The best way to study the Word is first of all read it cover to cover. Read it slowly. Don’t rush. Read it as if it were a novel, a good story. (You can do this at the same time as we study Romans.) It’s best to read it in the morning when all your faculties are fresh, after you’ve showered, dressed, and had your breakfast. If you have not prepared your body, your soul will be uncomfortable and it won’t receive instruction. Be at your best and prepared to receive the best.
As you read, note how the Old and New Testaments complete each other. They confirm, and/or explain what each one says. For example, in Revelation 12 we read about a woman running away. That woman is not Mary, nor is it the Holy Spirit, or any other guess that interpreters have suggested. That woman is Israel.
How do we know that woman represents Israel? We have to go back to Genesis 37 where Joseph has a dream about the sun, the moon and the stars bowing down to him. His father, Jacob, a prophet, interpreted the dream. He, Jacob was the sun, his wife was the moon and Joseph’s brothers were the stars. Since it is Jacob’s family we know it is Israel because that became Jacob’s spiritual name when he wrestled with God. Without Genesis no one would understand Revelation. If we didn’t have Ephesians, Isaiah would be incomprehensible.
The Old Testament and New Testament complete each other. The New in the Old is concealed. The Old in the New is revealed. Let me say that this way: When we read the Old Testament the New Testament is hidden therein. When we read the New Testament the Old Testament is exposed and understood.
Other books which have been added to the Bible are not Holy Scripture. God put the Bible together, the Holy Spirit coordinated the writing of it, and He coordinated the assembling of it.
For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).
The Word is alive, intense, and powerful. However, it is the spirit of the man that receives the Word as the carnal mind without the Holy Spirit cannot receive the things of God. God cannot use the educated or the proficient. He can only use those who have been cleansed from all filthiness - through the new birth - and filled with the Holy Spirit (in the new birth the Holy Spirit filled you, in the Baptism of the Holy Spirit He covered you with power) as these people receive the Word in their spirits.
So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17).
If you do as has been outlined:
Now you’re ready to really start living!
I added my personal #3 in parenthesis because I hold the Word in such high regard that I must prepare myself to read it by praying. However, many scholars I’ve read say just the opposite: Read the Bible, then pray. Their point of view is that you really have nothing to pray about unless you know the written Word of God about the subject before you pray. You will have to find your own way by what feels right in your spirit.
Week One: Romans 3:10–18
Week Two: Romans 3:19–30
Week Three: Romans 4:1–8
Week Four: Romans 4:9–16
Each week follow this format:
Day One: Read assigned verses to yourself three times.
Day Two: Read the verses out loud three times.
Day Three: Copy the verses into a notebook.
Day Four: Write the assigned verses in your own words.
Day Five: Taking into consideration all the verses you’ve read up to now, ask the Lord to choose one verse that He wants you to meditate on. Take that verse, meditate on it every day, and let it transform you to be more like the image of Jesus.
Each day of this month, ask the Lord what He wants you to do for someone else. Then do it for Him.
Keep a journal of what you’ve done in obedience and record the results.
Writing has been in my blood, so to speak, but when I surrendered my life to Jesus Christ and He told me to write, all my trepidations rolled away and I began in earnest! After all, if God Almighty says it was His idea that I be a writer, who am I to stand in His way? My hope is that you not only like what I write, but that your life is moved by it, and that your party to Jesus and with Jesus turns your life into days of Heaven on Earth.