When I researched to get an idea of what is generally recommended for Bible study, I rarely saw the Strong’s Concordance. This is unfortunate because the Strong’s Concordance is an excellent Bible study tool. It is easily accessible and it is surprisingly easy to use. I have had my Strong’s Concordance for many years and enjoy using it when studying the Bible.
According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:2 Peter 1:3
I am thoroughly convinced that our Creator has provided in His inspired Word, all that we need to know to be able to flourish as well as be content in whatever state of being or season that we are in our lives. Even in our technologically saturated and dominated world, Yah has provided us the knowledge in His Word to be as:
… a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.Psalms 1:3.
Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field… Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.Deuteronomy 28:3-6
… not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?Numbers 23:19
But He also said:
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…Hosea 4:6
We discover much that Yahuah has spoken in His Word when we go beyond simply reading to really studying His Word. Proverbs 25:2 says this of Yahuah:
It is the glory of Elohim to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.Proverbs 25:2
In my opinion, the Strong’s Concordance is one of the best Bible resources to help us search the Scriptures. It has been valuable in my personal quest for the Truth. It helps me find answers to tough questions about Yahuah, about myself and about the world in general. I have experienced tremendous spiritual growth and understanding as a result of searching deeper into Yah’s word using my Strong’s Concordance.
I cannot imagine studying the Bible without my Strong’s Concordance. Reading the Bible? Yes. Studying the Bible without it? No. I have discovered many benefits to using this handy Bible study tool.
Today, I am sharing three of its benefits, hoping that they will inspire you to begin to study Yah’s Word with a Strong’s Concordance if you are not already. First, a little background about this great companion to Bible study that was published more than 100 years ago.
Its full name is The Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. It was first published in 1890 and is named after Dr. James Strong (1822-1894). He didn’t singlehandedly create it. He had a large team that assisted him. Since its initial publication, it has been republished, revised and updated several times. I have the 1984 edition published by Thomas Nelson and also one that I picked up recently at a thrift store. It’s published by Hendrickson Publisher. Now, let’s get into the benefits of this useful Bible study tool.
The First Benefit of Using the Strong’s Concordance
What’s That Address?
But the Comforter, which is the Ruach Qodesh, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.John 14:26
Sometimes I can remember a verse in the Bible, but cannot remember exactly where it is? The Bible has 66 books and 1,189 chapters. It is impossible (at least for me) to know the address of every single verse. The Strong’s Concordance eliminates this problem.
If I can remember one or two key words in the verse, the Strong’s Concordance tells me exactly where to find it in the Bible. This is so helpful when I am studying a topic and the Ruach Qodesh brings a related verse to my mind. I may only know the book that it is in. Or I may not know where to look for it at all. Not a problem. I use my Strong’s Concordance to look for the key words that I do remember. It tells me the book and the chapter to find the verse.
The Second Benefit of Using the Strong’s Concordance
Is That Really in the Bible?
Now the Ruach speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;1 Timothy 4:1
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of Elohim: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.1 John 4:1
Scripture error is rampant (2 Tim. 4:3). There are both well-meaning ministers as well as wolves in sheep’s clothing that preach, teach and prophesy with the Scriptures. We ourselves, can entertain erroneous thoughts about Yah’s Word.
Another benefit of using the Strong’s Concordance in Bible Study is that it helps us to know Yah’s Word for ourselves. For instance, we may hear a lovely message on the grace of Yah that tickles our ears and appeases our flesh. However, the Ruach Qodesh says to our spirit, “That grace message sounds a little greasy. You may want to check that out further.”
With the Strong’s Concordance, we can be as Bereans and study for ourselves to see the whole picture of Grace in the whole council of Yah’s Word (Acts 17:10-11). With the concordance, we can go to the source, the Bible, Yahuah’s inerrant and inspired Word.
Also, there have been times that I thought a verse was in the Bible and it was not. Or I’ve heard a quote that was attributed to the Scriptures but is really not in the Bible. Here are a few such statements that you might have yourself heard:
Money is the root of all evil.
Cleanliness is next to godliness.
Money cometh to me.
The Bible says not to judge.
My Strong’s Concordance helps me to verify if these statements are in the Bible. If I know the key words, I can easily look them up. It is essential that we learn to verify if statements that are credited to the Bible are scripturally sound.
We will only know the Truth by knowing Yah and His Word. We only want to cling to Him. His unadulterated Word keeps us rooted and grounded in the Faith. The Strong’s Concordance is a useful component in our inoculation against seducing spirits and doctrines of devils. I am thankful for a Bible study tool like the Strong’s Concordance. It helps me to study the Word of Yah so that I can only grow and abide in the Truth.
The Third Benefit of Using the Strong’s Concordance
216 Occurrences of praise?
Most Bibles have a concordance in the back of them that are useful to an extent. However, they are not exhaustive like the Strong’s. For example, I have a Thompson Chain-Reference Study Bible which has a concordance. When I look for the word, “praise,” I see that there are 38 verses listed.
In contrast, there are over 100 verses that contain the word, “praise” in the Strong’s Concordance. Now, I may not ever study all these verses in the Strong’s. I do, however, like having access to them.
The concordances in the back of our Bibles were compiled by the publishers. They chose which words to include and which to exclude. It is understandable that they would only list a few representative words. They are primarily publishing the Bible and not a concordance. On the other hand, the Strong’s Concordance is exhaustive in that it includes definitions of every word in the Bible except the prepositions, smaller common words and articles such as “a,” “an,” “are” and “the.”
As an example, Strong’s lists and defines 7 different Hebrew words for the English word, “praise.” Each Hebrew word brings a depth of understanding to Yah’s Word that we miss when we only read the English word, “praise.” This is just one example. There are many other instances where there are more Hebrew and Greek words than our limited number of English words in the Bible. Strong’s defines them all.
One Disadvantage of Using a Strong’s Concordance
Although the Strong’s Concordance is exhaustive, you will be exhausted if you carry it around too long. My 1984 version has over 1,500 pages. In my opinion, its size is the biggest disadvantage to using a printed copy of the Strong’s Concordance.
Notice that I said, “printed” copy. There are excellent electronic versions available. Two of my favorites are blueletterbible.org and e-Sword. Both are free to use. Blue Letter Bible is an internet based bible study platform. e-Sword is a downloadable Bible study software that includes the Strong’s Concordance along with its many other Bible study resources.
An advantage of having an electronic version of the Strong’s Concordance is that you can access it just about anywhere. This is not without its disadvantages as well.
What if for some reason the internet is not available when you are ready to Study? This is why I am a proponent of owning a printed copy along with the electronic versions of my most important and most used resources. Even though I have access to more convenient electronic versions of Strong’s, I personally prefer to use my printed copy whenever I can.
The Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible need not be intimidating to use. Once you understand the basics, you can feel confident using it to enhance your Bible study time. It’s a great Bible study tool that helps us to personally dig deeper into Yahuah’s Word.
Question for you? Do you currently use the Strong’s Concordance? Which do you prefer, a printed copy or the electronic version? I’d like to read your ideas about the Strong’s Concordance. Please comments below.