The key to successful Bible study is a three-step process, which is: Observation, Interpretation and Application. This means basically, to look at what it says, figure out what it means, and then apply that message. You can also look at it as three questions: What does it say? what does it mean? and So what?
While there is a spiritual aspect. The Holy Spirit opens our spiritual eyes to the truth of the message, but that does not mean we stop using our brains. Our spirit may commune with God through the scriptures, but it is still with our minds that we understand.
To understand the bible we should study it the same way we would study any other piece of literature.
“I have not spoken in secret, from somewhere in a land of darkness,”
God has not hidden his message in the bible, or spoken in some way that is hard to understand. There is no secret code or message hidden that you need to pay someone to get the secret. For the most part it is fairly straight forward. Disagreements come when the text is not clear on a given topic.
The Spirit of God does direct our study, and the Holy Spirit can bring things to our mind to help us understand, but the actual understanding of the Bible is no different than understanding any type of writing.
It was also written in a certain context, and the words themselves have a context. A professor I know used to say, "Context is King." Context is everything in understanding. One sentence by itself has little meaning because it has no context. So while you are doing the three-step method, always keep in mind the context of what is being said.