The real benefit that this study Bible brings to the believer’s exploration of the Truth rests in the study method that it promotes. This Bible does not come with verse by verse notes as most study Bibles do. Rather, it promotes a method whereby the believer discerns the truth for himself, inductively. The old adage stands true that “If you give someone a fish you feed him for a night; if you teach him how to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.” This Bible will teach you how to fish.
The goal of Bible study should be to determine what the author intended the words, which he penned under inspiration, to mean. The text has many applications, but it has one meaning. This method guides the student to identify the historical, grammatical, and contextual meaning of each passage.
First, the reader is instructed to prayerfully seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We need to remember that Bible Study is spiritual work, and the truths are spiritually discerned. Next, the study attempts to establish breadth of view, by directing the student to read and re-read the book under consideration. After establishing a sound big picture, the details need to be identified. This is accomplished by asking yourself the five “Ws” and “H” (Who, What, When, Where, Why and How). It seems so simple, but it takes practice to do this well. Perhaps the most visible part of this method is the next step, during which the student is instructed to “mark key words.” The Bible gives an initial suggested list of these key-words for each book, but personal investigation will reveal more.
After gathering all of the facts, now it is time to synthesize them. This is done by establishing a title/theme for each chapter (sometimes paragraph) as well as for the entire book . This is not just what you are emotionally led to make the theme; rather, it is what the details and context dictate the theme to be.
You will find that practice improves your abilities to exercise this approach. However, from the very beginning you will find that the approach slows you down and forces you to reflect and mediatate upon what you are reading. The goal of the study is not to tally the chapters that you have read. The goal is to know what God’s Word means, what that reveals of Him, and how that reflects upon us.