Getting Started

Getting Started with the POUR Method

Starting something new can be fun and exciting. However, we must be sure of what is required at the onset of our endeavor (Luke 14:25-33). To be clear, the POUR method can be overwhelming at first regardless of your Bible study history. It demands a lot more time and energy than most studies. On the other hand, its rewards are much greater.

As you begin to apply the POUR method, we do not want you to grow weary or frustrated. Instead, we want to encourage you to press in and press forward, and we want to provide resources that may facilitate your progress. Therefore, we offer a set of recommendations below that you may wish to consider as you proceed. Additionally, we have compiled a collection of resources that may help facilitate your study. These resources come in the forms of downloads and helpful instruction. We encourage you to spend some time praying through the content below before you get started.


Sound biblical study and interpretation requires intense care and effort. It is not something that one can hope to master in a few days, weeks, or even years. Faithful study demands focused and intentional discipline that is executed consistently over many years. Don't expect this process to come easy at first, but stick with it and commit yourself to doing it well and with precision, to the best of your ability and as God allows. It will get easier over time, and you will begin to uncover new mysteries in God's Word.

We want you to be successful so that your effectiveness in ministry may increase. Remember, your effort in accurate study is to elevate the glory and supremacy of Christ Jesus as he is revealed in Scripture. Don't try to rush the process. Take your time, pace yourself, and enjoy the journey.

As you begin leveraging the POUR method, we suggest you consider these key basic recommendations:

  1. Don't try to "boil the ocean." Focus on a single verse, passage, or chapter each week. The goal of studying the Bible is quality, not quantity. If you set your scope too large, you will get lost pretty quickly. Most Bibles have subheadings that break up passages of Scripture. Perhaps, focus on one subsection at a time. Then, as your familiarity and comfortability in this process improve, you can attempt larger portions of Scripture. The more you study the Bible, you will uncover its seemingly never-ending layers of complexity and rich beauty.

  2. Set a daily goal and time limit. Depending on your personality, studying the Bible can be either very overwhelming or very exhilarating. The first type of person will tire themselves out fairly quickly if they take on too much; the second may end up chasing rabbit trails. In the end, neither is productive. Determine what you intend to accomplish for the day and set a time limit. Once you either accomplish your goal or you've reached your time limit, take a break—even if it's for a few minutes. You can always revisit the material later. Taking a break will give you time to reflect and facilitate your ability to retain what you've just learned.

  3. Have realistic expectations. Some may be sprinting out of the gate with the POUR method; others may find this method tedious at first. If you're the latter, give it some time. Additionally, don't be too hard on yourself, as far as quality is concerned, when you first start. God is faithful, and he will reveal his Word to you in his timing. Just keep persevering in your discipline to study the Bible.

  4. Be committed. Just as the second discipline encourages setting limits, you will also want to determine a minimum amount of allotted time. Don't sell yourself short, as nothing worth having comes easy. You must be disciplined in setting time aside for studying God's Word. After all, properly interpreting the Bible is a key component of a mature disciple.

  5. Choose the right approach. As great as the POUR method may be in helping you with Scripture interpretation, it may not be the right approach. All believers should be engaged in actively studying the Bible. However, if this is your first time in Bible study, you may want to consider a simpler approach, such as the HEAR method. Other approaches, such as the HEAR method, require less time commitment and can serve as an initial introduction. On the other hand, if you have studied the Bible for some time and are desiring to go much deeper, then the POUR method may be right for you.


We have compiled a collection of resources to aid in your implementation and application of the POUR method. These resources include downloads, tutorials, and links. We understand that each person works differently, prefers different types of tools, and, therefore, may not need all of the resources provided. Therefore, take a look at the collection and prayerfully consider which ones might be helpful for you.

You can find the list of those resources and their accompanying content on the Resources page.

Final Thoughts

With a foundational understanding laid and some resources at your disposal, you are now ready to begin learning the steps of the POUR method. Rightly understanding God's Word is a reward in and of itself, and we are sure that you will, if you have not already, realize that. God wants you to understand and communicate his Word well. We hope that you trust that and take comfort in it. Finally, regardless of which study method you adopt, we highly recommend that you proceed in prayer—pray before, pray after, and pray every moment during your study. Seek the Lord as you learn his Word—draw near to him and listen to him still speak. Find delight in the process of knowing your Father deeper and more intimately.

POUR Method
The POUR Method is a hermeneutical approach to studying the Bible.
It develops a healthy discipline of examining Scripture through its proper contexts.
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The POUR Method is a trademark of Discipled Church.