Chapter 19 – Studying Bible Poetry

OBJECTIVES:

Upon completion of this chapter you will be able to:

  • Write the Key Verse from memory.
  • Identify various forms of Bible poetry.
  • Identify various types of Bible poetry.
  • Study Bible poetry.

INTRODUCTION

The Bible is a collection of 66 individual books containing history, drama, romance, adventure, and poetry. The Bible is much more than great literature, but it is great literature both in content and form. When you study the content of a book you study the message of the book. You learn the spiritual truths it reveals.

When you study the form of a book you examine the way a book is organized to present the content. Most of the Bible is in narrative form which presents God’s truths in stories which are easy to understand. But five books of the Bible–Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon–are organized in poetic form. There are additional sections of poetry in other parts of the Bible even though the books are not part of the poetry division. For example, poetry is found in some of the books of law and prophecy.

The poetic form of presenting God’s truths is quite different from the narrative (story) form used in most of the Bible. Biblical poetry is also different from most forms of poetry with which you may be acquainted. For these reasons, special guidelines are necessary to help you study these books. This chapter explains the form and types of Bible poetry. This knowledge will help you understand and apply the great spiritual truths found in the poetic books of the Bible.

Read over the chapter study material and complete the self-test at the end. After this chapter is completed, mark complete and go to the next lesson.