If you lead a small Bible study group, and you noticed some students struggling to understand Scripture. Is there anything you can do to help them understand more easily?
Teaching the Bible is honorable and challenging work, and anyone is to be commended for their dedication to this important ministry. Obviously, it’s difficult for us to address exactly what may be holding some of your students back in their understanding of scripture, but before you blame yourself for their difficulty, remember not all students learn at the same rate for a variety of reasons. Bible Study Group
Additionally, here are some questions to consider in evaluating your situation:
1. Are all participants believers? Do you know that each person in your group has, in fact, come to faith in the Gospel? The Holy Spirit is our Teacher, therefore only believers are capable of understanding Scripture since only believers have the Holy Spirit working in their hearts. Paul taught this when he said:
1 Corinthians 2:12-16 (KJV)
12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man receiveth, not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. 16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? but we have the mind of Christ.
If someone is struggling to understand scripture, it may be a sign that this person has attached himself to the church as a club or social event, but he has never personally come to faith in Jesus as his Savior. You can rule out this cause through some simple questions or by asking the individual to give their testimony, and then listen carefully to hear what they say. If they don’t have a testimony of faith in Christ, then you should work to explain the truth of Jesus to them and then encourage them to be baptized (by immersion, as a response to their faith). Bible Study Group
2. In many places today, the Church has abandoned the practice of teaching the Bible systematically, so many Christians are weak in their scholarship of scripture and their Biblical knowledge. As a result, many find it difficult to understand basic Bible concepts. The writer of Hebrews warns that this weakening is a result of failing to pursue Biblical maturity: Bible Study Group
Hebrews 5:11-14 (KJV)
11 Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. 12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God, and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. 13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. 14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age (maturity), even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
Hebrews 6:1-3 (KJV)
6 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, 2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. 3 And this will we do if God permits.
If you believe your students’ difficulty is due to lack of experience, then you should focus on teaching “milk,” which are the basic principles of scripture outlined in vs.1-2. Once these principles have been addressed, then the student will be in a better position to learn the more difficult concepts.
3. Timing is everything. Not everything we study will be made clear to us in the first reading. The Spirit won’t necessarily reveal the same thing to each student in your class, so your students should be told that it’s OK to remain unclear on something, despite your best efforts to communicate the text’s meaning. We all must be content to wait on the Spirit and allow Him to reveal what He chooses. Bible Study Group
“The author’s biblical interpretations and conclusions presented in this document rely on original teaching used by permission of Verse By Verse Ministry International (VBVMI). The author’s views may not represent the views of VBVMI, it’s Directors or staff. Original VBVMI teaching may be found at http://www.vbvmi.org.”
Join our mailing list
Thank you for subscribing.
Something went wrong.