Something simple is easy to reproduce; something complex is not. In
most simple churches, there is no teaching from the front. Instead,
everybody learns by studying the Bible together. In this way a
church is self-feeding and gains the whole counsel of God.
One pattern for studying the Bible is to look for things in the
passage that correspond to three symbols:
A question mark: Is there something that you do not understand?
A light bulb: Is there something that sheds light on this passage,
or does this passage bring light to something that is going on in
An arrow: Is God speaking directly to your heart? Is there a way
your life must change because of this passage?
Spend about 15 minutes studying Luke 10:1-2 using the question
mark, light bulb and arrow pattern. Divide into groups of three to
five people and read only a verse or thought before stopping
discuss. Ask if anyone has a question mark, light bulb or arrow.
What did you learn from the method?
Did you notice everyone leaning forward during the study time? Even
the body language shows how actively involved people were in the
learning process. Studies show that people learn and remember far
more when they are allowed to say something than when they just sit
Was there anyone who did not say anything? The job of the
facilitator is to make sure everyone takes part, especially the
If someone has a question from the passage, the job of the
facilitator is not to answer it but to ask the group for their
ideas. Always seek to find the answers in the Scriptures. In that
way, the Bible itself, rather than a leader, becomes the
Was there someone who dominated the discussion? The facilitator
should make sure that no one (including himself) does all the
Did you see the advantage of only covering a thought or verse at a
time? It enables you to discover more from the passage. (The only
time you read more than this is if you are studying a story or
incident that only makes sense if the whole passage is read at one
time—for example, a parable.)
What did you learn from the passage? Did you see the following
points as you studied?
Jesus had a strategy for the area. He has a strategy for your area
Jesus told the disciples where they were to go. He will tell you
He sent the disciples out in pairs.
When Jesus sent people to a place, he planned to come too. If Jesus
sends you somewhere, He will come with you.
According to Jesus, the problem was not the harvest. Many people
complain that their area is too hard, that the people are not
interested in Jesus. But Jesus tells us the harvest is ready.
If you each find someone outside the group to share this pattern
of Bible study with outside of the group this week, it will
reinforce these ideas.
More methods for inductive Bible Study: Simple Inductive Bible Study from David Watson’s Touchpoint blog
1. Listen to or read the passage until you can understand it and
say it in your own words.
2. Say or write the passage in your own words. It is only when
understanding comes that you can say or write the passage in his or
her own words and accurately include the essential information in
3. Say or write in your own words how you will obey the passage. In
the case of those who are not yet believers, this step can be
modified to ask what you learned about God or man from this
passage. Formulates a series of “I will…” statements. Share these
out loud with the group, to establish accountability to obey the
passage. You can have husbands and wives or parents and children
turn to each other and commit to obeying the passage in their
marriage and families.
From “Getting Started” by Felicity Dale
A couple of verses are read, and then the group answers three
1. What does it say?
2. What does it mean?
3. What difference does it make in my life?
There is a difference between questions 1 and 2. For example, in
John 1 it says “In the beginning was the Word.” Without asking the
second question, a huge amount of meaning would be missed.
Another method, learned from Robert Fitts:
“In discussion Bible Study, we simple read the Scripture, each
taking turns reading a few verses, depending on how many people are
present. While it is being read, everyone is invited to interrupt
at any time to make a comment or ask a question.”
-Alpha Omega Bible College
If too much is being read, the facilitator can stop the person
reading and ask: Does anyone have a comment? Only a few verses
should be read before a discussion develops.
Praying the 10:2b prayer
Prayer is essential to any move of God.
Back in 2002, two friends, Kenny and John, were discussing how to
see a church planting movement start across their state. They
realized that Jesus had given the key in Luke 10:2. They settled on
an experiment. Each day they would pray this prayer together for a
few minutes over the phone.
As their praying continued, they realized they didn’t know how to
pray the prayer day after day, so they asked the Lord to teach
them. He showed them that they needed to be persistent in their
praying and to be very specific in what they asked for.
Things started to happen. Kenny was responsible for church planting
in his state for his denomination. Prior to their praying, about
one person a month contacted him about church planting, but as they
prayed together, this soon became a daily occurrence. And in one
eight month period, he saw more than 120 churches start as a direct
result of this praying.
Kenny and John call this the 10:2b prayer virus (Luke chapter 10
verse 2 and the second part of the verse) and they are seeking to
infect everyone they come across with it. Across the world, people
are partnering to pray the 10:2b prayer daily, and everywhere they
are seeing remarkable answers to prayer.
Pray the Luke 10:2b virus in pairs. Stand and pray actively and
loudly. Then arrange to pray the 10:2b virus with a prayer partner
(We usually get men praying with men, and women with women) over
the phone for the duration of the course.