What we’ve been doing this year is learning to discover God’s Word ourselves. Through the Swedish and the COMA methods we’ve learnt, some things in the Bible have (I hope!) become clearer.
By reading God’s Word we have:
- Exposed ourselves to lifegiving, life-changing stuff: So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:11.
- Been making disciples of one another and therefore been involved in fulfilling the Great Commission: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. Matthew 28:19-20.
- Developed personal relationships alongside gospel growth.
As we continue studying God’s Word – either together, with someone new, or on our own – we will come across passages that are hard to understand. We might feel intimidated. Here are some tips to take with us (found in Practical Theology for Women by Wendy Alsup):
Practical tips for Bible Study
- Approach the Bible knowing that – from Genesis to Revelation – it is all about Jesus.
- Understand the different types of literature in the Bible: literature that contains pictures of the Messiah (e.g. Psalms, Isaiah); literature that contains stories that show God’s work in preserving the lineage of Christ (e.g. Esther); literature that shows the horrible condition of man apart from the saviour and his subsequent need of a saviour (e.g. Judges).
- Bear in mind that cross references are important. Use them to connect the dots to form the bigger picture that the whole Bible is about Jesus.
- Realise that the Bible begins with a divorce and ends with a marriage. Read each book in between and ask how each bit contributes to the canvas of that most beautiful portrait of a redeemed bride (us) sitting with her bridegroom at the marriage supper of the Lamb in heaven.
Our last 1-2-1 Bible Study for the year
Using either the Swedish method (see the February post entitled ‘Closing the Gap’) or the COMA method study the final Colossians passage below. Close in prayer.
2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. 3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. 4 Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. 5 Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. 6 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
7 Tychicus will tell you all the news about me. He is a dear brother, a faithful minister and fellow servant[a] in the Lord. 8 I am sending him to you for the express purpose that you may know about our[b]circumstances and that he may encourage your hearts. 9 He is coming with Onesimus, our faithful and dear brother, who is one of you. They will tell you everything that is happening here.
10 My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.) 11 Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews[c] among my co-workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me. 12 Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. 13 I vouch for him that he is working hard for you and for those at Laodicea and Hierapolis. 14 Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings. 15 Give my greetings to the brothers and sisters at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house.
16 After this letter has been read to you, see that it is also read in the church of the Laodiceans and that you in turn read the letter from Laodicea.
17 Tell Archippus: “See to it that you complete the ministry you have received in the Lord.”
18 I, Paul, write this greeting in my own hand. Remember my chains. Grace be with you.
Compiled by Brenda Daniels
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”