Which is the right order to study the books of the Bible and how to study the Bible?
Order of studying Books of the Bible
Since the bible begins with the book of Genesis, I recommend a person starting with the book of Genesis but it will take long before a person becomes a Christian.
Christians are only found in the New Testament, therefore:-
- Start with the New Testament, the Gospels in their order: Mathew, Mark, Luke and John. The gospel books bring a person on a one on one encounter with Jesus Christ.
- Move to the book of Acts. It paints a picture of the revelation and development of the early church
- Then to the Paul’s letters; Epistles. Study them in order, from Romans, 1 Corinthians, 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 1 Thessalonians, and 2 Thessalonians.
- To 1st and 2nd Timothy, Titus, Philemon, Hebrews, James, 1st and 2nd peter, 1st, 2nd and 3rd John then Jude.
NB: Do not study the book of revelation yet. You need the foundations of the book which are found in the books of genesis, the prophets and Daniel. Few foundations are found in the New Testament books which you have already read.
Go to the Old Testament and study each book in order from Genesis up to the last book Malachi.
After studying and understanding the entire books of the bible except the Book of Revelation, now you are ready to study this book and go down into it.
(Where you need interpretation and help as you study the Bible, I am available: Contact me).
How to study each book of the bible
Before you study a book of the Bible you need some background information. Like; –
- Who is the writer of the book?What information is available about the author?
- When was the book written?
- Under what circumstances was the book written?
- To who was the book addressed?
- What information is available about the people to whom the book was addressed to?
All this information may be found in the book or from other sources like in the cross-references etc
Now study the book with all this information in mind.
How to study a chapter in a book
- Theme of the book
Study the entire chapter to get its theme. Note down the several subjects mentioned.
- Close examination
Then go back to study the chapter as you examine verse by verse, line by line, word by word, comma by comma, dot by dot. Everything in the bible has a meaning.
- Verses carry several subjects
A verse or a line in the bible carries several subjects.
- Take care of punctuation
Verse or line subjects will only be captured and understood if one reads word by word, taking care of tense, pluralism or singularity, meaning of word and commas, full stops or any punctuation marks.
- Take care of tense
In a word, take care of the tense, the plurality or the singularity and the meaning of words.
- Take care of word meaning
In the bible words may carry a different meaning from the common meaning (meaning found in the English Dictionaries) reason I strongly recommend using a Bible dictionary.
Remember that the bible is infallible and everything is accurate.
First mention principle
In the Bible, we use the first mention principle to know the meaning of words as used.
To get the meaning of a word, go back to the place it is first mentioned. Do not ignore a word because it is common, familiar, or you know it’s meaning. The bible may use a word differently than it’s meaning in English dictionaries.
The word ‘week’
The bible severally uses the word, ‘week’. In English dictionaries a week means ‘a seven day period’. Using ‘first mention principle’ in the bible, a week means?
Let’s go to the first place mentioned. Gen: 29:27: Fulfill her week. It does not stop here but goes further to explain what a week is. ‘…and we will give you this also for the service which you shall serve with me yet seven other years’.
A week in the bible means ‘seven years’, and this is the meaning of the word in the entire bible usage.
If you do not have a bible dictionary use this principle to get the meaning of words as used in the bible.
Things to note;
- The bible is self-explanatory book. If you do not understand something, note it down and you will find it in another place explained further.
- If a verse confuses you, other verses and statements nearby may clarify the meaning. Reason you must read in a continues prose.
- Some words may have different meanings in different contexts. We learn the correct meaning by how the word is used.
- A statement can best be understood by considering how it is applied in context. ‘Context’ means the verses surrounding the one being studied
- Using cross-reference and footnotes may confuse you especially if they refer you to a book you haven’t read entirely.
- References in back of some bibles refer you to the first time mention. Use them.
- Know that the bible is accurate , true and it does not contradict itself
- lastly share what you have learned with others
Have a wonderful bible study