Prepare the Meal

Now that you’ve studied the overview page, you’re ready to begin the Searching the Scriptures process and prepare the meal! When studying the Bible for yourself, Chuck encourages you to work through each of the four basic skills used in Bible study: observation, interpretation, correlation, and application.


What do you see?


What does it mean?


How does it relate?


How does it apply?

Searching the Scriptures Bible Study Process

Use this summary overview as a guide to Searching the Scriptures. You can also download a printable chart for later use.

Observation: Read the passage thoroughly.

Observe the passage by examining:

  1. The who, what, where, when, why, and how
  2. What you can see, touch, taste, hear, and smell
  3. The logical connections, flow of thoughts, and range of subjects
  4. What’s repeated, emphasized, related, alike, and unalike
  5. What’s written before and after

Interpretation: Understand the passage deeply.

Interpret the passage by studying:

  1. The cultural, biblical, and historical context
  2. The literary genre and use of language
  3. The author’s intent for writing
  4. The author’s beliefs about God and life

Correlation: Compare the passage carefully.

Correlate our passage by comparing it with:

  1. Scripture that corresponds with historical events
  2. Scripture that corresponds with theological truths
  3. Scripture that corresponds in application principles

Application: Internalize the passage personally.

Apply a passage by:

  1. Reflecting on your daily habits, attitudes, and relationships
  2. Inviting the Lord to search your heart (Psalm 139:23–24)
  3. Asking questions: Do I need to heed a warning? Claim a promise? Confess a sin? Overcome a fear? Break a habit? Resolve an offense? Offer praise?
  4. Pursuing new paths that lead to wholeness and spiritual health

“I have rejoiced in your laws as much as in riches. I will study your commandments and reflect on your ways. I will delight in your decrees and not forget your word.” (Psalm 119:14–16)

Next: Serve the Feast!

Once you’ve prepared a spiritually satisfying meal for yourself, find helpful ideas on how to serve it to others!