- Look at the book as a whole – that means that you do an overview of the book so that you are familiar with the content and the flow of the author’s argument. There are many ways to do an overview. But that is not the focus here.
- Analyze the content of the book – this is where a lot of us begin. We dive into the book, chapter 1, verse 1 without having a grasp of what the book is about. That means that we are trying to figure that out verse by verse. Not easy if not impossible. It leads to wrenching passages out of the context of the author’s argument, among other errors. Like the overview there are many ways one can analyze the content of a book. We cover five or six in the Dads Teach the Bible workshops, there are three in my book and workbook.
- Summarize what you have learned – this is the step that most people skip even if they have done the first two. The problem is that this is the step that will cement what you have learned in your study. After doing an overview and working through each section of the book, as you go back through the book you will see the whole with different eyes.
While I still have work to do, there are vestiges of a theme that I had not seen there before emerging. My understanding of Hebrews and by extension my Lord is richer as a result.
Don’t leave out steps. Especially 1 and 3. If you need help with method, let me know. I will help.