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God's Word

Tips on learning how to study the Bible...
E. Glenn Wagner
Do you love God's Word? Statistics indicate that only about 10 percent of Christians read their Bible every day. More fall into the category of "once in a while," while others look at it only when the pastor preaches from it on Sunday morning, or they're faced with a major crisis.

The Bible is God's gift to us, to be used to understand His nature and to guide us in daily living. Don't be intimidated by the Bible. Learn to use it and it will become a vital force in your life.

Ways to get into your Bible:

  1. Bible reading. Simply read the Scriptures. Read them as a novel, a biography, or a book from a Christian bookstore. Make them the key to your daily "quiet time." Start where you are and move toward a goal of daily reading. Use a translation you can easily understand.
  2. Hearing a sermon. Hear Scripture proclaimed by a pastor or Bible teacher. Next week: go to church, sit in the pew, and ask God to teach you something through the worship service. Besides listening to your pastor, you can also hear good Bible teachers on cassette tapes and the radio. You can even listen to the Bible on tape.
  3. Bible study. The step beyond reading the Word is studying the Word. This is a more serious pursuit that leads to a fuller and deeper understanding. As you read a passage, ask yourself: What does it say? What does it mean? How does it fit in with other passages? What does it mean to me?
  4. Bible memorization. Memorizing Scripture sounds painful and laborious to some, but the truth is that God will honor your efforts to remember His Word. Memorizing is not a punishment; it's a privilege. Every person has the ability to memorize. We memorize streets in our town, sports statistics, and important dates. The more you memorize, the greater will be your hunger and ability to memorize more.
  5. Bible meditation. Christian meditation is not the emptying of your mind, but rather the active and constructive thinking on significant truths of the Scriptures, and how they apply to the realities of your life. Spend time thinking deeply about what the Scriptures are saying to you in practical terms. This can occur at various moments throughout the day and night. Think so much that Scripture saturates your conversation and compels you to action.

From The Heart of A Godly Man: Practical Disciplines for a Man's Spiritual Life, (c) 1997 by E. Glenn Wagner. Used by permission of Moody Press, Chicago, Ill., 1-800-678-6928.


E. Glenn Wagner has devoted his life to equipping Christian leaders. He received his Ph.D. from Oxford Graduate School and is senior pastor of Calvary Church in Charlotte, N.C. Glenn is also minister-at-large for Promise Keepers and speaks at many major events across North America and worldwide. He is the author of Strategies for a Successful Marriage and The Awesome Power of Shared Beliefs. He is a contributor to the bestselling book, Seven Promises of a Promise Keeper.


Originally published October 28, 2009.