Bible Study Fellowship (BSF), otherwise known as BSF International (www.bsfinternational.org), is a international Christian interdenominational fellowship offering structured bible study. Utilizing a four-fold approach to studying the Bible, you answer questions on a bible passage, discuss the passage in small groups, listen to a lecture on the passage, and then read comprehensive notes written by commentators on what the passage means.
Begun in 1959 by A. Wetherell Johnson, Bible Study Fellowship is the best bible study today. Fostering community and learning, BSF International is the best small group bible study and online bible study today.
Over the years, I’ve gotten this question, so I thought I would write a post and share with those who are new to BSF.
BSF stands for Bible Study Fellowship. It’s a free nondenominational bible study group founded in 1959 by A. Wetherell Johnson. It chooses a Bible Study every year to focus on that follows the school year, usually beginning the week following Labor Day and ending in mid-May. It uses a four-fold approach, which includes reading a Bible passage, answering questions on the passage, discussing the questions in a small group session, and then listening to a trainer speaker on the passage. It focuses solely on what God’s word says, not what others interpret it as.
There are BSF bible study groups all over the world and the country. These groups are divided into women, men, and young adults. There is a student program that follows the adult program that parents can bring their children to. Since the pandemic, BSF has expanded to online groups as well.
The Bible study changes every year and usually focuses on one book or topic. For 2022/2023, BSF will be launching People of the Promise: Kingdom Divided, a study of many books of the Bible. This will be my 10th year, and I’m SUPER excited for this study!
For many of us, when BSF ends and takes a summer break, we are left scrambling for some way to stay in His word. Without an official study, this can be incredibly challenging for many, and sometimes, Bibles can go unopened all summer until Bible Study Fellowship begins again in the fall.
BSF is now offering summer bible studies for those who want to stay in His word over the summer. This is available via their app, WordGo. You simply go to your PlayStore and download this free app. Once downloaded, you’ll be able to pick a course that lasts anywhere from two weeks to six weeks. These are manageable time slots for many.
These BSF studies of the Bible include questions, so you can dig deeper in God’s Word. You can watch BSF’s explanation HERE
BSF encourages you to do these together. However, in today’s world, going it alone is okay, too. Plus, this may be easier for some who prefer to study their Bibles early in the morning or late at night.
I plan on picking one of these and posting my answers here. I am hoping some of you will at least follow along and maybe chime in the comments when prompted. Or, just read my summeries when you have a bit of time.
There’s a poll on the sidebar. I’d like your input for which study we start with. I plan on beginning this early to mid-June. I will announce that here on my blog.
BSF International will now be on break so that we can enjoy the holidays with our families.
I just want to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and to express my sincere gratitude to you all who visit and are a part of my life in some small way. It definitely makes me a better person. Thank you all who have donated and who continue to do so. It definitely helps.
I pray that you all are blessed in the upcoming new year and enjoy this time for your family.
Now that we all have access to the BSF questions and notes online, some of you have asked if I could post over the holiday break because you want to stay in the Word and work ahead. If this is something you are interested in, please leave me a comment. If enough of you request this, I would begin posting on December 30th instead of January 6th when BSF begins again. So this would be one week ahead of schedule.
I received an email about the changes Bible Study Fellowship has made this year and the email was wondering why BSF didn’t ask for feedback on the changes at the end of this year.
So, here it is! Your chance to tell BSF International what you think of the changes!
Leave a comment below. Your voice matters!!
I’ll go first:
I personally didn’t like the flex questions. I always did all the questions anyways as you all know and skipping around made the lesson feel choppy, haphazard, and incomplete.
I miss the opening time and the hymns.
We also have quit having monthly fellowships in others’ houses. We maybe had “all-class fellowships” 3 times this year. Once in the beginning, before Christmas break, and our last meeting. I miss this unstructured time together. Even these all class fellowships were rigid as we were always asked to come prepared to answer a discussion question and I don’t know about you but I get tired of homework!
I DO like the shaving 30 minutes off of our time. I attend a night class, and it’s hard to focus late at night for me for 2 hours and my kids were zombies most of the time because of school. That extra half an hour does make a difference. I’m more relaxed. I have time to get home and unwind. And I have more time to do my own in-depth study of God’s word and reflection time on the lesson before I go to bed so hopefully I don’t forget quite so easily!
I like the not calling on women so often. It eliminates the guilty feeling if you didn’t get your lesson done. I also like the laid back atmosphere more of “just come” instead of “don’t come if you didn’t do your lesson”. No one appreciates a guilt trip.
I know some of you were like me when you showed up to Bible Study Fellowship this year: we’re doing what?
Changes made to my group:
No opening worship time. We now go straight to our groups.
Flex Questions. We are picking 6 questions to focus on instead of doing the whole lesson. This is an effort to encourage those who don’t finish their lessons.
BSF is now only 1 1/2 hours instead of 2 hours long.
There are no hymns at all.
I would love to hear all of your initial impressions on these changes to the traditional BSF format. These are the most changes BSF has ever done at once and they are major. Please comment below with your thoughts.
I woke up with this thought in my head: BSF lectures should be available online for all–not just for the children’s leaders and volunteers and for one week only. Also, I know BSF is recording the lectures and posting them somewhere for the satellite groups so they are already doing all of the work.
I thought of my church and how they post every sermon online for years back. If you miss one, anytime, you can go and listen/watch or you can revisit it and listen/watch it again.
This year I have missed most of the lectures. Not because I want to. But because I have somewhere I have to be and can’t stay and listen. I think a lot of us are like this. It’s something I’ve accepted, but I wish I could listen to the lectures when I have the time.
I know this has been suggested before, but I thought I’d revisit it and throw out the idea and get your all opinions on the matter.