We want each woman who attends our studies to experience a growing sense of community which is fostered by weekly meetings as well as times of fellowship. We also want them to get into the practice of daily study, and as they come each week with a lesson prepared, the more effective we are in helping them achieve that goal. And that is our ultimate purpose—not only to lead women in the study of the Bible, but to also equip them to become independent students of the Word, that they may impact other’s lives even as their own lives are being changed into the likeness of Jesus.
The purpose of my women’s Bible study is to lead women in the study of the Bible, equipping them to be independent students of the Word, that they may impact other’s lives even as their own lives are being changed into the likeness of Jesus.
What does that mean? Our purpose statement is the why behind what we do in Women’s Bible Study. It gives us direction and focus as to what we are doing and the parameters of how we go about it. This statement has four important phrases:
- Study of the Bible – The Bible is the primary textbook for every study I write. Jesus commanded His followers to teach the Bible. He told them to go and make disciples (literally, learners), “teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:20). Women cannot live in obedience to God’s commands if they don’t know what those commands are. While other resources can be beneficial, the Bible has center stage in each of my studies.
- Equipping them to be independent students of the Word – My desire is that women would discover the joy of gleaning Biblical truths from their own personal study of scripture. Research tells us that people remember far more of what they say than what they hear, and far more of what they discover for themselves than what they are spoon-fed. As women interact personally with scripture, the Holy Spirit reveals the truth of the Word and engraves in on hearts. So, not only are my studies centered on the Word of God, each study, be it in class or through the homework, aims to get women digging into the Word for themselves.
- Impact Other’s Lives – By equipping women to study on their own, we give them the tools of discipleship. As they grow in their knowledge of and relationship with the Lord, they will be able to share with each other and those in their world the exciting truths and blessings of being in Christ. Sharing truths with each other encourages deep friendships that “spur one another on to good works.” Sharing the truths of scripture with those in their world carries out the Great Commission.
- Changed into the likeness of Jesus – The purpose of studying the Bible is not simply to gain knowledge but to be changed by what we learn. More specifically, it’s to be “conformed to the likeness of His Son.” Such a purpose involves a process of transformation. Second Corinthians 3:18 states: “But we all, with unveiled faces holding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.” Though the potential for Christ-likeness is immediately present within the believer at the moment of salvation, the process of being transformed into the likeness of Christ occurs gradually. Our role is to bring women to the Word of God, through which the Holy Spirit will bring about this progressive transformation.
Lessons per week:
This will be determined by the calendar and time frame allotted to your group.
I generally recommend teaching through a study week by week, completing 2 homework lessons for discussion per week. My audio leaders’ guides and video lectures follow this schedule.
You may find that a different schedule works better for your group.
How to Use Your Time:
1st - about 1 hour - homework discussion - I have found that prioritizing the discussion of homework encourages women to complete the workbook questions so that they come to the class prepared. It is also important to give women the opportunity to share their answers, learn from each other, and ask questions on topics that they didn't understand.
2nd - share prayer requests briefly in the last 10 minutes of discussion time (or ask ladies to email them to the leader)
3rd - about 10 minutes - bathroom break / snack / fellowship - this allows women to mingle and get ready to focus on the lecture
4th - short lecture (30-45 minutes)
- Placing the chairs in a circle tells people you want them to participate. A discussion is more easily generated when people can see each other. This is a very good set-up for the introductory session of Bible Study.
- Sitting around a table promotes group interaction that asks women to draw from their Bibles and/or homework. They communicate a message that says, “we’re here to study and learn.”