Study Hall 

Welcome to the Study Hall. This area will hopefully get you equipped and ready to learn of your Father. We are told The Word for Today to seek out our own salvation. This is more than praying and fasting, but actually seeking Him and learning of Him The Word for Today. 

Why Study? 
Even though in school I used to think studying was a waste of time, I've changed quite a bit since then. I've learned through the precious Word of our Father, that studying helps us think for ourselves. Jesus said not to let any man deceive us(Matthew 24:4), the only way to do that is to study, study, study. Paul reiterated this fact to Timothy, in the second letter that he wrote to Timothy, 2nd Timothy 2:15, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth. 16 But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness." 
The word "approved" here is the Greek word(#1384 in a Strong's Exhaustive Concordance),dokimos, Dokimov;dok'-ee-mos, acceptable(current after assayal) i.e. approved 
This word comes from(#1380), Dokeo;dok-eh'-oh; which is a lengthened form of, dokw, doko, dok'-o;to think; by implying, to seem(truthfully or uncertainly). 

So we should study to show Father that we can think for ourselves, to show him we love him enough to be disciples of his Word. Jesus brought this out in: 
John Chapter 8:31-32 
31 Then Said Jesus to those Jews which believed, "If ye continue in my Word, then are ye my disciples indeed; 
32 "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you FREE." 
If we follow Jesus and continue in his word, our studying brings us to truth by teaching of the Holy Spirit, as our understanding increases the bonds that chain us to the traditions handed down from generation to generation, are broken and we are made free. Happiness abounds in those who are truly free. 

So therefore, let us study to our gain, to show the Father, the one who created us for his pleasure, that we love him. For if we learn of him, we put down our burdens and put on the yoke of Yashua(Jesus). His yoke,learning of him, is much lighter than ours. In this we find true Sabbath(rest). 
Matthew 11:28-30 
28 "Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." 
29 "Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls." 
30 "For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." 

That is indeed true rest! 

How To Study 
As I have been studying the Word for several years, I have developed a way to study that covers things in depth. Now there are three major types of studying: 

Topical Studies: Studying with a Certain Topic or theme in mind. Such as; Love, Temptation, etc. 
Chapter Studies: This is the method of chapter by chapter and verse by verse, there will be lots of things to cover in this way. As you go through the verses, you will keep in context with what is being taught. Many times with various side studies. 
Word Studies: These are actual studies on one certain word. This type of studying is to see how this word is used in various places, thereby gettting a better grasp on the usage itself. 

There are many other ways to study. You may want to just study one verse for instance. This actually proves pretty productive, because it expands the more you study it. See the sample study below. 

Before you can sit down to study, you must prepare with the proper tools. today's age, there are various computer programs on the market that makes it easier to study. Some prefer to use the old "hard copy" method, others use a mixture of both. taking there copies of various literature and using it right along with their computer software. Whichever way you decide to study the tools below will help you get serious about studying. 

Hard Copy 
King James Version Bible: Of course you need a Bible to study, but the KJV is probably the best translation out there. Though it's Old English style  is hard to understand for some people, the next tool helps to clear up those wherefore's and thous and wist nots. 
Strong's Concordance w/Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries: This is THE tool for studying the Word. It allows you to take the English Translation back to the original languages that the Word of God was written in. In this way, you are able to see the words that the translators saw when they were putting it into English. 
Smith's Bible Dictionary: This is one of the more popular dictionaries. it has a good system for names in the Bible, which is not only interesting, but important in studying. use any dictionary you like, this is just one of the more popular ones. 
Hitchcocks Bible Names: This is another good dictionary that is solely for names. 
Webster's Dictionary: Always have an English dictionary handy. If you find a word that you don't quite understand, for instance; propitiation. you can look it up and simplify it, so that you can better understand it. 
Thesaurus: This; of course; will help you find words that are compatible with each other. For instance; I did a study on 2nd Thessalonians Chapter 2 in which I used the Thesaurus to look up words related to "defection from the truth" which is the definition given in my Strong's for the falling away. This is apostasia in the Greek. 

Lexicons: A Lexicon is a dictionary of words in their original language with various meanings in English. These are good for cross-referencing the Strong's Concordance and establishing a better understanding of the word. I use a Greek Lexicon in my studies. 

Other Resources: I use a number of other resources in my studies. These resources cover a vast area of knowledge. Below are some of my favorite resources that I use: 

The Encyclopedia of Mythology - Arthur Cotterell: This enclyclopedia covers Classical(Greek and Roman), Norse and Celtic Mythology. 
Nelson's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Bible Facts: This has much information concerning the rituals, history and other things relating to the Bible. 
Dictionary Of Symbolism - Great reference in finding how different symbols represent certain things in the various cultures of the world. 
The Other Bible: This book contains various excerpts and sometimes full text of various manuscripts considered "holy" by other religions or sects. included in this are excerpts from the Apocrypha and much more: Discernment is needed with this book. It could lead the unwary student astray, but it is a great resource for seeing other types of scripture. 
The Goodspeed Apocrypha - This is the collection of books that were originally included in the Bible, but were taken out because they were considered, "not holy" by "scholars". You decide for yourself, use discernment. 
Hammonds Atlas Of The Bible Lands - A great collection of maps, that help to give a visual account of various happenings The Word for Today. 

Though I have several more, these are the main ones that I use. There are many other great resources out there, just look around and find some. Remember to always use discernment, let the Holy Spirit guide you, and teach you all things. 

Bible Software 
There are many software packages out there for searching and studying the Word of God. But I can only recommend one because it is the best one for the best price: FREE! 

E-Sword is completely free bible software with extensive add-ons, most of which are free as well. It has great search capabilities, along with easy to use tools that are essential in learning and understanding the Word of God. Get it now at E-Sword.Net 

5 Steps of Study 
In anything there should be a method. This holds true for studying also. I will attempt to relate the procedures I go through in studying the Word. I will use a sample study as I go along to show you how this works... 
Determine The Study Material: First you must decide what you will study, whether it be a certain book of the Bible chapter by chapter, verse by verse; A topic; or  A certain word. 
        I am going to choose to do a Verse Study on Matthew 10:28, "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.",  in this we must answer all questions about it. Who, What, Where, Why, How. 
Dissect: This step gets down to the nitty gritty. Take your Strong's Concordance and break down the key words in this verse to help you better understand it. this is done whether in a "word study" or a "verse by verse study". 
        fear: G5399 phobeo {fob-eh'-o}from 5401; 
1) to put to flight by terrifying (to scare away) 
    1a) to put to flight, to flee 
    1b) to fear, be afraid 
        1b1) to be struck with fear, to be seized with alarm 
             1b1a) of those startled by strange sights or occurrences 
             1b1b) of those struck with amazement 
        1b2) to fear, be afraid of one 
        1b3) to fear (i.e. hesitate) to do something (for fear of harm) 
    1c) to reverence, venerate, to treat with deference or 
        reverential obedienc 
        kill: G615 apokteino {ap-ok-ti'-no} from 575 and kteino (to slay); 
1) to kill in any way whatever 
    1a) to destroy, to allow to perish 
2) metaph. to extinguish, abolish 
    2a) to inflict mortal death 
    2b) to deprive of spiritual life and procure eternal misery in hell 
       hell: 1067 
1067 geenna {gheh'-en-nah} of Hebrew origin 1516 and 2011; valley of (the son of) Hinnom; gehenna(or Ge-Hinnom), a valley of Jerusalem, used (figuratively) as a name for the place (or state) of everlasting punishment. 

Excavation: Once all the words are broken down, it's time to get into your resources and find out everything you can about the words. By this I mean, to search out  names and places and history of things related with these words. Since this word Hell is "gehenna" and as stated, Hebrew origin, Go into the Hebrew first to see the Hebrew for it. This comes from two Hebrew words: H1516: gay' {gah'-ee} or (shortened) gay {gah'-ee} probably from the same root as 01466 (abbreviated);  1) valley, a steep valley, narrow gorge 
I used God's Word For Windows to look this up, your Strong's can do the same if you don't have a program. 
Now Look up the next Hebrew Word: 
H2011: Hinnom {hin-nome'}  probably of foreign origin;  Hinnom = "lamentation" 
1) a valley (deep and narrow ravine) with steep, rocky sides located 
    southwest of Jerusalem, separating Mount Zion to the north from the 
    hill of evil counsel' and the sloping rocky plateau of the 'plain of 
    Rephaim' to the south 

Expand: Now we know where the name comes from, a place just outside of Jerusalem. But let's dig a little deeper. The key to true study and getting all the knowledge you can is to milk every resource you have. Look at Easton's Dictionary: gehenna 
(originally Ge bene Hinnom; i.e., "the valley of the sons of Hinnom"), a deep, narrow glen to the south of Jerusalem, where the idolatrous Jews offered their children in sacrifice to Molech (2 Chr. 28:3; 33:6; Jer. 7:31; 19:2-6). This valley afterwards became the common receptacle for all the refuse of the city. Here the dead bodies of animals and of criminals, and all kinds of filth, were cast and consumed by fire kept always burning. It thus in process of time became the image of the place of everlasting destruction. In this sense it is used by our Lord in Matt. 5:22, 29, 30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15, 33; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; Luke 12:5. In these passages, and also in James 3:6, the word is uniformly rendered "hell," the Revised Version placing "Gehenna" in the margin. (See HELL HINNOM) 
Notice this place was a place where waste was thrown, and the word gehenna became the common name for "hell". This was a place of fire, sound familiar? A Lake of Fire if you will..... 
Now as you study through, begin looking up other areas where the word, "hell" is used. Notice in your concordance how the numbers change. The Old testament of course will have it's set of Hebrew numbers and the Greek will have it's various numbers. 
Since we are in the New Testament and the Greek language, let's scan down the line of NT occurences and find the next verse with a different number from the one we just looked up. Scanning....Ahha! 
Here is the next one: G86 hades {hah'-dace} from 1 (as negative particle) and 1492; unseen, i.e. "Hades" or the place (state) of departed souls. 
Hey, so here is a different Greek word for the same english word, and what? It's a different type place then that of Gehenna. Hades is the place that the "unsaved" soul goes until the judgement. It is a "prison" of sorts. 
Do you know where Jesus was those three days that his body laid in the tomb? He was in Hades, "the Prison" teaching those there and giving them a chance to accept him.(Peter 3:17-20) 
So this starts a very interesting study on Hell,  I encourage you to continue it and seek it for yourself. Good Luck! 

So now you know how and why to study, so hop to it! Dig in that Word! IT truly is a living Word, because every time you study you find something more than before! Studying brings you so much closer to your Father and it grows your shield of Faith in knowing that all things written interlink with one another to form an infallible letter of truth from our Father! 

So here are my 5 Steps to Studying: 
1. Determine your Material: Topic, Book, Chapter, Verse, Word 
2. Dissect: Use Hebrew Greek Dictionaries to break each key word into original words. 
3. Excavate: Use Resources to dig deeper into those people, places and things. 
4. Expand: Increase your understanding by finding witnesses to that particular scripture or topic. 
5. Review : Take all that you have learned into your mind, into your heart and thank the Father for His wonderful letter to you!