Disciples Bible Study

Core Principles

Contextual Integrity
Entire books of the Bible are read over the course of, typically, 1-5 weeks depending on the length of the book. This helps to keep the big picture context in mind even while focusing on a smaller Focus subsection. Context is very important for proper interpretation and application. Some reading plans make it difficult to keep context in mind due to moving the focus from one book to another from day to day. In contrast to this, using the DBSJournal you read the whole context several times and the Focus section several more times within a single week.
Repetitive Reflection
As noted, reading the same chapters of Scripture through multiple times makes good sense according to principles of learning that encourage repetition and reflection. Processing information effectively requires multiple exposures over a short period of time. At the close of the week, further reinforcement of Biblical learning occurs through either review of previous weeks journal entries or live sharing within a DBS group setting. This is the balanced middle ground between a quick reading of Scripture such as a Bible-in-a-Year plan, or the more indepth and slower verse by verse exposition plan. While both of these are of value, in terms of making more fruitful impact on transformational application and life change, the DBSJournal is arguably more effective.
Guided Discovery
While we gain wonderful insights from the teaching of others, either live or through written/visual/audio media, interacting with Scripture directly is necessary to explore, understand, reflect, and apply Scripture under the tutelage of the Holy Spirit. By having a smaller Focus section of Scripture each week, we are able to slow down enough to listen to God speak to us through his word. Through the DBSJournal you are moved from general observations about the text to exploring what the passage teaches us about people, God, and Jesus. Then, like all good Bible study, it moves you toward personal application.
Disciples Bible Study


The images above briefly explain each section within the Disciples Bible Study format using the DBSJournal. The Journal includes 52 weeks of journaling through Scripture, using the recommended one year New Testament plan, the four year Old Testament/New Testament plan, or a 52 week customized plan. Each week the reading plan has a featured verse from Psalms 119, all highlighting the importance of meditating and dwelling on the precepts and statutes of God. 
The DBSJournal combines these reading plans with guided discovery, Bible memory, and repetitive reflection, all while keeping the context in view. 
Some of the more unique elements of the DBSJournal is that several chapters are read multiple times through the week. Within the larger reading section, a verse to Memorize or Meditate on is selected, as is a smaller Focus section. The Focus may be a few verses up to a whole chapter. The Focus is read several additional times through the week. Each day you add insights to the Exploration questions. At the end of the week, you either review this weeks entry along with 2-3 past weeks entries, or, meet with a small group of others that are reading the same Scripture section and Focus Scripture as you, and share with each other from your journal entries. As an added bonus, you can add new content to your journal from insights shared by others during the group. This is the most effective way of using your DBSJournal and is strongly encouraged as a means of gaining the most from your time.
Use of the two-page-per-week Journal format can be illustrated by following the daily activity guide. Assume you are on the 29th reading from the New Testament plan, which means the section of Scripture to be read is Acts 13-18.
Day 1 Pray and read all six chapters of Acts 13-18.
Day 2 Pray, read Acts 13-18, select a memory verse from anywhere within these six chapters.
Day 3 Pray, work on your memory verse, and read a Focus section of Scripture for the week, such as Acts 15:22-35, that either you selected, or was chosen by a group facilitator.
Day 4 Pray, work on your memory verse, read the Focus section again, Acts 15:22-35. 
Day 5 Pray, work on your memory verse, read Acts 13-18.
Day 6 Pray, work on your memory verse, read Focus section, Acts 15:22-35 and/or, read commentary on the Focus section.
Day 7 Pray, work on your memory verse, and either review the last two or three weeks journal entries, and/or, share with others in a DBS group.
 DAILY, add to the Explore/Discover sections of the Journal.