Guidelines for Reading and Studying the Life-study Messages
We need to learn how to study the Life-studies, similar to studying a textbook. A Life-study message cannot stand on one point alone. It is at least composed with a few points. If you want to get into a Life-study message, you must first read it in a general way. By reading it in a general way, you will be able to realize that some points are more crucial than others. You must, first of all, pick up the crucial points and get into them.
When you read, pay attention to the section titles for a general understanding of the content. Then underscore or highlight the key point(s) in a section. When appropriate, refer to the corresponding footnote(s) in the Recovery Version for further clarification.
Also, in reading anything we must first understand the vocabulary. This shows us that to get into the truth we must have a good lexicon, and in some cases to understand the Greek or Hebrew equivalent. None of us are adequate enough to know the full, proper, and accurate definition of any word. For example, the word designated in Romans 1:4 is not easy to understand. One definition is to be marked out or set apart for a specific purpose; however, if you read note 1 for verse 4 in Romans, you realize that designated means Christ’s humanity needed to be sanctified by passing through death and resurrection.
In addition, you should pray for the Lord to make a particular point of truth your experience. Concerning the matter of being designated, you might pray, “Lord, sanctify my humanity that I may express You.” Designation is to have our humanity sanctified so that Christ may be expressed through our human living.
Use the Recovery Version in conjunction with the Life-study messages to supplement your study. In studying the Recovery Version there are three subsidiary items to the text itself: the outlines, the footnotes, and the cross references. The footnotes are very crucial, but the outlines are more crucial than the footnotes. You should have a proper understanding of its contents. This will help you identify the crucial points of a message and how they are related.
After picking up the crucial points, we should put these points together. In order to have a “bird’s-eye view” of a message, you must learn how to connect the points. Many of us who read the Bible and the Life-studies pick up some points, but we do not relate any of these points to other points. Once you consider how the crucial points are related, you have an overall view that gives you more light on the message you are studying.
With an overall view, you can write a simple summary of the Life-study message. This exercise will enhance your understanding and recollection of the message.