This is a subsidiary post of Disciples.

Subsidiary post:  Our Course of Study

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Related words:  examine, inquire, search, seek, study

As for “search,” consider our use of the word “research.”

The word “study” (or a cognate) occurs only twice in the NASB, both in the Old Testament – in Ezra 7:10 as “study” and in Psalm 111:2 as “studied.”  Both verses are in the list below. both below).  Nevertheless, the underlying Hebrews word in these two occurrences is, according to, is Strong’s #1875 “darash,” meaning “to resort to, seek,” and occurs in 152 verses.  In those 152 verses, it is variously translated:

ask(1), avenge(1), calls(1), care(1), cares(3), comes the reckoning(1), consult(2), consulted by them at all(1), demand(1), inquire(33), inquired(5), inquirer(1), investigate(3), investigated(1), looks(2), making inquiry(1), questioned(1), require(7), required(1), requires(1), resort(3), search(6), searched(1), searched carefully(1), searches(2), seek(53), seek after(1), seeking(2), seeks(3), sought(18), studied(1), study(1), surely require(1).

As you can see, the most common NASB translations of “darash” are:

forms of “seek” – 77 (48%)
forms of “inquire” – 40 (25%)
forms of “search” – 10 (6%)
forms of “require” – 10 (6%)
all other – 24 (15%)
Total 161 (100%)

[The total of these numbers is greater than 152 owing to multiple occurrences of the word in some verses.]

An asterisk at the beginning of the citation indicates a non-explicit reference to study.

*John 5:39, 40  –  “You search the Scriptures…”  –  See note on 1 Peter 1:11 below.

*John 7:52  –  “…Search, and see that…”  –  See note on 1 Peter 1:11 below.

*Acts 17:11  –  “…for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily…”
*Acts 17:11 KJV –  “…in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily…”

*Acts 18:24  –  “…and he was mighty in the Scriptures.”  –  Could Apollos have been “mighty in the Scriptures” without having studied them?  In this vein, consider also Acts 8:26-35 wherein Philip shared his greater understanding of the Scriptures with the Ethiopian.  Thus the Ethiopian studied the Scriptures under Philip’s tutelage.

*2 Timothy 2:15  –  “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God…”
2 Timothy 2:15 KJV  –  “Study to shew thyself approved unto God…”
*2 Timothy 2:15 ESV  –  “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved…”

*2 Timothy 3:6, 7  –  “…always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.”  –  This speaks of study that is fruitless.  What is the point of study that never leads to knowledge?  (2 Timothy 3:7 KJV and 2 Timothy 3:7 ESV are only slightly different.)  For an example of this sort of futile study, see John 5:39-40 above.  As the purpose of seeking is to find, so the purpose of study is to arrive at knowledge.

*1 Peter 1:10  –  “…made careful searches and inquiries,”
*1 Peter 1:11  –  “…seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating…”  –  An NASB margin note on “seeking to know” says “Or, inquiring.”  According to, the Greek word translated as “seeking to know” appears five other times in the New Testament where it is translated “search” (John 5:39; 7:52; Romans 8:27; 1 Corinthians 2:10; Revelation 2:23).  Note that the two occurrences which refer to man’s searching (John 5:39; 7:52), as opposed to God’s searching, refer to searching the Scriptures (John 7:52 does not stipulate this but it is easily inferred).
*1 Peter 1:12  –  “It was revealed to them that…”  –  When something is “revealed,” it is “made known” (To Reveal Is to Make Known).


Ezra 7:10  –  “For Ezra had set his heart to study the law of the LORD…”  –  An NASB margin note on “study” says “Lit. seek.”

Psalm 111:2  –  “Great are the works of the LORD; they are studied by all who delight in them.”

*Proverbs 20:25  –  “It is a trap for a man to say rashly, ‘It is holy!’ And after the vows to make inquiry.”

*Ecclesiastes 12:9  –  “…and he pondered, searched out and arranged many proverbs.”

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