A couple of weeks ago, I said that I was starting a Bible study with the ladies over at Love God Greatly. For the next eight weeks, I will be studying the book of Esther. LGG created some great Bible studies that can even be found on You Version (app and website). For this particular study, every day we will read a passage from Esther, and then usually a connecting passage from the New Testament. LGG has also included a written devotional that connects to the passages and provides insights for your daily reading. I briefly talked about my excitement to start this over at this post, but today I’ll be talking about a particular method I’ll use daily to better understand scripture. Sure, I will take notes on the devotional, possibly dig deeper with the help of Google, but the SOAP method will be the best way for me to interact with scripture.
What is the SOAP Method? SOAP is an acronym standing for Scripture, Observation, Application, and Prayer. SOAP is a wonderful method to engage with Scripture, to work through the Word, and let the Word do work on you. I think this works best with smaller passages, a few verses, or even a single verse (like the kind that you need to memorize!)
- Scripture You need to actually write the scripture down. Word for word, from whatever version of the Bible happens to be your favorite. Think about the words as your write them, write down the scripture’s address, and reread the verse when you finish this step.
- Observation What do you notice about the scriptures? Is the speaker earnest in their delivery, using strong language, talking about the character of Jesus, or giving insight into the Kingdom of God? What’s going on here? What jumps out at you?
- Application God speaks to His people in so many ways, but one way is through His Word. I love when I open my Bible and read exactly what I needed to read. How is this SOAP passage applicable to your life? What is the Holy Spirit trying to tell you? What is something that you cannot deny as a “next step” for you?
- Prayer Be sincere, detailed, thorough, and personal in your prayers. I will let you know a little secret: there is no point in keeping things from God, both your wildest dreams and your deepest fears. He already knows them! Write a prayer expecting the Lord to do great things. If you are a Christian, you need to approach the throne of grace with confidence and be confident in you being a child of the one true King.
SOAP is new to me, so I’m excited to see what the Lord will do as I dive deep into the Word. Have you used the SOAP method before? What has the Holy Spirit shown you while studying Scripture? Do you use other methods to help you hide the word in your heart?
Photo cred to No More Dirty Looks