Questions & Skills

Asking good questions is going to be key for leading a great Bible study AND other discussion as well. It is not possible to ask too many questions.
Opening Questions.
These break the ice or introduce a subject matter. These questions are normally low to medium risk. These are supposed to be “safe” questions. The purpose of these questions is to build community and to warm up. They don’t have to always be safe but they should all be provocative enough to stir conversations?

Examples:

If money were no object what vehicle would you drive?
You have a 5-night coupon to eat anyplace you want, which 5 restaurants would you eat at?
If you could attend any one non-biblical historical event what would it be?
If you could be doing anything else right now, what would it be?

Thought Questions
These questions will be key in maintaining discussions. The goal is to get feedback and stir up further discussion. These questions can never be answered with a simple yes or no. Thought questions can also introduce new material. They can present ‘devil’s advocate’ positions or may not even be answerable.

Examples:

What are the possible consequences for the disobedience of Moses?
What does Nicodemus being a Pharisee tell us about Nicodemus?
What are the possible explanations of the empty tomb?
How can we minister to the poor? What will that cost us? Is it worth it? Why?

What character issues do you think God would want to change in you immediately if He had His way with you?

Clarifying Questions
These allow us to summarize what has been said. They will also help communicate the essence of what someone is saying on both the thinking and feeling level.

Examples:

Are you saying that this parable only applied to the disciples?
So you think that’s okay for us to have tattoos?
Did I hear you correctly when you said that only lost people will suffer in the Tribulation?

Directing Questions
These questions allow us to maintain focus in our discussions and Bible studies. They are an attempt to redirect a wandering discussion. They can also be an attempt to pin down a principle or point.

Examples:

That is a great insight, does anyone else see something different?
Why Is Nicodemus going to see Jesus at night significant?
When did you go see Jesus at night and why? Why not?

That is great rabbit to chase but for now what is the major point of this passage?
When Jesus says to feed the poor, help the sick – did he mean us as individuals or ‘the church’ in general?

Active Listening
75% of all communication is non-verbal. We want to observe things like eye contact, posture, tone, and inflection. A good active listener will maintain eye contact at all times. They will lock on to whoever is speaking. A good active listener will nod or give verbal encouragement while listening. When someone listens like this it encourages vulnerability.

Supporting
People need encouragement and support. Try to find something positive to affirm with everyone. This is equally important to do outside the meeting time. We support by sending cards, offering help, or phone calls.

Next Session: Telling Your Story

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