Recently, I have been looking for some Bible studies that we might use in our youth group and when I found one, I came up across others. These are Bible studies that can be used for any text from the Bible, they do not need any specific material, just a pen and a paper, some preparation and time for reflection. I am sure you could also use these for any online meeting and some of them as well by yourself at home. I hope you find some inspiration in these when you study God’s word.
SOAP stands for Scripture, Observation, Application and Prayer. In my opinion, this type you can very well use in your daily Bible reading since it is focused on your quiet time in reflection and prayer. When we did it in our youth group, we first read the text together out loud and then took a quiet time when we studied the word, which took us around 30 minutes. In the end, we each shared what was the key verse that caught our attention and how God spoke to us through it. Since there were only four of us, the sharing time was good, especially for us to see how each of us chose something else and had a different thing that God pointed at. In a bigger group, I would recommend splitting into smaller groups for this part of sharing.
SCRIPTURE – read the text planned for this time, take your time and allow God to speak to you and highlight a verse that particularly speaks to you. Write it down.
OBSERVATION – what struck your attention in the text? What do you think God is saying to you there? Paraphrase the scripture and write it down in your words.
APPLICATION – ask yourself how this applies to you. Is there any area of your life that it speaks to? It may be an instruction, encouragement, promise or correction. Write it down.
PRAYER – ask God to use the scripture or give you an even deeper understanding. Take time to listen to God’s response.
There are several worksheets that you can download for this study freely and if you have your own template, do not hesitate to upload it into the shared folder so that others can benefit from it.
COMA method as opposed to SOAP starts with context. It’s a great part of the study. If done in a group, the leader would say something about the context of the book, who wrote it to whom, what were the circumstances of it, understanding of certain topics and culture. These facts can shed a different light on the text and can help us understand the meaning and necessity of what is written.
Let’s break down all the parts of the COMA method.
CONTEXT – this aims as the history as well as literary context. You can also focus on what does the text say about the author and his audience, how does the text stand in the chapter/book, what’s the theme?
OBSERVATION – here you can focus again at what catches your attention, what are the key details, main points, is there any repetition or is there any surprise for you?
MEANING – focus on several points – how does it relate to Jesus, what does it teach you about God, what is the idea and can you summarize it in your own words?
APPLICATION – see where it speaks to you in ways that it challenges your understanding. Is there a place where you may need to change the way you live or attitude?
This method doesn’t have an acronym, but pictograms and focuses on good observation. There are five points for discussion or thought.
LIGHTBULB – anything that “shines” through the passage. It does not have to be a piece of content, but also a style of the passage or the way a message is conveyed.
QUESTION MARK – is there any question that comes up to your mind when you read the text? Try to think of a question about the context, culture or meaning.
CROSS – how does the passage relate to Christ? Where is He in the text? Luke says all scripture is about Christ, so how do you see it here?
ARROW – “so what?” How can you apply this passage to your life? Make it personal and practical. You can use SPECK that stands for finding Sin to avoid, Promise of God to claim, Example to follow, Command to obey and Knowledge of God or self that you need to learn.
TALK BUBBLE – God’s word is His spoken word to us, that means that we need to speak it to others! Think about with whom you can share what you learned in the text. Write their name down and pray for them and for an opportunity to share.
There is also an extended version for which you can download the template here.
I hope this is useful for your ministry. Let us know if you are interested in seeing more content similar to this on our website.
You can find printable templates for these Bible studies on this link.