There are books that have been written (with the title “How to Study the Bible”) by various authors. One of my favorites is by Samuel Ridout and it is available in a Kindle Edition and some websites have used copies for sale. You can also read it free on  Here are FIVE SUGGESTIONS that have served me well for the last 46 years. You should read your Bible:

1) With DEPENDENCE on the Holy Spirit. As you may know, it is the Holy Spirit who inspired men to write the Bible. “Holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2nd Peter 1:21). And it is the Holy Spirit who will TEACH YOU the Word of God. Jesus said, “He will TEACH YOU all things…He will GUIDE YOU into all truth” (John 14:26 & 16:13). The Apostle Paul taught believers that we will never understand the revelations God has given us except by the Spirit, “But God has revealed them to us THROUGH HIS SPIRIT. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of man which is in him? Even so no one knows that things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that WE MIGHT KNOW the things that have been freely given to us by God” (1st Corinthians 2:10-12). It is impossible for you to understand the Bible apart from the Holy Spirit teaching you, so I would emphasize that you must be DEPENDENT ON THE SPIRIT TO TEACH YOU.

2) With PRAYER to God the Father for the Holy Spirit’s guidance and teaching. Prayer is the expression of our dependence on God and thus it is absolutely vital to ask God to “guide you into all truth” through the Divine Teacher, the Holy Spirit. Don’t depend on your own intellect or reasoning powers; simply present yourself to God the Father as a humble student who is eager to learn. James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, LET HIM ASK OF GOD, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” As you can see, these first two suggestions go together; for we are dependent on God the Holy Spirit and God the Father to gain an understanding of the Word of God.

3) With a WILLINGNESS TO OBEY the truth. God has no desire to reveal His Word to us unless we have the desire to act on the truth of His Word. Jesus gave us a promise regarding this in John 7:17, “If anyone wants to DO HIS WILL, HE SHALL KNOW concerning the doctrine.” The fact is if we want to learn God’s Word to “fill our heads with knowledge,” it will only lead to PRIDE. The Apostle Paul spoke of this in 1st Corinthians 8:1 with three words, “Knowledge puffs up.” But if we come to the Word in order to “fill our hearts with God’s will for us,” it will lead to SPIRITUAL GROWTH. “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that YOU MAY GROW thereby…But GROW in the GRACE AND KNOWLEDGE of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (1st Peter 2:2 and 2nd Peter 3:13). This will result in our being TRANSFORMED TO THE IMAGE OF CHRIST. “And do not be conformed to this world, but be TRANSFORMERD by the renewing of your mind…But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being TRANSFORMED INTO THE SAME IMAGE from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord” (Romans 12:2 and 1st Corinthians 3:18).

4) With MEDITATION and MEMORIZATION. The aged Apostle Paul told young Timothy, “Give attention to READING, to exhortation, to doctrine…MEDITATE on these things” (1st Timothy 4:13 & 15). It is not enough to simply “read the word”; we must “meditate upon it” in order to “make it our own.” When you eat food for your body you “chew on it” and allow your body to “digest it.” When we feed on the Word of God we must “think on it throughout the day” in order for it to really “sink into our heart and soul.” Joshua told his brethren, “This Book of the Law shall not DEPART FROM YOUR MOUTH, but you shall MEDITATE IN IT DAY AND NIGHT” (Joshua 1:8). As you meditate on the Word, it will find a home in your heart and you will find that you are also MEMORIZING it, for you will find yourself quoting scriptures that have been indelibly impressed upon your mind and heart.

5) With HELPS (from other sources). Though the Bible is “the BOOK of books,” it is profitable to use “other books” in your study of the Word of God. In my study of Scripture, I often use: 1) Bible DICTIONARIES; 2) a CONCORDANCE; and 3) COMMENTARIES.  A dictionary is very helpful if you don’t know what a word means and once you know the meaning it will often shed new light on the meaning of the passage you are studying. A concordance is a very good tool, for it contains an alphabetical index of all the words used in the Bible, the main references where each word occurs, and is useful in locating passages in the Bible. A Bible commentary is invaluable, for Christ has given the “gift of TEACHING” to certain believers for the “edifying of the body of Christ” (Ephesians 4:7-8, 11-12). This gift can be used for “oral ministry” but it is equally important for “written ministry” in the form of a Bible commentary.

In closing, I start my daily study of God’s Word by looking to God the Father to “teach me His Word by the Holy Spirit” and I include a prayer for a greater desire to “obey the truth that I learn.” I will spend time “meditating upon the Word” and “using a Bible dictionary and concordance” if needed. And finally, I will “read some commentaries” in order to be edified by what godly men have learned from the Word of God. I often find that they bring out similar thoughts that I had gleaned while meditating on the scriptures and it serves to “confirm the truth that I had learned.” At other times I learn “new thoughts” that I had not received before and thus my understanding of the Word is “enhanced by what the Spirit had revealed to them.” As a result, I am able, by the grace of God, to pass on the truth I have learned to others through this ministry we call, “Answers From the Book.”  (465.5)  (DO)