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It’s not too difficult for you

Encouragement to study the Bible

Studying the Bible my self is too difficult


Many people find the idea of studying the Bible a bit scary. It is a thick book after all and most people have never read a book that thick let alone studied one.


The Bible is our guide book for life and as such it is important to know all about it as far as possible. If you have not got into studying and reading the Bible by your self I am pretty certain that one of the reasons is because you think it is too difficult. To address this I want to encourage you with some words from the Bible its self. Speaking about His instructions for living revealed in the Law, God says, “It is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.” (Deuteronomy 30 v11) This is a truth about all God’s instruction for living. If you don’t agree with this statement I would like to lead you through the following points and prayers.


I have four children and one thing that they all say now and again is, “I can’t do that”. If it is to tidy a bedroom then there is just too much to do. If it is to make a sandwich then they think they don’t have the skill. If it is for my little one to put shoes on then really he would just prefer me to do it for him because he finds it quite hard just now.


When people say that studying the Bible is too difficult then they may mean any of these real reasons. The great news that I want to encourage you with is that they can all be over come.

The great news that I want to encourage you with is that all your difficulties can be over come.



Too much


God expects that we will spend our whole lives learning from the Bible. If you think about all the things a new baby has to learn about walking and talking, about getting on with people, reading and writing and a million and one other things, then no one expects them to get it in one sitting. The same is true of the Bible.

When my child says they cannot tidy their room because there is too much mess then we both have to stop and step back a bit and think of a manageable way of doing it. I might say, “go and put all the books away”, then when they have done that, “pick up all the clothes”, then “the five biggest things” etc. As they grow they will be able to think for themselves of a manageable way of tackling the tasks rather than needing me.

The same is true for studying the Bible. When we first start with no plan for managing all the things that we need to study, the job looks overwhelming. The great news is that there are plenty of people you can go to to ask for help in choosing manageable pieces to tackle.

But like my child who would rather just not do the tidying, we have to choose to get on with asking for help and then doing what we are instructed to do.

Let us pray together


Father God,

it is wonderful that you have so much to say to me. It is wonderful that you have written it down so that I can have it before my eyes and keep coming back to it. Thank You.

Heavenly Father sometimes I am over-whelmed by the size of the Bible, I am sorry. Help me to love reading your Word so that with the Psalmist I may “Understand the teaching of Your precepts,” and, “meditate on Your wonders”.

Help me to find a manageable way of reading and studying so that my life may be renewed by the transforming of my mind (Romans 12 v2)


However you go about it you will learn bit by bit, not at one sitting. Go for it.

There are many different systems to make studying the Bible more manageable. There is not the space here to look at any but I have put one suggestion further down. Look out for other articles on this website for ideas. Keep asking friends who know the Bible well about how they study and maybe read books which are there to teach you just such techniques.

How ever you go about it you will learn bit by bit, not at one sitting. Go for it.










I lack skill at present

Many, if not most, people go all the way through their school years without ever learning how to study. If this is your experience then rest assured that study skills are something which can themselves be learnt.

What are some factors to consider?

Plan when you are going to sit down to study. If you wait until you have free time you may find other things are always more pressing. Decide to make it at the top of your agenda at a particular time no matter what else comes along.

Find a quit place with a table or desk that you can sit at. Good Bible study will involve writing as well as reading, it may also involve other books apart from your Bible and you are far cleverer than me if you can balance all that on your lap.

Decide how you want to record your findings. You may like to use a note book but may I suggest loose leaf paper and a folder. You can insert notes on the same topic or Bible book all through your life and have them together. I have ring folders divided up into each book of the Bible and then topics (such as ‘grace’ ‘Amen’, ‘joy’ etc.) and people (such as ‘David’, ‘Moses’ etc.) in further separate sections.

Decide how you want to go about your studies. I have already mentioned deciding how to do the study in the previous section. Whatever you choose it will be a small bit at a time remember so don't become over whelmed by the whole but as a quick start you may consider the following:

Choose a section of Scripture to study (a chapter, a piece of teaching, a story etc.) Then systematically go through the passage and ask ‘who, what, where, when, why and how’. Come up with as many different questions starting with these words as possible. Then go about trying to find the answers to those questions. (Please look elsewhere for how to do that and don’t forget to ask knowledgeable people you know if you don’t have any books to help you at this time).

Decide how long you want to spend studying at one sitting. Be realistic. If you have never done any study then don’t start with a four hour sitting. You will become burnt out and discouraged. Study requires concentration and you may need to build up your ability to do that—perhaps choose something between 10 minutes and half an hour to begin with.

When you begin.

  1. Make sure you have a Bible, pen and paper as basic requirements.

  2. Check your attitude is ready to learn.

  3. Pray that God will speak to you through His Living Word.

  4. Read the passage at least twice!

  5. Begin your chosen method of study.

  6. At the end thank God for all that you have learnt and ask for His help to follow up anything that needs doing.

  7. Apply what you have learnt to your life. (There is no point in studying the Bible if it does not change us.)

Just like my child who is learning to make a sandwich makes one that is food but does not yet do it beautifully, what you come up with at your first attempt will be nourishing to your soul even if it is not presented perfectly. Keep at it.

If you have never done any study then don’t start with a four hour sitting. You will become burnt out and discouraged.




Bible studies lead by someone else are good, sermons are good, reading books is good, but none of these replaces personal Bible study.

I find it hard

It is much quicker and much easier for a small child to go to his parent and get them to put his shoes on him, than to do it himself. I think of my youngest son as I write this. The trouble is he will never grow up and become independent if he always relies on others and doesn’t learn to do it for himself.

This example applies directly to personal Bible study. Group Bible studies lead by someone else are good, sermons are good, reading books is good, but none of these replaces personal Bible study in a growing Christian. They all have different functions and none replaces another.

When I lead a study I only pass on a small amount of what I have found out. If those group members do not go away and study the subject for themselves they will only ever have an introduction to the topic.

I cannot repeat often enough the importance of personal Bible Study and I so want to encourage you to get into this more and more. You might find it difficult at first but as my daughter quoted back at me the other day, “We know that practice makes perfect, don’t we Mummy.” Get started and it will become easier.


Let us pray together again.


Heavenly Father,

Without Your Word we would not know of so many of the wonderful things that You have done throughout history. We would not know how consistent You are in Your love and care. We would not know how Your plan has come together over centuries and millennia.

I am sorry I have often thought that studying the Bible is too difficult for me but I choose to believe Your word that says, “It is not too difficult for you or beyond your reach.” I want to learn more about You and rules for living. Please help me to grow in my ability to study and put me in touch with someone who can encourage me to keep with it.


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This article © Linda Faber 2006-2009.