What's In A Verse
This is a little study habit I have developed that has proven valuable for me in witnessing and teaching others from the scriptures. It's very new to me considering the time I've known Jesus as my Savior, however it's practical, down to earth, scholastic and profitable to those who will embrace it. It's also simple enough for the average Bible student to grasp and use.
I simply take one verse of scripture and try to gain all I can from that verse so that I will have a better grasp and understanding of what it says. My first verse will be Genesis 1:1, and I will use that verse as an example on this page and then extend this idea by creating additional pages as time permits for others to study and profit from. God grant this will bring glory and honor to him through the people who seek to know and love him and his word completely!
All the scriptures in this study will come from the King James Version of the Bible.
Genesis 1:1 -- "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."
Let's break this verse down and see what we can derive from it.
In the beginning --(the beginning of what?) This is relatively simple, and I am amazed that I have studied scripture for a so many years and never thought of this. Eternity always existed, and has no end so the reference here must be to time. So we might render it "In the beginning of time."
God - Who or what is He? Where did he come from? What is the meaning of his name in the Hebrew language? Let's address the last one first. The word for God here is Elohim which in the Hebrew language denotes more than one person in the Godhead. That is the question that is easiest to answer, and although the Jewish scholars would not allow for a trinity which would include Jesus Christ, they readily admit to plurality in the Godhead.
Who or what He is requires more diligent study and examination of the scriptures. For those who have already done their research we have discovered that God is eternal and therefore the only being in the universe who was never created. To carry that thought to its conclusion we must understand that all other beings ever created were created by or through Him and for Him. It stands to reason then that everything is sustained by Him and that all life stems from His creative power. It can't be understood any other way.
Where did God come from? A diligent and objective study of the scriptures will reveal that God is the only being in the universe who wasn't created. He always existed and he cannot come from somewhere or go to a place because he fills the universe with his presence. He is omnipresent or present everywhere, and the only person who has that kind of presence in the universe.
John 4:24 tells us that God is a Spirit. To move from this introductory verse to the creation of man in the first chapter of Genesis will reveal that God made man in his image and likeness. (Genesis1:26-27) Since God is a spirit, the image and likeness must of necessity be a spirit as well. The body given to human beings is merely a house for living out this life and it surrounds the spirit within. When we die, the spirit leaves the house and the house is empty with no life in it and we call that death. The body is no longer necessary because the spirit has moved on to the next destination.
The next word in this verse is created. What this word means should be simple for the entire human race so let's move on to the next words concerning what He created.
the Heaven - A study of the entire Bible will reveal that there is more than one Heaven. So we must figure out which heaven is being addressed in this verse. Since this is speaking of the beginning of creation, the far greater possibility is that this verse speaks of the heaven we can visibly see above the earth or, in other words, what we call the sky.
The earth spoken of in this verse is simply our planet earth and needs no further explanation.
Obviously all this information was not written in the first verse of Genesis. However, to take one verse and dissect it and break it down forces us by our very nature as students to look further into each part of that verse.
Because of this we either have additional information in our minds already that supplement that verse or we do some research to gather information that will enhance our understanding of that verse. Suppose then that we would do this from time to time with various verses that we might have trouble understanding. Consider what could possibly come from such study that could be beneficial to us and others provided that our motivation is right and our study remains objective.
The idea is not to prove we are right or someone else is wrong but to subject ourselves to the divine teacher, the Holy Spirit to teach as scripture promises us he will for the benefit both of ourselves and the edification of all our brothers and sisters in Christ and those who are outside the body of Christ and seek the answers to life themselves. We are to further our knowledge and understanding of God's Word so that we learn to live for his honor and glory above all else.
For a simple exercise to those reading this page; take the scripture John 3:16 as your first project and create your own "What's in a verse study." This is the most well known verse in the world. See if you can come up with some understanding of who God is in this scripture. It won't be the same as Genesis 1:1 because it's a different language. Discover what "only begotten son" means or who the world in this verse refers to. What does "whosoever" mean in reference to you? You can easily find the answers online, but try to think things out before you go there.
I am a student of the scriptures for over 49 years as of this date December 19, 2017. Consider that this is relatively new to me in the study of God's Word. I am always learning more and more when I submit myself to the Lord to be taught. If we lived a million lifetimes and studied the scriptures daily for all that time we would still be always finding new things that we had never discovered before. That is because our knowledge base is so small and our God is so big!
All praise and honor and glory to him and him alone! He is more than worthy!