word or phrase (not more than three words) from the text itself, to identify the paragraph.  Write these on the right side of the page.
2.  Paragraph Themes
   Look at the paragraphs again.  What is each paragraph attempting to say, generally?  Highlight them or put them in separate colors.

3.  Initial Observations
   There is no set procedure as to what to look for in this stage of the study.  These are first fresh moments of your visit to the passage.  Remember that observation is the art of seeing things as they really are.  Some prefer simple skeletal questions as Who? What? When? Where? Why?  Usually you write a lot of the text out.  You may use the text provided.  Mark it up as you would like.     

4.  The Key Center and its Relations
   The starting place for a main topical study is the finding of a “key center” in the segment.  It is a short word or phrase, which “sticks to you” as you study the passage.  This key must represent a thought or concept that is found in each paragraph, you should not choose a word or phrase that cannot be related to each paragraph.  On the sheet, record the key center in its approximate location
   in the paragraph frame.  Put it in a box.
5.  Recording the Study
   In each paragraph division, underline the phrase to which the key center is being related.  An arrow is drawn from the key center to the phrase related to the key center.

6.  Master Title
   Construct a “master title” for this main topical study.  This usually represents your own words.  It would relate specifically to the key center.  In many cases it is the same as the center.

7.  Paragraph Points
   Secure paragraph points for this topical study, and record them in bold print in the left-hand margin of your sheet.  These are made up by you and should relate to the master titles.  Make these 1-3 words long.  (Example would be in Mark 1:1-13 that the “Master Title “ is: Jesus Came.  And the Paragraph Point is: Bring Good Tidings for the first paragraph.)

   Various graphic aids can be used such as: indentations, different colors, underlining, arrows, LARGE and small capitalizations’s, numerical listings {1, 2, 3}, blank spaces   , small-type letters, shading, circling, boxing, highlighting to name a few.

8.  Setting Details       ☼
   Is there a main character in each paragraph?  Any significance?
   Watch the time element!  On one of Jesus’ days, the three paragraphs could represent morning; noon and evening or 4 chapters could represent 48 hours.
   Does the place of action change in one segment?  Are there implications?
   Look for any pattern in the order of the action, such as sermon; reaction, explanation.

9.  Atmosphere
   What is the mood of the segment as a whole?  Treachery?  Hate?  Encouragement?  Write at the bottom of your sheet what you think.  This is a helpful clue in interpretation of the passage.

10.  Relation of a Passage to the Entire Book
   Keep in mind the theme of the whole book while analyzing smaller passages.  For example, the key center of John “Who am I to You” will be continually referred to in reference to Christ’s identity in various study passages.

11.  Observation
   Ask, “What does it say?”
12.  Interpretation
   Ask, “Why does it say that?”  “Why did they choose this?”

13.  Application
   Ask, “How does it apply to me?”
   True Bible Study involved diligent response and application.  “Study without response cannot bring forth life.” (Plutarch)
   You should not come to the Bible to do something to it, but to let it do something to you.

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"I don't claim to have found the truth but I know it has found me."  Sara Groves

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