Do you love the Bible? Part one of two.
6/2/2017 1:34:50 AM
What is in your left hand?
Do you love the Bible? Part One of Two.
O, I mean you want to, but let’s be honest, it really isn’t easy to love…at first. Now me -- I am a book lover—cannot, will not be converted to reading the Bible on my phone except if I am checking a reference.
I like the feel of the pages, especially in my oldest Bibles.
I like to underline and take notes in my Bible (One of my treasures is my mother’s Bible
which has her underlining and notes in her beautiful scripted penmanship. Will your children get
your well-read, personalized Bible someday?)
Another reason I like holding a Bible in my hands is that
I like to look up supporting Scriptures
I genuinely love my Bible,
but I didn’t always.
I read it because that’s what I was supposed to do.
~>Having a working understanding of what is in the Bible has helped a
lot, plus asking God to give me a love for his Word.
When you hold a Bible in your hands, what do you have? Your left hand grasps the Old Testament, and your right hand, the New Testament.
The Old Testament spans more than a thousand years,
while the New Testament just 80 – 90 years,
with 400 years of silence from God in between.
It is important to remember the Bible is not ordered chronologically.
Step a little closer, please as we look first at the Old Bible, as my mama called it. The Old Testament is a written record of the history of Israel, written between 1440 b.c. and about 400 b.c.
-There are 39 books in the Old Testament which can be broken down into several categories:
The Pentateuch (meaning five books), also called the Torah. These first five books of the Bible are also known as the books of the law because they contain the laws and instruction the Lord gave Moses for the people of Israel—except for the last portion of Deuteronomy because it covers the death of Moses.1
The Historical Books include Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Samuel, Kings, Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther, covering about 800 years of Israel’s story—from the life of the nation as they possess the land of Canaan through two exiles and loss of land because of their unbelief and disobedience.2
The books of Poetry lend greater insight to Israel’s spiritual life and include Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon. In them, we see expressions of praise and prayer, wisdom writings, growth through suffering, and precepts for living.
The books of Prophecy are divided between the Major Prophets and Minor Prophets. The Major Prophets are Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel; they deal with Israel’s history with a prophetic bent. They include messages God gave these men to deliver to his people. The Minor Prophets are all of the rest of the O.T. books including Jonah, Micah, Habakkuk etc.; they were dubbed ‘Minor’ by Augustine in the late fourth century, because they are smaller books. They include words of direction from God--judgment to the people of Israel as well as exhortation and salvation messages.
The Protestant church accepts identically the same Old Testament books as the Jewish people and as Jesus and the apostles accepted. The Roman Catholic Church, since the Council of Trent in 1546, includes 14 books of the Apocrypha as well.
So now when you take a look at the pages of the Old Bible, you have an idea of what is involved. On my trip to Israel in late Fall, 2016, the stories of the Old Testament came alive for me! To see Mt. Carmel where Elijah called forth a miracle, to see Gideon Springs where God gave Gideon a new name, to see the caves of Ein Gedi where David hid from Saul anchored scripture to real places … totally awe-inspiring!
Don’t be put off by the Old Testament; it is so rich. Start with the Psalms, read Proverbs, and then dig a little deeper.
1 – https://bible.org/seriespage/3-law-first-five-books
2 – https://bible.org/seriespage/4-historical-books