The final section of OIA is the A – application. In my opinion, this can be both the easiest and hardest part of inductive Bible study. On the one hand, it’s often easy to see how we can apply the text to our everyday lives, but harder to honestly answer and do it.
After reading and analyzing the text, you should have a fairly solid idea of its meaning – though not complete of course! But take a look at the text, your notes and what you’ve learned about this passage, and ask yourself “what does this mean for me?”
Scripture is God’s gift to us. It isn’t a textbook to be studied from afar, or a book of poetry to get warm fuzzies from. Every verse is applicable for teaching and guiding us.
If you are having trouble finding a solid application, remember that every part of the Bible, at its core, is about Jesus and the gospel. Maybe the passage you are looking at is just a beautiful reminder of Jesus’ coming, or God’s patient love for His people.
Ask yourself if the text is challenging you in any way: to do something, to change a behavior, to shift your mindset. What would it look like to embrace the passage in your everyday life? What would it look like to share the message of the passage with a specific person that you know? The application section of this Bible study is when we take the knowledge of the Bible, and put it into action.
God Will Meet You There
The Bible is a long and ancient book. But it’s also miraculous gift that many of us in the modern American church take for granted. We leave it sitting on our bookshelves and bedside tables, forgetting that it is the Holy word of God. If it feels too intimidating to open your Bible and start reading, then I would challenge you to first pray that God would give you wisdom and discernment when reading His word. That is something He’s always willing to grant!
But then make a plan, break down these three simple steps, and take the time to really sit with a passage. God will meet you there, no matter your reading level or general Bible knowledge. He’s always ready to speak to us through His word.
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