A Brief History of Small-Group Bible Study By Anthony Freddura

Today, Christians of all denominations enjoy participating in small-group bible study in addition to attending services at a larger church. Many who participate in such groups see them as forums for building close relationships within the church, and ways to help further their understanding of scriptural teachings.

Biblical accounts of characters such as Noah, Moses, and Jesus suggest a valuation of small-group fellowship, however small groups had a very different function in Early Christianity than they do today. In the earliest days of Christianity, worship groups had to be small because there were few (if any) dedicated buildings for worship. This meant believers had to hold services in existing houses or other spaces.

Much later, as the Protestant reformation began to brew during the 17th century, reformers (including John Calvin and Martin Luther) urged their followers to meet in small groups outside the established churches, which many viewed as spiritually corrupt.

Today, however, it is simply a great chance to build relationships in the church, and to learn about the theology and beliefs that make up your faith.

About Anthony Freddura

An active parishioner of the Grace Chapel congregation in Lexington, Massachusetts, Anthony Freddura participates in the church’s musical performances as well as its bible study groups. In addition to his private worship activities, Freddura lends his time to community outreach efforts that support less-fortunate community members.