Mining God’s Word

Learn to Interpret God's Word in Its Historical-Cultural, Literary, and Whole-Bible Theological Contexts

In partnership with Bethlehem College & Seminary

Course Introduction

About this Course

In this course Professor Brian Tabb presents fresh teaching on interpreting the Gospels, Letters, and Revelation in their historical-cultural, literary, and whole-Bible theological contexts, while offering training in key inductive Bible study skills such as word studies, cross-references, and phrasing so that learners may live out God’s Word in their daily lives.

This course is provided courtesy of The Worship Initiative Used with Permission.

About Dr. Brian Tabb

Brian Tabb (PhD, London School of Theology) is Academic Dean and Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies at Bethlehem College & Seminary in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Resources prepared by Tyler Stitt from Bethlehem College & Seminary.

Look, Learn, Live: Why We Mine God's Word

Reflection Questions
  1. How does asking questions of the text deepen our understanding, even if we have read the text multiple times before?
  2. What kinds of questions should we ask? What patterns or kinds of words should we be looking for?

Study in Context

Reflection Questions
  1. How does studying a text in context illuminate our understanding of the real meaning?
  2. What are the three different contexts we should consider when studying a passage of Scripture?

Study the Gospels and Letters

Reflection Questions
  1. How would you define a “Gospel” as a literary genre?
  2. What are the standard components to most of Paul’s letters?

Study Revelation

Reflection Questions
  1. What is the purpose of symbolic imagery in Revelation? How does understanding the Old Testament background help us understand these images (e.g., lampstands, beasts, lamb)?
  2. Where in Revelation do we hear a call to keep faith, resist compromise, and hold fast to the testimony of Jesus?

Understand the Bible's Big Story

Reflection Questions
  1. Why is the doctrine of inspiration crucial to believing the coherency to the biblical storyline?
  2. Comparing Luke 24:44-49 and Acts 26:22-23, how do both Jesus and Paul summarize the central message of the Bible?

Learn to Use Cross-References

Learn to Use Translations

Reflection Questions
  1. What is the difference between a “word-for-word” approach to Bible translation and the “idea-for-idea” approach?
  2. What are the benefits to consulting multiple translations when you are doing a Bible study?

Learn How to Do Word Studies and Phrasing

Reflection Questions
  1. What are the steps to doing a successful word study?
  2. How does phrasing help us trace the flow of an argument? What are some of the benefits to representing the text visually in this way?

Live Out What You Learn

Reflection Questions
  1. Why are faith, obedience, and trust necessary responses to reading and studying the word of God?
  2. How does connecting the gospel to our response to God’s Word remind us of our gracious place in his family? How does the gospel empower our response?