The African Bible Study Method

This Bible Study method was introduced by the African Delegation to the Lambeth Conference in 1998. It is known by both names: “Lambeth” and “African.” It is rooted in the ancient method of praying the scriptures, known as Lectio Divina, or “Holy Reading.”

Opening Prayer:

O Blessed Lord, who caused all Holy Scripture to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our savior Jesus Christ, Amen.

  1.  One person reads passage slowly.
  2.  Each person identifies the word or phrase that catches their attention. (1 minute)
  3. Each shares the word or phrase with the group. (3-5 minutes, NO DISCUSSION)
  4. Another person reads the passage slowly (from a different translation, if possible.)
  5.  Each person identifies where this passage touches their life today. (1 minute)
  6. Each shares. (3-5 minutes, NO DISCUSSION)
  7. Passage is read a third time (another reader and translation, if possible.)
  8. Each person names or writes: “From what I’ve heard and shared, what do I believe God wants me to do or be? Is God inviting me to change in any way?” (5 minutes)
  9. Each shares their answer. (5-10 minutes, NO DISCUSSION)
  10. Each prays for the person on their right, naming what was shared in other steps. (5 minutes)

Closing Prayer : The Lord’s Prayer

Notes: This should take 30-40 minutes for a group. It could easily be adapted for individual prayer or as a method of lectio divina.

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