We don’t often think of study as a spiritual practice, but it can be. Seeing study as a spiritual practice helps us to move beyond acquiring or accumulating knowledge so that what we learn leads us to wonder and worship.
This week, our good friend, Carolyn Arends, encouraged us to see study and contemplation as ‘fraternal twins.’ Each is incredibly important, but they are much better together. We encounter God in scripture when we examine the text (study) and allow the text to examine us (contemplation).
In our time of practice, Carolyn shared the context of John 4:7-26. After exploring the linguistic, literary, historical, cultural, and Biblical/theological contexts, we entered into a time of contemplation. This week, we invite you to make time for this practice (study and contemplation) at least three times. In addition to concordances, commentaries, and interlinear texts (all can be found at BibleGateway or BibleHub), we would also encourage you to explore the resources at The Bible Project. Both the videos and podcast are a tremendous resource! If you would like additional help either understanding the context or choosing passages to study check out Jan Johnson’s book, Meeting God in Scripture. This wonderful book will offers both the context and guided reflections.
Meeting God in Scripture by Jan Johnson
The Fire of the Word by Chris Webb
How to Read the iBible for All Its Worth by Gordon Fee and Douglas Stewart
Scripture and the Authority of God by N.T. Wright
Bible Study that Works by David Thompson
Misreading Scripture With Western Eyes by E. Randolph Richards and Brandon J. O’Brien
Misreading Scripture with Individualist Eyes by E. Randolph Richards and Richard James
Reading While Black by Esau McCaulley
If you have a story to share about how you have been encountering God in this season, we would love to hear it!
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