A few things come to mind for biblical students who want to be scholars and teachers:
1. Work hard to know the primary sources that give us windows into the ancient world/world of the Bible.
2. As you do that, make sure you don’t get lazy or give up time reading the Scriptures (and when appropriate, in the original languages).
3. Work to know the history of biblical interpretation. But situate your work and your thoughts with respect to the primary texts first!
4. Don’t be afraid to be creative! Pay attention to what’s going on in the world. Read, think, and ask questions that have existential/ethical significance. In other words, don’t just stay in Bible-land all the time.
5. Related to #4, being a biblical scholar requires a lot of hard work and discipline, but devote yourself as best as you can to committing yourself to your family, friends, church, etc.
~Joshua Jipp, Associate Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School