How to Get Started with Bible Journey for Churches
Although your entire congregation may be a very large group, Bible Journey’s flexible and customizable course offerings make it a great fit for entire congregations. Bible Journey has successfully been used for church-wide studies, as Sunday School curriculum, as a supplement to the sermon series or just as a personal enrichment resource to provide to your congregation. There are a number of uses and ways to customize Bible Journey for your church—keep reading for more ideas and best practices.
Uses for Bible Journey in your Church
As a congregational resource
A Bible Journey subscription for your congregation gives you a way to provide additional theologically-rich resources to deepen biblical literacy and engagement within your church, without having to create all of the material. Families and individuals can work through Bible Journey on their own or in small groups. Bible Journey’s self-paced, completely-online platform offers flexibility for individual learners, remote learning groups, small groups and more.
For small groups
If you have small groups or life groups at your church that regularly meet for community and Bible study, Bible Journey is the perfect resource for those groups to take a deep dive through the entire Bible together. Bible Journey courses can be used as a supplement to your church’s weekly sermons or as a separate small group curriculum.
As a Sunday School curriculum
Does your church have a dedicated Sunday School tradition for adults? Bible Journey provides theologically-rich, seminary-led courses that can easily be adapted for Sunday School settings to take your church on a journey through the entire Bible—or, if you prefer, to focus on a specific study or group of books, such as the Pentateuch or the Gospel. The interactive lectures, interviews and onsite videos can easily be used in a group setting, with additional articles, workbooks, reflection questions and other resources to be used for further study and personal reflection.
As a church-wide study
Churches can walk through parts—or the whole—of Bible Journey’s courses together as a church-wide study. We’ve found that church-wide studies like this can work well as a supplement to the sermon series. It’s a great way to provide deeper Scripture study for your entire church with minimal preparation and time from your ministry staff, freeing you up to provide care and focus to other needs within your church.
As ministry training
Bible Journey can provide essential training for ministers, lay pastors, and other staff to increase biblical literacy and support your staff’s personal growth and spiritual life. Bible Journey courses not only dive into the Scriptures themselves (In the Text), but also uncover the cultural, geographical and historical context of the Scriptures (Behind the Text) for a fuller understanding of the Bible. In addition, In Front of the Text features offer an opportunity to see the Bible at work in Christians around the world and throughout history, putting the Scriptures into perspective and practice. Bible Journey also provides an effective and easy-to-use way to provide discipleship for leaders entering (or currently involved in) your church’s ministry.
For deeper discipleship groups
Want to provide a way for new members, new Christians or church members itching for deeper study to go deeper into God’s Word? The Bible Journey curriculum is a great option for small discipleship groups. New Christians who are serious about studying the Bible may wish to work together with a leader from your church to understand the scope and message of the whole Bible. Discipleship groups for members within your church who are seeking a rich, long-term discipleship option can also use Bible Journey to dive deeper into the entirety of Scripture, learning to study the Bible like never before.
How to Implement Bible Journey with your Church
Of course, the context of how you’ll use Bible Journey will vary from church to church and looks different for everyone. Depending on how you decide Bible Journey will work best for your congregation will determine some of the best practices and methods of integration. To get you started, try some of these tried-and-true methods from other churches who’ve used Bible Journey.
Designate a point person
If you’re planning to work through the Bible Journey curriculum with your entire church, it’s a good idea to have a point person on staff for individuals to reach out to with questions as they work through the curriculum. This staff member may also want to create smaller discussion groups with more leaders, moderate online discussion boards or host Q&A chats at the end of a course. You may also choose to have ministers in training lead discussion groups or disciple individuals going through the Bible Journey curriculum.
Integrate flipped learning
Bible Journey courses work particularly well with flipped learning environments. In a flipped learning setup, participants will do some (or all) of the lessons at home, either individually or with their families, and then will return to a group setting for discussion and further teaching. Many churches find that this is a great option for their church and leads to rich discussion and opportunities for further exploration and deeper study together.
Flipped learning and discussion groups can also happen virtually, particularly if your church is large (or meeting virtually in the time of COVID-19). Private Facebook pages and groups, Zoom discussion groups or other online message boards can serve as a virtual discussion board where members can post questions and comments as they work through the lessons. Posts and questions from virtual discussions can also be integrated later into sermons, large-group discussions and other meetings for further reflection, opportunities for your pastoral staff to answer questions, and so on.
Take advantage of flexible subscription options
We offer both monthly and annual pass options for individuals to groups up to 5,000 people and beyond. No matter your church size, we can work with you to provide the subscriptions you need, for as long as you need them. Perhaps you want to provide an annual subscription for your entire congregation for a year, or start by providing a subscription to ministry staff to work through before expanding your subscriptions to discipleship groups. Some churches have also had success with covering partial enrollment costs while members cover the rest of their individual cost. This option allows members to make a monetary investment in their studies—often increasing follow-through and motivation to continue with the program—while allowing it to be more affordable. Whatever you’re looking for, our flexible subscriptions can help you make it work.
Ready to see how Bible Journey can become an essential resource for your ministry staff and church congregation? Start a free one-month trial of Bible Journey today and see everything that it has to offer!