Leadership

9 Interactive Bible Study Ideas for Youth Groups

Having trouble keeping your youth focused? Here are 9 fun ways to teach the Bible in a brand new way to teenagers.

H1 What’s a Rich Text element?

H2 What’s a Rich Text element?

H3 What’s a Rich Text element?

H4 What’s a Rich Text element?

H5 What’s a Rich Text element?
H6 What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

H4 Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

H4 How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

  • List Item 1
  • List Item 2
  • List Item 3

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

9 Interactive Bible Study Ideas for Youth Groups

It’s difficult to keep younger students engaged during Bible study. After all, many other activities are vying for teenagers’ attention nowadays: social media, games, and even junk food. Therefore, it’s essential to find ways to make the Word of God come alive for them, so that they not only understand it but also apply the learnings in their lives.

How can you make the Bible more interesting for young learners? Check out these ideas for interactive Bible studies for youth groups!

3 Interactive Ideas for Engagement

Your goal as a Bible study leader is to get everybody to contribute their thoughts and engage with the lesson. Doing so allows for a more intimate understanding of the Scripture and helps them discover more profound insights into the Sunday School lessons they had as a kid.

Here are three interactive ideas to get everyone in your group involved:

1. Brainstorming Questions

Ask difficult questions – ones that can’t be answered by either a yes or no. This way, the group members are encouraged to explore the topic, think deeper, and find meaningful insights. Here are some questions you can ask to get the ball rolling:

  • What does this passage mean to you?
  • How have you seen God at work in your life recently?
  • What would you have done if you were in the shoes of one of the characters in the story?
  • Do you think that there are any modern-day applications of this lesson?

For example, if you’re discussing Lot’s story, you can ask, "How do you think Lot’s wife felt when she was turned into a pillar of salt? What would you have done in the situation?” Your goal is to get each person to use their imagination and share their thoughts. 

2. Role-Playing

This role-playing activity is an easy way to have the members interact with the material. It allows them to put themselves in the characters' shoes and understand the lesson from different perspectives.

Here’s how the activity works:

  1. Have everyone stand up and form a circle. 
  2. Assign each person to one of the Biblical characters in the story. 
  3. When the game begins, all the members must act out their roles according to how they understand the situation. You can also have them take turns, so the story continues around the circle. 
  4. Everyone is free to make their own interpretations of their character based on their understanding. 

For example, if you're tackling the story of Joseph the Dreamer, you can assign one member to be Joseph, a couple to be the brothers, one for Jacob, two for the Pharaoh and his wife, and two for the prisoners. Then, have "Joseph" arrive at the scene, his "brothers" throw him into a pit and sell him to strangers, "Jacob" weep over the bloody coat, and so on.

This activity is a great way to get everyone involved. As each member contributes their own understanding of their character’s perspective, the more they can relate to the Bible lessons on a personal level.

3. Crossword Puzzle

Crossword Puzzle is an excellent activity if your group is trying to memorize Bible verses. The puzzle will help them review Scripture and encourage teamwork throughout the game.

Here are the instructions to create a crossword puzzle:

  1. List the Bible verses you want to include.
  2. Take note of the keywords of each verse, and arrange the keywords in a grid pattern with overlapping answers. For example, for John 3:16, you can have “love” across and “eternal” down, starting from the letter “e” of the word “love”.
  3. Remove all the words in the puzzle so it’s now an empty grid. If you have phrase answers (e.g., “eternal life”), black out the blanks in place of the spaces.
  4. Create clues for each word in the puzzle. For the word “love”, the clue can be “the reasons for God saving the world”; for the word “eternal”, the clue can be “the gift God gave after saving people from eternal death”. 
  5. Add number references to match answer spaces to clues.
  6. When the puzzles are ready, get the group to work in pairs to solve the puzzle. You can also time them to see how fast they can complete it. 
  7. If you have prizes, award the first team that finishes the activity.

You can also throw in trivia questions related to past materials, not just Bible verses. For example, if your group has gone through a series about gratefulness, you can include “gratefulness” as an answer with “showing our appreciation for God by living according to His ways” as the clue. Doing so will help them refresh their memory of both the Bible verses and their lessons.

3 Interactive Ideas for Creativity

A key aspect of retaining teenagers' attention is to get their creative juices flowing. Many teenagers enjoy expressing their creativity through art, music, and writing, so leveraging their strengths will naturally help them engage more with the lesson.

Here are three ideas to help your group get creative: 

1. Rap Battle

If your group is musically, lyrically talented, or has a great sense of humor, play a game of rap battle to review a particular Bible lesson, book, or material. It doesn't matter if they don't take the raps seriously – the point is to get them to understand the study at a deeper level together. 

Here’s how you can have a rap battle with your group:

  1. Split your members into teams of two or three. 
  2. Have each group choose a section of the book or material they're studying and write a rap about it.
  3. Once everybody is ready, have each team perform their rap in front of the group. 

Other members can vote on who they thought did the best to explain the story, make it entertaining, and keep the main lesson intact. You can also have a panel of judges so the activity feels like a competition.

Remember to allow as much creative freedom as possible, so the members can explore the Bible lesson and relate to it on a personal level. The raps can include original beats, ridiculous rhymes, or even choreography – whatever helps them interact with and feel closer to Scripture.

2. Word Association

Another creative way to interact with your members is by playing word association to review key Bible concepts. It’s a simple game that requires little to no preparation, making it an activity that you can do at a moment’s notice.

Here’s how you can play the game:

  1. Have everybody sit in a circle. 
  2. Each person takes turns saying a word associated with the passage or lesson while ensuring that it's still related to the last word. For example, if the passage is John 3:16, the first word can be "love", the second can be "compassion", the third can be "salvation", and so on. 
  3. The turns continue around the circle until someone hesitates, can't think of a new word, or the association has been made so many times that it's no longer relevant.
  4. The person who makes a mistake is then removed from the ring, and the game proceeds until only one person is left in the group. 
  5. The last one standing is declared the winner.

You don't have to be too strict about the association, as long as it's clear that the students understand the verse or lesson at hand. You can also make things more challenging by establishing a time limit per turn.

3. Draw It Out

Drawing is another excellent activity to encourage creativity, interaction, and teamwork – especially if it's a drawing activity that requires everybody's participation to complete. Moreover, this activity is perfect for visual and auditory learners, who must pay attention to the story to draw correctly. 

Here's how it goes: 

  1. Designate one person to be the artist. 
  2. Have everybody else turn their backs to the artist.
  3. Give everyone 15 seconds each to explain what happened in the story. 
  4. Have the artist draw the story based on their understanding. They can't speak or ask for clarification.
  5. Once the drawing is complete, check how much of the story they got right. 
  6. Conclude by having everybody point out the errors and funny details.

Alternatively, you can have members take turns being the artist for 30 seconds each, where artists will have to continue where the other person left off. The result may even be more chaotic, but it's a creative way to get the members involved with the Bible story.

3 Interactive Ideas for Team Building

Other than encouraging engagement and creativity, it's also essential to build a sense of unity among group members. That way, they'll be more likely to support and rely on each other inside and outside the group.

Here are three ideas to get your group working together:

1. Two Truths, One Lie

The classic game of “two truths and one lie” is an excellent way for members to think critically about what they've read in the Bible. However, instead of creating statements about themselves, this game requires them to play the role of a Biblical character and see if the others will recognize the lie.

Here are the steps to playing this game:

  1. Have each student write down two factual statements and one false statement about a particular Bible character, passage, or story. 
  2. Share the statements with the group and have everybody guess which one is the lie. Members can also explain why they think certain statements are true or false so that they can learn from each other in the process.

2. Bible Quiz Show

This game is another way to review key Bible stories and lessons while encouraging teamwork in the group. Note that this game does take a few hours to play, so ensure that you allot enough time for the activity.

Here’s how to play the Bible Quiz Show game:

  1. Create a series of questions related to the passage or story you're studying – for example, Easter and the meaning behind the resurrection of Christ. 
  2. Split your group into two teams and give them a "buzzer" button (this can be anything from an empty milk carton to a pillow). 
  3. Start the game by asking a question. Whoever "buzzes" first gets to try and answer correctly. If they get the correct answer, they'll get the point. If they answer incorrectly or run out of time, the opposing team can respond correctly to "steal" the point. 
  4. Whichever team has the most points by the end of the game wins the quiz show.

Alternatively, you can also turn the activity into a game of Jeopardy and create categories with different point values. For example, you can have a category on Bible stories worth 100 points, a category on Bible verses worth 200 points, and so on. 

3. Yes Or No

This game helps your group review Bible lessons, stories, and concepts. This game is similar to Quiz Show but encourages more interaction and team play.

These are the steps to playing the game:

  1. List Bible-related people, places, objects, and things on small pieces of paper. 
  2. Put all of those words in a bowl or container. 
  3. Split the group into two teams and appoint one person to go to the front. 
  4. Have the remaining team members draw one word per team. 
  5. When the game begins, the appointed members should ask yes or no questions to their respective teams. The other team members will then guide their teammate toward the correct answer. For example, the appointed member can ask, "Is it a person?" and the team members can say, "Yes!". 
  6. Continue asking questions until the player gets the correct answer. Since it’s a competition, only the first team to get the answer wins a point. Teams can then switch out the appointed player, so everybody gets a chance to play. 
  7. Continue until the answers run out. Whichever team has the most points wins the overall game.

If you want to make the game more competitive, award extra points for creative questions or speed. You can also have multiple difficulty levels with corresponding points (e.g., easy guesses equal 100 points while harder ones get 300 points).

Interactive Bible Study for Youth, Instrumental Spiritual Lessons for Life

These are just a few of the many games you can use to review Bible stories and lessons with your members, so feel free to use these ideas as a starting point for interactive activities. What's important is that you find a game they'll enjoy, so they interact with the material more personally. 

podcast transcript

(Scroll for more)

H1 What’s a Rich Text element?

H2 What’s a Rich Text element?

H3 What’s a Rich Text element?

H4 What’s a Rich Text element?

H5 What’s a Rich Text element?
H6 What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

H4 Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

H4 How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

  • List Item 1
  • List Item 2
  • List Item 3

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Special Offer

Blog

9 Interactive Bible Study Ideas for Youth Groups

9 Interactive Bible Study Ideas for Youth Groups

Having trouble keeping your youth focused? Here are 9 fun ways to teach the Bible in a brand new way to teenagers.

Show notes

9 Interactive Bible Study Ideas for Youth Groups

It’s difficult to keep younger students engaged during Bible study. After all, many other activities are vying for teenagers’ attention nowadays: social media, games, and even junk food. Therefore, it’s essential to find ways to make the Word of God come alive for them, so that they not only understand it but also apply the learnings in their lives.

How can you make the Bible more interesting for young learners? Check out these ideas for interactive Bible studies for youth groups!

3 Interactive Ideas for Engagement

Your goal as a Bible study leader is to get everybody to contribute their thoughts and engage with the lesson. Doing so allows for a more intimate understanding of the Scripture and helps them discover more profound insights into the Sunday School lessons they had as a kid.

Here are three interactive ideas to get everyone in your group involved:

1. Brainstorming Questions

Ask difficult questions – ones that can’t be answered by either a yes or no. This way, the group members are encouraged to explore the topic, think deeper, and find meaningful insights. Here are some questions you can ask to get the ball rolling:

  • What does this passage mean to you?
  • How have you seen God at work in your life recently?
  • What would you have done if you were in the shoes of one of the characters in the story?
  • Do you think that there are any modern-day applications of this lesson?

For example, if you’re discussing Lot’s story, you can ask, "How do you think Lot’s wife felt when she was turned into a pillar of salt? What would you have done in the situation?” Your goal is to get each person to use their imagination and share their thoughts. 

2. Role-Playing

This role-playing activity is an easy way to have the members interact with the material. It allows them to put themselves in the characters' shoes and understand the lesson from different perspectives.

Here’s how the activity works:

  1. Have everyone stand up and form a circle. 
  2. Assign each person to one of the Biblical characters in the story. 
  3. When the game begins, all the members must act out their roles according to how they understand the situation. You can also have them take turns, so the story continues around the circle. 
  4. Everyone is free to make their own interpretations of their character based on their understanding. 

For example, if you're tackling the story of Joseph the Dreamer, you can assign one member to be Joseph, a couple to be the brothers, one for Jacob, two for the Pharaoh and his wife, and two for the prisoners. Then, have "Joseph" arrive at the scene, his "brothers" throw him into a pit and sell him to strangers, "Jacob" weep over the bloody coat, and so on.

This activity is a great way to get everyone involved. As each member contributes their own understanding of their character’s perspective, the more they can relate to the Bible lessons on a personal level.

3. Crossword Puzzle

Crossword Puzzle is an excellent activity if your group is trying to memorize Bible verses. The puzzle will help them review Scripture and encourage teamwork throughout the game.

Here are the instructions to create a crossword puzzle:

  1. List the Bible verses you want to include.
  2. Take note of the keywords of each verse, and arrange the keywords in a grid pattern with overlapping answers. For example, for John 3:16, you can have “love” across and “eternal” down, starting from the letter “e” of the word “love”.
  3. Remove all the words in the puzzle so it’s now an empty grid. If you have phrase answers (e.g., “eternal life”), black out the blanks in place of the spaces.
  4. Create clues for each word in the puzzle. For the word “love”, the clue can be “the reasons for God saving the world”; for the word “eternal”, the clue can be “the gift God gave after saving people from eternal death”. 
  5. Add number references to match answer spaces to clues.
  6. When the puzzles are ready, get the group to work in pairs to solve the puzzle. You can also time them to see how fast they can complete it. 
  7. If you have prizes, award the first team that finishes the activity.

You can also throw in trivia questions related to past materials, not just Bible verses. For example, if your group has gone through a series about gratefulness, you can include “gratefulness” as an answer with “showing our appreciation for God by living according to His ways” as the clue. Doing so will help them refresh their memory of both the Bible verses and their lessons.

3 Interactive Ideas for Creativity

A key aspect of retaining teenagers' attention is to get their creative juices flowing. Many teenagers enjoy expressing their creativity through art, music, and writing, so leveraging their strengths will naturally help them engage more with the lesson.

Here are three ideas to help your group get creative: 

1. Rap Battle

If your group is musically, lyrically talented, or has a great sense of humor, play a game of rap battle to review a particular Bible lesson, book, or material. It doesn't matter if they don't take the raps seriously – the point is to get them to understand the study at a deeper level together. 

Here’s how you can have a rap battle with your group:

  1. Split your members into teams of two or three. 
  2. Have each group choose a section of the book or material they're studying and write a rap about it.
  3. Once everybody is ready, have each team perform their rap in front of the group. 

Other members can vote on who they thought did the best to explain the story, make it entertaining, and keep the main lesson intact. You can also have a panel of judges so the activity feels like a competition.

Remember to allow as much creative freedom as possible, so the members can explore the Bible lesson and relate to it on a personal level. The raps can include original beats, ridiculous rhymes, or even choreography – whatever helps them interact with and feel closer to Scripture.

2. Word Association

Another creative way to interact with your members is by playing word association to review key Bible concepts. It’s a simple game that requires little to no preparation, making it an activity that you can do at a moment’s notice.

Here’s how you can play the game:

  1. Have everybody sit in a circle. 
  2. Each person takes turns saying a word associated with the passage or lesson while ensuring that it's still related to the last word. For example, if the passage is John 3:16, the first word can be "love", the second can be "compassion", the third can be "salvation", and so on. 
  3. The turns continue around the circle until someone hesitates, can't think of a new word, or the association has been made so many times that it's no longer relevant.
  4. The person who makes a mistake is then removed from the ring, and the game proceeds until only one person is left in the group. 
  5. The last one standing is declared the winner.

You don't have to be too strict about the association, as long as it's clear that the students understand the verse or lesson at hand. You can also make things more challenging by establishing a time limit per turn.

3. Draw It Out

Drawing is another excellent activity to encourage creativity, interaction, and teamwork – especially if it's a drawing activity that requires everybody's participation to complete. Moreover, this activity is perfect for visual and auditory learners, who must pay attention to the story to draw correctly. 

Here's how it goes: 

  1. Designate one person to be the artist. 
  2. Have everybody else turn their backs to the artist.
  3. Give everyone 15 seconds each to explain what happened in the story. 
  4. Have the artist draw the story based on their understanding. They can't speak or ask for clarification.
  5. Once the drawing is complete, check how much of the story they got right. 
  6. Conclude by having everybody point out the errors and funny details.

Alternatively, you can have members take turns being the artist for 30 seconds each, where artists will have to continue where the other person left off. The result may even be more chaotic, but it's a creative way to get the members involved with the Bible story.

3 Interactive Ideas for Team Building

Other than encouraging engagement and creativity, it's also essential to build a sense of unity among group members. That way, they'll be more likely to support and rely on each other inside and outside the group.

Here are three ideas to get your group working together:

1. Two Truths, One Lie

The classic game of “two truths and one lie” is an excellent way for members to think critically about what they've read in the Bible. However, instead of creating statements about themselves, this game requires them to play the role of a Biblical character and see if the others will recognize the lie.

Here are the steps to playing this game:

  1. Have each student write down two factual statements and one false statement about a particular Bible character, passage, or story. 
  2. Share the statements with the group and have everybody guess which one is the lie. Members can also explain why they think certain statements are true or false so that they can learn from each other in the process.

2. Bible Quiz Show

This game is another way to review key Bible stories and lessons while encouraging teamwork in the group. Note that this game does take a few hours to play, so ensure that you allot enough time for the activity.

Here’s how to play the Bible Quiz Show game:

  1. Create a series of questions related to the passage or story you're studying – for example, Easter and the meaning behind the resurrection of Christ. 
  2. Split your group into two teams and give them a "buzzer" button (this can be anything from an empty milk carton to a pillow). 
  3. Start the game by asking a question. Whoever "buzzes" first gets to try and answer correctly. If they get the correct answer, they'll get the point. If they answer incorrectly or run out of time, the opposing team can respond correctly to "steal" the point. 
  4. Whichever team has the most points by the end of the game wins the quiz show.

Alternatively, you can also turn the activity into a game of Jeopardy and create categories with different point values. For example, you can have a category on Bible stories worth 100 points, a category on Bible verses worth 200 points, and so on. 

3. Yes Or No

This game helps your group review Bible lessons, stories, and concepts. This game is similar to Quiz Show but encourages more interaction and team play.

These are the steps to playing the game:

  1. List Bible-related people, places, objects, and things on small pieces of paper. 
  2. Put all of those words in a bowl or container. 
  3. Split the group into two teams and appoint one person to go to the front. 
  4. Have the remaining team members draw one word per team. 
  5. When the game begins, the appointed members should ask yes or no questions to their respective teams. The other team members will then guide their teammate toward the correct answer. For example, the appointed member can ask, "Is it a person?" and the team members can say, "Yes!". 
  6. Continue asking questions until the player gets the correct answer. Since it’s a competition, only the first team to get the answer wins a point. Teams can then switch out the appointed player, so everybody gets a chance to play. 
  7. Continue until the answers run out. Whichever team has the most points wins the overall game.

If you want to make the game more competitive, award extra points for creative questions or speed. You can also have multiple difficulty levels with corresponding points (e.g., easy guesses equal 100 points while harder ones get 300 points).

Interactive Bible Study for Youth, Instrumental Spiritual Lessons for Life

These are just a few of the many games you can use to review Bible stories and lessons with your members, so feel free to use these ideas as a starting point for interactive activities. What's important is that you find a game they'll enjoy, so they interact with the material more personally. 

video transcript

(Scroll for more)