Facts about the Individual Book Study Method.
– Is the most thorough and comprehensive way to study the Bible.
– It is the way the Bible was written—Book by book. The Bible is an anthology of 66 books (if you count Samuel, Kings, & Chronicles as two books each). So it’s the best way to study and understand the information in the books.
– Books were written without Chapters and verses. Jesus and the disciples memorized and studied scriptures that didn’t have verses and chapters, only books. For about 1500 years Since Jesus died, Christians studied the Bible without verses and chapters. Chapter and Verse divisions are a recent innovation that helps referencing scriptures when writing Biblical treatises but can adversely affect ordinary Bible reading and study since some of the chapter and verse divisions are arbitrary and disrupt the flow of the text. Book study helps to avoid this problem to a good degree since you focus on the entire book.
– It is the difficult method to study the Bible but it is also the most rewarding way and yields results that are the most permanent.
– The method has four major parts that work together to allow us to most thoroughly study the Word of God. The four parts are: Book Background Study (gives us a proper context and elucidates the themes and the backdrop of the accounts we are studying), Book Overview (gives us an overview or bird’s eye view of the entire book), Book Analysis (We study the details of the entire book, chapter by chapter), Book Synthesis (we put everything back together.
– Some authors present these four parts (Book Background, Book Overview, Book Analysis, and Book Synthesis) as four separate book study methods. The idea is very tempting because it breaks down the work into four separate chapters, which are easier to handle. But from our experience, when it is broken down in that fashion, beginners often make the mistake of thinking that they can thoroughly study a book by using only one of the four methods. But putting them under one method but different parts as we have done allows readers the opportunity to do the study one part after another without making the mistake to try to do Book Analysis or Book Synthesis when they haven’t first done the Book Background and Book Overview.