The expositional method of Bible study involves deeply studying a single book of the Bible in order to expose and deeply understand the meaning of the book and how to apply it to our lives. It involves obtaining the big picture of the book as well as details such as word and verse meaning, context, and application.
- Opening prayer
- Watch Jen Wilkin’s “How to Study the Bible” on Esv.org
- Read the overview of James in Knowing the Bible
- Answer the 5 questions about James: Who wrote this?, To whom was it written?, When was it written?, In what style was it written?, What is the main theme of the book?
- Closing prayer
Heavenly Father, thank you for the opportunity for us to come together to study your Word. Thank you for this group of women, Lord, who have come together in the name of your son, Jesus. Please be with us as we embark on a new adventure and learn how to deeply understand your Word and how to apply it to our lives. In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.
As mentioned above, an expositional Bible study usually involves the deep study of a single book. It is also known as biblical exegesis, part of the process of hermeneutics, the science of interpretation. We will therefore be fully interpreting the text for ourselves over 12 weeks, drawing meaning from it for our lives.
After researching which book to begin with, I came across many suggestions to begin with James. As we’ll learn, James was likely the first book written in the New Testament so it works well for a chronologically study of the NT, and it is also a short book making it suitable for beginners to expositional study. We will learn other reasons why James is the most suitable as we go along.
We will be utilizing several resources for this study. One of them is called How to Study the Bible by Jen Wilkin and it is one of the free plans available on Esv.org. Another resources which is available with a subscription on Esv.org or from the link above is James: A 12-Week Study by Greg Gilbert. Lastly, we will be using a workbook created by David Padfield, which can be downloaded from their site here.
Review the “The 6 Ps Of Sound Bible Study” from the free bookmark available in the plan and watch Jen’s video about how to study the Bible. Then read “Week One: Overview” in James: A 12-Week Study.
Using a notebook, the back of the workbook, or the copy of James you printed out, answer the following questions as a group and write down your notes:
Who wrote this?
To whom was it written?
When was it written?
In what style was it written?
What is the main theme of the book?
Almighty God, thank you again for this time together. Thank you for bringing this group of women together and please be with us as we continue to grow in relationship with each other and with your Word. Lord, we want to draw closer to you and feel your presence in our lives. Please be with us throughout this study as we discover everything you want us to know about the book of James and how to apply it to our lives. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Next week we will look at James 1:1-8 using the Workbook on the Epistle of James, and the word studies will be for the words πειρασμοῖς (1:2), ὑπομονήν (1:3), τέλειοι (1:4), and διακρινόμενος (1:6).
Featured image is from The Book of James: Did You Know?