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GENESIS


This book tells us that God created all things, including time, and He made the universe in six days. The first man and woman were named Adam and Eve and they were perfect. They lived in the idyllic Garden of Eden and the world had no sin or death. Yet they disobeyed the only restriction that God had given them, which was not to eat the forbidden fruit, and because of their sin, death and corruption entered the world. Mankind grew progressively more wicked and so God sent a great flood to wipe out all life on the earth. He spared his faithful servant Noah and his family by having them build a large wooden ark that contained Noah's family and a variety of animals that would be used to repopulate the earth. God began to reveal a grand plan for the redemption of mankind and the corrupted Creation. He chose a man named Abraham who trusted God through faith, and through Abraham's son Isaac, and Isaac's son Jacob, God created the nation of Israel through which will come the Redeemer and Savior of the world - the Messiah.


CHAPTERS 1-6




CHAPTERS 2-3





CHAPTER 4



CHAPTERS 6-9




CHAPTER 11





CHAPTERS 12-22



CHAPTER 15 (Verses 5-6)



CHAPTERS 24-36







CHAPTERS 37-50


EXODUS


The descendants of Israel multiply greatly in the land of Egypt and they are eventually enslaved. God reveals to His servant Moses that God is Yahweh, the self-existent God, and then He sends Moses to Egypt to lead the people out of captivity. God sends plagues against Egypt because the Pharaoh refuses to let His people go. With awesome miracles God uses Moses and Aaron to lead the entire Israelite nation out of Egypt. After the Exodus, at Mount Sinai, God makes a covenant with Israel and has Moses record the laws that the people must follow.


CHAPTERS 1-2



CHAPTERS 2-34




CHAPTER 33 (Verses 17-20)


LEVITICUS


Through Moses, God reveals to the Israelites who have just partaken in the Exodus, that Yahweh is a perfect and holy God. Only perfect and holy people can approach Him and when they are not perfect, they must provide sacrifices to atone for their sins. The Israelites are given numerous laws and regulations to follow regarding offerings, sacrifices, cleanliness, and behavior.


CHAPTERS 1-27


NUMBERS


God has freed the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and now they travel from Mount Sinai to the Promised Land. Moses undertakes a census of the nation and then more commands are given regarding the priestly service and the Tabernacle. Yet when the people arrive at the borders of the Promised Land they learn that Canaan is inhabited by mighty men and they lose faith in God's ability to overcome their Canaanite enemies and want to return to Egypt. For their disbelief the nation is sent into the wilderness where they wander for forty years.


CHAPTERS 1-36


DEUTERONOMY


Deuteronomy means "second law" and that is exactly what it is: a second telling of the law to the Israelites. Under the leadership of Moses and Aaron, the Israelites have been freed from slavery in Egypt and because of their disbelief even after directly witnessing numerous miracles by God, were unable to enter the Promised Land. They wandered in the wilderness for forty years and the disbelieving generation died, but now the younger generation stands ready to cross the Jordan River. Moses reminds the people of God's commandments and retells some of the history of the Exodus and wilderness wanderings. Joshua is appointed to succeed Moses and lead the people into their inheritance and then Moses passes away after gazing upon the Promised Land.


CHAPTERS 1-34



CHAPTER 33 (Verses 26-28)


JOSHUA


The people could not enter the Promised Land under Moses' leadership because they failed to trust God's promises. The doubting generation perished in the wilderness outside of Israel, but under the leadership of God's faithful servant Joshua, the Israelites were finally permitted to cross the Jordan River and enter the land that God had promised to them as their inheritance. Led by Joshua, Israel defeats many enemies and destroys the city of Jericho. The prostitute Rahab and her household are alone saved from the destruction of Jericho because of her faith in Yahweh. After most of Canaan is conquered by the Israelites, Joshua has the land portioned out to each of the tribes of Israel.


CHAPTERS 1-6



CHAPTER 1 (Verse 9)



CHAPTER 24


JUDGES


After the Israelites finally crossed the Jordan River into the Promised Land and took possession of much of the land, God appointed different "judges" to settle disputes among the people and lead the armies of Israel against their enemies. Having no government aside from the priests and judges encouraged the people to remember that God was their ruler and provided for them and protected them directly. This book is the historical record of the era of the Judges before the people cried out for an earthly king and includes the stories of such biblical heroes as Samson, Deborah, and Gideon.


CHAPTERS 6-16












RUTH


The story of Ruth takes place during the time of the Judges after a severe famine had struck the land. When the famine was over, the Israelite widow Naomi returned to her land accompanied by her Gentile daughter-in-law Ruth, who was also a widow. Poor and destitute, they encounter Naomi's wealthy relative Boaz who takes an interest in Ruth because of her godly character. He becomes their kinsmen-redeemer and marries Ruth saving them from poverty. Ruth has long been seen as a foreshadowing of the Church and Boaz of Christ.


CHAPTERS 1-4


1 SAMUEL


1 Samuel tells the story of the birth of the prophet Samuel and his oversight of Israel. The people demand a king rather than the God-appointed judges, so Samuel appoints Saul to be king. Saul turns out to be a wicked king and so God raises up David to succeed him. This book records the violent war with the Philistines in which David confronts a giant champion of the Philistine army named Goliath of Gath.


CHAPTERS 1-9



CHAPTERS 10-31


2 SAMUEL


This is the record of David becoming king and his war with the House of Saul for possession of the whole kingdom. The rest of the book is an account of King David's reign, including the various wars he fought in and his sin and repentance over his affair with Bathsheba and the murder of her husband, Uriah.


CHAPTERS 1-24


1 KINGS


This is the historical record of Solomon being appointed king and the death of his father, King David. The kingdom prospers greatly under Solomon, but in the latter half of his life he turns from God and after his death the kingdom is divided between the ten northern tribes of Israel in the north (Kingdom of Israel) and the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi in the south (Kingdom of Judah). Both kingdoms begin long moral declines as they replace worshiping Yahweh, with the worship of false gods and idols. God sends the prophet Elijah to confront Ahab, the wicked king of Israel, and his false prophets. In the end, Ahab is killed.


CHAPTERS 1-16



CHAPTERS 17-22


2 KINGS


This book is a record of the history of the divided kingdoms of Judah and Israel beginning after the death of the wicked king of Israel, Ahab. The prophet Elijah is taken up to Heaven and he passes his responsibilities on to Elisha. Israel refuses to repent and is conquered by Assyria. Judah moves away from God, as well, but under the reigns of Hezekiah and Josiah the kingdom briefly turns back to Him and therefore remains independent for a longer period of time. However, in the end the kingdom does not cease its wickedness and is conquered by Babylon and the city of Jerusalem and the Temple are destroyed.



1 CHRONICLES


1 and 2 Chronicles were likely written by Ezra and are detailed historical records and genealogies of Israel's history, especially from the reign of King David on. 1 Chronicles begins with a genealogy from Adam all the way to David, intermixed with small details in Israel's history. The last two-thirds of the book contains a history of King David's reign.


CHAPTER 29 (Verses 10-14)


2 CHRONICLES


2 Chronicles is a historical record beginning with King Solomon's request for divine wisdom and ending with the destruction of Jerusalem and the Jews being sent into exile in Babylon. King Solomon builds the first Temple in Jerusalem, but after his reign ends the kingdom is split in two and both subsequently fall into decline as they turn away from God.

EZRA


After 70 years in exile the Jews were finally allowed to return to the Promised Land. Zerubbabel and Jeshua, descendants of King David and Moses' brother Aaron, lead an effort to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem. Ezra then reminds the people of the Law of Moses and implores them to obey it.


CHAPTERS 1-10


NEHEMIAH


After the exile the Jews returned to Jerusalem and rebuilt the Temple, but the city remained in ruins. This is Nehemiah's account of his request to rebuild the city's walls and the quick accomplishment of the monumental task even as opposition mounts from the enemies of the Jews. After the walls are completed, Nehemiah gathers the people on the Feast of Trumpets and the Law of Moses is recited to them.


CHAPTERS 1-13



CHAPTER 8 (Verses 9-12)


ESTHER


Esther was a Jewish exile who had kept her ethnicity a secret, but after she marries the king of Persia and learns that a Persian official named Haman was seeking to exterminate the Jews, she takes a step of faith by revealing her Jewish ethnicity and pleading for her people. In the end, the king sides with Esther, the Jewish people are saved, and Haman is executed.


CHAPTERS 1-10


JOB


This is the story of a faithful and blessed man who honored God. Satan sought to prove that Job would turn against God if Job's blessings were taken away. God allowed Satan to wreak havoc in Job's life, but Job never let go of his faith in the LORD even though he lost his family, possessions, and health. In agony he questioned why God allowed those terrible things to happen, and God revealed that His plans were much grander than Job could presently understand. Job's friends suggested that the turmoil in his life was a result of his sins, but God rebuked them for judging Job without wisdom rather than sympathizing with him. In the end we discover that Job had faith in the coming Messiah and God blessed Job again.


CHAPTERS 1-42



CHAPTER 1



CHAPTER 19


PSALMS


The Book of Psalms is a collection of songs written by many different Believers in ancient Israel, including King David, King Solomon, Moses, and the sons of Korah. The songs contained therein cover many topics including praising and worshiping God, declaring God's mighty works and miracles, and trusting the LORD in the midst of troubling or doubtful circumstances. Perhaps unbeknownst to the authors, God used their music as a form of prophecy and many of their prophetic utterances were fulfilled throughout history, including in the life of the Messiah, Jesus Christ.


CHAPTER 1



CHAPTER 8



CHAPTER 18



CHAPTER 19 (Verses 1-4)



CHAPTER 22



CHAPTER 23



CHAPTER 24



CHAPTER 27




CHAPTER 36



CHAPTER 42




CHAPTER 46 (Verse 10)



CHAPTER 47



CHAPTER 51



CHAPTER 56



CHAPTER 61



CHAPTER 84



CHAPTER 89



CHAPTER 92



CHAPTER 95



CHAPTER 97



CHAPTER 98



CHAPTER 99



CHAPTER 100



CHAPTER 103



CHAPTER 104



CHAPTER 112



CHAPTER 113



CHAPTER 119



CHAPTER 124



CHAPTER 135



CHAPTER 145



CHAPTER 146



CHAPTER 147



CHAPTER 148


PROVERBS


A collection of wise sayings and advice written by King Solomon and other wise men. In 1 Kings, Solomon asks God for wisdom and God chooses to endow Him with an abundance of divine wisdom. Proverbs is a collection of some of that wisdom and contains a great amount of spiritual and practical truth. The central truth we can learn is that all real wisdom begins with the fear of the LORD.


CHAPTERS 1-31


ECCLESIASTES


A poetic book that was likely written by King Solomon, Ecclesiastes deals with the fact that human life at times seems meaningless and human effort is wasted. The wiser you get the more worries you have, riches cannot satisfy you, and the wise and foolish die in the same way. Everything seems like vanity, yet in the end we are encouraged to trust in the LORD and obey Him because nothing better or more satisfying can be done on this side of Heaven.


CHAPTERS 1-12


SONG OF SONGS


This poetic story of love, also called the Song of Solomon, is about a handsome shepherd and his beautiful bride-to-be. The two prepare themselves, are then married, and then embrace in a union of sexual intimacy and love. Some scholars believe parts of it are a prophetic analogy of the spiritual union between Christ and His Church.


CHAPTERS 1-8


ISAIAH


After Israel had been divided between northern and southern kingdoms, many of the people turned away from God. God sent the prophet Isaiah to warn them that Israel would be conquered and the southern Kingdom of Judah would be overtaken soon after. Yet the broader theme of Isaiah is not Israel's earthly judgment, but the coming Messiah and God's great plan to save His people along with the Gentiles. The Messiah was first to come as a suffering servant who would die a substitutionary death for the sins of the people and then rise again. At His second coming the Messiah's earthly kingdom will be established and eventually God will create a new heaven and a new earth where justice and peace reign.


CHAPTER 6 (Verses 1-3)



CHAPTER 7 (Verse 14)



CHAPTER 9 (Verses 6-7)



CHAPTER 12



CHAPTER 40 (Verses 28-31)



CHAPTER 45



CHAPTER 60



JEREMIAH


Jeremiah was known as "the weeping prophet" for he had to deliver the sad news of Jerusalem's imminent destruction. The city and Temple would be burned down if the people did not repent. Indeed, Jerusalem's royalty and people refused to listen and Jeremiah's prophecy was fulfilled. Jeremiah desperately wanted his fellow Jews to repent, but instead they mocked and ridiculed him, imprisoned him, and threatened to kill him. He prophesied during a time when a number of false prophets had arisen who were falsely claiming that God had promised peace and safety to Jerusalem.


CHAPTERS 1-52





CHAPTER 9 (Verses 23-24)


LAMENTATIONS


Lamentations is the book of sorrow. Jerusalem had finally fallen to the Babylonians because the people refused to repent even after numerous prophets were sent to them. The book is a collection of dirges, or mournful songs, that were written about the catastrophe that had befallen them. Yet in the midst of great sorrow, those that love the LORD are reminded to trust in God's enduring love.


CHAPTERS 1-5


EZEKIEL


Ezekiel was a Jewish exile living in Babylon who God made a prophet. Through Ezekiel, God warns that Jerusalem will be attacked a third time because it still refuses to repent, yet God will restore Israel in the future, resurrect the dead, and defend Israel from all the enemies that surround her. The Messiah will come a second time and a great temple will be built in Jerusalem during His future millennial reign. We learn from Ezekiel that we are responsible for one another - especially for warning each other when we see trouble or judgment coming.


DANIEL


Daniel was a major prophet who lived among the Jewish exile in Babylon. God gave him many visions including of future events leading up to the Messiah's first and second coming. Daniel was faithful to God even while enduring much persecution for his faith. We learn through Daniel that God is sovereign over all things and He is working out a grand plan throughout history to save His people. We also get a glimpse into spiritual warfare as good and evil angels fight behind the scenes.


CHAPTERS 1-12



HOSEA


Hosea was a prophet of God who had married a prostitute. God uses Hosea's marriage to demonstrate His unconditional and unfailing love for His unfaithful bride, Israel. Hosea was faithful to his bride even as she was continually unfaithful to Him, just as God was faithful to Israel while Israel continually turned away from God and His laws.


CHAPTERS 1-14



JOEL


God proclaims through the prophet Joel that He is bringing a plague against Judah because of its sin, but if the people will repent, God may relent. When the Messiah arrives there will be signs in the heavens including the moon turning red like blood, and the sun becoming dark. The Apostle Peter cites the prophet Joel as proof that Jesus is the Messiah because many of the signs were fulfilled at Jesus' crucifixion and the subsequent day of Pentecost. Joel also warns that a future judgment is coming on all the nations because they have divided the land of Israel.


CHAPTER 1


AMOS


A humble shepherd by the name of Amos is chosen by God to warn the Northern Kingdom (the ten northern tribes of Israel) that because they have rebelled against Him by worshiping other gods and ignoring God's laws, King Jeroboam would die and the people would be carried off into exile. A lion who "roars from Zion" is the symbol of God in this book.


CHAPTER 1


OBADIAH


When the Babylonians attacked Jerusalem, the Edomites (in the area of modern day Jordan) cheered on the Babylonians because of their hatred of the Jews. God sends the prophet Obadiah to warn the Edomites, the descendants of Esau, that God is going to destroy Edom because of its great sin and hatred of His people.


CHAPTER 1


JONAH


The most famous of the twelve "minor prophets", Jonah was commanded by God to preach to the pagan Ninevites a message of repentance, so that the city could be saved, but he initially refused. Jonah tried to flee God by sailing across the Mediterranean Sea, but he learns an important lesson: God is everywhere. Jonah is swallowed by a very large fish (possibly a whale) and remains in its stomach for three days. He prays to God for mercy and God commands the fish to vomit him up on shore. After that, Jonah obey's God's command and preaches to the city of Nineveh. The Ninevites repent and the city is spared.


CHAPTERS 1-4


MICAH


The prophet Micah tells the people of both Israel and Judah that they are practicing injustice and calls them to turn back to God, so that they "do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with [their] God". We learn through Micah's prophecies that the Messiah will be born in Bethlehem and that for a time the nation of Israel will be abandoned until a predetermined time in the future.


CHAPTERS 1-7


NAHUM


Years before, the prophet Jonah had called the people of Nineveh to repent and they heeded his call. However, their repentance did not last. God sends the prophet Nahum to tell of Nineveh's impending destruction. We learn in this important book that the guilty will not go unpunished.


CHAPTERS 1-3


HABAKKUK


God reveals to the prophet Habakkuk that the wickedness of Judah had reached its zenith and must be punished. He tells the prophet that the Babylonians will be the instrument of God's justice, but Habakkuk struggles with this prospect because the Babylonians are a people even more wicked than Judah. Why would God use them? God reveals to the prophet that after the Babylonians bring judgment on Judah, they themselves will be destroyed by the surrounding nations. In Habakkuk we learn that the righteous "shall live by their faith", which is the rallying cry of the Apostle Paul and the early Church many centuries later.


CHAPTERS 1-3


ZEPHANIAH


Through the prophet Zephaniah, God warns the disobedient nation of Israel of their impending judgment and also the future judgment of the surrounding nations. Yet after His judgment, He will bring restoration, peace, and holiness throughout the world, gathering a remnant from Israel and the surrounding nations.


CHAPTERS 1-3



CHAPTER 3 (Verse 17)


HAGGAI


After the Jews had returned from captivity with permission to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem, they had made some progress, but as obstacles and apathy set it, the people abandoned the project to focus on making their own houses and bettering their own lives. God sends the prophet Haggai to remind the people they need to put God first and finish building His Temple. Haggai encourages them and reminds them that God is with them.


CHAPTERS 1-2


ZECHARIAH


The prophet Zechariah has a simple message from God: "return to Me that I may return to you". For generations Israel had refused to listen to God and now God has sent another prophet. The prophecies of Zechariah are filled with vivid visions and symbols, many of which align with Daniel and Revelation. The last several chapters contain detailed descriptions of how the Messiah would suffer, Christ's second coming, and how aspects of life during the Millennial Kingdom will function.


CHAPTERS 1-14


MALACHI


The last book in the Old Testament is the prophecy given to the prophet Malachi. Many of the people of Israel had returned from captivity and the Temple had been rebuilt in Jerusalem, but the spiritual leaders of the Jews were becoming apathetic and condoning improper sacrifices, withholding tithes and offerings, and allowing for divorce and marital unfaithfulness. God calls them to turn their hearts back to Him and through Malachi He tells the people that God is going to come to them very soon in person.


CHAPTERS 1-4



CHAPTER 3 (Verses 6-12)


MATTHEW


The first gospel account in the New Testament was written by the Apostle Matthew who was a tax collector until he followed Jesus. Matthew records all of the major events in Jesus' life, from His prophesied Incarnation and birth, to His miracles and teachings, all the way to His death and resurrection. One of the Twelve Apostles who were personally chosen by Christ, Matthew was an eyewitness to many of the events he records in his gospel. He wrote to confirm that Jesus had perfectly fulfilled many of the Old Testament prophesies about the Messiah and that Jesus had come to save his people from their sins.


CHAPTERS 1-2












CHAPTER 2 (Verses 13-23)



CHAPTER 4



CHAPTER 5 (Verse 6)



CHAPTER 6 (Verses 4-6)



CHAPTER 7 (Verses 9-11; 24-27)




CHAPTER 14



CHAPTER 17 (Verses 14-20)



CHAPTER 24 (Verses 9; 36-44)




CHAPTERS 27-28