WordGo: A New Generation of Bible Study
BY BENNETT ROLAN
BSF BLOG EDITOR
I n 2018, a cross-country move left me feeling lost and alone. I desperately missed fellowship in God’s Word and longed for the BSF group I had left behind.
As the wife of a college football coach, moving to different teams in different states is part of our family rhythm. Whether we move to a small town in the Southeast or a major city in the Midwest, I can depend on a new BSF class to provide friendships grounded in God’s Word wherever my husband’s career takes us.
But BSF is more than just Bible study and fellowship. God uses each study to magnify Himself and mature His people.
Personally, God used the Matthew study to transform a difficult family relationship. He used Revelation to renew my longing for Christ’s return. And in Romans, He affirmed the promise that nothing “will be able to separate us from the love of Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:39b).
In the middle of that Romans study, a job change took us to southern Utah, where the closest BSF class was hours away.
Even as I prayed, “Lord, why did you move us here?,” God was planting a seed that would change hearts and impact a community.
Bennett and her family
Just weeks after we moved, I was asked to test a new BSF model called WordGo.
Tapping in to BSF study material and four-fold approach, WordGo is designed to reach primarily young adults, those of us who were raised in a culture that claims, “The Church is outdated,” “The Bible is irrelevant” and “Religion is right if it feels good to you.”
To be honest, I was skeptical. Could the app possibly be as effective as an actual BSF class?
But I prayed, said “yes” and looked for opportunities to invite women to join me in studying God’s Word. Without knowing anyone in our new area, I relied on God to provide participants.
He did. Abundantly.
WordGo brought in-depth Bible study to the Utah desert. It introduced the gospel to several women who were not willing to walk into a church. It brought safe harbor to fellow believers who thirsted deeply for Christian community in a barren land.
God is on the move
Just eight months after we arrived in Utah, another coaching change moved our family to southern Illinois. Once again, we landed in a town without BSF. But God used a second WordGo test phase to draw several women to Himself.
Our group included two former BSFers, a new believer, a skeptic and an atheist. We explored God’s promises, His power and His commitment to establish His people in the book of Joshua. By the end of our study, one woman tearfully shared how the experience transformed her entire family, and another is planning to be baptized this month!
In Isaiah 55:11, God promises, “(My Word) will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”
During the initial tests, WordGo sprang up in unexpected places. Groups gathered in corporate offices, including Facebook’s headquarters, in homes, in coffee shops, college dorms and local churches.
Though the setting, technology and length of studies might look different from a traditional BSF class, the impact of God’s Word is unchanging. Fortunately, the Holy Spirit is not limited to a church sanctuary. I experienced that truth in Utah and Illinois, and I can’t wait to hear how God uses WordGo to reach people with His Word.
“For the Word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joint and marrow …” – Hebrews 4:12
What is WordGo?
WordGo offers the questions, notes, lectures and training materials we love in a mobile app so people can launch a study with their friends anytime, anywhere. At the outset, WordGo offers Joshua, Ruth and Acts 1-5 in a library of studies that will steadily grow.
How is it different from a BSF class?
WordGo is designed to meet unique needs, targeting those who aren’t able or willing to attend a traditional BSF class. The app meets many of the needs BSFers have been voicing for years, especially for the rising generation of believers.
With the app, people can start study groups. As Group Guides, they can:
· Start anytime, without a waiting list.
· Invite friends easily through the app.
· Benefit from online training resources and continued support to keep the group on track, all from within the app.
· Keep members updated with any location, date or time changes by sending notifications.
Group members can:
· Customize daily study content to a specific number of minutes per day.
· Receive study reminders and notifications to stay focused and on track.
· Store notes, thoughts and study answers to be used during group discussion.
· Study on the go by listening to custom Bible teaching, audio notes and a built-in audio Bible.
Who can start a WordGo group?
Unlike planting a BSF class, which can take years, WordGo accelerates that process by allowing anyone interested in leading a group to access the app. WordGo Group Guides are simply focused on inviting members and hosting the group.
We believe God will faithfully call, equip and convict the men and women who are committed to facilitate these studies. The material remains true to God’s Word, regardless of cultural context. The four-fold approach ensures that those studying with WordGo do not depart from the text.
Will you partner with us?
There are three things we would like to ask you, the leaders and members of BSF classes, to prayerfully consider:
Right now, as you read this, can you think of someone with whom you could share WordGo? A friend? A family member? Someone from church? Or work? Who are the people in your life that are hungry for God’s Word and would enjoy the opportunity to gather a few friends for a study?
Pray for WordGo
Would you commit to pray for the ministry and impact of WordGo? Join the WordGo prayer list for regular info and prayer requests.
Give to WordGo
Would you like to support this new ministry of BSF as we move to reach and resource believers around the world with in-depth Bible study? Your support of this new ministry will help BSF reach and equip new believers around the world with in-depth Bible study.
Does Word Go come in an ipad version. I find it too hard to read, and doing Ephesians I am only getting a few lines at a time, most of the page is your logo etc.
Hi Rhonda! Here is what the WordGo support team says:
WordGo is an app designed primarily for use on a smartphone. It works optimally on any of the latest smartphones (post 2017 models) and does have some functionality on an iPad and other tablets, but we recommend using the app on a smartphone. Additionally, at this stage WordGo studies are not available for download via laptop or computer.
Part of the vision behind the app was to meet people who lead busy lives “on the go” with a resource for Bible study that would be easily transportable and accessible anywhere and anytime.
If you would still like to do an online study but do not have a smartphone there are courses available on BSF online which can be used on a desktop.
I would like to do WordGo studies on my own over the summer when not in BSF but hate to be on my phone so much. Is there any way I can print out the lessons. As an alternative, can the app be loaded on my computer which would still give me more screen time than I would like. I’m 75 and paper and pen still work best for me and I’m very tech challenged.
Appreciate any help you can supply.
Hi Gayle – the WordGo helpdesk is amazing! You can submit your request here and they will be happy to assist: https://wordgo.freshdesk.com/support/home
Is Word Go available in Spanish?
Hello! Thank you for your question. There are selected WordGo courses available in Spanish on the app. Once you download the app, navigate to the course library to see the current options and expect more to come in the future. Thank you!
Thank God for this new initiative, may God Almighty grant deep understanding and conviction in the lives of all who will join BSF Word go in Jesus name.
I think the admin of this website is actually working hard in support of his web page, since here every material is quality based data.
This is so utterly inspiring! I can think of endless opportunities to use this kind of study with neighborhood groups, contacts overseas or even my family.
I’m currently a CL in the student program, but have an opportunity to teach Bible clubs in the public schools. The idea of teaching the unchurched is inspiring to me and with Wordgo I can enjoy BSF as outreach as well as teaching in the public schools. I will definitely be following the development of this.
I totally agree with Mary Alice. BSF has matured and empowered many women. Let’s not water down the great gains that have been made. My prayers.
I am interested in learning more specifics about the leadership commitment. I have been in children’s and small group leadership and had to leave BSF this year because I now travel 250+ miles every other week to care for my grandson, which is a wonderful blessing and privilege. This does not allow me, however, the ability to commit to a weekly leaders meeting nor a weekly, physical location, Bible Study. What are the requirements for the leaders meeting and the weekly study?
Hi Beth, the leadership training is online and on your own time. For more info, check out wordgo.org. It sounds like it could be a great fit with your travel schedule!
Do you know how many weeks you should allot for each of the current studies available? Just wondering. Thanks, Bennett!
Hi Dawn, great question! The current studies range from 4-5 weeks
Unable to get into app. Keep getting server error. Help
Hi Pamela, if you go to the WordGo help page, you can open a support ticket. Hopefully that will be resolved quickly!
Tapping in to BSF study material and four-fold approach, WordGo is designed to reach primarily young adults, ….why not middle-aged or older age groups of people?
Hi Carl, while the target is primarily young adults, WordGo is awesome for all ages! In fact, our oldest group member in Illinois was actually the one who helped the younger members download the app 🙂 I loved being in a multi-generational group! Such a gift.
Bennett, I’m just repeating what I picked up on the wordgo application. I’m on board with the multi-generational approach. I am presently with an online BSF group that is multi-generational.
I have read everything and would like to start a group in my neighborhood at my home. What do I need to do?
Hi Stacie, check out https://wordgo.org or for additional help, visit the WordGo support page:
As a former BSF member, who is now unable to attend a traditional class due to ill health, I am thrilled that I will be able to participate in Bible studies from my home! Thank you for meeting the needs of those of us who are forced by health issues to give up BSF.
BSF offers online groups. I have enjoyed one for the past year. Choose a day of the week and time. We have people from all throughout the world on the calls once a week for one hour.
Sounds like a great idea but I’m not seeing the plan for leader selection and training? I know BSF is concerned about the Word being taught accurately and promoting discussion that is facilitated by leaders who all agree with BSF statements of faith, represent the Scripture accurately as they facilitate discussion, and have been trained to facilitate. I remember learning that the Romans study was added to the BSF course because it became apparent that many BSF leaders did not have right thinking about some of the major doctrines of the Bible and so I am wondering what the plan is for that doctrine to be dispensed to all of these new leaders. It is exciting to think of all the places this new technology will reach people! I’m sure BSF has some sort of plan to maintain excellence in all they do, including this new technology.
I agree with Susan that the much as this is a way to reach more of God’s people faster, we must be careful to maintain the integrity of God’s word and the way it is delivered. So far BSF has done so excellently well. We must guard against what could be misconstrued as relaxing the study so much that we lose out on the fact that God’s word must be accurately shared. Let us continue praying that God will give the best direction and guidance on how to roll out WordGo.
Thank you for your continued prayers, Mary Alice!
Hi Susan, great question! As you have said we place high value on training. We have developed resources including videos, articles, blogs, FAQs, a support website and more to ensure Group Guides have access to BSF approved training content. You can view some of this here https://wordgo.freshdesk.com/support/home
Great news that this will be available. It sounds like it will help fill a huge need.
This is a wonderful idea! I live in a very rural community where bsf is about an hour away. With this tool I can bring bsf to my community.
Praise The Lord for giving BSF such a powerful tool to reach out and to witness The Lord. Pray that it will bless more and more until The Lord returns.
On he other hand, I also pray that the ‘in-depth’ of BSF Bible studies will continuously go deeper and deeper so that loyal BSF fans like me can benefit. I suggest if this contradicts with the present aim of reaching to the general, why not adding supplementary notes for our further studies?
I trust The Lord will surely satisfy all of us in our Bible studies. Praise The Lord.