But lately, I've been craving a way to study God's Word more deeply. I've tried different things over the years and kind of long for some consistency without becoming mundane and routine.
In the fall, I am hoping to take a class at our church how to study the Bible exegetically. Exegesis is interpretation. "The goal of Biblical exegesis is to explore the meaning of the text which then leads to discovering its significance or relevance." (wikipedia) Bible scholars, correct me if I'm wrong, but I think one strategy (so I've heard) in employing exegetical methods is knowing how to use Greek and Hebrew (and Aramic) to understand the words and context in the original language. English isn't as descriptive as Greek. An easy example - Greek has 4 different words for 4 different types of love. In english, we imply that "I love you" to your husband is different than "I love eating Portillos" but it's the same word. All that to say, understanding the original languages of Biblical text and having resources to help with interpreting the original language would be helpful in studying the Bible. (I'm not saying using Greek and Hebrew is NECESSARY for understanding God's Word, but rather an added helpful tool, like so many other things.)
Wow, I got side tracked.
Anywhooo, I was looking for a way to study the Word better rather than just read a passage and think to myself "huh. interesting" or "that was nice."
The Bible IS the Word of God. And God's Word is LIFE! It is living and active. It is good for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righeousness. I must be aware of when I fall into the habit of reading it like any old book.
I stumbled across this little tool on a blog, and have found it really helpful just in this past week. I don't think this is a tool I'll use forever, but while I try to learn from others and ask God to show me better ways to read His Word, this little acronym is very helpful: SPECK
Promise to claim
Example to follow
Command to obey
Knowledge about God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit.
I didn't make it up.
The original blog post is here
Here is what the creator of this method says about how to use it:
"Basically, I pick a few verses (or a chapter to read). I suggest starting in the Gospels or New Testament. Then, I look for one of the categories above (not all of them).
- Does this passage talk about a sin I need to avoid? Am I currently participating in it?
- What about a promise to claim? Is that promise conditional? Meaning… does it rely on an action that I need to do first to claim the promise? ex: John 3:16 “… whoever believes in Him will be given eternal life.” The condition is “believe in him” to receive the promise of eternal life. Or is it unconditional? Something God promises no matter what?
- Is there an example to follow (or maybe NOT to follow)?
- What about a command that God gives me that I should obey?
- And finally – maybe there is just a new knowledge about God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit that God wants to teach me that day.
And if that doesn’t work, I’ll often invite someone to come alongside me and help me get out of my funk. I’ll ask them what God is teaching them and experience the life of the Word through them."
Make some coffee.
Get in the Word.
God loves you. There is no better day to start than today.