The documents available under the Bible Studies tab are examples of the most effective way, in my opinion, to lead a small group bible study–by asking questions. Each page consists of questions designed to bring out the important truths of a particular part of scripture, and it typically represents one meeting’s worth of questions.
Numerous people have told me they used to have difficulty studying the bible on their own but that these questions seemed to make it all come alive and helped them to think and understand.
Any small group leader can prepare questions like this. You simply need to study the bible and then ask yourself what the important points are that would need to be taught. Then, instead of just teaching it, come up with questions that would prompt people to tell you what it is you want them to know. These questions (or statements) normally start with the words, “How, What, Why, When, Tell me, Explain and Describe.”
In essence, you are the facilitator as opposed to the teacher. You are always prepared to give direct teaching input where needed, but your primary responsibility is to facilitate the discussion of others and keep them engaged.
Leading a bible study in this way has numerous benefits. Some of the key benefits are:
- Group members are actively involved in the learning process and they essentially “own” it because it’s not just you doing the talking.
- Participants are much more likely to be fully engaged in the study since the questions ensure they think and take part.
- A deeper level of understanding of truth occurs because the group receives more than one person’s wisdom and experience.
- The bible really starts to come alive as members study it directly, without the aid of a curriculum, sometimes for the first time.
- Group members are more likely to apply truth to their own lives because they have had a big part in learning it.
- Christians are encouraged and begin to believe that they too, with the help of the Holy Spirit, can understand the bible.
- Everyone learns more about each other and this fosters love for each other and a deeper level of openness and sharing.