Devotional Study Method
While all Bible study should have an element of personal devotion to it — meaning that it is with the purpose of deepening one';s personal relationship with God — there is one method that makes that aspect of Bible study its primary focus. It';s called the devotional study method.
If you study the Bible using this method, you';ll need a Bible as well as a notepad and writing utensil. With those items at the ready, go to the passage you wish to study and read it several times over, all the while making notes of observations and questions that come to mind about what you';re reading. Then take the time to rewrite the passage in your own words while at the same time personalizing it.
For example, turn in your Bible to Psalm 1:1–3, which reads:
Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or stand around with sinners, or join in with scoffers. But they delight in doing everything the L ORD wants; day and night they think about his law. They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season without fail. Their leaves never wither, and in all they do, they prosper.
After you';ve read this Psalm several times, rewrite it and personalize it. Your version might read something like this: God gives me great joy because I choose not to follow the advice of evil people, or spend my time with sinners, or join in when I hear people ridicule or mock the words and ways of God.
When you study the Bible using this method, its words and messages jump off the pages and become words and messages spoken to you personally. That makes it easier to apply these things to your own life, which in turn brings you closer to God Himself. That';s because you';re reading the Bible as if God wrote it as a personal letter to you and you alone.