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1. How to Start a Bible Study Group

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Many churches offer Bible studies for women. All you have to do is sign up. But, a lot of churches do not offer Bible studies for women because the churches are too small or have no one to lead the way.

What if you really want to do a Bible study and would rather do it in community with other women rather than by yourself? Maybe you have been thinking about starting a Bible study and inviting others to join you, but that thought terrifies you. Now may be the time to step out in faith and just do it. In this article, I will take you through the step-by-step process for launching a Bible Study group.

Know that you can start a Bible Study…by faith

Faith is the essential component of the Christian life. Followers of Jesus Christ are to live every day by faith. That is what Paul is communicating to us in Galatians.

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. (Galatians 2:20, NIV)

The life you and I live every day is by faith in the Son of God—Jesus Himself. Christ not only lives in you, He is living through you.

Jesus Christ gave His life for you, so that He could give His life to you, so that He could live His life through you. (Ian Thomas, The Saving Life of Christ)

If you are being prompted by the Lord to start a Bible study, just say yes – “I will do this, Lord. Please help me.” Jesus is with you every step of the way and in every situation. That includes:

  • in your church, neighborhood, community, or workplace.
  • at any age or stage of life. Someone around you needs to know Jesus or to know Him better through studying the Bible.
  • with any size group—large or small.
  • whether you have been studying the Bible for 2 years or doing it for decades. Share what you know and what you are learning.

You can start and lead a Bible study not because you are so great or smart or have been a Christian a long time or know the Bible really well. You can do this because Jesus is the one who enables you to do it. Say "yes" and jump in with both feet.

Desire the benefits of starting and leading a Bible Study

Starting and leading a Bible study can be one of the greatest adventures you’ve ever tried. And it’s good for you.

  • Leading a Bible study presses you to grow and learn for yourself. You always learn more when you prepare to help someone else grow in their faith.
  • Leading a Bible Study also teaches you how to depend on Jesus Christ more. And, whatever leads you to depend on Him is a good thing for you. We are to live by faith in Him and let Him live His life through us.

So, give your insecurities to Jesus. He is the one who makes you able to do everything in the Christian life, and that includes starting a Bible study. You are simply to obey Him and trust His Spirit to work through you. Being scared is a good thing; you will rely on Him more. It is okay to say, “Lord, I can’t do this on my own, but you can in me and through me. I will trust you with this.” Step out in faith.

Getting started

So, you are willing to start a Bible study group but don’t know how to begin? I suggest you do these:

1. Pray. Ask Jesus to help you discern what you should study and to show you whom to ask to join you.

2. Choose a Bible Study that interests you. Your passion about the study will be infectious to your group. And, it will be easier to get others interested.

  • Will your group be mostly those new to the Bible? Choose a Bible study that is designed for those new to the Bible. You want lessons that are short, simple and easy-to-understand for beginners.
  • Will your group be mostly those with Bible Study experience? Choose a study designed for growing Christians who already have some experience studying the Bible. You can tell this by the length of the lessons and whether the questions assume you have a working knowledge of the Bible.
  • What do you think will be your available group time? Pick a shorter study if you are only meeting for an hour or less.

3. Consider women who might be interested in joining you for that study.

  • Perhaps you could just put an announcement in your church news and see who wants to join you. I’ve done that a few times.
  • Do you have a few neighbors you could ask? This is a great way to build community.
  • Maybe you have some mommy friends who need to have some adult discussion. I know a group of women who get together for Bible study right after they drop their children off at school in the morning.
  • Consider inviting some co-workers to join you during your lunch break.
  • Maybe you could just post it on Facebook and see who responds. One woman told me how she did that and found 50 women in her remote area who wanted to do a Bible study with her through a Facebook Group, occasionally meeting together at a local coffee shop.

If you already have a group of friends, neighbors, or co-workers who want to join you for a Bible study, that’s great.

4. Choose a time to meet.

  • Morning, lunch, afternoon, evening? It can be at any time that works for your group. Early in the morning before school or work? Over the lunch hour for co-workers? In the evening? Or anywhere in between. Whatever works for you and for those you invite. Go for it.
  • 1 hour, 1½ hours, 2 hours? That depends on you and your group.
  • Every week, every other week? I know of several groups of friends who meet only twice a month for Bible study. It does help to not go too long between meetings, though, because you really do lose consistency in thought if too much time passes. For consistency, it is best to meet at least twice a month.

5. Choose a place to meet.

  • The possibilities are endless. I have met with a group of ladies at a coffee shop on summer evenings while sitting outside under the awning. Another group met in the café area of the local grocery store over the lunch hour, drawing in women who work from home in our area. Restaurants can be noisy, making it hard to hear one another. But, some have side rooms you can reserve. Homes are always good. Meeting at a room in your church might be the most convenient place, especially if you like to know you will always have a place to meet away from crowds.
  • You can try different days/times/places until you find something that works well for your group. Remember that you want everyone to be able to hear and see each other.

6. Set a start date, notify those you are inviting, and give them access to get the study materials.

  • Option 1: Download the study and print it for all the group members.
  • Option 2: Order books for all the group members to have on hand the first time you meet.
  • Option 3: Give the link for each member to order her own book.

Step out in faith…just do it!

Ask Jesus to help you with all of the above steps to starting a Bible study group. Depend on Him to show you what to do. He is faithful! And, see what He does as you trust Him with this decision. Go ahead, begin the adventure…

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Related Topics: Discipleship, Teaching the Bible

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