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September 7, 2005
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Bible Study Notes
 

The following are Bible study notes used during toninght's study of 2 John.

 

We are not to interpret the Bible as we read it.  We must train ourselves to be students of the Bible thinking about It and understanding It for what It really says and means.  Our minds, when untrained, will make a mess of the Scriptures.  Proper Bible study should be done all the time, not just when we “notice” a problem with the text.  Remember that our assumptions about a text may be wrong.  Make sure you know what you know and why.  To use your “gutt” apart from your mind is to make a dangerous interpretation of God’s Words.

 

The true meaning of the Biblical text for us is what God originally intended it to mean when it was first spoken, - Fee and Stuart

 

Start with prayer.

Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you.

Put perspiration into it.

 

Always remember 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NLT).  All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right. It is God’s way of preparing us in every way, fully equipped for every good thing God wants us to do.

Some simple steps:

 

I. Read the introduction to the book

o       Let the scholars do the work for you.

§         Who wrote it?

·         The Elder (possibly John)

§         Who did He write it to?  What was the audience like?

·         The chosen lady and her children (possibly the Church)

§         Why did He write it?

§         When did He write it?

§         Is it a letter to a person or church or is it a document to be read by all?

·         It seems to be a letter written to a group of people (either a family or a church family)

§         What is the literary context?

§         Is it a poem, a letter, a teaching, a historical document, a song, etc.

·         It is a letter

§         Does any of the above matter?

II. Read the entire book

o       Read it again

o       Read it again in other translations

o       Jot down any overall impressions/ themes about the book. 

o       What is the big idea?

§         We are to love others

§         We are to Obey the teachers of Jesus

§         It is a warning against false teachers

o       Do not focus on specifics

o       Write down major questions that have to do with the book as a whole

o       Only focus on specifics when they relate to the major questions

 

III. Read a more specific paragraph/section/chapter

o       Read it again

 

IV. Ask the Bible some questions

§         Things you don’t understand

§         Things you think you understand but have never really studied for yourself

 

**Important study note** Our best answers are always found within the text itself, either in the immediate text or in other parts of the Bible.

 

(1) 

Is this the same John who wrote the book of John?

John 13:34
"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

Is this one of the original disciples?

“the one whome Jesus loved”  John 13:23.  John 20:2.  John 21:7.  John 21:20. 

 

Who is the chosen lady?

Strong’s: 2959 κυρία [ Kuria / koo· ree ·ah /]. From 2962.  Two occurrences; translates as “lady” twice. 1 a Christian woman to whom the second Epistle of John is addressed.

Vine’s:  kuria ( Κυρία , 2959 ) is the person addressed in 2 John 1 and 5 . Not improbably it is a proper name (Eng., “Cyria”), in spite of the fact that the full form of address in v. 1 is not quite in accord, in the original, with those in v. 13 and in 3 John 1 . The suggestion that the church is addressed is most unlikely. Possibly the person is one who had a special relation with the local church.

Who are her children?

Vines:  Figuratively, teknon is used of “children” of (a) God, John 1:12 ; (b) light, Eph. 5:8 ; (c) obedience, 1 Pet. 1:14 ; (d) a promise, Rom. 9:8 ; Gal. 4:28 ; (e) the Devil, 1 John 3:10 ; (f) wrath, Eph. 2:3 ; (g) cursing, 2 Pet. 2:14 ; (h) spiritual relationship, 2 Tim. 2:1 ; Philem. 10

 

 

(3)

What are the following:

Grace?

Strong’s:  2. charis ( χάρις , 5485 ), “grace,” indicating favor on the part of the giver,

Mercy?

Strong’s:  kindness or good will towards the miserable and the afflicted, joined with a desire to help them.

Vine’s:  eleos ( λεος , 1656 ) “is the outward manifestation of pity; it assumes need on the part of him who receives it, and resources adequate to meet the need on the part of him who shows it.

 

Peace?

Strong’s:  1515 ερήνη [ eirene / i· ray ·nay /] . Probably from a primary verb eiro (to join); translates as “peace” 89 times, “one” once, “rest” once, and “quietness” once. 1 a state of national tranquillity. 1a exemption from the rage and havoc of war. 2 peace between individuals, i.e. harmony, concord. 3 security, safety, prosperity, felicity,

(4)

What does it mean to be walking in the truth?

Strong’s:  4043 .      περιπατέω pĕripatĕō , per-ee-pat-eh´-o; from 4012 and 3961 ; to tread all around , walk at large (especially as proof of ability); figuratively to live, deport oneself, follow (as a companion or votary):— go, be occupied with, walk (about).

(5)

When was the beginning?

John 13:34
"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

John 13:35.  Romans 13:8.  1 Peter 1:22.  1 John 3:11.  1 John 3:23.        

1 John 4:7.  1 John 4:11.  1 John 4:12

**notice a reoccurring theme of love in John’s writings.

 

Didn’t someone else tell us to love one another?

John 14:15.
"If you love me, you will obey what I command”

 

(6)

Is a description of love found elsewhere in the Bible?

1 John 4:10.
1 John 5:3
This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome,”

(7)

Who are the deceivers?

What did it mean for Jesus to come in the flesh?

Strong’s:  flesh (the soft substance of the living body, which covers the bones and is permeated with blood) of both man and beasts. 2 the body. 2a the body of a man.

Definition of antichrist?

(8)

What have we worked for?

How can we lose what we have worked for?

How are we going to be rewarded?

(9)

What does it mean to run ahead?

Is it saying that you can have the Son but not the Father?

(10)

Bring what teaching?

(10-11)

What does it mean to welcome someone?

(12)

Our joy may be complete?

(13)

Who are the children of the chosen sister?

 

V. Find the answers to your questions

o       What does it mean?

o       Word studies (original language, not Webster’s)

o       Bible Dictionaries (Make sure the word you look up is the correct one.)

o       Bible encyclopedias (same as above)

o       Commentaries (these are as a last resort since they are mostly the opinions of others)

o       The internet (www.crosswalk.com, www.biblegateway.com, www.bible.org, www.studylight.org)

o       Concordances (see how the same word is used other places)

 

VI. Ask yourself some questions

o       Once you’ve done all the research, what does it say?

§         Do not read your meaning into the text.  Take the meaning from the text.  Let the text say what it says

o       What does that have do with our world today?

o       What difference does it make?

 

VII. Verify it

o       Does it say that somewhere else in the Bible?

o       Pray