PG's BLOG

Welcome to my Blog! This is where I share teachings , updates on my personal life, ministry, prayer requests, and books I'm writing or enjoying.  Your prayers, comments, questions, and encouragements  are welcomed and appreciated.

 

Bible Study Methods

Bible Study Methods When people go to the gym and work out, they often don’t see results for at least two reasons: For some, they do the same thing over and over again. Our bodies adapt really well and, therefore, stop growing in endurance, strength, and size. For others, they simply have no plan at all. They pick up this weight, work out on that equipment, etc. Without any real plan, they don’t see much results. Both groups often become bored and discouraged with their workouts, in part, because of a lack of results. People often experience this in their Bible study as well—going through seasons of dryness—not as interested, motivated, or fruitful. Sometimes this happens because of unrepent

Bible Study Skills: Applying the Text

Life Application There is a story of a young man who was looking for direction in life. “What should I do with my life?” he prayed. He opened his Bible and put his finger in it—hoping that God would give him direction. It landed on Matthew 27:5, which read, “Then he went out and hanged himself.” Perplexed, not understanding what the text meant for his life, he tried again. This time his finger landed in Luke 10:37, which read, “So Jesus said to him, ‘Go and do the same.’” Starting to get nervous, he tried one more time with his finger landing in John 13:27. It read, “Jesus said to him, ‘What you are about to do, do quickly.’” Though humorous, this story illustrates the dangerous ways in whic

Bible Study Skills: Interpreting the Text

Interpreting the Text After observing Scripture—considering what it says—one must interpret what it means. The science of Bible interpretation is often called biblical hermeneutics. Often people think that understanding the Bible is something mystical, but it is not. Hermeneutics is something we do every time we read a newspaper, article, or letter. We are simply using principles to discern what the author meant when writing to a specific audience. A text, generally, has one meaning (interpretation), though it may have many applications. The primary difference when interpreting Scripture, in comparison to regular writings, is the fact that the Bible is God’s Word and therefore is without err

Bible Study Skills: Observing the Text

Bible Study Skills: Observing the Text In studying the Bible, an important acronym to remember is OIL: observation, interpretation and life application. Observation asks this question about a passage, “What does it say?” Interpretation asks, “What does it mean?” Life Application asks, “What should we do about it?” Only after diligently observing a passage can one truly find the meaning of it, and only after understanding the meaning of a passage can one properly apply it. Observing, interpreting, and applying are skills which the Bible student must develop to become competent at studying Scripture. We will look at each skill separately. Observation A popular genre of film or books is crimina

Bible Study Tools

Bible Study Tools When you come, bring with you the cloak I left in Troas with Carpas and the scrolls, especially the parchments. 2 Timothy 4:13 What types of resources does one need to study the Bible? If you went to the home of anybody that is great at something, typically you would find that they have collected many tools and resources to help them with their craft. Great fishermen will have an assortment of fishing rods, types of bait, the appropriate clothes, and possibly even a boat. Great musicians will have instruments, cords, notes, electronic equipment, etc. Great businessmen will have books on leadership, marketing, and maybe even statistics. Similarly, people who are going to go

Hindrances to Studying Scripture

Hindrances to Studying Scripture How do we prepare our hearts to the study the Bible? One of the ways we do this is by getting rid of every potential hindrance to studying and understanding Scripture. Ezra 7:10 (ESV) says, “For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the LORD, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.” In the KJV, it is translated that Ezra “prepared his heart.” In Scripture, heart often refers to the mind, will, and emotions. It is the center of who we are. Proverbs 4:23 says, “Guard your heart with all vigilance, for from it are the sources of life.” Our heart affects our jobs, families, friendships, and our relationship with God and his Word. In fact,

Six Foundations to Understanding Scripture

Six Foundations to Understanding Scripture When constructing a great building, builders start with securing a strong foundation. If the foundation is off, the building will have problems and possibly be unsafe. Likewise, when developing a life of studying and understanding Scripture, great attention must be given to the foundation. A faulty foundation will seriously compromise one’s study—possibly leading to injuring oneself and others. Many in the body of Christ have been hurt by a faulty foundation and some have even fallen away from the faith. In this lesson, we will consider six foundations of understanding Scripture. Foundation 1: We Must Be Born Again to Understand Scripture The first

Ten Reasons to Study Scripture

Ten Reasons to Study Scripture Unfortunately, many Christians struggle with consistently reading and studying the Bible. Why? For many reasons. However, one of them is probably motivation. Like with any endeavor, if we don’t recognize how beneficial it is, we will struggle with motivation and, therefore, won’t do it, or won’t do it consistently. This is, in part, why Scripture consistently teaches about the benefits of studying it. It challenges us to not only study because God calls us to, but also because there are so many blessings for those who do. In this lesson, we will consider ten reasons for studying Scripture, with the hope that we’ll become motivated to study God’s Word more. Peop

James Series: Why Prejudice Is Incompatible with the Christian Faith Pt. 2 (2:8-13)

Why Prejudice Is Incompatible with the Christian Faith Pt. 2 But if you fulfill the royal law as expressed in this scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well But if you show prejudice, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as violators. For the one who obeys the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it. For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a violator of the law. Speak and act as those who will be judged by a law that gives freedom. For judgment is merciless for the one who has shown no mercy. But mercy triumphs over judg

James Series: Why Prejudice Is Incompatible with the Christian Faith Pt. 1 (2:1-7)

Why Prejudice Is Incompatible with the Christian Faith My brothers and sisters, do not show prejudice if you possess faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ. For if someone comes into your assembly wearing a gold ring and fine clothing, and a poor person enters in filthy clothes, do you pay attention to the one who is finely dressed and say, “You sit here in a good place,” and to the poor person, “You stand over there,” or “Sit on the floor”? If so, have you not made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil motives? Listen, my dear brothers and sisters! Did not God choose the poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom that he promised to those who love hi

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© 2020 by Gregory Brown