It’s That Time of Year Again…

So I was sitting in class when I, again, heard my answer recited verbatim.  If you hadn’t noticed, I use certain words that many of you probably do not.  It’s just my writing style that is unique to everyone.

And this was one of those unique answers full of words that are not common that I use regularly on my site.  And it was verbatim as well.


Last year (See post HERE), it was one woman.  This year there are at least 3 women in my group who I have noticed that use my answers consistently in class.

It seems to be that time of year where it has become easier to just copy off of my site rather than do your own work.  Truthfully, it does bother me.  It bothers me because I know that woman probably didn’t do the lesson ahead of time.  She either copied or printed off from this website.  And then said, “Well, I got…”

It saddens me a bit.

Am I complaining?  No.  For this site is public for all to learn off of as its intent is.  It is sad though when I feel some are not learning at all.  I even wonder if those of you who do use my answers verbatim even read the question or the passage, which is defeating the whole purpose of bible study.

Yes, consequences of posting my answers.  For anyone could just print these off all year long and have the answers.  But those of you that do are only cheating yourselves.  You are not learning as you should nor internalizing God’s word and what He has to say to you.  For this is what He has said to me, not you.

It saddens me.  It truly does.

And I pray for those women to find the time to study His word and find their own answers and THEN come to my site and see what I have to say BEFORE class.

I know I am probably wasting my time with this post for I believe it is a minority of you that do this and I believe I won’t change anyone’s heart.  But I figured it was worth a shot.

To those who do use my answers:  at least try to paraphrase them.  For I bet half the women in your group know you are using my answers and they are probably thinking/feeling how I am.  Yes, it might take an extra minute to do so but maybe in that minute as you ponder the question you will hear from Him and just not me.  For I am a mere human who knows nothing.  He is the omniscient, One True God who is waiting for you.

Please know I am not saying you don’t do your lesson or you don’t open the Word and study it.  And if you do, I am not speaking to you.  I am speaking to those who don’t.

I am not judging you either.  I am merely yearning for you to hear from God.  For isn’t that why we are all here?

And if you use my answer because you like how it sounds better than yours, go for it.  For in your heart God knows you are seeking Him.  That is totally different.  That is how this site is supposed to be used.

I am only addressing those (hopefully few) who don’t do the lesson and just print off or copy my answers and then use them in class as their own.

And you know who you are.

Everyone else can ignore this post.


37 thoughts on “It’s That Time of Year Again…

  1. I totally agree.
    Someone that doesn’t study on their own account to answer the questions is creating themselves. Your work is a good resource but it is not the only way to address the questions. You have a great understanding but your view is not the only answer to the questions. Your work should fuel addition study so you learn more.
    Do keep up the good work.


  2. Your diligence in study & research have expanded my exploration of the Scriptures & enhanced Biblical insight. I believe the LORD is using your posts for the greater good of the many rather than the few who tend to “skate”. It is great to be able to compare your input on questions with what I have discerned in my lesson prep. Thank you!


  3. I Agree , As Well !!

    My Issue Is , That Although I Knew The Verses From Growing up . . { But As An Adult Had To Renew My Mind Through Scripture writing , memorizing , thinking on } . . I try To Look At Your Studies , And When Something Pops In My Mind , I Just Add It To My Comments I Leave .

    I Read KJV . . So I Will Use That Bible Version After I Read Your Lesson . { Just Something I Do For Clarity }
    To Make Sure What I Write Is What That Verse Says Or Means To Me , And To Me You Seem To Answer From How I Feel About That Particular Verse .

    I Am Thankful That I Came Across Your Lessons , Cause They Help Me ! They Really Do .

    I Always Ask First , Before I Copy Something From Another . . .

    Forinstance . . I Am Learning , That I Have A Communication Problem When It Comes To My Marriage And At Times To Others . I Go To Another Blog For Help In That Area . So I Asked Her If I May Copy And Paste Something I Feel That I Need Help On , To Put In My Google Documents { That Only I Can See } For Referance , For I Felt When I Leave Comments I Can Seem , I Don’t Know How To Put It . I Chose Not To Leave Comments On Her Blogs For That Reason .

    I Have Yet To Visit Your Blog Yesterday , Because Sickness In The Family , But I Intend To , Sometime Today!!

    I Personally , Thank You For Your Lessons ! They Help Me.


  4. I understand where you are coming from But what you do is a Blessing for some, including me. 1) Many questions, especially the Challenge ones are difficult to understand what they are even asking. Your site has brought clarity to them so I could understand and answer them.
    2) This is my 4th year of BSF. I have figured out my strategy to do the work daily rather than wait till Sunday and do them all. It’s not easy and requires God’s help for us to do and keep up. I tried BSF many years ago and quit after the pressure of having to complete and didn’t want the stress when it came to discussion. I finally started again because having study questions helped me focus on bible study and get much out of the bible. I will now mine first but will read yours for another’s perspective.
    3) it is a gift you provide. I don’t believe it’s ‘cheating’ if someone uses more, commentaries or the Bible if the truly seek knowledge of our Lord and King. You do what you so and then let God do His work in others. I think you do this because you are a servant of God and sharing His word or helping enable it within those that read. Imagine not ding this and know all those worldwide that stop BSF because its too hard, or they didn’t do there work for any reason. It’s not supposed to be work, lets Pray that all have the desire to seek God’s word and be His servant.
    4) Thank You for the work here you do, it helps!

    In Yeshua’s Name,
    Bruce Silver


  5. Oh I

    Just Skimmed Some Of Your Comments On The Link You Gave . . . Reckon I Didn’t Read The Blog Above , Properly , For I Did not Know What Verbatim Meant . You Meant The Word , Not How You Was Giving Your Thoughts To Scripture Through Your Blog Like You Do With The Studies .

    My Apologizies !

    Perhaps , I Should Look Up Words . . Including Words In The Bible That I Didn’t Understand As A Child Or Teen Or Even Now Really , When I Tried Renewing My Mind.


  6. Wow. I love doing my homework, but I also love visiting your site….the reason…our class discussion is bland one word answers is what most people give and there is NO discussion. I love to learn and I want to know what other people think, because my way of thinking and how I understand passages may be different and may not be right. I love other peoples view points do not see how someone would copy your info directly and pass it off as their own thinking and understanding….REALLY…. then why are they doing BSF in the first place if they did not want to learn and understand for themselves what the Bible has to say and how to apply it in their lives today.


  7. Your blog is great, AtoZMom, but I intentionally never read any of your BSF answers until after my group meets. I’m afraid I might be influenced by your posts, and the best way for me to prevent that is to wait. If I am off target with my answers during grouptime, so be it. I’m not in a contest with my classmates to see who has the most insight. Personally, I suspect that a lot of people copy your answers, and they probably justify it to themselves by thinking that they are learning from you, from the other class members and from the teaching leader. As long as you post this blog, you’ll always have those who use your answers, and that is sad, especially for you. However, you have many more who enjoy reading your posts as a resource – not a cheatsheet.


  8. Do you ever wonder if those in your class hear your answers and think to themselves you must have using ‘your’ answers too – not knowing you are you? Ironic.

    Thanks for what you do. HH


    1. No, because even I paraphrase my answers for exactly that reason! Ironic, isn’t it?

      And I have stopped answering ones that I have a unique perspective on, if you know what I mean.

      I usually am the one answering the obvious questions.


  9. I would suggest posting your answers after your group meets for discussion. You might notice that many of us don’t look at your answers until after our own class meets anyway.


  10. Thank you SO MUCH for your email. I tripped across your blog almost a year ago when I had misplaced my BSF Lesson Notes and Questions and googled for help. You are exactly right about those who copy verbatim from your answers! I love to review your perspective and gain an even deeper, richer understanding. I promise to do every BSF lessons myself and use your blog for a deeper perspective and meaning. I appreciate your writing and DO LEARN more from your perspective before the rich, meaningful dialog in my Cary, NC BSF group. Thank you for sharing your understanding of God’s word! Suzanne Graham, Cary, NC


  11. Thank you for all your efforts. I appreciate your posts because if I am truly “brain blocked” I an glance at your take on the question and it is an “oh, yes” or it jogs my mind and off I go with my answer. It is SO true……those who use your answers are only cheating themselves and I will add that they are possibly taking the place on someone who might want to be in BSF if there were room and they would do all their own studying and growing. BUT, God is fully aware of it all and HE will take care of it. God bless you and yours.


  12. I’m sorry these ladies are using your answers as their own. They are missing such a blessing in not studying and allowing the Holy Spirit to speak to them. I get my questions done usually on Thursday and Friday, then on Tuesday morning (we meet on Wednesday morning), I pull your answers up and compare, Most of the time we say about the same thing, worded differently, of course, but I NEVER change my answers when we differ. The Holy Spirit has spoken to me and I have derived my answers and don’t want any other answers. I love having your answers to compare.


  13. I felt your heart so profoundly in this post. I think this is one of the most well stated expressions of your heart and thoughts on this subject that I have read to date. So incredibly well said. You’re right they are cheating themselves. They aren’t benefiting from it as an aid to their own study and seeing it as your revelation. I don’t get it. Getting in and doing it ourselves helps us to know our God. What a privilege that is. I rarely check your answers but when I do it’s just because I’m curious what you thought because I want to see your insight. I’d never use your answers because it isn’t what God said to me. I just like knowing what he said to you the way I want to hear from my other ladies at group. This is just one more inspiration and a brick in the wall of my understanding. …thanks for sharing your insights and you discouragement. I so wish we could go get coffee.


    1. You’re on for the coffee!!!!

      And I appreciate your comment and support. It makes me smile 🙂

      Frequent commenters such as yourself I feel like I know. God bless!!!


  14. What a blessing BSF has been in my life…and to copy answers would be such a disappointment to God, because I have committed to this study to help me grow in my relationship with Him. It’s my time with Him alone that helps me to understand more of His character and who He wishes for me to be. Even if my answer is “wrong” so be it…apparently God was trying to teach me something about myself that I was not aware of.

    I do look at your answers after doing my lessons and yes, many times it shows me something I did not see, but, the scripture speaks to each of us differently for a reason…we are individuals and the Holy Spirit speaks to “our” individual needs.

    God Bless You for what you do….it adds a lot to my studies, just as what we share in group!


  15. I enjoy your Blog, but do work on my lesson & see what suggestions you have. Your ideas are great,
    gives me more understanding of the lesson. Thanks for your help in studying for my lesson.
    Do need to hear from the Holy Spirit first, but know it’s wonderful that you are there!!!


  16. One more grateful and thoughtfully-intended comment/perspective . . . .

    I am so thankful to God for my birth family (as well as world-wide family). I want to share another perspective about BSF sparking a voracious hunger for information, education and God. I grew up in a wonderfully devout, loving, and intellectual family. Every member of my 6-person birth family has a Doctorate (M.D.) and/or Masters Degree. One, besides being the M.D., is an ordained minister. Three are teachers. Two others of us are Chemical or IT engineers. Two of us are ordained Elders.

    We hunger for love, knowledge, and opportunity to serve God and His creation. Besides being an Elder, I have degrees in Mathematics, Information Systems, and am 2 courses short of M.B.A. I daily search to increase information, knowledge, and to teach/help others. I search for every perspective I can find on a subject to seek understanding and blend it with my understanding of God’s will.

    I am exceedingly grateful for your BSF lesson perspectives and for the vigorous discussions we have in my BSF small group. It makes us all more informed and better Christians and brothers/sisters in the general public.

    God Bless you for your Christian writing and for sharing your knowledge and understanding. Besides reading your Blog, I study several days on each BSF lesson.

    Thank you again for sharing your Christian insights!

    Sincerely, Suzanne


  17. I have been is BSF for 7 years and have loved every minute of it. I am the one on the first day of BSF I asked my leader if “anyone had ever flunked out”. this is how unknowledgeable I was when it came to the Word. I have found that I possible know and remember more than I thought by reading your Blog. I get through my lesson, then I go to your blog and see what you have said. 9 times out of 10 I am on the right track, just haven’t worded it as well as you have, but I then feel a little more confident that I am learning. Thank you for helping me.


  18. It certainly shows that you research and study and put a tremendous amount of effort into the study. Bless you for that. Perhaps it might be a good lesson to speak the truth and tell them directly that they are copying your answers specifically if they read them out in the class. They may appreciate the answer you derive at but should not take credit for someone else’s thoughts.


  19. I am so sad that happened.  I use your answers, but I am not in your group.  I confess, I could not do BSF without your answers. I am learning the Bible, more and more, but I have a hard time understanding.   Please know that you mean so much to all of us in BSF out here, and all of us feel the same way as I described above  j


  20. I appreciate all that you do in your study and for sharing it with all of us. I do all of my lessons first. Then on the morning of my BSF class, I review all of my answers and only then do I sometimes read your blog if I am needing clarification on a question. It’s too bad that some don’t spend their time studying HIS Word instead of commentary.


  21. I must admit I too use some of your answers, not because I am not doing the study but because a lot of times I just don’t get the question, Sometimes I get a lot from your responses and then I understand, and sometimes I don’t understand till group and then an ahha moment.


  22. I hope you don’t mind, if I share a different opinion. While its unfortunate that some feel the need to use your answers verbatim, be happy that they are getting “something” from using/finding your blog. Your answers maybe their only source of learning…which will make both you and them better people. For you, your selfless act of sharing your gifts with strangers brings more blessings to you, a clearer understanding of scripture and the ability to help others through your writing. You can not worry about what others do or take away…at least its better than doing nothing at all. This is how they choose to grow their faith, I guess, and maybe it works for them. What you do is a service to many, its not about ego, its sharing. I don’t think these ladies realize its called Bible Study for a reason. Its not bible reading or a Q & A. All we can do as Christian women is pray that G_d will ignite their spark to seek and find Him in the word. Oh, and I’m not an answer stealer but you sure do help me reach my own, at times!!!


  23. Male. I’ve read you answers and have been impressed by much. I also believe He will speak to each of us so I try & block out what I have read AND LISTEN. I’m not tooting any horn of mine, just thinking that there are many of us who do not believe in ourselves. He believes in us, His creation and We need to believe in OUR Maker.


  24. I wrote a comment thisorning and its not here. I thought I wrote thoughtfully and supportive of your site and of the comment. Can you tell me why it wasn’t posted? Thanks, Bruce Silver.


    1. Bruce,

      Some comments I have to approve and it appears you are a first time commenter to this site. As such, I had to approve it and I was not on-line at all yesterday. I apologize for that. It is now posted for all to read!

      Thanks for commenting and I hope you continue to do so!


      1. Thanks so much, I do enjoy what you do! Has the leadership of BSF said anything about? Please continue what you do…

        Thanks, Bruce


  25. Thank you for sending your opinion regarding this subject.  I a’m not the one that you are talking about since my class is definitely ahead of your post. Knowing your opinion about the subject is an added knowledge for me.  And I really appreciated so much your post.  A comparison between yours and our group suggestions plus our lecturers explanations constitute so much to my work and to my spiritual transformation. I considered the same as my spiritual inspiration and guidance to my stairways to Christ. How grateful am I, to meditate on your post after our group discussion. Thank you so much! Thank you so much and May the Good Lord bless you continuously.


  26. Because of the net I read 3 bibles at a time trying to grasp the meaning of what I’m studying. I want to fully understand. I’m a bit over analytical.

    You are my study partner. The other side of the question that comes completely from the heart. I look to your blog for that second opinion. You always see more than I and you’ve help me in my in my journey to become a better Christian.

    The people that copy from you are also learning just by reading what you have written they are becoming more enlightened. You are spreading the word to these people. They are there, they are participating, they are learning and hopefully some day they will come and thank you.

    You have helped me understand and get so much more out of my lessons,

    And thank you for taking your time to writing this blog!


  27. I’m a group leader for a class of women who work and are sandwiched between numerous children at home AND elderly parents, several of whom are dying. One of them was struggling mightily and in grave danger of dropping out. She was under attack. She wanted to come to BSF but with everything on her plate, doing “BSF Homework” was one thing that wasn’t imperative to keeping everyone functioning. I continued providing lessons to her even when she missed class. I made the effort to meet her the next day somewhere in town. We prayed. I listened. I sent her here and encouraged her to check out your answers whenever she had a chance whether it was in a carpool line (yay for smart phones) or sitting vigil with a sick child. She was OVERWHELMED with life. BSF didn’t need to be another burden for her. (No, it isn’t a burden for me and many of us but we are farther along in our journey!!!) I had encouraged her in the past to attend without her lesson done but she was embarrassed. Your “help” has encouraged her to show up with most of her lesson done. She has started doing more and more on her own….God has been gracious to stretch her time and she now sees this as the spiritual battle that it is. YOU played a huge part in helping her. I’d rather listen to your answers from my ladies watching their mothers and fathers on their death beds than to have them not show up and for all I know, they were on the same Holy Spirit wave length as you. It is possible to have the same answers and even word them the same. Anyway, I just wanted to offer another perspective. It’s easy for us who aren’t working outside the home or whose children are grown or who aren’t homeschooling or who don’t have deployed husbands or spouses who work out of town all week or who have elderly parents out of state or even across town requiring frequent visits or who are hospitalized to tsk tsk those who “aren’t making God a priority” when they really are…they are honoring their mothers and fathers and raising up their children in the Lord and doing the work of two parents…and praying all day. I pray mercy for these. I pray help for these. I pray for Satan to get out of the way and for God to stretch their time and for the Holy Spirit to give them confidence and direction as they find time for Jesus. And I thank you for the help you provide many. Growth will come. I’ve seen it happen. God bless us all and you, AtoZMom. And thank you to Ms. Johnson for founding Bible Study Fellowship which eliminates Biblical illiteracy and encourages a passion for Jesus Christ.


  28. I am grateful for your answers because after I find my own answers I can read yours and sometimes they give me a different perspective on the subject. Sometime I agree and sometimes I don”t but your perspective always gives me something to think about!! Thank You. JoAnne N.


  29. I find your answers give me a better understanding. I do read and at times do not understand what it is that I read to answer the question at which time I read your answer and still don’t understand LOL I appreciate your work. Thank you


  30. I love this site. I am new to BSF and studying the bible. So some of the questions can become overwhelming. I will normally read the question look up the bible verse and then read what you have written. I try to write my “own” feelings, finding and thoughts. I do have to say though many times I am so confused and do not understand until I read what you have written..then it jogs my mind. I love this blog. Thank you.


  31. I loved reading all of the comments. I read your blog for a better understanding and a different outlook on the question. You are a blessing to our community and may not know why God put you in this position. Please don’t be discouraged by the direct quotes: many people have given you good reasons why that may be so. Just know that you are indeed a blessing and God will reward you for those you are helping. Continue what God inspire you to do and He will get the glory.

    By the way, I know you are not in my class because your answers are at least a week ahead of mine.


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