The author of Ecclesiastes cautions there is no end to the amount of study one can do and reminds us amassing knowledge is not the point. He concludes his words of wisdom by saying the Scriptures spur us on to obedience. God calls us to engage in a reverent, loving relationship with him and obey his commands (Ecclesiastes 12:9–14). I love to learn but too often I’m guilty of not putting what I’ve learned into action. Can you relate? How can we be more intentional about applying the truth we learn from the Bible in our daily life?
Application Starts with Study
We can’t apply what we don’t know or understand. So, we must start with studying the Bible in such a way as to gain access to the eternal truth revealed therein.
For this post, I’m going to assume you know how to study your Bible. If you need some help in that area, you may wish to read my posts: 7 Common Sense Keys to Unlocking Life-Changing Truth and How to Enjoy Reading the Bible and Get More Out of Your Time in It. In those you’ll find tips and links to helpful resources related to sound interpretation and study of Scripture.
Learning is not the end we work toward, though. We want to activate the truth in our life by reverently loving God and doing what he commands (Ecc 12:13).
I’ve broken down the process into the following easy to follow guide. Be sure to get the FREE Checklist that summarizes these steps. Just click the image above or the button below and I’ll email you the guide instantly.
Now for the rest of the process…
Identify the Takeaway Truth
Whenever you study Scripture, conclude by listing your “takeaway” statements. Review the key points you have drawn. What eternal truth(s) have you discovered? By that, I mean what truth was the writer communicating to his original recipients that is also true for us today? This is what you can take with you from your study time into your daily life.
Create a Call to Action
Now, translate your takeaway statements into a call to action, or calls to action. Until we apply it, the truth remains, for us, theoretical. Paul wrote, “Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” (Philippians 4:9) If we want to fully experience our relationship with God and have his Word be real for us personally, we must go beyond thinking about him and what he says to do; we must act on his truth.
Pinpoint Application Situations in Your Life
Consider your upcoming day, week, and month. Where are you likely to come across situations for which your takeaway statements would apply? What relationships or interactions in your life come to mind when you review the eternal truth taught by the passage you studied. When and where could you apply this truth to your life and relationships?
Plan How You Will Put the Truth into Action
With a time and place identified in which to apply this truth, consider how it applies and how you can live it out in that specific situation.
- What action does this truth require you to take in that setting?
- How do you typically handle these circumstances?
- What do you normally say, or how do you usually interact?
- Does what you learned indicate you need to think, speak, or act differently?
Applying God’s truth might require you act when you normally would refrain from acting. Or, it might compel you to exercise restraint where you normally would charge ahead.
Now you know when and how you will apply the truth you’ve learned from your study of God’s Word. But things won’t always go smoothly. So, consider what obstacles you are likely to face as you attempt to put the truth into practice. Then brainstorm how you will overcome those obstacles and be obedient in the face of setbacks and difficulty.
Activate the Truth
Close your Bible, journal, and/or notepad. Get out there in your daily life and put the truth into action. It is best if you can find a way to take some action today through which you heed the call to action you heard from God in your study.
An Example Using Luke 4:1–13
If you combine the 7 Common Sense Keys to Unlocking Life-Changing Truth with the above Easy to Follow Guide to Apply God’s Truth to Your Daily Life, you get a seven step process to study and apply God’s truth.
Seven Step Process to Study and Apply God’s Truth
- Study the Biblical passage (using the 7 Keys to Unlocking Life-Changing Truth).
- Identify your takeaway statements.
- Create a call to action.
- Pinpoint application situations in your life.
- Plan how you will put the truth into action.
- Anticipate obstacles.
- Activate the truth in your life by reverently loving God and doing what he commands (Ecc 12:13).
I thought it might be helpful for you to see how I used these steps as I studied Luke 4:1–13. If you’d like a copy of my notes, let me know by clicking the following button. I’ll email you the PDF instantly.
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If you’d like me to instantly email you the easy to follow guide that summarizes the process covered in this post, just click on the image or button below!
Question: I pray this helps you study and apply God’s Word. Leave a comment and let me know how this process works for you! You can leave a comment by clicking here.