It’s no secret here at Every Woman a Theologian: we want readers equipped to study the Bible independently, free of props and narrative. Learning how to study the Bible and seek God’s face without a scripted study is a skill set every Christian should cultivate. And that said… structured Bible studies also serve a purpose! A well written guided study can be immensely helpful for new believers, during a break from inductive study, or for going through a deep dive on a topic.
For the last five years I read through the Bible chronologically. Then halfway through my fifth time, I decided to quit. I was forcing something because I had always done it instead of pursuing variety in my study of God’s Word – a pursuit that would free me to enjoy it more! When I stopped my chronological plan, I felt a little lost. What should I study? A few weeks prior I received a study on the book of Esther. It was short, so I picked it up for the next two weeks. I left those two weeks refreshed and newly appreciating this book of the Bible, partially because I took a stretch of two weeks to study it instead of the two days I would’ve had with my bible reading plan.
All of this to say: structured studies serve a purpose. Though they should not be your only means of bible study, they are still a great way to learn about the Lord and His Word! Below are ten studies for personal (as opposed to group) use that I recommend and/or enjoyed myself.
Esther: The Hidden Hand of God by Lydia Brownback
This is the study I did on Esther earlier this year. While the daily reading and study is light (as far as work goes), you’ll still get a fantastic overview of the book of Esther and will cross reference with other portions of Scripture. I thoroughly enjoyed this study and will probably try another one of Lydia’s studies in the future (she also has one on 1 Peter). Get it here.
*Note: This study is published by Crossway, and therefore comes from a Reformed/Calvinist perspective.
Growing Slow by Jennifer Dukes Lee
While I’m recommending this for personal use, I am currently using this for a group study for moms! It has sparked awesome discussion and can definitely be a great group study, but it’s also a good choice for personal use. This is a topical study as opposed to exegetical (passage-based), focusing on God’s design for growth, rest, Sabbath, and trust. Using the imagery of farm life in Iowa (Jennifer is a farm wife there) we learn what Scripture says about growing into the people God desires us to be, why hurry is the enemy, and how we can trust God to do sanctifying work in our lives.
*You’ll get more out of this study if you buy the book AND the workbook.
Jude: Contending for the Faith in Today’s Culture by Jackie Hill Perry
I have not personally done this study, but it’s on my list! I have so much respect for Jackie’s voice and devotion to the Word. I can’t think of anyone more equipped in the Christian women’s ministry space to talk about faith and culture. Jude is a short book and this is another short study, but you’ll get a lot out of it.
Better: A Study of Hebrews by Jen Wilkin
You all know I am a Jen Wilkin “fan” for life. This woman has blessed so many with her “long obedience the same direction” and quiet faithfulness to the Word. I also love the book of Hebrews (perhaps because of how much I love Leviticus!) so this is a perfect pairing! If you want to understand the role of the Old Testament law, how Jesus fulfills it, and where we go with those truths, this would be a great starting place.
Colossians: Rooted in Faith by Daily Grace Co.
This was the study I did when postpartum with Van. I wanted something manageable for those early days with a newborn, and this was perfect. I spent about 20-30 minutes working through the daily Colossians passage and answering the questions. Daily Grace Co. produces beautiful studies that are also exegetical, so if you like something visually appealing AND Scripture rich, these are a great choice.
Walk in Grace: Ephesians Journal by Well Watered Women
This is technically not a study, but I love it all the same! It’s a simple journal that breaks down the entire book of Ephesians into tidy passages for you to study inductively. You’ll read the assigned passage, take some notes, answer a few questions, and find yourself learning how to study the Bible on your own along the way. They have multiple journals with this format (I use the Give Me Jesus journal daily, which does not have verse prompts but is still my favorite resource for note taking during bible study).
Unveil: Lust Free Living by Lowell Seashore
This study was pivotal to my personal walk with the Lord in my early twenties. It’s a humble design and not very long, but the truth in its pages set me free for the first time from a struggle with sexual addiction. If you or someone you know struggles with sexual addiction and shame, this is a great study for women who feel alone in that journey. I have only been able to find it on their website, not on Amazon – it’s a self published work.
Gideon by Priscilla Shirer
I did this as a group study, but the personal study time was strengthening to my walk early in my faith. Priscilla’s studies are not as heavy as some I have done, but they are still Scripture-rich and sound theologically. I appreciate her voice and application for the biblical truths.
The Bible Recap by Tara Leigh Cobble
This is more of a book/guide to go along with the Bible Recap podcast, which walks you through the entire Bible in an easy -to-understand way. This would be my recommendation before attempting a chronological reading plan on your own! It will help you make sense of the narratives and how they are all connected into one seamless story. You can listen to the podcast anywhere podcasts are found, and the book can be bought below.
Every Nations, Tribes, People and Tongues: The Hope of Christ in Revelation
I always swore I would never write a bible study – there are too many good ones out there already! – but when I couldn’t find a bible study on Revelation without a specific bias, I decided to write one! This study is inductive, which means there is minimal commentary from me and a lot of questions for you. The questions will have you digging into Scripture and finding out just how much of the Bible is summed up in Revelation!
If you have never studied Revelation for yourself or if you were taught a scary, Left-Behind narrative, this study is for you.
Get the ebook here; print versions will return soon!