How to Lead a Great Bible Discussion
All the material you need for each discussion meeting is contained in the videos you can find at PRS.work. At each meeting you show one video then discuss it. Anyone can lead a discussion using PRS.work! You do not have to be a Bible expert. You do not have to be a minister. You don’t have to have Bible study leader training. All you need to do is help people discuss what they see and hear in the videos. Here’s how:
- Watch the PRS.work video that you have chosen for your meeting. You can do the sessions in any order, so simply choose one! Links to all the sessions can be found at PRS.work/sessions.
- At the end of the video, tell the group it’s now time to discuss. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate in the discussion. No one should tell others what to think. Instead, everyone gets to share what comes into their mind.
- Start by asking “Who would like to get our discussion started?”
- After each person speaks, thank them for contributing to the discussion. You don’t have to reply to them or try to correct or teach them. That’s not how this kind of Bible study works. This kind of Bible study is simply each person sharing what the Bible passage means to them. So you don’t have to take charge of what is said. All you have to do is make sure everyone gets a turn to speak and treats everyone else with respect.
- Remember, you are a participant as well as a leader. Share your own reactions to the Bible passage and commentary with the group at some point during the discussion.
- When it’s about three minutes before time to end your meeting, thank everyone for contributing. You don’t have to try to sum up the discussion or form a group consensus. As long as everyone got an opportunity to say something and everyone was treated with respect, you have done your job well!
Tips for handling tricky situations:
- If the discussion seems to stop, here are some questions you can ask:
- Did anything bubble to the top when you heard it read out loud?
- What does this mean for your work?
- I wonder what someone else thinks….
- If the group is straying from the Bible passage…say “What part of the Bible passage does that connect with?”
- If someone says something you think is incorrect, you don’t have to correct them. Just say, “Thank you. I wonder what someone else thinks.” If you think someone says something so wrong that you just can’t let it go, then say, “Thank you. I don’t think I can agree with that myself. I wonder what someone else thinks.”
- You do have to make sure that the discussion is respectful and that everyone gets an opportunity to participate. Here are some things you can say if necessary:
- If someone interrupts….say, “I think the person before you might not be finished yet.”
- If someone demeans or diminishes what someone else said… say, “That’s your perspective, I understand, but we want to take seriously what the previous speaker said. I think what they said was worth listening to.” Then go back to the person whose contribution was demeaned or diminished and ask, “Is there anything you’d like to add to what you said before?”
- If someone is rude or insults someone else.. say, “Everyone in the groups deserves to be respected. What you just said didn’t sound to me like it completely respected what the previous speaker said. Would you like to try again?”
- If a few people keep speaking again and again, while others aren’t speaking…say, “Let’s hear from someone who hasn’t spoken yet.” Or you can invite someone individually to participate, such as “Mary, I’d love to know what you’re thinking.” But don’t try to force anyone to speak. It’s OK if someone prefers not to say anything. Just make sure they have the opportunity if they want it.
Trust God’s Holy Spirit to be present. The discussion doesn’t depend on you, but on God!
- How to Recruit Your Group
- How to Run an Online Bible Study Using the PRS.work Free Online Video Curriculum
- How to Lead a Great Bible Discussion
- How to Keep a Bible Study Group Going
Ready to Get Started?
Go for it!! All of us at PRS.work are so excited about what God will do through these studies in your life and the lives of your friends!