Summary of study, theme, clarify, word study, reminders, exegesis, delivery

Study and Teach so to give God’s message to God’s people

“Let the text mean what it says in its context”

Tod Kennedy. Revised as needed. Most recent revision 10.24.23.

Jesus said, “feed my sheep,” John 21.15-17

Bible Study is like the scientific method

  1. Observations yields a preliminary thesis
  2. Test these by a closer study
  3. Compare with other Scripture
  4. Make conclusions
  5. So what? Make applications for life

Condensed exegetical Process emphasizes gaining and preparing the content of study for understanding and teaching.

  1. Why did the author write this?
  2. Observe the Text—what it says?
  3. Interpret the text—what it means?
  4. Apply the text and answer so what? What to do?

Title, Theme, Argument, Summary, Doctrine, Content, Application, Clarify, Verify, Simplify,

  1. The title is any word or phrase that conveys a main point of the article and this will help the memory to recall the content of the article.
  2. The theme is the central message, the idea the author wishes to convey. It is like a rope that goes through the section that hold everything together. Like one clothesline with clothes hanging. The clothesline is the theme.
  3. The argument is the tracing the theme through the article, so the theme is shown to be true.
  4. The summary is a brief sequential explanation of the main points of the article.
  5. Doctrines are the specific topics that the author refers to, depends on, and brings out in the Bible section. This is the development of the theology referred to in the section. Teaching these gives the theological explanation and development for the student.
  6. Teach content or spiritual food they can eat, chew, and digest, not food they choke on or spit out.
  7. Application is the so what? of the study—why it is important; what to do with the truth in the study.
  8. Clarify, verify, simplify the passage, topic, or points you are studying and teaching, whether you are discussing, writing, or speaking.

The dictum of clarify, verify, and simply can apply to all writing.

  1. Clarify=make sure the thought flow is accurate and clear and biblically based.
  2. Verify=use scripture that actually teaches what one is saying.
  3. Simplify=is there a shorter and more to the point way of saying what one is saying and still retain the accuracy and meaning. Dr Charles Ryrie was very good at this in his writings.
  4. Make sure the readers and listeners know the point, theme, and “so what?” of a class, doctrine, or article.

Study a Word Using Strong’s Concordance

  1. Select the word you want to study in the Bible.
  2. Look in Strong’s for the word in your reference.
  3. This will give you the number for the Greek or Hebrew word.
  4. Write down Strong’s page number and dictionary number.
  5. Look up the dictionary number in the back.
  6. Write down the definition.
  7. Go back to the concordance (you wrote the page number) and find the word (you have the number).
  8. Read through the verses that match the number and write down the best meaning for the word in the context under study.
  9. Write out in a sentence or two the best meaning and point of the word in the passage under study.

Reminders when one studies a Bible book

  1. Read and reread and develop the initial theme for the book and each chapter. This is starting with the big picture or overview. Get the basic plan first like one building a house or one writing a book. Start putting titles for each chapter. Always interpret the text within its context.
  2. Then develop the preliminary theme for the entire book from this study and eventually develop the preliminary argument of the author.
  3. Then work through paragraph, verse, words and structure to develop, support, and correct and improve the theme and argument of each chapter and book. The degree of detail depends upon the purpose for the study, the level of spiritual maturity of the audience, the time allotted for the study, and general common sense.
  4. Then one can develop pertinent doctrines, concepts, and applications that the author is teaching or referring to.
  5. This seems to be better, more enjoyable, more accurate, and better for application than beginning by plodding through each verse from start to finish without really knowing what the author is writing about.
  6. Throughout, but especially when you have answered the interpretive questions, keep asking the question, so what? Why did the author write this? Does it just have specific application to the original audience and also to me?

The Exegetical Process, Short Summary of advanced study

  • History: The facts of history or historical background pertinent to the Bible section under study.
  • Context: the relationship to the paragraph, chapter, book, argument of the book, other Bible books, to the Bible as a whole, and to God’s plan for creation. This includes a preliminary outline.
  • Text: The determination of the wording of the manuscript that best reflects the original.
  • Grammar and Syntax: The forms and uses of the language(s) at the time the Bible section under study was written (subject, verb, object, phrases, clauses, etc). This includes style, literary form, and poetry. Diagramming helps.
  • Lexical: The development, use, and meaning of the words.
    • This includes figures of speech by which the author expresses himself in a special way. Important figures of speech include Simile, a comparison using like or as (Psalm 1:3 and 42:1). Metaphor says something is something else to imply a resemblance (Psalm 23:1; John 10:7, 11). Symbols are words that teach by representation (John 1.29).
  • Analysis and Synthesis: The investigation, explanation, and combination of the elements and parts of the whole. This will include an outline. This is the place in the process where everything is brought together.
  • Summary: A concise recapitulation of the Bible section under study. This includes a brief point by point, verse by verse, paragraph by paragraph summary as is appropriate for the study.
    • The theme is the condensed thesis of the article, the central message, the idea the author wishes to convey.
  • Doctrines and Applications: Develop the categories and principles of doctrine related to the Bible section under study. Be sure to make applications of the doctrines studied and include the applications in the study.

Reminders for Oral Delivery

  1. Be expressive.
  2. Be flexible.
  3. Be Humble
  4. Be natural
  5. Don’t brag about your learning
  6. Encourage audience.
  7. Feed spiritual food they can eat
  8. Lead the audience through the text.
  9. Speak clearly.
  10. Stay on points you are making
  11. Stay on subject matter
  12. Stay on time.
  13. Thoughtful illustrations help
  14. Watch audience.