Although preparing a quality and Christ-centered Bible lesson is an exhaustive task, it takes skills—not time, to prepare a quality bible lesson in which God speaks through you to the people.
If you lack the skills on how to prepare quality Bible lessons, never mind! I will show you five simple steps you can follow to ensure a stress-free lesson preparation.
Here are the steps:
Step #1: Read through the Bible Passage first.
Many bible teachers often make the mistake to skip directly to the lesson manual without taking the time to study the bible passage.
You might skim through a lesson manual; probably because you are running out of time to prepare adequately. In most cases, such lessons are skin-and-bone.
God is not happy with this kind of approach to lesson preparation.
The right approach is to study the bible passage first before you take a look at the lesson manual, if any.
As you read through the passage, also read one or two chapters before and ahead of the passage under study. For example, a lesson drawn from Genesis chapter 4, read Chapter 3 and Chapter 5 to have a holistic view of the main text.
I recommend the New Living Translation Version of the bible because it provides you with the summary or theme of the book, the author, and an outline of each chapter.
When you understand the theme of a book, it makes it easier for you to figure out any unclear information from the lesson manual.
This exercise shouldn’t take over 10 minutes.
Step #2: Take notes as you read along
When you must have grabbed the general idea from the passage, take some important notes.
You may wish to:
- Highlight key areas you want the students to note
- Indicate the main characters and their role
- List the keywords in the passage
- Set questions as you read.
This exercise gives room for God to speak to you even without turning over to the lesson manual. This is how to own a lesson and be a suitable transmission vessel.
Whenever you hear a teacher say: this is what the manual says… rather than saying, : this is what the Bible says…know that the teacher prepared their lesson directly from the lesson manual and did not study the Bible.
Step #3: Turn over to the teacher’s manual.
If you are preparing a lesson from a lesson guide or manual, this is the time to turn over to it.
From the manual, you can get additional questions related to the passage, cross references and other Bible verses and information to supplement your lesson.
The lesson manual is not a caste-on-stone document to read from and deliver your lesson. God doesn’t speak through such kinds of lessons.
The very lesson you wish to deliver to students must thoroughly teach you first.
Step #4: Rely on other resources.
Although the Bible is the final authority in all matters of faith and doctrine, researching commentaries can raise your level of understanding and also ease your work.
Nowadays, you can have tones of information just a mouse -click away.
There are many bible study apps you can download on your android phone and get tones of commentaries related to your text.
Check out these apps in one of the recent articles I published in August 2020: 4 Amazing apps every Bible teacher should have in their phones.
I use the Logos app, which provides good commentaries to every bible verse.
Step #5: Produce a mind map or a lesson plan
It makes no sense having a wealth of knowledge on a bible passage when you cannot deliver it in a structured manner.
Take some time and produce a good lesson plan or a simple mind map.
I still see many bible teachers use their lesson notes to teach students instead of their lesson plans. This probably explains why many bible teachers run out of time, drift from the main topic, loose class control and class engagement.
With a carefully crafted lesson plan, you are super clear about everything that would happen in the lesson.
It gives you a clear picture of how you would:
- Start the lesson;
- What you will say and do;
- The nature of questions you would ask;
- The activity or illustration you would use;
- The time you would take for each activity, explanations or discussions.
For more information on how to prepare a lesson plan, get in touch with me for a complete PDF file on this subject.
You may have been struggling with bible lesson preparation on a weekly basis. This is the time to change your strategy and try these five proven steps.
To add, do not forget to pray before you prepare your lesson and after you have taught the lesson.
The more you practice, the more effective you will become.
If it works for me, it will definitely work for you.
If you find this article helpful, share your thoughts in the comments below!