Summary: In this lesson, we discover the timeless tool of Inductive Bible Study and practice it together on a section of scripture that will lead you to read and apply the Bible more accurately.
Gentlemen, it is great to have you back.
Our Mission to disciple and develop men to lead. And I hope these last two lessons have empowered you with an understanding that will help you spiritually lead.
So far, we have navigated through two topics that I believe are critical to Bible Study. In our first session, we learned that the goal of Bible study is personal change. And last time we discovered the plot of the Bible to gain a scope and sequence on what God was doing through history and how that centers on the life of Christ. Today we are going to turn to actually study the Bible. And while it has taken a couple of lessons to get here, learning how to study the Bible, before understanding the goal, and the plot can derail our focus and context.
As we dig in today, I want you to know that the process we use for studying the Bible matters. And the method we will discover today is a process that preachers and teachers have used for hundreds of years.
I believe the greatest gift you can give any man is the ability to read and understand the Bible (hold up Bible). Because if you can teach a man to learn how to read and understand the Bible then he, on his own, can extract principles he can then use throughout his life. Yet while I believe most Christian men know it is important to read God’s Word, we sometimes we have a hard time mining truth from it, and therefore we don’t turn to it when we need it most.
Our goal in today’s lesson is to learn a process of studying the Bible with the outcome of giving you some time to use this method on your own. And the best part is, it is simple.
Now there are a lot of things about studying the Bible with other men that are intimidating. At Resolute, we have lead hundreds of groups with other guys, and we know that men often are most intimidated by the Bible because it is unlike any other book they have ever read. And this is often compounded by the fact that it has so much ancient history, cryptic language, and religious jargon. And of course, men worry that in a public Bible Study they might be made to feel less than competent and thus embarrassed and ashamed.
But don’t worry no one here is going to make you feel that way today.
As a man who reads and studies the Bible on a regular basis, I can tell you that Bible study, not just privately, but with other men, is extremely rewarding if not one of the most rewarding experiences of my spiritual life. This is because when men from various life contexts come together their observations, interpretations, and applications can be insightful far more than a private study. And I believe a man's life is radically changed when he is engaged in active bible study with other men because his learnings bleed out into his life at home, work, church, and in his community at large.
So now we are going to turn to the next page of your handout. It is entitled “The Inductive Bible Study For Men,” (Slide) and I want to encourage you to listen and take notes as I share with you a Bible study method that will forever change how you view, study, and read God’s word.• So now I am going to walk you through a simple bible study method that many refer to as the Inductive method. The word inductive is referencing a process we use to read and understand the Bible. There are two common ways to reason, one is called inductive, and the other is called deductive. Inductive Reasoning (Slide) seeks to draw meaning out of specifics and then make a general conclusion. Deductive Reasoning (Slide) aims to reach a conclusion and then prove the specifics. How men tend to read the bible is deductively, but this leads to us importing our ideas, opinions, and experiences into the Bible which can lead to errors as we interpret. However, if we can read the bible inductively drawing from the specifics of the text and letting it speak for itself, we will both remain faithful to God’s intended meaning, and discover real life change, because we are the ones who are changed by God’s unchanging Word.
So, let me walk you through the inductive process.
The first step is Observation (Slide). Observation is the step that we all want to fly past, but shouldn't. Here we are looking for the raw content and what the text says. So, what I do, is I find a section of scripture – typically a paragraph or two. And I read it multiple times observing how the text reads. And while I am reading I am persistently scanning the text for these six things while I am trying to figure out what the text says. And I usually start with looking for some of the smallest details and then along the way discover the larger details.