The mid-week Bible study group at our church recently finished what we called a “3-2-1 Study” of the gospel of Matthew. This approach can be used with any portion of Scripture. It’s really quite simple. We were looking for some things to write down as we studied: Three things to know, two things to pray about and one thing to do.
We looked for things that we wanted to remember, such as the location of: the Sermon on the Mount, the Golden Rule, the Greatest Commandment and the Great Commission. Perhaps what we wanted to know was a concept, such as: the great lengths we must go to forgive someone, the fact that faith and fear do not mix or the exhortation not to worry. If we write these biblical teachings down as we read them, we stand a much better chance of retaining them.
We also looked for a couple of things to pray about. Prayer and Bible study should go hand-in-hand. If we are praying God’s Word back to him, it’s hard to go wrong! We were reminded to pray for boldness, for greater faith, for workers for the harvest and many other items that are very important to God.
Finally, we wanted to write down at least one thing to do. Not just some vague notion of “doing better” either! We tried to put something on paper that would require a certain action, such as: forgiving a particular individual who had wronged us, witnessing to a certain friend about Jesus or showing love to a person who is difficult to love.
Writing these concepts down helps us to remember God’s Word and to pray and act within his will.
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”—James 1:22.