What is Bible Study?

Instructor: Douglass Gunselman

Doug is currently a head middle school principal and has taught middle school/high school English/speech/computers. He has a master's degree in Educational Administration.

This lesson will cover the definition of Bible study. At the end of the lesson, the reader will understand what Bible study is and why it can be important in the studies of history, literature, religion, and science.

What is Bible Study?

If I asked you, what is Bible study? How would you respond? Would it be one answer or several answers? Some may perceive the Bible as a book that should be studied in the church and home only. What is fascinating about the Bible is that it can be read and studied for a variety of purposes anywhere.

So what exactly is Bible study? Bible study is simply the analysis of the Bible. The type of analysis really depends on the reader and his/her purpose for studying the Bible. A reader may choose the Bible as a resource, because it is a book with a variety of genres and purposes. It is also one of the most read books in history. Let's take a look at the types of Bible studies people may pursue.


1. Bible Study for Historical Purposes:

The Bible contains sixty-six books that can be used as historical accounts; however, some may dispute its accuracy. A historian may access the Bible and read it for its historic contents. The Bible mentions people, places and experiences that, in many instances, can be backed up by other historical manuscripts.

Example: Historians may have read in other historical documents about King David. They can compare these ancient manuscripts with the Bible to see if there is cohesion with the historical accounts. Historians can also look at archaeological records and compare them with the accounts in the Bible.

2. Bible Study for Literary Purposes:

The Bible contains a wealth of literary genres and techniques. Students or teachers of literature can access these literary elements in the Bible.

Example: A literature teacher may want to access poems of regret. They could access Psalm 51:10, which is David's poetry written with regret about his mistakes with Bathsheba. Even though the poem was written a long time ago, it still resonates with its readers!

3. Bible Study for Religious Purposes:

The Bible was written mainly to convey God's commands to humankind. People may study the Bible in order to find their purpose in life, to be encouraged, or to understand God's commands for His people. This can include clergy, counselors or just everyday people.

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