The BIBS Process Is Simple, But Not Easy [BIBS]

In compiling the BIBS process of Bible study to teach to my teens, I found that the concepts were simple, but actually doing the work was hard. Bible study–when you’re doing it right–is an exacting exercise. Not only do you have to mentally and emotionally get into it, but you have to live it out spiritually, too. Daily.

It takes discipline. And courage. And determination. And grit.

“Sure, I get it. Read a text; figure out what it says.” It goes beyond that, though.

None of these steps are original to me, but they’re the simplest way I have found to read and understand Scripture. I think the simplicity of the BIBS process is why it resonates with so many people. Observe. Interpret. Apply.

As we have discussed in other posts, the first step in the BIBS process is to observe. Gather information from the birds-eye perspective. Step back and look at background, language, culture, author, style, genre and as much behind the scenes stuff as you can.

Then, interpret. Follow the steps listed above. Find out what God is saying. Simply, the BIBS interpretation process is as follows:

  • Read
  • Reread
  • Flag words
  • Word
  • Phrase
  • Sentence
  • Question
  • Answer(s)
  • Combine (Big Idea)

Finally, apply. The last stage of the BIBS process is to take what God said and translate it into what God is saying. If God is speaking, listen. When you listen to God, He shows you all kinds of things to fix.