After reading chapter 3 carefully, complete the following assignment. Follow the format on page 62; feel free to practice more with assignments 3-2, 3-3, 3-4, 3-5, but only 3-1 is required.
Write out Acts 1:8 with plenty of space between lines and in margins. Find and list a minimum of 30 observations, following the guidelines in the chapter; it is acceptable to include observations from the preceding and the following verses if they help you understand verse 8. Avoid making interpretations or application at this stage. That is, stay with observations. For example, an observation would be to note t-hat the passage starts off with the conjunction “but.” This conjunction connects the sentence to the one above it in a contrasting way. If, however, you were to note that the Holy Spirit empowers us for evangelism, that observation falls into the category of interpretation or application. Do not enter the interpretation or application phase yet. Limit all 30 of your observations to the details and not to the interpretation of the details. Work hard! Dig deep! Read and reread the passage. Do not quit until you have found at least 30 observations. Try to find more than 30. Happy hunting!
After reading chapter 4 carefully, complete the following assignment.
Write out Matthew 6.25-34 with plenty of space between lines and in the margins. List as many observations as you can. Dig deep! Think hard! Spend some time here! Mark and list dozens and dozens of observations. Read and reread! Look again! Observe! Observe! Observe!
After reading chapter 5 carefully, complete the following assignment.
Read the story recorded in Mark 5:21-43. Actually it is 2 stories. The first story is about Jairus and his daughter. The second story is about a bleeding woman. Note that the second story interrupts the first; that is, the bleeding woman story is presented right in the middle of the Jairus episode. Can you think of what that might suggest to us? Look at the two stories and list as many direct comparisons and contrasts between the two as you can find. Read carefully! Look hard! There are many to find.
After reading carefully and exploring GGW chapters 3, 4, and 5 related to making detailed observations and practicing discovering observations, now do the same kind of digging with your assigned text. Push yourself to discover more observations than you think possible. List them here. A surface-level reading will not be sufficient here to find what you need to find. Note that a good observation may be a question that you don’t yet know the answer to; if you identify such questions at this point, you’ll be ready to find answers later in your study. Don’t neglect to consider the discourse considerations addressed in chapter 5. Determine if your text is more like the narrative text discussed on pages 94-96 (Mark 8:14-30) or the teaching text discussed on pages 96-97 (Colossians 1:3-18). List connections that you discover between the paragraphs in your text, following the examples in chapter 5. The more you are willing to dig here, the better off you’ll be later, so don’t take shortcuts that will hurt you later.