Free Online Bible Classes | Bible Study Methods

Bible Study Methods

This class will introduce you to the basics questions of how to study your Bible.

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About this Class

What is Bible study? Why do we study these specific 66 books? What type of literature are we studying? What are the practical steps we should take? How do we determine a word’s meaning? How do we apply the text to our lives? These questions and more are answered in this course.

Lectures

Lecture 1

It is important to recognize your presuppositions when you study and interpret the Bible. The writings of the Bible reflect diversity in authorship, genre and cultural background. The common theme that unifies the Bible as a whole focuses on the story of creation, fall and redemption.

Lecture 2

Hermeneutics is the science and art of biblical interpretation. The science of hermeneutics provides methods, rules, and a measure of objectivity while the art of hermeneutics speaks to the skill that is learned through practice. The goals of exegesis are to determine the meaning of a passage in its original context, and to determine the significance of the passage for today.

Lecture 3

The first goal of hermeneutics is to determine the author’s intended meaning of the text. The interpretation process must take into account the genre of the literature and the historical and literary context. The meaning of the text controls our application. In this lecture, you will get a glimpse of the process of interpretation by looking at four principles of exegesis, the four steps we take to cross the bridge from our contemporary culture to the original context of the Biblical authors. 

Lecture 4

In this lecture, we get into the practical details for how to exegete a passage. Dr. Strauss explains the first four (of ten total) steps for English Bible exegesis: 1) identify the genre, 2) get the big picture, 3) develop a thesis statement and 4) outline the progress of thought. This lecture teaches new skills and provides examples for you to put them into practice.

Lecture 5

The final six steps in the exegesis process are consulting secondary sources, analyzing syntactical relationships, analyzing key terms and themes, resolving interpretive issues and problems, evaluating your results from the perspective of wider contextual and theological issues, and summarizing your results. (At the 26-minute mark, the verse reference, John 14:6 should be John 14:26.)

Lecture 6

Dr. Strauss leads us into exploring the riches of Biblical words in this lecture. He explains some common misconceptions and gives us safeguards so that we do not wander into exegetical fallacies. If you want to know the way forward in Biblical exploration, then listen in as Dr. Strauss outlines the basic principles for doing Biblical word studies correctly.

Lecture 7

In this lesson, Dr. Strauss discusses two extremes to avoid when applying Scripture. He also gives us five principles to guide our contextualization of a particular passage. Listen in and grow in your ability to apply Scripture in your context to your life in meaningful ways.

Student's Guide

Frequently Asked Questions

Who are the programs intended for?

The Foundations program is intended for everyone, regardless of biblical knowledge. The Academy program is intended for those who would like more advanced studies. And the Institute program is intended for those who want to study seminary-level classes.

Do I need to take the classes in a specific order?

In the Foundations and Academy programs, we recommend taking the classes in the order presented, as each subsequent class will build on material from previous classes. In the Institute program, the first 11 classes are foundational. Beginning with Psalms, the classes are on specific books of the Bible or various topics.

Do you offer transfer credit for completing a certificate program?

At this time, we offer certificates only for the classes on the Certificates page. While we do not offer transfer credit for completing a certificate program, you will be better equipped to study the Bible and apply its teachings to your life.