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FOCUSed15 Christian Podcast – Episode #11 (Season 2)

Today we’re discussing commentaries! Chances are, you probably teeter between one of two extremes when it comes to using one. Some check the commentaries and study notes in their Bible right away. Some never use them at all. In this practical 15 minute episode my husband Chris and I chat about the helpful ways commentaries can be used to enhance and guide our interpretation of Scripture. I hope you’ll listen in!

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • What a commentary is and how it can be used during your Bible study time
  • The appropriate time to use one when you study
  • The influence the worldview will have on the writer of a commentary
  • The nature of the different commentaries
  • The distinction between a Study Bible and a commentary
  • Practical tips to help find a commentary that will work for you

RESOURCES MENTIONED:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #10 (Season 2)

I spent a lot of time reading and studying the Bible as if it were only a collection of random stories about God and how I am to live, instead of seeing it as one big beautiful masterpiece. But that is just what God’s Word is. Before we get into the nitty-gritty of Bible study, it is important to understand the big-picture themes of Scripture. In today’s 15 minute episode, Chris and I chat about the major movements of the Bible and how each should shape the way you approach Bible study.

IN THIS PODCAST EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • How every book and verse serve a purpose to point to the same thing
  • The cohesive, consistent storyline throughout the Bible
  • The 4 different components present throughout all of Scripture –  Creation, The Fall, Reconciliation, Consummation
  • How God’s Word is a tapestry of threads that connect to tell the story of God’s love

RESOURCES MENTIONED:

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!

  • Welcome to the Story – a quick read giving a great overview of the narrative of the Bible.
  • Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin – another quick read all around helpful resources for Bible study. Includes a chapter on the big-picture themes of the Bible.

HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS CHRISTIAN PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #9 (Season 2)

There are loads of gems in this 15 minute episode! Chris and I continue on in our What do I need to know about … episodes. We’ve covered Matthew and Mark so far. Now it’s Luke’s turn. Listen in to hear a few important things you need to know before you start studying the gospel of Luke.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • Who the author of the Gospel of Luke is – his occupation, and where he was from
  • Who his audience is and the reason he is writing
  • How this book fits in with the other gospels
  • When it was written and how that fits in with history
  • How Luke was connected to the Apostle Paul
  • The importance his writings had on the early church and how it fueled their faith
  • The significance of Luke’s profession and his name being associated with these accounts

RESOURCES MENTIONED:

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!

SERMONS ON THE GOSPEL OF LUKE:


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #8 (Season 2)

In this age of detailed Pinterest instructions and blog posts galore, there are no shortage of “should’s” and “how-to’s.” Though the extra details can be helpful guidelines, we must be careful not to make them more than what they are: suggestions from one person on how you should carry out a task. The in’s-and-out’s of how to spend time in the Word can become a burden instead of helpful tools. Today, Chris and I chat about whether or not it matters if you have a 5-minute quiet time or an hour and a half in the Word. Listen in to this quick 15 minute episode for the encouragement you need to keep going!

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • Whether or not there are guidelines for study mentioned in the Bible
  • The importance of knowing what you want to accomplish during your study time and taking it to Lord
  • “Bite-sized Bible time” and how something is always better than nothing
  • Routine vs. spontaneous Bible time and finding what fits you best
  • The key question to ask yourself about your study time

RESOURCES MENTIONED:


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #7 (Season 2)

Whether you realize it or not, we all have expectations and pictures of what the “perfect” quiet time looks like. Though we certainly need to be careful not to give in to the paralysis of perfectionism, it is typically helpful to have some guidelines in place to evaluate how effective our time with God is. Listen in to this 15 minute episode to receive some helpful guard rails to keep your quiet times on track.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • How we define a “quiet time”
  • The importance of both hearing from the Lord and speaking to Him within your quiet time
  • Specific elements given to help incorporate both this hearing and speaking into your time with God
  • Three ways to approach the intake of God’s Word
  • Three ways to communicate with God during your quiet time
  • Quiet time ruts we may get into that keep up from experiencing God more fully

RESOURCES MENTIONED:


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

 

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #6 (Season 2)

Have you every wondered why we have four tellings of the life of Christ (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) instead of just one? Do you know what the commonalities are between them? Their differences? In today’s 15 minute episode, Chris and I tackle what you need to know about the Gospel of Mark. As the shortest Gospel—and the first written—the book of Mark is a great place to start if you want to study more about the life of Christ. Listen in to this quick 15 minute podcast episode to learn more about the book of Mark.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • When the Gospel of Mark was written and why the date is important
  • Who Mark was and how he’s connected to the apostles
  • What a Synoptic Gospel is
  • Who Mark’s audience was and his main purpose for writing his book
  • The distinction between an apostle and a disciple

RESOURCES MENTIONED:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!

SERMONS ON THE GOSPEL OF MARK:


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSED15 PODCAST – EPISODE #5 (SEASON 2)

We all live busy lives, and this pace of life often keeps us from doing the things we say we want to do. From working out, to spending more quality time with the ones we love, to studying the Bible — busyness can be a barrier to enjoying the most important things in life, including going deeper in our relationship with God.

In today’s brief podcast episode, Chris and I chat about the reality of our busy lives and how to get in the Word despite it.

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • Why this “excuse” is used so often and the common issues behind it
  • How to overcome a lack of desire to be in God’s Word by using scripture and prayer
  • The reminder that God is delighted when we come to His Word
  • How we always make time to do what we ultimately want to do
  • Some tips to stir up your affections to study God’s Word

RESOURCES MENTIONED:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

My FOCUSed15 Bible studies help you go to the Word deeply in 15 minute chunks. Below are studies currently available.

HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #4 (Season 2)

I’m really excited about today’s episode. Today we kick off our first “What you need to know about …” podcast episode. The plan is to cover each book of the Bible, providing you a quick and easy “on demand” option to learn the background of each book and any other important facts that will shape your study. In the weeks to come, during season 2 of the podcast, we plan to go through and highlight what you need to know about all of the Gospels and then the book of Acts.

Today, Chris and I chat about what you need to know about the Gospel of Matthew. I hope you’ll listen in!

IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL HEAR ABOUT:

  • What you need to know before you start studying Matthew that will make the biggest impact.
  • Three important elements of a book to look for before you begin studying: author, audience, and aim
  • The person of Matthew and the authority he had to write about Jesus
  • The significance of the Jewish audience and Jesus’ genealogy, and how that relates to the promised Messiah
  • Matthew’s style of writing using discourse and narrative throughout the book
  • The Great Commission and how that marks a change in mindset from the Old Testament into the New Testament

RESOURCES MENTIONED:

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!

Sermons on the Gospel of Matthew


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST:

You have many options for listening in. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #2 (Season 2)

There is often much confusion and sometimes heated opinions about which version of the Bible you use to read and study the Bible. Though the Word of God is undoubtedly inspired and inerrant there are variations within each version on the shelves. In today’s 15 minute podcast episode, Chris and I chat about why there are so many translations of the Bible, and what you need to know about their differences.

If you have any additional questions about translations or other questions you’d like us to answer on the podcast, let us know in the comments!

In This Episode You’ll Hear About:

  • Whether or not it matters which translation you use
  • What makes one version of the Bible better than another
  • The translation process
  • Word for word vs. phrase for phrase translations
  • Agendas behind certain translations
  • Study purposes vs. readability
  • Chris and Katie’s top Bible versions and how they use them

Resources Mentioned:

Links below may include affiliate links. At no additional cost to you, I receive a small portion of your purchase. Thanks!


HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST

You have many options for listening. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button at the beginning of this post.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app. You’ll have access to new episodes on either app as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes or Stitcher. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes or here to listen from the Stitcher website. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes and/or Stitcher dashboard.

How do I maintain consistency in my Bible study?

FOCUSed15 Podcast – Episode #1 (Season 2)

I’m good at starting things—not so good at following through. This has been true for many areas of my life, including my time in the Bible. After leading and getting to know thousands of people both online and “in real life” I know that I’m not alone in this struggle. This roadblock is seen on campus ministries, established churches, and online ministries alike. Members of home groups, Sunday school, and accountability groups all encounter this very common snag and it slows almost everyone down from growing spiritually the way they want to. What is this common struggle?

It’s the hurdle of inconsistency.

So if you’ve started Bible reading plans but lose steam in Exodus, you have a bunch half-completed Bible studies on your shelves, and/or you know of others who do and you’re not quite sure how to encourage them toward consistency (Hint: telling them to, “Just decide to do it—then do it!” is not helpful.) this episode is for you!

There are many more tips we could have shared today, but we’ve boiled it down to some of the perspectives we’ve found most helpful and fruitful in our own lives and ministries. Join my husband Chris and I for a quick 15 minute episode as we kick off Season 2 of the FOCUSed15 Podcast with a few easily implementable tips.

In This Episode You’ll Hear About:

  • The real issue behind our inconsistency
  • What a “trigger” is and how to use your current routine to get in the Word
  • Tips to maintain consistency
  • Experiencing grace in your quiet time (even if you’re inconsistent)
  • How to deal with the knowledge that you aren’t as consistent as you’d like
  • A Biblical example of God working to get back into relationship with man and what that has to do with our quiet time

HOW TO LISTEN TO THIS PODCAST

You have many easy options for listening. Simply choose your favorite from below.

1. Listen right here on the blog. Just click the little play button below.

2. Listen from an app on your smartphone, iPad or iPod– For iDevice users, click here to access the podcast and subscribe in iTunes.  If you don’t have an Apple device, you can listen with the Stitcher app or directly from the site. For all podcast apps, new episodes will show up as soon as they are published.

3. Listen from your computer via iTunes. Just click here to access the podcast in iTunes. Once you subscribe to the podcast, new episodes will show up in your iTunes dashboard.