Read & Study the
Bible in New Ways

Posted by on 08/24/2017 in: ,

The Bible is an ancient text. So, it isn’t surprising when we get a little bored while reading it—especially with our entertainment-saturated culture. The average person watches only 10-seconds of a video on Facebook! If our attention spans can only handle 10-seconds of a video, how can we possibly stay focused while reading a historic text over and over again for our entire lives?

Well, we have a few ideas for you! This blog post will offer five ways to study and read the Bible in a fresh way.

1) READ DIFFERENT TRANSLATIONS

Ever wondered what the difference is between all the English Bible translations? There are so many! The best way to think about this is to imagine a spectrum. One on end, there are Bibles that are translated word-for-word. These are very literal. Then, on the other side, you have Bibles that are paraphrased versions. In the middle, you have Bibles that are translated by sentence or thought.

So, why would you want to read different translations? Languages are complex with idioms and phrases that don’t translate well word-for-word. At the same time, a paraphrase may miss out on key details. Comparing translations will give you the full picture, and also give you a fresh perspective on the verses you have read several times over.

In our app, it’s super easy to read two translations at once. Just pull open another Bible in the split-screen window!

2) CHECK OUT THE CROSS REFERENCES

Have you ever noticed the little green letters that appear in your Bible in our app? Those are cross references! Any time a verse appears that corresponds directly to another verse in the Bible, it gets tagged. Here’s an example:

In John 1, we learn about Jesus being at the beginning of all creation, bringing everything to life. Verse 5 says, “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” If you look closely, you’ll see an “h” appear right after the verse number. By tapping this, you’ll pull up the list of cross references, and you can look at the corresponding verses in the pop-up window. This cross reference took us to John 3:19, which talks about light coming into the world, but humanity hating the light because they were evil and loved darkness. Put together, we can now understand that John is foreshadowing Christ’s coming and death in the beginning chapters of his book.

So, how can using cross references help you read the Bible in fresh ways? The Bible is one, big historical narrative that tells the story of God redeeming his people. When we use cross references, we are able to more clearly see the connections between these events, the ways God fulfilled His promises, and the richness of the text.

3) USE GOSPEL HARMONIES

We’ve created Gospel Harmonies to make studying Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John easier. Instead of flipping through your Bible to find the stories that correspond to one another, we’ve made them available in one screen. The best way to explain this is to show you.

Why use Gospel Harmonies? Each Gospel is written by a different author and with a different intention. By comparing all accounts, you can make sure to catch all the details, and perhaps make new connections you wouldn’t have made otherwise. We sell these Gospel Harmonies in several different translations as well: NASB, KJV, ESV, NIV, NKJV, NA28 with Parsings & Dictionary, and Byzantine Greek New Testament. Currently, these are all 50% off!

4) TRY A CHRONOLOGICAL STUDY BIBLE

Chronological study Bibles are just what they sound like—Bibles arranged in chronological order with study notes inserted. How does this work? Here’s an example! The Chronological Study Bible (NKJV) starts the New Testament with Matthew 1:25, covering Jesus’ genealogy. There are a few study notes on the culture and society during Jesus’ birth. Verse 25 ends with Joseph believing that Mary is still a virgin and naming his son Jesus… and then the text jumps to Luke 2:1-20, sharing the more detailed account of Mary and Joseph heading to Bethlehem.

Reading a chronological study Bible can rejuvenate your quiet time by helping you see the story of God’s Word. All of the different historical accounts interact with one another and show God’s faithfulness through time. When you read it in order, you will be able to insert yourself into the story, too.

Other recommended chronological study Bibles:
Chronological Life Application Study Bible NLT (20% off)
KJV Reese Chronological Study Bible (50% off)

5) LOOK AT STUDY NOTES

Study notes provide deeper insights into the text of the Bible. Although they aren’t as developed as commentaries are, they are still very helpful when coming across difficult passages. Here’s a few study Bibles that we recommend:


NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible (50% off)
Archaeological Study Bible Notes
NIV Zondervan Study Bible

FIND A NEW BOOK

Sometimes, we just need to be encouraged by another person, a new voice, or a fresh perspective. Right now we have titles on sale that are aimed at helping you read and study the Bible in new ways. You can look through the entire sale here.

12 Comments

  • Larry Ajedewe says:

    A good way to study the scriptures and internalize them not only for memory but for absorption

  • Yvonne Sookdeo says:

    Email Correction

    Unfortunately, my email address is incorrect

    Kindly correct my email:
    yjenkinsdl@gmail.com

    and forward billing information. Thank you.

  • anonymous English for corporate communications bachelorette says:

    You rushed through the proofreading process– you misspelled Joseph’s name.

  • Yvonne sookdeo says:

    Yes Cerrato, the email address is correct, but I may have created a new Gmail address mistakenly. I meant to incluse the “dl”. I did not want too many email addresses. The issue is that I cannot access the new email address to check my order. Thank you for your support.

    Yvonne

    • Cierra Klatt says:

      Hm, sorry that I’m not quite understanding the problem! It’s okay if you use a different email address to contact our support team than the one that you use for our app. You’ll just need to explain that to them! I won’t be able to help you further. Our support team will get you back on track!

  • Yvonne says:

    Cierra, I purchased a Harmony Bible expecting it to be downloaded to my Android Tablet. I have not seen the Bible on my Android and I cannot access the newly created email address in order to check for a billing record. How will this book be trasnsmitted to me? Was my order successful and should it be automatically installed to my Tablet? Even though I could not access the email address, I was of the opinion that the Biblessings would appear on my Tablet. Why are my emails to the address you sent me failed?

    • Cierra Klatt says:

      I’m sorry, Yvonne. I’m not able to help you from our blog comments. If you would like to share your email address with me, I’d suggest that you contact us in a direct message on either Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. Then I can have our support team reach out to you.

  • Yvonne says:

    Hi Cierra, I understand your position and wilLing to send a number where I can be supported. Please email me at yjenkinsdl@hotmail.com.

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