7 Easy Ways to Study the Bible (For Beginners!)

7 Easy Ways to Study the Bible (For Beginners!) May 13, 2023

Woman reading Bible and smiling
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At twenty, I thought I had the Bible all figured out. Turns out, I was wrong. 

Growing up, I was certainly around the Bible enough to know what it said. My grandfather was a small church pastor, and my mom was (and still is) the church pianist. I was heavily involved in Sunday School, Awana, Bible quizzing, vacation Bible school and church plays.

I was active in youth group, where I learned several ways to study the Bible. I even graduated from a top-rated evangelical Bible college that faithfully taught us not only how to read the Bible but also the importance of living it out.

Many young adults begin to question their faith when they leave for college. For me, it was a conversation with my mother-in-law.

A devout Catholic curious about her new daughter-in-law’s Protestant beliefs, my mother-in-law asked me what I believed and why. I never felt she had an agenda. She simply wanted to know how we could read the same Bible verses and come to such different conclusions.

Initially, I thought I had all the answers. But the more I studied what Catholics believe and why, the more I learned that my pastors, Sunday School teachers and youth group leaders had made some serious mistakes.

I never ended up converting to Catholicism, but it did rock my thinking…

How could I spend so much time in church, youth group and Bible study, only to get key details of my faith wrong??

The truth is: We’re all human. We all get things wrong sometimes. (Even your pastor.) This is why you NEED to learn how to study the Bible for yourself. 

This is not to say that your pastor isn’t trustworthy, that you shouldn’t consult additional sources (you should!), or that your opinion is the only one that matters. We should respect and learn from those who have devoted years to studying the Scriptures and their historical context.

However, as Christians, we have a responsibility to ensure our beliefs line up with God’s Word.

One way we can do this is through regular Bible study — either by purchasing a variety of women’s Bible studies or by diving straight into the Bible for ourselves (my preferred method!).

While independent, in-depth Bible study might seem overwhelming on your own, thankfully, it’s a lot easier than you might think.

Here are 7 easy ways to study the Bible that are perfect for beginners.


Related Reading: How to Make Bible Study More Engaging


1. Topical Bible Study

One of the most popular ways to study the Bible, topical Bible studies examine what the Bible says about one specific topic, such as loving others, trusting God, or self-care.

Topical Bible studies are highly practical. Not only do they offer a wealth of related verses all in one place, but they also give actionable suggestions for how to live out these verses in your day-to-day life.

You can find tons of topical Bible studies on nearly every topic you might want to study by visiting your local Christian bookstore or by searching on Amazon. Alternatively, you can easily discover what the Bible says about anxiety (for example) by looking up relevant verses in a concordance. Most study Bibles have a concordance or index of subjects in the back.


2. “Book” Bible Study

Another one of the most popular ways to study the Bible, book studies walk you chapter-by-chapter through a specific book of the Bible, such as Psalms, Proverbs, Matthew, or James.

Book studies are wonderful because they give content to your study — something that some topical Bible studies can overlook. The best book studies offer a wealth of knowledge about the author, history and context of the biblical book you are studying, bringing additional life and insight to the Scripture.

You can easily find book studies on every book of the Bible by visiting your local Christian bookstore or searching online. Alternatively, you might want to check out one of the many free Bible study apps available online. My favorite is the Through the Word app, but the YouVersion Bible App is incredibly popular as well.


3. Character Study

You may want to study the lives of one or more famous Bible characters to learn from their example.

You might study the life of Abraham, David or Daniel. Or you might study one of the great of the Bible, such as the Proverbs 31 woman, Leah, or Abigail in the Bible.

While some Bible characters only show up in one short passage of Scripture, others (like Jesus, Moses and Paul) show up repeatedly across multiple books. A good character study will help you trace their lives throughout Scripture so you can learn from their positive choices and their mistakes.


4. Verse Study

If you want to go really in-depth with your Bible study, you might choose to do a verse study, also known as verse mapping.

With a verse study, you choose one particular Bible verse and study each of its words and how they relate to each other. 

One of the most versatile ways to study the Bible, verse study can include:

  • Reading the verse in multiple translations
  • Researching the original Hebrew or Greek meaning of unfamiliar words
  • Locating unfamiliar words or concepts throughout the rest of the Bible
  • Writing or coloring the verse through Bible journaling
  • Using the verse to inspire a prayer for prayer journaling
  • Memorizing the Scripture through repetition
  • Or wearing the verse on a piece of jewelry or apparel


5. Word Study

Similar to the topical Bible study method mentioned above, with the word study method, you choose one particular word and trace it throughout Scripture.

Simply choose a topic or concept (like fellowship or anger) or a place (like Mount Gerizim or Jerusalem) that appears repeatedly throughout the Bible that you’d like to know more about. Look up the word in the original Greek or Hebrew to learn more about it, and then use a concordance to help you find the word all throughout Scripture.

The Blue Letter Bible is one free online website that can be very helpful for word studies.


6. APPLE Bible Study Method

Bible study teacher Arabah Joy recommends the APPLE Bible Study Method to dive deeper into God’s Word.

Simply follow the APPLE acronym as you read any passage of Scripture:

  • A: Attributes of God
  • P: Promises of God
  • P: Principles for Life
  • L: Lessons Learned
  • E: Examples to Follow

You won’t find these five elements in every passage of Scripture. However, this easy-to-remember acronym can help you train your mind to look for new insights you might otherwise miss in the stories and letters woven throughout God’s Word.


Related Reading: 6 Tips for Hosting a Bible Study at Your Home


7. Sword Bible Study Method

Pastor David Kim of PursuitBible.com recommends the Sword Bible Study Method, calling it the “easiest way to study the Bible.”

To use this method, ask yourself three questions as you read through Scripture:

  1. What Do I Learn About God?
  2. What Do I Learn About People?
  3. What Does God Want Me to Do?

Similar to the APPLE Bible study method listed above, this method is easy to remember, highly practical and requires no extra materials, making it a great choice for beginning Bible students.


Whether you choose one of these easy ways to study your Bible or you simply open God’s Word and read, I hope you’ll make studying Scripture a priority. There is no better way to hear God’s voice and know God’s will for your life than to get in God’s Word regularly.

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