Once upon a time — actually, “in the beginning” — God created the world. Among all of creation, human beings were uniquely made in God’s own image, with a will of their own that enabled them to choose a real relationship with Him. They misused that gift, and chose to have their own way at the expense of that relationship.
God knew that would happen, and had pre-planned a way for them to be reconciled with Him…at great cost to Himself. He prepared a nation, taught them about Himself, and used them as the home and family into which He would be born in person.
When He arrived, He gathered followers who trusted in Him. Those followers watched and learned as He lived a perfect life, died a sacrificial death on their behalf, then proved His power and success by rising back to life again.
As He returned to heaven afterward, He charged those followers to spread the news. He will return again to gather His family to heaven to be with Him forever.
God used human writers to tell His story. There were about 40 of them, each living in their own culture and time, writing in their own words. Their work was done over a span of 1500 years, in three languages (Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek). Their literature styles include historical narrative, poetry, letters, story-telling, and predictive prophecy. Some were contemporaries; many were not. Some were royalty; some were educated; some were simple peasants. But…
They all contribute to the same one story. Each writer’s portion meshes and blends with the others within the one overarching theme of relationship between God and man. In a quick summary:
- Moses tells the beginnings and background in Genesis through Deuteronomy.
- Joshua, Judges, Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles tell the national history.
- The prophets explain the history.
- The Psalms and Wisdom literature express all the facets of God’s character.
- The Gospels tell of Jesus’ time on earth.
- Acts tells the history of the early church.
- The letters explain how Jesus fulfills the Old Testament and how His followers are to build on that foundation.
- Revelation tells how the story will wrap up.
For a little more detail on this huge subject, the following table links to descriptions of each book, and how that book tells its part of the same story. We’ll see the repetitive themes of:
- God’s Plan, and His Power and Sovereignty to carry out that plan
- God’s Holiness and Righteousness
- God’s Love for us, and His pursuit of a loving Relationship with us
- God’s Care & Protection for those who trust Him
- Man’s Rebellion and Sin with the resulting Judgment
- God’s solution for that sin
- Atonement, Grace, Mercy, and Forgiveness
- via a Savior/Redeemer/Messiah
- bringing Reconciliation, Restoration, and Redemption
Plan, Power &
Pursuit of Relationship
Rebellion & Sin;
|Song of Songs|