Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. –James 1:2-4 NLT
Ever Webster Knows
Many people believe that to do a good Bible study, you need an extensive concordance or commentary. But did you know that you can do a great study with something as simple as a dictionary?
Let’s use James 1:2-4 as an example. If we look in a dictionary at the following keywords from those verses, the meaning comes alive:
- Friends: Those we have a bond of mutual affection for
- Glad: Pleased, delighted
- Trouble: Affliction or problems
- Endure: To suffer (something painful or difficult) patiently
- Tested: Checking the quality or reliability of something before it’s put into practice
- Everything: Current life situation or life in general
- Mature: Reaching the most advanced stage
- Lack: Be without or deficient
So this verse now reads: My friends, who I have a mutual bond of affection for, be pleased and delighted even if you have a lot of afflictions or problems. You will learn patience through things difficult and painful by having your faith checked for reliability before putting it into practice. You must learn to suffer patiently your current situation in life so that you can reach the most advanced stage. You will not be deficient in anything.
Even the dictionary can be used to proclaim God’s truth. Isn’t God amazing?
Pick a Scripture and do a word study, you’ll be amazed at what you learn.
Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal truth in everything you see.