The Bible is big and can be intimidating! There are so many translations and versions…. Where do you start? How do you get the most out of reading Scripture? How do you get the most out of Bible Study? Let Bible Basics Bible Study Lessons help you to understand the Word of God, the Scriptures, The “Good News” of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
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Which Bible to Choose?
· I chose the NIV Study Bible because members of my Disciple Study group recommended it to me because it has many footnotes helping to explain the text, and is simple to read and understand.
· The most eloquent Bible (but also hard to understand) is the King James Version.
· Rick Warren author of the best seller The Purpose Driven Life:
First, no matter how wonderful the translation is, it has limitations. Second, and even more important, is the fact that we often miss the full impact of familiar Bible verses, not because of poor translating, but simply because they have become so familiar.
Purpose Driven Life used 15 different Bibles for Scripture translations.
1. The Amplified Bible
2. Contemporary English Version
3. God’s Word Translation
4. King James Version
5. The Living Bible
6. The Message
7. New American Bible
8. New American Standard Bible
9. New Century Version
10. New International Version
11. New Jerusalem Bible
12. New Living Translation
13. New Revised Standard Living
14. New Testament in Modern English
15. Today’s English Version (Also called Good News Translation)
· Disciple: Becoming Disciple Through Bible Study, Study Manual recommends the New Oxford TEV Today’s English Version Annotated Bible with the Apocrypha.
· Then there is always the Gideon’s Bible in the nightstand beside the bed at motels and hotels by the Gideon’s Society.
· There is even the Complete Bible For Dummies.
· The NIV Adventure Bible is great for kids!
You can find these Bibles at Christian Book Stores, Book Stores, and also on Internet stores. The Bible, The Purpose Driven Life written by Rick Warren, and other good Christian reading can be found at Walmart and Sam’s Clubs, etc. at very reasonable prices. There are CD/DVD Bibles that have the King James Version with other various versions of the Bible, translations, and languages.
· The “Bible Basics… a closer look” Small Group Study Guide Series relies heavily on the NIV version of the Bible.
The Bible is big and can be intimidating! Dr. Blair Monie senior pastor of PHPC recommends the best place to start reading the Bible is from the New Testament the book of Mark one of the four gospels about Jesus Christ because:
1. It is the shortest of the four gospels.
2. The most concise and action packed.
3. You get to know about the life of Jesus Christ.
Normally starting at the beginning of a book seems like a good idea! But if you start with the Old Testament with the first book of Genesis, if you use the Purpose Driven Life author Rick Warren’s Bible one-year reading plan it will take you ten months before you get to the New Testament and the life of Jesus Christ!!!
The best thing about reading the four gospels is that they are all about the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. After you read the four gospels you become familiar with the Story of Jesus, but do not neglect to read the Old Testament; it’s the foundation.
When a part of the Bible was difficult to understand and I did not comprehend; I would take a nice “Bible Break.” I would start to read from Psalms, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes; these have many short chapters that are easy to read and understand.
Adopt A Bible
In medieval days only the Priest could posses or own a Bible. Today there are more Bibles in print than ever before, but too many of them are just sitting on bookshelves gathering dust. There are many beautiful Bibles at the Half Price Book Stores. There are beautiful large family King James Bibles with magnificent artwork and pictures. There are Study Bibles, and various translations of the Bible available. I personally believe that everyone should have a Study Bible; one where you can underline, highlight, write notes in and a King James Version so you can just enjoy the magnificents of God’s Word. Parallel Bibles are a wonderful way to compare different translations of the Bible.
Rick Warren in his book, The Purpose Driven Life points out that many believers read their newspapers more religiously than their Bibles and that reading the Bible to our children is almost nonexistent!
He also points out that through his free personal daily Bible reading plan (Link below!) if you read the Bible just 15 minutes a day; you can read the Bible in just one year!!! Just imagine if you give up a 30 minute TV show; you can read the Bible twice each year. We cannot watch TV for hours and then give God a 3-minute prayer and expect to really come closer to God. How are you going to use your time?
Disciple Bible Study Class
A Disciple is always learning and growing.
We are all students and teachers.
“Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked.
“How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?”
Act 8:30-31 NIV
Reading the Bible at first can be difficult.
What helped me!
· 1st I started going to church on Sunday.
· I joined a Disciple Bible Study Group.
The Disciple Bible Study class was a 34-week class. Do not be overwhelmed! The worst thing about the class is that it lasted 34 weeks. BUT the best thing about the class is that it did last 34 weeks! The best thing that happened to me is after studying and reading the Bible for 34 weeks. Actually got me in the HABIT of reading the Bible on a regular basis. The 34 weeks couldn’t be that bad because I signed up for another 34 week class the next year. Teresa White thought she was signing up for a 3 to 4 week class; not a 34-week class. Gary had planned to teach Disciple the next year. The only thing that could stop Gary was his death in April 22, 2001.
We had an exceptional teacher, Audrey Romasco. This Disciple Class is one of the most fulfilling and important things that I have ever done. Words cannot explain the bond, which ties this class together.
The Purpose Driven Life
by Rick Warren has sold over 4.5 million copies-enough to give it 43 weeks on the New York Times’ advice best seller list, and months on USA Today Best selling books list. It was named “Book of the Year” by Christian Bookseller and Rick Warren was named “America’s most influential pastor” by Christianity Today.
“It’s not all about you,The purpose of your life is far greater than your family, your career, or even your wildest dreams and ambitions. If you want to know why you were placed on this planet, you must begin from God. You were born by his purpose and for his purpose.”
“You are as close to God as you choose to be.”
The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.
I started to read The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren on March 25, 2004 and finished on May 6, 2004. By Chapter 10, I had already realized that this book has had a major impact on my spiritual life! I started to buy copies for family and friends before I had finished the book.
I have not yet read the Bible from cover to cover; but this is something I will do something about! (See Note and Link below)
Rick Warren points out that through his free personal daily Bible reading plan if you read the Bible just 15 minutes a day; you will read the Bible in just one year!!!