Bible Teaching Must Keep the Word Central

Bible Verses on the Importance & Usefulness of God’s Word

Bible TeachingFor everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. (Rom. 15:4)

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Tim. 3:16-17)

For you know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. (1 Thess. 4:2)

Some have departed from these and have turned to meaningless talk. They want to be teachers of the law, but they do not know what they are talking about or what they so confidently affirm. (1 Tim. 1:5-7)

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples . . . teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” (Matt. 28:18-20)

Bible Teachers Must Therefore Keep the Word Central in Their Teaching

While it might seem obvious that Bible teachers should be using the Bible at the core of their teaching, that does not always happen.

  • Some Bible teachers merely read from the curriculum manual, never opening the Bible.
  • At times discussion becomes merely the exchange of ideas with little or no reference to what the Bible says on the topic.
  • When using a contemporary book or video presentation for the lesson, attention is not always given to studying the Word but rather what the book or video communicates which may or may not point to the Bible.

Implications for Bible Teachers:

  1. Use the Bible as your primary text. Books written by contemporary authors or video lessons can be profitable but they must be not only biblically based but also obvious that the Word is the source of teaching.
  1. Use the Bible as your primary source of authority. Recognize that the authority is God’s, as communicated in His Word, not the teacher’s or class’ opinions. Always give Him the final say. Do not water down the truth in an attempt to please people.
  1. Use the Bible as your primary tool for impacting lives. While building relationships and creative teaching is critical, ultimately God uses His Word to change lives.

In these ways Bible teachers will keep the Word central in their teaching.

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Bible Teaching Demands Accuracy

Bible Verses for Bible Teachers

Bible TeachingDo your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. (2 Tim. 2:15)

Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage — with great patience and careful instruction. (2 Tim. 4:2)

But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, (1 Pet. 3:15)

You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine. (Titus 2:1)

Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Matt. 5:19)

Bible Teachers Must Stay True to God’s Word, Accurately Presenting it

  1. Your approach to studying and interpreting the Bible matters. You need sound hermeneutics. Below are some books in our affiliate store that could help Bible teachers personally and in turn, their teaching.

Basic Bible Interpretation by Roy B. Zuck
How to Study the Bible for Yourself by Tim LaHaye
Rightly Divided: Readings in Biblical Hermeneutics by Roy B. Zuck
The New Joy of Discovery by Oletta Wald

  1. Your accountability is for what comes out of your mouth. Bible teachers can’t blame the curriculum. They must be able to catch inaccuracies in the lesson and know what to do about it.
  1. Your awareness of how students receive the lesson is important. Bible teachers need to be clear in their presentation. We have an example of this going back to the time of Nehemiah — “They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people understood what was being read.” (Neh. 8:8) First and foremost is our responsibility to God to accurately handle His Word but then also to people so they don’t leave with misconceptions.
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Bible Teaching is an Awesome Responsibility

Bible TeachingWhat God’s Word Says about Teaching

Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. (James 3:1)

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. (2 Tim. 2:15)

An Awesome Responsibility

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines awesome as:

“causing feelings of fear and wonder : causing feelings of awe”

I am using the word “awesome” purposefully in this post because teaching God’s Word should instill both of these feelings within us.

1) Bible teaching is a wonderful, terrific, extraordinary opportunity.

We should have a sense of wonder that the Almighty God has given us the privilege of working in cooperation with Him to change lives through the teaching of His Word.

2) Bible teaching is a serious responsibility for which we will be held accountable.

We should have a sense of reverential fear of the Almighty God and His Truth that we want to properly handle it, putting our best efforts into preparing and presenting the lesson.

Questions for Bible Teachers:

Do you truly understand what an awesome responsibility you have in teaching God’s Word?

Your answer to the next questions will determine how much you truly understand.

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Bible Teaching is a Special Divine Empowerment

Bible TeachingWhat God’s Word Says about Teaching

We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; (Rom. 12:6-7)

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. (1 Pet. 4:10)

Spiritually Gifted to Teach

A spiritual gift is “a special divine empowerment bestowed on each believer by the Holy Spirit.” (Click here to learn more about this definition.) When using our spiritual gifts we are therefore operating according to God’s power.

Implications for Leaders who are Recruiting Bible teachers:

Since God has gifted people to teach, it only makes sense that we would look for people who have spiritual gifts that empower them to teach. While we might think of Bible teachers as those with the spiritual gift of teaching, that is not necessarily the case. Some who teach could have the spiritual gifts of exhortation. Others could have the gift of prophecy. And, some have a combination of these gifts.

People with the spiritual gift of teaching will tend to be more systematic in their approach.

People with the gift of exhortation will tend to be more applicational in their approach.

People with the spiritual gifts of prophecy will tend to be more confrontational in their approach.

The Holy Spirit can impart divine power and use people who are not gifted to teach, but God obviously intends for spiritual gifts to be an indication of where we should serve.

  • Understand the way God has empowered the people you recruit and help them understand it as well.

Implications for Teachers:

  • If God has given you a spiritual gift for teaching, then find some way to use it.
  • If you have been gifted to teach, are you effectively using that gift? – Paul told Timothy to “fan into flame” the gift he had been given (2 Tim. 1:6).
  • If you are teaching but are not so gifted, rely on the Holy Spirit to work through you nonetheless, while seeking to find your best fit in ministry.
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Bible Verses for Bible Teachers

What better way to encourage and train teachers than to use God’s Word. The following verses could be used as part of a teacher training session such as a previous post, Circle Response Teacher Training.

Or you can use these verses to send by e-mail, post on a Facebook page or other social media platform for your teachers, or put them in a note card. You could distribute these verses one by one, maybe posing a question or adding a word of encouragement, or as a whole. You could encourage your teachers to use them in a devotional time, meditating on the Scripture as it relates to their teaching.

  • Bible Teaching is a Special Divine Empowerment (Rom. 12:6-7; 1 Pet. 4:10)
  • Bible Teaching is an Awesome Responsibility (James 3:1; 2 Tim. 2:15)
  • Bible Teaching Demands Accuracy (Matt. 5:19; 2 Tim. 2:15; 4:2; Titus 2:1)
  • Bible Teaching Must Keep the Word Central (Matt. 28:18-20; Rom. 15:4; 1 Tim. 1:5-7; 2 Tim. 3:16-17)
  • Bible Teaching Requires Reliance on the Holy Spirit (Jn. 14:26; Gal. 5:22-23)
  • Bible Teaching Must Equal Bible Living (Rom. 2:19-21; 1 Cor. 4:17; James 1:22)
  • Bible Teaching Must be Fueled by Prayer (Prov. 3:5-6; Eph. 1:16; 3:16-19; Col. 1:9-12; 1 Thess. 1:2; 2 Thess. 1:3; James 1:5)
  • Bible Teaching has an Important Purpose (Matt. 28:19-20; Eph. 4:11-13; 2 Tim. 2:2; 3:16-17)
  • Bible Teaching Requires a Good Dose of Humility (Jn. 13:14-15: Gal. 6:6)
  • Bible Teaching Requires Ongoing Growth in the Teacher (Deut. 6:6-7; Matt. 10:24; Lk. 6:40; Phil. 3:12-14; Col. 3:16)

In upcoming posts we will look at each of the above points about Bible teaching, giving some questions or statements to pass on to your teachers.

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Circle Response Teacher Training

Circle Response Teacher Training

Click to enlarge & repin in Pinterest.

Circle response is a method you can use in teacher training to get everyone participating in a minimally threatening way. How personal the type of response you request could depend on how well your teachers know each other. Each person is permitted to only respond with one word, phrase, or sentence, depending on what you set as the criteria. You can use any statement or question for them to respond to that could possibly generate more than one kind of response.

1) Arrange seating in a circle. You would normally do this prior to the session.

2) Start with the person who tends to be more outgoing and go around the circle having each group member give his/her response to your statement or question. No comments may be made to what is said until you get around circle.

3) Follow the circle response with a summary with observations of what was said and then instruction/discussion.

An Example of Circle Response in a Teacher Training Session

Here is an example of how you can use circle response in training your Bible teachers that helps them assess their teaching.

Do the Following Circle Response Statements:

  • In one word, express how you feel about your teaching.

(Go around the circle for their responses. Move on to the next statement immediately without providing any commentary on what they said.)

  • In one word, describe how you think your students feel about your teaching.

Make observations about responses:

You might be able to comment something like the following:

For some, the words you used to describe your teaching from both points of view were similar. For others, they were quite different.

Use the following questions to discuss responses:

  • What criteria did you use to determine your responses to each statement?
  • Now, think to yourself, how do you think God feels about your teaching?
  • What criteria would He use? (Ask for some Scripture verses that have been meaningful to them to keep them on track in their teaching as God’s Word needs to be our standard.)

The next post will provide some Bible Verses for Bible Teachers that could enter into the above discussion.

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