3 Your guide for group Bible reading and Discussion
(Discovery Bible Studies, DBS)

Preparation

This is quite simply, an opportunity for a group discussion about a Bible text or texts. Everyone is invited to participate in the discussion, and in that way we listen and learn from each other. It’s not a question of listening to an expert or theologian who teaches everyone else!
The first step is to choose someone who is willing to lead the discussion, ask questions, and act as a chairman/woman, so that everyone has an opportunity to share their points of view, and no-one is allowed to dominate the discussion.

Pray

Pray that the Holy Spirit will lead you in your Bible reading.
Begin by reading the whole context (include the sections before and after).

Then the Bible text (Read)

Read the text privately. Someone reads the whole text, aloud.
One or more people recount the text, but in their own words.
The others can make corrections, if anything is missing from the accounts.

Writing alternative (A way of helping the text to sink in):
Read the text aloud several times.
Everyone should write the whole text word for word in the “Bible text” column.
Everyone should then write the text in their own words in the next column.

Discussion (Understand)

Discuss the Bible text. Was there anything in the text which specially captured your attention?
What did you think about the text? Was there anything in the text which disturbed you? Why? What does the text tell us about God? What does the text tell us about human beings? What does the text tell us about a life which is pleasing to God? Keep the text in focus!

Reflection (Apply/Obey)

It is important to apply and obey. Reflect together. Which changes are you going to make in your life as a result of the text lessons and the discussion? Answer the questions What? When? How? What does it mean to you? Try to be realistic and give tangible examples for changes which can be followed up during the coming week. E.g. How does it change your concept of God? How does it change your attitudes and treatment of other people? How does it change the way you live, think and act? God invites us into a relationship with Himself, to live with and for Him, and to apply the word of God in our daily life and experience.

Witness (Share)

Do you know anyone with whom you can share this Bible text and your thoughts about it? Do you know anyone who needs help? What can the group do to help them? Try to make it into an extension of your discussions on the Bible. Create an opportunity for discussing what you have learnt, with non-believers. “God taught me something today”. If they are interested, then you can share it with them.