I received a request from author Shelley Noonan to check out her Bible Study and her Selah Bible Study method. For those that have followed my blog for a little while, you know I am a big proponent of studying the Bible using the inductive method. One of the biggest benefits from this inductive method is that it slows you down, allowing you time to think about what you’re reading rather than just skimming through it quickly.
While the inductive method that I taught at our church could seem a little deeper than what some people may want to dive, this Selah method that Shelley uses is very promising as you will read a little later in this review. Shelley generously sent me a copy of her Selah Bible Study on the book of Ruth for me to do an honest review.
I would give this book an 9.3 out of my normal 10 point rating scale. On a “5 star” scale that some websites use, I would give it a solid 5 star rating.
In full disclosure, I was not required or requested by Shelley Noonan to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Shelley Noonan’s Bible study of Ruth is based on the Selah method where you read and pause to reflect on questions, thoughts and some deeper dive points on small sections of Scripture over an eight week duration.
Noonan did an excellent job explaining the Selah method and how it can be applied to really any portion of Scripture. This Bible study is done in an easy to use workbook-style format allowing you plenty of room for your thoughts, reflections and prayers.
I hope that Shelley does more of these Bible studies in the future as I see a huge benefit for many people. The flexibility of this Bible study method is that it can be done on many levels from an individual basis, to a family study, to small groups and even in a larger group setting such as a congregation approach.
I received a copy of this Bible study in exchange for this review from the author and all opinions are my own.
DESCRIPTION OF THIS BOOK:
Type of Book: Bible Study & Bible Study Method
Publisher: Pumpkin Seed Press
Author: Shelley Noonan @Shelley_Noonan
ISBN-13 of Bible Reviewed: n/a
Price: At the time of writing this review, you can get this Ruth Bible Study from the author’s website for $13.95. Please note that this price do not include any potential shipping charges.
82 pages (including cover pages)
Dimensions: 8.5 x 11 inches
Selah Bible Study Method:
The name “Selah” actually is a very good term for this Bible study method. The word “Selah” occurs more than 70 times in the Bible and it means “to pause”. Think of it like a pause in music, or a division – a short silence. In music, the pauses (or rests) allows you to appreciate the musical notes that are heard. They allow you time to reflect on those notes. The Selah method causes you to slow down and pause – thinking about and meditating about what you have just read and observed in The Word. This method could easily be used as a discipleship tool to share grow in Christ with people around you.
As I said earlier in my introduction, one of the greatest things that I appreciate about what this Bible Study method does is how it encourages you to slow down and meditate on the Scriptures. That is one of the key goals to the Inductive Method that I taught at our church, but this actually takes a less intense approach to the study approach. Yes, it does take discipline as any real Bible study should do, but the flexibility allows you to do this method as an individual, family, small group or a larger congregation setting. The Inductive Method that I taught is more of a personal approach.
The concept is that you take around 15 to 30 minutes to read the selected Scripture and record what your findings are, but you can take more time than that if you wish. The “pause” portion of the method allows for you to take time to find out the intent of the author and what the meaning was for the original audience to whom the book (or letter) was first written.
Then we come to the listen and reflect portion where you think about and list your favorite verse, what the main theme is for your selection of Scripture and then what God’s revealed character is in Scripture.
Things that this method uses for the “pause” or slowing down portion to think about what you read:
– Words you look up (Bible Dictionaries, Concordances, etc.)
– Questions you asked
– Key people
– Connected Scripture(s)
– Favorite verse(s)
– Main theme(s)
– God’s revealed character
The Selah portion of this method is broken out in an easy to remember acronym as follows:
S – State sins to forsake
E – Explore errors to avoid
L – Live out lessons to learn
A – Affirm promises to claim
H – Highlight commands to obey
Then you pause and listen for a reflection time.
Following that is the time for personal prayer which uses the common ACTS acronym:
A – Adoration
C – Confession
T – Thanksgiving
S – Supplications
Selah Bible Study of Ruth:
This Bible Study book is based on the Selah Bible Study method which breaks the book of Ruth into an 8 week study using the tools of the method listed out in the previous section of this review for each of these Scripture sections:
Week 1 – Ruth 1:1-13
Week 2 – Ruth 1:14-22
Week 3 – Ruth 2:1-16
Week 4 – Ruth 2:17 – 3:5
Week 5 – Ruth 3:6-18
Week 6 – Ruth 4:1-12
Week 7 – Ruth 4:13-17
Week 8 – Ruth 4:18-22
Overall, this method really would work nicely with any section of Scripture you would like to use it for. My personal recommendation would be to not take too large of a section of Scripture though as it will be harder to do the tools of the method on a large section in a manageable time for most people. The four chapters of Ruth are broken up very nicely over the 8 week period.
Some people I have talked with think of Ruth as a study that is more geared toward women, but in reality, men can get so much out of the book of Ruth as well. There is so much truth in it for everyone. As for this Bible study from Shelley Noonan, really, the only thing that looks “womanly” is the front cover. lol it shows a female standing on railroad tracks while holding a suitcase. But the content and the method of this Bible study is certainly very suitable for either gender.
If you don’t want to go into a deep dive with a full inductive study of Scriptures, then this Selah method is what I would consider to be the next best thing. It is ideal for multiple uses, whether it be a personal study, a family Bible study, a small group study or even a whole church or larger group study. I am honestly very impressed with this and think that a vast majority of people would strongly benefit from this. Now, this particular Bible study is based on Ruth, but you can easily utilize this method of Bible study to any portion of Scripture you want. Highly recommended.
Goals for the Selah Ruth Study
What is Selah
The Selah Journal
Selah Daily Schedule
How to Use Your Selah Journal
Context for Selah Ruth
Selah Five Questions to Gain Perspective
The Names and Attributes of God
About the Author:
Shelley Noonan is a speaker, author and blogger. She has been a guest speaker at numerous conferences including Relevant and The Beautiful Conference. Shelley has spoken for the last 17 years at home education conferences across the United States on healthy family relationships. She has written and published four Bible studies for parents and children as well as her newest Bible study entitled, Selah – Ruth. She has a blog for Mothers and Tween daughters. Shelley and her husband, Bob, live on a farm in northeast Nebraska.
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