Pathway Bible Guides

Pathway Bible Guides
Matthias media, various.

£3.50 (Approx)
3.4
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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

Pathway Bible Guides are simple, straightforward, easy-to-read Bible studies, ideal for groups who are new to studying the Bible, or groups with limited time for study. We’ve designed the studies to be short and easy to use, with an uncomplicated vocabulary. At the same time, we’ve tried to justice to the passages being studied, and to model good Bible-reading principles. Pathway Bible Guides are simple without being simplistic; no-nonsense without being no-content.

What do you get and how?

Soft cover A5 booklets covering 7-10 studies per title with leader’s notes included. This series of Bible studies is now also for sale in PDF formats, either for printing at home or in a size ideal for iPad display.

Some titles include:

  • Jesus Through Old Testament Eyes
  • Beginning with God (Genesis 1-12)
  • Getting to know God (Exodus 1-20)
  • One Life Under God (Deuteronomy)
  • For Our Sins (The Cross)
  • Seeing Things God’s Way (Daniel)
  • The Art of Living (Proverbs)
  • Fear and Freedom (Matthew 8-12)
  • Alive with Christ (The Resurrection)
  • Following Jesus (Luke 9-12)
  • Peace with God (Romans)
  • Church Matters (1 Corinthians 1-7)
  • He is Our Peace (Ephesians)
  • Standing Firm (1 Thessalonians)

Who is it for?

  • for Christians new to studying the Bible
  • for people who want simple studies without being simplistic
  • for people where English is not their first language
  • studies that model good Bible-reading principles
  • studies that unearth the profound life-changing truths contained in the Bible.

Cost?

£3.50 per booklet, similar for PDF and license.

Review

  •  What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    Smart A5 matt booklets.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    Very clear, with leader's notes explaining the structure for both preparation and leading the group. Easy icons to follow.

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    The one booklet contains both the participants' notes and then leaders' notes for each session at the back. Each study comprises: ‘Getting started' icebreaker based on the theme, sometimes with a Bible verse too; ‘Light from the Word' section with readings from one or two passages and seven or so study questions; ‘To finish' section focused on summary understandings of the passage studied; ‘Give thanks and pray' with suggestions for prayer focused on the topic. Nicely laid out with lots of white space in the participants' section. Some studies are more creative than others, with different ways of engaging with the Bible, but essentially they are all focused on methodical Bible study around the theme. The leader's notes are given as guides rather than ‘answers' as such. The ideal is envisaged as a leader who knows enough to be able to lead the study without ‘regurgitating' the notes. The notes, however, do give strong steers as to the direction each section is pointing in.

    Who could lead it?

    As these studies are designed for those less familiar with Bible study, for whatever reason, a leader who can sensitively guide, help and inspire would be good. Flexibility encouraged.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    The vision for these guides is to both introduce people to Bible study and inspire them to keep going with it. So the questions are fairly straight-forward and aimed at helping people to understand what the Bible passage is about. The ‘To finish' section takes this further in simple, overall application. Room for notes under each question.

    How good is any digital material?

    N/A

    How much prep will I have to do?

    Recommendations for preparations are spelt out as 60/40/20 where 60 minutes are spent reading passage and answering the questions oneself; 40 minutes are spent consulting the leader's notes for that study; and 20 minutes spent praying for the study and the participants. So that's a couple of hours suggested, with the additional recommendation that less time is still used in these proportions.

    Is there website support? Links?

    N/A

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    Straight-forward discussion around Bible study questions and initial application; prayer together: all of which may be new to many participants. Non-threatening, with a clear structure.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    This seems to be a good introduction to straight-forward Bible study. It will inevitably appeal most to those who are happy to discuss and read.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    As an initial introduction to Bible study, these seem to be a good length, good questions and good structure. For those less used to the read-and-discuss way of doing things, it may not be the best way to begin. Visual aids, and stories could be added perhaps.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    This varies somewhat according to the author. The emphasis is on beginning to understand the foundational doctrines of Christianity, firmly based on the Bible.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    All of it.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    Well targeted for initial understanding of biblical concepts, some more complex than others. Questions are straight-forward rather than probing.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    Focus on understanding more than application, though again this varies according to the theme.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    Solidly evangelical.

  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    The range of titles is good, and it covers a range of discipleship subjects.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    As initial, solid introductions to the big concepts of Christianity, these are great studies. For many, these concepts would be new, so there would be plenty to take on board and wrestle with.

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    Again, many of the subjects would be very new for participants, and the easy structure would help people to dig into them without being overwhelming. Foundational.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    This varies according to topic, with the overriding focus being to help people engage with initial doctrine in a helpful way. Application is generally implicit or limited to a couple of questions.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    Implicit in being designed for new Christians, and committed to the centrality of the Gospel message for all humankind. Features more in some titles than others.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    Features in overall principles rather than specifics.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    Not a focus in reviewed books.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    Implicit in understanding of Gospel.

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