As promised, today I’m sharing my favorite Bible study resources.
Many of us and many of our women do not feel equipped and/or confident in teaching out of God’s Word without a book study to help uncover the meaning of scripture.
Thankfully there are several resources that can help us as we dig into God’s Word.
*Please note this post contains affiliate links.
Last year our Women’s Ministry offered the study Read the Bible for Life. (The content was great. We opted to show shorter clips of the videos.) The author, George Guthrie, highlights the importance of context in reading the Bible. He says, “When we make an effort to discover the context for a passage of Scripture, we find important clues for better understanding the meaning of that Scripture.”
In week two of Read the Bible for Life we examined five areas of context: historical, cultural, literary, theological and personal.
For example, when we look at the cultural context of a cross (something we usually consider as a positive symbol of our beliefs – think church steeples topped with a cross) we discover that it was “such a symbol of horror and shame that a person might not feel comfortable even saying the word in polite company. It was a shocking word because the cross was used as a means of torture and execution…”
Likewise when we examine the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15:11-32 we discover that a patriarch would never run as he did toward the prodigal son (v. 21) it would have been undignified. Only slaves and children would have been seen running. His joy was so great that he ran anyway!
Understanding the context changes our understanding of scripture! I knew this, sort of, but not to the degree that we talked about during our study.
Guthrie suggests several tools that can help us understand and interpret Scripture accurately.
- A Study Bible
- A Bible Dictionary
- Bible Commentary
- Bible Atlas
- Bible Handbook
As we walked through Read the Bible for Life my friend, Carolyn, who has spent years researching the Bible brought in her favorite and best resource books for us to look through.
Side note: Carolyn has created a class called “Connecting the Dots” which our women completed after Read The Bible for Life. If you’re in the Charlotte area, Carolyn is available to teach her class to your group. Be sure to check out her blog where she frequently shares fascinating information she has learned about the Bible.
I’ve known for awhile that I needed to add some Bible study resources to my library, but now I knew WHICH ones I needed to add!
If you were to purchase just one book, I would strongly suggest: The Complete Guide to the Bible
Several of the women in our group purchased it and have found it incredibly useful.
As I worked on this post I came across this great article on exegesis – what it is and why it’s important when we seek to discover the meaning of scripture. We’ve got to go deeper, girls!
Can studying the Bible be difficult? Yes! But there are lots of great resources available to us. We just have to be willing to do a little digging.
You can check these resources out on Amazon and Christianbook through the links below. Any purchase you make helps cover the costs of this site and is greatly appreciated!
|What the Bible Is All About: NIV Bible Handbook, Revised and Updated|
|Essential Companion to Life in Bible Times: Key Insights for Reading God’s Word|
|The Essential Bible Companion|
|The Complete Guide to the Bible|
|Stephen M. Miller’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary|
|Holman Illustrated Bible Handbook|
|Zondervan Essential Atlas of the Bible|
|NIV Life Application Study Bible, Hardcover|
I’d love to know, what other Bible study resources do you recommend?
You may also want to read:
What do your women want to study?
Tools and Tips for Bible Study and Small Group Facilitators