“Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.”
2 Timothy 2:15
If you’re new to Bible study, it’s hard to know where to begin. In my opinion, it’s best not to begin at the beginning, but in the middle, with the story of Jesus. Oftentimes, I will suggest people start with the book of John. All of the Old Testament points to Jesus, so we can’t really understand the Old Testament until we first understand Jesus.
Now, this is where things can get a little confusing. Even though Jesus initiated the New Covenant (New Testament) when He was observing the Lord’s Supper the night before His crucifixion, the Old Covenant (Old Testament)- all 39 books- points to Him. When you read the Old Covenant, think B.C. – Before Christ. The first five books are called the Torah (books of Mosaic Law and the origin of man and Israel.) The next twelve are called the Historical books, telling about the history of ancient Israel. After that, you come to five books that are called Poetry – books like Job, and Psalms and Proverbs. Then you come to the 17 Prophets of the Old Covenant.
But with the New Covenant – think A.C. – After Christ. It introduces the life of Jesus in the four gospels and the beginning of the church in Acts. Then come tons of letters to early churches on what we believe as Christians and how we should live. And it ends with Revelation and the events around Jesus’ second coming and the end of this age.
It’s an incredible story – the story of God’s redemption of mankind through Jesus Christ. But here’s the key to understanding the depth and magnitude of this incredible story: start with Jesus and ask God to reveal the rest.
Tomorrow, we’ll talk about HOW to study the Bible.