How should the teacher prepare before each lesson of inductive Bible study?

I received this question from the students of the International Mission School – Precept Ministries Eurasia. More specifically, I was asked if it is enough to have the teaching plans from the session at the Institute of Inductive Bible Study  or before the lesson you need to do something else. Do you need to come up with a new plan to refresh the subject or study the textbook again? Do you need to review the teaching plan you have from the session? 

It is different depending on the situation. I will explain below how I usually prepare for the lesson.

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The discipline of preparation for the sessions of the Institute of Inductive Bible Study is very important 

Session preparation is very important for the quality of teaching God’s Word. I think that all the students of the Institute of Inductive Bible Study understand this importance well, because what we can convey in words is so little compared to the real impact that the sessions of the Institute have. Only after studying at the Institute you understand well the importance of the sessions, how much you didn’t know until then, how much you missed and what a big role they play. During the session we understand the subject well, we study it in detail. This is absolutely important. You cannot teach a subject that you do not understand well or you are not sure that you have understood it correctly. 

The “Spiritual Counseling” session  within the Institute is now taking place in Chisinau. Participants study the course “Marriage Without Regrets”. After the session, they will be able to teach the course in the Bible study groups they will open. For a quality teaching of the Word, discipline in teacher training, growth in knowledge is imperative. 

I have made a decision for my life to prioritize the study of God’s Word and my training as a teacher, as the apostle Paul urged Timothy: 

“Take pains with these things; be absorbed in them, so that your progress will be evident to all. Pay close attention to yourself and to the teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.”(1 Timothy 4:15-16 NASB)

Thus, I go annually to the Institute of Inductive Bible Study to go through the sessions three times a year. This year I graduated level I of the Institute. In October I will go to the session in Romania, to the session for English  teachers where we will study the Bible course “Abraham. How to become friends with the faithful God? ” .

Christians interested in learning how to share God’s Word and to make disciples can become students at this Institute, the great commandment left by the Lord Jesus. Admission to the Institute is done by participating in the first 3 sessions of level I – the sessions “Evangelism and Discipleship”, “Spiritual Counseling” and “Church Planting”. The next admission session will be in January. For details contact +373 69 966779 or write to info@precept.md. 

Review everything you need to teach before the lesson 

If the course is freshly studied, you do not have to study the textbook again or make another teaching plan. Use the teaching plan you prepared for the session, but go through the plan and review the plan. First go through the whole lesson, read the Bible texts in the lesson, and then review the plan. When reviewing the plan, you need to consider the specific audience you are teaching, their needs, the issues they face. Depending on this, prepare the application questions for them. Think about what they find difficult to understand and what they need to understand well after the lesson. I usually write the teaching plans on the computer and each time I complete with a different color what I need to add depending on the group to whom I teach the course. There is also a big difference when teaching future teachers. Then the lesson plan must also cover the teaching aspect. Here is an example you can download, lesson 8 of the Covenant course. This is the plan for lesson 8 in the LINK course, which I have revised several times. 

When you need to complete the manual again or write a new plan 

If you want to start teaching a course and it has been a long time since you studied the course or since the session, it would be good to study the same course again. Get a new manual and complete it once more, then review the plans. I saw that my teacher Anastasia Filat does that. I think it’s a much needed refreshment. 

If you are unsure of the structure of the teaching plan or you see that it is not as good as you originally wrote it, write another plan. Make sure it is simple and that you achieve your goal through it – the students will understand very well what they need to understand in that lesson. 

If you are unsure about some aspects or did not understand the lesson well 

If you are unsure of the structure of the plan or did not understand the lesson well, ask your teacher again before teaching the students. I call my teacher Anastasia Filat when I have questions and she explains. I can’t teach if I was left with ambiguities or I didn’t understand the purpose of the lesson, the structure. You can also ask colleagues from the session if the teacher is not available or is gone. 

If questions arise during the lesson that you do not know the answer to, tell the disciples that you do not know. We can never claim to understand all the things in the Bible, and it is perfectly normal not to answer all the questions. I had such a situation and I said that I will ask my teachers the question and I will study to understand. We looked closely at the text with the disciples then and tried to understand, but I did not give interpretations that I am not sure of, I stuck strictly to what Scripture says, even though I had questions left. You can use the ASK THE PASTOR button on the website www.moldovacrestina.md, he also recommends that the disciples ask their questions here. 

Think about what questions the disciples might have about the subject being studied 

I asked on facebook other teachers who teach the Bible according to the inductive method and one of the suggestions was this. It is good to be well prepared for the lesson and to be able to answer the disciples. When there are cases in which we do not know the answer, we acknowledge, as we wrote above. But in order to be able to explain well to the disciples’ questions, to be able to argue with Scripture well, we must invest a lot in our training as teachers. We need to study daily and have the discipline to prepare for the sessions. They’re all tied together. 

I emphasize once again that our preparation, our personal attitude towards the Word, is very important. It can be seen and felt so strongly when the teacher is well prepared for the lesson and when he is not prepared. It also shows his personal attitude towards the Word. The teacher’s love for studying the Bible will be passed on to the disciples. But what if that love is missing not and they don’t see it? How motivated are your disciples to study more after the lesson? How eager are they to study, to understand more, how do I ask for this? How do you see their love for the Word?

Translated by Nicoleta Vicliuc