The #BeUMC campaign reminds us of who we are at our best — the spirit-filled, resilient, connected, missional, faithful, diverse, deeply rooted, committed, disciple-making, Jesus-seeking, generous, justice-seeking, world-changing, grace-filled people of God called The United Methodist Church.
We study, teach, learn from and live out the Word of God.
First and foremost, we are dedicated to the mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world in the tradition of John Wesley.
We recommend these resources to help United Methodists study the Bible. The list includes small group studies on:
- Understanding the Bible
- Studying books of the Bible
- Bible study series
- Long-term studies
Understanding the Bible
Making Sense of the Bible: Rediscovering the Power of Scripture Today (DVD Study) by Adam Hamilton. Hamilton invites us into an honest conversation with foundational and challenging questions people often ask about the Bible. He addresses often misunderstood biblical themes leading readers to a deeper appreciation of the Bible so that we might hear God speak through it and find its words to be life-changing and life-giving.
Bible Stories for Grown-Ups: Reading Scripture with New Eyes (DVD Study) by Josh Scott. Scott looks at familiar Bible stories and reveals new details and interpretations for an adult audience. He reimagines these stories and opens new visions for readers to understand well-known pieces of Scripture in our current cultural environment.
What is the Bible? (Book Study) by Anne Robertson. This study gives students a broad overview of the entire Bible, including chapters on how to select a Bible suitable for your needs, how the Bible is organized, how the collection of books that comprise the Bible were chosen, different ways that people approach the text, and what archaeology has to tell us about the text and its stories.
Reading the Old Testament Through Jewish Eyes: A Study of The Scriptures Jesus Read (DVD Study) by Evan Moffic. Rabbi Moffic explores the first five books of the Hebrew Bible and highlights the key points of interest to Christians. He presents the biblical text and interpretations of it in the way Jewish leaders during the time of Jesus would have studied it while examining different commentaries from thousands of years of Jewish sources.
Animate: Bible (DVD Study) from Sparkhouse Publishers. This study explores seven big conversations about the Bible, including the canon, history, testaments, Gospels, genre, interpretation, and grace. Each session is taught by a different speaker, including Will Willimon, Phyllis Tickle, Rachel Held Evans, José Morales, and others.
How United Methodists Study Scripture (Book Study) edited by Gayle C. Felton. This study includes lessons on Reading the Bible in the First 16 Centuries, The Study of Scripture in Early Methodism, A Contemporary Approach – Interpreting the Bible in Historical Context, and Characteristics of United Methodist Study and Interpretation of the Bible.
Study Books of the Bible (DVD Studies)
Acts: Catching Up with the Spirit by Matthew L. Skinner. Explore six key themes that illustrate the ways in which reading Acts is capable of igniting our imagination about the character of the Christian gospel, the work of God’s people (the church), and the challenges of living faithfully in a complex and changing world.
1 Corinthians: Searching the Depths of God by Jaime Clark-Soles. 1 Corinthians is basically a letter Paul wrote to a people who were trying a wild new social experiment known as a Christian community. Centuries later, our churches deal with many of the same issues Paul addresses. Jaime Clark-Soles explores these topics and the awe-inspiring, breathtaking world of the first-century church.
Hebrews: Grace and Gratitude by David A. deSilva. deSilva helps us to see the connection between God’s grace in our lives and the gratitude we can express for our salvation when we answer the call to invest ourselves in God’s mission in the world. Discover a bold perspective on the meaning and significance of Jesus’ death and resurrection in light of the Old Testament, allowing us to hear afresh God’s call to a life of faithfulness.
Proverbs: Pathways to Wisdom by Dominick S. Hernández. Explore the biblical book’s well-known verses and prevalent themes in a manner that offers various interpretations, opening the way for us to see how they apply to our modern world. You’ll learn about the authorship, genre, and historical setting for each of these verses, which will broaden your understanding and bring more meaning to familiar passages.
Luke: Jesus and the Outsiders, Outcasts, and Outlaws by Adam Hamilton. Hamilton explores the life, teachings, death, and resurrection of Jesus as told in the Gospel of Luke. Through Luke’s stories, we find Jesus’ care and compassion for all as he welcomes sinners and outcasts. As we study Luke and see Jesus’ concern for those who were considered unimportant, we hear a hopeful and inspiring word for our lives today.
John: The Gospel of Light and Life by Adam Hamilton. The Gospel of John is the most deeply spiritual of the four gospels. Follow the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus through the Gospel of John and understand the context of some of the best-known verses in the New Testament.
The Gospel of Mark: A Beginner’s Guide to the Good News by Amy-Jill Levine. Walk through the Bible’s earliest source for the life of Jesus with scholar Amy-Jill Levine as she examines John the Baptizer, the Little Apocalypse, the Transfiguration, and several of Jesus’s most notable stories and parables. The Good News of the gospel message comes alive in this book as readers see Jesus as divine and human, powerful and weak, approachable yet mysterious.
Breaking the Code: Understanding the Book of Revelation by Bruce M. Metzger, Revised and Updated by David A. deSilva. Although many Christians find the Book of Revelation to be full of great beauty and comfort, others find this part of the Bible bizarre, bewildering, and sometimes frightening. Bruce M. Metzger provides one of the most important and trustworthy guides of Revelation, and now it includes findings from the most current biblical research.
Bible Study Series
More options to study the Bible book by book.
Efird Bible Study Series (DVD Studies) by James Mickey Efird. Dr. Efird was a beloved professor of biblical interpretation at Duke Divinity School. These recordings of his lectures were made into small-group studies and published with workbooks. They have been popular in many of our churches for their in-depth approach to books of the Bible.
Immersion Bible Studies (Book Studies) from Abingdon Press. This series was published along with the Common English Bible translation. Various authors wrote four-session studies that help readers explore the emotional, spiritual, and intellectual needs of their personal faith. The Media Center has some titles from this series. The others can be purchased from Cokesbury.
Genesis to Revelation (Book Studies) from Abingdon Press. This classic series was updated in recent years. It is a comprehensive, verse-by-verse, book-by-book study of the Bible that will strengthen your understanding and appreciation of the Scripture by helping you engage on these three levels: What does the Bible say? What does it mean? How does it relate to my life? It uses the NIV translation. The Media Center has some titles from this series. The others can be purchased from Cokesbury.
Journey Through the Bible (Book Studies) from Cokesbury. This series uses the NRSV to study the Bible book by book. It lifts up the Bible’s most significant stories, themes, events, and people. It describes the historical and cultural setting, the original language and what the passage meant for its first readers, and possible life applications for today. The Media Center has some titles from this series. The others can be purchased from Cokesbury.
Disciple Bible Study (DVD Studies) from Abingdon Press. Disciple is a program of disciplined Bible study aimed at developing strong Christian leaders. The study gives the Old and New Testaments equal time, emphasizing the wholeness of the Bible as a revelation of God. Disciple draws upon the work of scholars, the personal Bible reading and study of the participant, and dynamic group discussion to aid understanding of the Bible. It includes several long and short-term studies. Read more about the many different ways you can engage with a Disciple Bible Study.
Covenant Bible Study (DVD Study) from Abingdon Press. The goal of Covenant Bible Study is to deepen our understanding of scripture while also helping us respond together in answering God’s call to a faithful life in Jesus. So it embraces a learning experience that builds trust in others and confidence in scripture for each participant, leveraging not just scriptural examples but also personal memories of God’s faithful love. It is a 24-week, in-depth Bible study in which people read and discuss the Bible together, learning how to love God and others better.
Request These Resources
These resources can be borrowed for free by anyone involved with a United Methodist Church in the North Carolina Conference. We will mail them to your home! All you need to do is fill out the Resource Request Form.