Methods, Forms, and Types of Study

Developing a personal methodology of study is important. Usually this will develop through trial and error, but tapping into the methods of others can be both time saving and helpful. Ways and means are legion; perhaps these will assist you in honing your study skills and habits.

  1. Listening – As elementary as this may sound, an open ear can result in the acquiring of a wealth of knowledge.
    1. Discussing the Bible with others and making mental and written notes of the discussion help tremendously.
    2. Listening to recorded sermons, teaching and Bible reading is helpful.
    3. Teaching and preaching by your pastor and other ministers enhance your knowledge of the Bible.
    4. Heeding what we hear is essential (Hebrews 2:1-3).
  2. Reading – Read the Bible through in one year or less if you are serious about study. Resource material is available. Buy, borrow, trade, or check books out of the library, but by all means, you must be a reader to learn.
  3. Memorizing – Knowledge can be acquired and retained if we will discipline ourselves to commit important facts and verses to memory. The following are some suggestions for memory work:
    1. Key verses on doctrine, holiness, faith, etc.
    2. Entire chapters such as Psalm 23, 1 Corinthians 13, Hebrews 11, etc.
    3. The books of the Bible and their correct spelling.
    4. The twelve apostles names.
    5. The Beatitudes.
    6. The fruit of the Spirit
    7. The gifts of the Spirit.
  4. Analyzing Topics – Choose a particular subject of interest and exhaust every resource until you know and understand the subject well. The following are suggested tops for study:
    1. Doctrine – Know what you believe and why you believe it.
    2. History – Study church, secular, and Bible history.
    3. Prophecy – Study prophecies that have been fulfilled and those that have not.
    4. Life of Christ – Know His journeys, miracles, questions asked and answered, etc.
    5. Maps and geography – Find on a map the place you are reading about.
    6. Chronology of Scripture – Understanding dates, times, and the sequence of events is important.
    7. Tabernacle – Know its dimensions, material, purpose, etc.
    8. Genealogy – Studying the backgrounds of individuals is an interesting topic.
    9. Word studies – The origin, meaning, and pronunciation of words is important.
    10. Chart studies – Many are available and enlightening.
    11. Examples (Hebrews 8:5), shadows (Colossians 2:17), types (Hebrews 8:5; 10:1), figures (Hebrews 9:9), allegories (Galatians 4:22-31), and patterns (Hebrews 9:23) provide interesting study topics.
  5. Studying Cross-References – Compare Scripture with Scripture. The Bible is its own best commentary. A concordance and a good reference Bible used properly will open a wealth of knowledge to you.
  6. Outlining – Write notes in outline form of what you learn. Maybe keep a blank not paper in your Bible, and when a worthy thought comes, write it down. After you have accumulated dates, locations, personalities, and other pertinent material relating to the subject, make an outline. Writing reinforces the learning process and aids in memorization.