At Love God Greatly, we believe that the Word of God is living and active. We believe the words of Scripture are powerful and effective and relevant for life in all times and all cultures. We also know that the Bible was written to specific audiences in specific cultures at specific times. We believe that in order to interpret the Bible correctly, we need an understanding of the context and culture of the original writings.

As we study the Bible, we use the SOAP Bible Study Method. The acronym stands for Scripture, Observation, Application, and Prayer. It’s one thing simply to read Scripture. When you interact with it, intentionally slowing down to reflect, truths start jumping off the page. The SOAP Method allows us to dig deeper into Scripture and see more than we would if we simply read the verses. It allows us not only to be hearers of the Word, but doers as well (James 1:22).

In all of our reading plans, we read a passage of Scripture and then apply the SOAP Method to a few verses. We believe that using this method allows us to glean a greater understanding of Scripture, which allows us to apply it effectively to our lives.

The SOAP Method includes four steps:

  1. Scripture. Write out the verses at least one time. Slow down and copy the passage from the text, focusing on what you are writing. Writing it more than one time is always helpful.
  2. Observation. Take time to carefully observe the passage. What do you see in the verses you’re reading? Who is the intended audience? To whom is the writer speaking? What cultural factors are at play? Are any words or themes repeated? What literary devices are being used?
  3. Application. After carefully observing what is happening in the passage, determine the main message or truth of the passage. How can you apply this truth to your life?
  4. Prayer. Pray God’s Word back to Him. If He has revealed something to you during this time, pray about it. Confess any sin God has revealed. Pray through the truth of the passage.

The most important ingredients in the SOAP Method are your interaction with God’s Word and your application of it to your life. God’s Word is powerful and effective. You will never waste time in God’s Word. Take time to study it carefully, discovering the truth of God’s character and heart for the world.

 

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