IV. Analysis by Key Words
A. Key Words are words and expressions which occur frequently throughout the book.
This kind of study works especially well when making a study of the shorter books in the New Testament called epistles or letters.
B. Key Words can most readily be found when studying the King James or Authorized Version and other word-for-word more literal translations of the Bible. I just checked the English Standard Version (ESV), and I see it is literal enough to make this kind of study for the key words in the book of 1 John.
C. Observe and take note of the key words you find that are repeated in the book being studied.
Analysis by Key Words, 1 John
1 John 2:6, 10, 14, 17, 24, 27, 28. 3:6, 9. 4:12, 13, 15.
1Jn 2:6 He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.
1Jn 2:10 He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.
1Jn 2:14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.
1Jn 2:17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
1Jn 2:24 Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.
1Jn 2:27 But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.
1Jn 2:28 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.
1Jn 3:6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him.
1Jn 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
The word “remaineth” translates the same Greek word rendered “abide” in the verses reproduced from chapter 2 of 1 John. The word “dwell” in the references to 1 John 4:12, 13, 15 likewise translates the same Greek word otherwise more often rendered “abide.” Knowing this enriches our understanding of the original language word involved.
2. born of God
1 John 3:9. 4:7. 5:1, 4, 18.
1 John 2:3, 4, 7, 8. 3:22, 23. 4:21. 5:2, 3.
1Jn 2:3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
1Jn 2:4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
1Jn 2:7 Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning.
1Jn 2:8 Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.
1Jn 3:22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight.
1Jn 3:23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment.
1Jn 4:21 And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.
1Jn 5:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
1Jn 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
1 John 2:3, 4, 13, 14, 20, 29. 3:14, 15, 19. 4:2, 6, 13. 5:2, 13, 15, 18, 19, 20.
D. It is often helpful to write out or chart the key word and the phrase in which it occurs.
II Timothy, Analysis by Key Words
Once again I am hampered and stymied by this keyboard and my lack of knowledge on how to create and post a chart, so I will describe the format but display only an outline.
The chart has headings for four columns. The headings, placed across on the first horizontal line, are “word,” “chapter,” “verse,” and “the phrase noted.” The first column must be wide enough to accommodate the word, perhaps an inch and a half. The chapter column can be narrow, perhaps 3/8 inches. The verse column can be a bit wider, perhaps an inch. The remaining much wider column for the phrase being noted will take the remaining space to the right on the page.
1. word: remember
2 T 1:3.
Paul remembers without ceasing, Timothy, night and day in his prayers.
2 T 1:5.
Paul remembers Timothy’s sincere and real faith.
2. word: serve
2 T 1:3.
Paul serves God.
2 T 2:3b
serves as a soldier of Christ
2 T 2:4
separated for service
2 T 2:15
study for service
Try this method of Bible study for yourself on one or more of the shorter books in the New Testament. You will find it helps to get into the word of God, and requires only a plain text Bible–always the best starting point for Real Bible Study.