As we use these studies in teaching the Bible to people around us, what are we aiming to do? Are we trying to pass on knowledge? Are we trying to convince people to stop sinning? Are we trying to persuade people to accept our understanding of the Bible’s teachings on salvation? While each of those is true in some way, none of them are the core of why we do what we do as disciples.

As we share our faith with those around us, we are declaring the praises of God who called us out of darkness (1 Peter 2:9). We are bringing good news to the lost (Luke 4:18-19), life-giving water to the thirsty ( John 4:13-14) and freedom for slaves of sin ( Romans 6:6). We are shining light into the darkness of this world ( 2 Corinthians 4:6) and offering truth that sets people free ( John 8:31-32). We are trying to persuade those around us to hear the gospel and are warning them of the coming judgment ( 2 Corinthians 5:10-11).

If you are a disciple of Jesus, then God has moved powerfully in your life, reconciling you to himself, forgiving your sin and giving you a hope that the world so desperately needs. As Christ’s ambassadors ( 2 Corinthians 5:18-20), God has committed to us that same message of reconciliation, and we now represent Christ in reaching the lost world. By God’s design, the spread of the gospel always takes place through his disciples. That is why we “go and make disciples of all nations,” sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with anyone who will listen! And that is the purpose of this series of studies. They are a tool, designed to help Christ’s ambassadors make God’s appeal and present the gospel to those around us.


It’s important to remember that helping someone come to faith is a deeply spiritual and unpredictable process. Each person we study with is unique, and each has their own unique religious background. This study series is not some formula or process by which people can be converted. At times, you will need to tailor the studies to suit a specific need, and that is to be expected. The order of the studies has been carefully selected and they have been written with this order in mind. However, you may find it necessary to use them out of order. You may find it necessary to pause somewhere in the series to answer questions or to study a particular topic in greater depth. Remember that you are helping to bring them to the foot of the cross, and that path will be somewhat different for each person.

It’s also important to remember that, as ambassadors, our representation of the gospel goes far beyond the content of these studies and our ability to teach sound doctrine. We chiefly represent Christ by living out his teachings and loving others as he has loved us. Helping someone become a Christian is more about showing than it is about teaching. Remember that as you use these studies to present the gospel, the most important part of your gospel presentation is the life you live!


The best place to start is to find out their religious background and their spiritual beliefs. It’s crucial that you know them as a person and that you take the time to get to know their background. Find out about any spiritual aspects of their upbringing. What faith were they raised in? Were they a part of a church (or other religious community)? Find out about their beliefs concerning the Bible, God and Jesus. Find out where they see themselves now spiritually. Are they seeking God? Are they a disciple? What do they hope to gain from these studies? What do they believe regarding eternal life and where they stand with God?

One helpful approach is to write a timeline of significant spiritual events in their life. If they identify themselves as a Christian, ask about their conversion and how they became one. Your goal is to get any significant events on the timeline such as: particular prayers, worship experiences, baptisms or turning points of any kind. If they were baptized, what did it mean and why were they baptized?

As you discuss these things, it’s important for you to remember that God works in our lives long before we come to take him and his word seriously. This is true even if our experiences reflect misunderstandings of scripture or trust in false doctrines. God was still present and was working through our experiences, relationships and circumstances to try to draw us to him, long before we came into a saving relationship with Christ. Thus, it’s important as you discuss their background that you don’t deny the significance of some spiritual event in their life. Look for ways in which you see God working and affirm those when you can. Of course, as you guide them through these studies, they will likely come to understand their religious background in a whole new way, but changing their perception of their background is not our focus. Jesus focused on adding to people’s understanding and faith and that should be our approach as well.


Have your friend into your home and get time in their home

Introduce them to your family or your roommates. Learn about their family and living arrangements. This will help them begin to know your real life and you will begin to know theirs.

Consider the location of your studies

It would be best to meet in a home. If you are meeting elsewhere, be sure to choose a place where you can talk freely.

Give them a Bible

If they don’t already have a good Bible, it’s a great gift to give them.

Share your own life

Tell about your own life and conversion, and talk about how God has moved in your life.

Remember to serve and love as Christ has done for you

Watch for opportunities to meet needs.

Introduce them to the church

Invite them to church events and show them what God’s church is like.

Have one or two other disciples join you for the Bible studies

This will help foster other new relationships. We all need many good Christian relationships to remain faithful.

Don’t do all the talking

Remember, conversion is a heart matter, not just the passing on of information. Make sure communication is two ways and that you give them every opportunity to answer the questions you ask and to ask any questions they may have themselves.

Teach them to pray

Prayer is a vital part of every disciple’s life and is therefore a vital part of helping someone come to faith. Pray as a part of your times together.

Focus on what matters

At times, certain debatable or controversial matters come up as we teach the gospel, and sometimes discussing them is unavoidable. However, our goal as we teach the scriptures should be to focus on the core matters of life and doctrine ( Titus 3:9).


As mentioned above, it may be necessary for you to use these studies out of order in studying with a particular person. However, the order of the studies has been carefully chosen and each study has been designed to fit well within that order.

We begin the series with two studies covering the Bible and Jesus, and there is no better place to start! We start with The Bible-God’s Word in order to establish the scriptures as the authority on matters of faith and salvation. We finish that study with John 8:31-32, pointing out that only by abiding in the words of Jesus will we be set free by the truth. That leads into the next study simply entitled Jesus. In that study, we focus on the “author and perfecter of our faith,” illuminating who he was, some of what he taught and his call to “come follow me.”

The next two studies (Sin and The Good News) focus on sin and the gospel message. We close the sin study with Romans 7:24-25 which looks forward to God’s answer for our sinfulness in Jesus. As in Acts 2 and other places in scripture, this study series presents the problem of sin and the gospel message prior to giving the call to discipleship. When we present The Call to Discipleship in the fifth study, we are calling them to follow the man who came and paid the price for their sin.

The sixth study, entitled The Way of Salvation, focuses on repentance and baptism as the scriptural response to The Good News and The Call of Discipleship. It offers a chance to discuss false doctrine concerning salvation and uses Saul’s conversion as an example of both repentance and baptism. The final study, The Church, lays important foundational convictions concerning the family of God and speaks to the glory of true Christian fellowship. An eighth study, one that focuses on counting the costs and celebrating the blessings of becoming a Christian, is also provided and can be used as needed.


The following list contains things that you should do in preparation for each study. Some of them may not be as necessary as you grow in your familiarity with these studies, but they are still great practices!


You and the person you are studying with are engaged in a deeply spiritual event. God is fighting for their soul and Satan will not let them go without a fight. Pray for them regularly!

Spiritually prepare yourself

Leading a Bible study is a spiritual task, led by the Spirit, and it’s important that you are connected with God and walking with him. Make sure you are spending time with God and that you are ready to be used by him.

Read through the teacher’s guide

Each study has a teacher guide that offers background, clarification and guidance.

Be familiar with the verses you will be teaching

As the teacher in this study, you need to know well the scriptures you will be teaching so that you can “correctly handle the word of truth” ( 2 Timothy 2:15).

Be familiar with the study notes

Note the flow of the study and the main focus. Read through the questions you will be asking. This will help you be ready to lead the study with confidence and conviction. If you have any questions, ask for help!

Look through any relevant pages in the appendix

Several other helpful resources are available to supplement the studies.

Confirm with those who will be attending the study

It is wise to confirm the time and location with the person you are studying with, as well as with any other disciples who will be attending the study. Remind these disciples to be prepared for the study in these ways as well.

Be watchful

God has been working and moving in their life and heart long before this study will begin, and he is still working. Be watchful for how God is moving and be ready to respond to wherever they are and wherever he leads!