Use a Keyword Search Function
Second in a series providing a practical guide for studying scriptures about strengths.
God has equipped each of us with unique strengths. He uses His Word to help us learn how we are equipped and how our strengths can contribute to the Kingdom.
As you study what God says about differences, you become better able to embrace your unique giftedness. Dozens of Bible study tools facilitate this process. You can get started studying scriptures on your own at no cost using online tools from Bible Gateway like Bible versions, Bible keyword searches, Bible dictionaries, and Bible commentaries. For instance, Part 1 in this series address reading strengths scriptures in different Bible versions in order to grasp God’s gift of strengths. Another simple-to-use tool is a Bible keyword search.
What Is a Keyword Search?
A keyword search is a data base hunt for a particular term, as in when you use a search engine to look for information on the Internet. In a Bible keyword search, the computer program sorts through the Bible and returns a list of places in scripture where your specified term appears. A strong Bible keyword search function allows you to search a single Bible version or several simultaneously. You can also search for a single word or a phrase.
The returned list of Bible citations is valuable in several ways:
- The results help you locate the passage references that contain the term. This is especially helpful when you cannot remember where you read the term or phrase.
- The results show you other places in scripture where the term is used. This information allows you to compare how the term is used and learn more about the subject.
- The results from a multi-version search show you how the same term is used differently in various Bible translations.
If You Can Use Google, You Can Search for Keywords
You can conduct a Bible keyword search in the same way you undertake a conduct a keyword search in a search engine like Google or Bing.
For instance, using Bible Gateway’s free Keyword Search feature, enter a term in the Search box. Select the Bible version (or multiple versions) you’d like to search, enter specific search options, and click “Search.”
What You Can Learn About Strengths from a Keyword Search
In studying scriptures about strengths, one important keyword is “gifts” – those special abilities God bestows on individuals to use to build His Kingdom. In fact, 1 Peter 4:10 translates “gifts’ as “abilities” in The Living Bible version: “God has given each of you some special abilities” (TLB).
A keyword search using the term “abilities” in The Living Bible version returns 12 results. A quick glance at some of the results for “abilities” reveals several insights:
- 1 Corinthians 12:1: The Holy Spirit is the giver of these special abilities. He is the conduit by whom we receive our special abilities.
- 1 Corinthians 12:4: The Holy Spirit is not only the giver of these special abilities, but He is the source of them. That means He originates or creates them.
- 1 Corinthians 14:1: We can ask the Holy Spirit to give us special abilities that will build the Kingdom.
- Ephesians 4:7: Christ wants us to have special abilities. He does not hold back gifting from us nor give it to us grudgingly, but desires to endow us with unique strengths.
After you study more thoroughly each of the 12 results from a specific translation, you can delve even deeper with a keyword search for the term “gifts” in other versions, such as the New International Version.
You can see why even just one keyword search can lead you to more meaningful understanding of God’s strengths working in you.