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Some Interesting Facts About the Bible


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Old Testament


Books of Law

Genesis
Exodus
Leviticus
Numbers
Deuteronomy

The Books of Law were written by Moses and are referred to as the Book of Moses in 2 Chronicles 35:12. The law was given to Moses by God.

GENESIS (which means beginning) tells us of the beginning of God's chosen people. It gives an account of the creation of heaven and earth. (Genesis 1)

First Day

-

Light and Darkness (Day and Night)

Second Day

-

Firmament (Heaven)

Third Day

-

Earth, Seas, Vegetation

Fourth Day

-

Sun, Moon, Stars

Fifth Day

-

Fish, Fowl

Sixth Day

-

Beasts, Cattle, Creeping Things and Man to rule over them

Seventh Day

-

God Rested

In Genesis, we learn about the Garden of Eden, time before the flood, Noah and his family, the Tower of Babel and the scattering of the nations. Also, we learn about the lives of the patriarchs - Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph. Patriarch means father, and during the patriarchal age, the people were governed by the heads of the family. Jacob had twelve sons whose names were given to the twelve tribes of Israel.

Reuben

  

Dan

  

Issachar

Simeon

  

Naphtali

  

Zebulon

Levi

  

Gad

  

Joseph

Judah

  

Asher

  

Benjamin

Levi was the priestly tribe. David and JESUS descended from the tribe of Judah.

EXODUS - Exodus means "going out" which refers to the children of Israel going out of Egypt. This book tells about the birth of Moses, his training in Pharaoh's house, and his exile in Midian. It tells of his return to Egypt to lead the Israelites out of Egypt (The Exodus). God delivered ten plagues upon the Egyptians before Pharaoh would let the Israelites go. The plagues were:

1.

Blood

    

5.

Murrain of cattle

    

9.

Darkness

2.

Frogs

    

6.

Boils

    

10.

Death of Firstborn

3.

Lice

    

7.

Hail

    

 

 

4.

Flies

    

8.

Locusts

    

 

 

Moses journeyed to Mount Sinai where God gave him the Ten Commandments. (Exodus 20: 3-17) We also learn about the building of the tabernacle. The Ten Commandments could be used as the basis of our moral conduct today. They are all carried over into the New Testament except for one - "Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy."

1.

Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

2.

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image.

3.

Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.

4.

Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.

5.

Honor thy father and thy mother.

6.

Thou shalt not kill.

7.

Thou shalt not commit adultery.

8.

Thou shalt not steal.

9.

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

10.

Thou shalt not covet.

LEVITICUS - This book gets its name from Levi, one of the twelve sons of Jacob. It was the priestly tribe. It had the duties of carrying out the rites and ceremonies in the tabernacle, including the offering of animal sacrifices.

NUMBERS - This book continues with the law. It gets its name from the two numberings of the children of Israel. The experiences of the Israelites as they wandered in the wilderness for 40 years are recorded in this book. It tells about their crossing the Jordan River into the Promised Land.

DEUTERONOMY - After the Israelites wandered in the wilderness for 40 years, they were ready to enter the Promised Land. Moses was not permitted to enter the Promised Land because he failed to honor God when he brought forth water from the rock. It warned the people what their fate would be if they departed from God's law. He also told them of the blessings if they were faithful in keeping the law. Deuteronomy includes several of Moses' speeches. Deuteronomy is the second giving of the law.

Books of History

Joshua
Judges
Ruth
1 and 2 Samuel
1 and 2 Kings
1 and 2 Chronicles
Ezra
Nehemiah
Esther

JOSHUA - This book was named for one of the two spies (Joshua and Caleb) who went into the land of Canaan to spy out the land. He later took the place of Moses in leading the children of Israel into the Promised Land. He led them across the Jordan River and conquered the Canaanites. Joshua admonished the people to honor God.

JUDGES - The Israelites settled in the land of Canaan and they repeatedly disobeyed and departed from God. As they repented and turned back to God, He gave them leaders who delivered them. These leaders were called Judges and there were 15 of them.

Othniel

  

Abimelech

  

Elon

Ehud

  

Tola

  

Abdon

Shamgar

  

Jair

  

Samson

Deborah

  

Jephthah

  

Eli

Gideon

  

Ibzan

  

Samuel

RUTH - The book of Ruth is a love story from the time of the Judges. This love story gives a picture of the life and customs of the common people during a violent period of the Judges. Ruth was a Moabite and married one of Naomi's sons. One of the most beautiful passages in the Bible records what Ruth said to Naomi after their husbands had died and Naomi was planning to return to Bethlehem.

"Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me." (Ruth 1:16,17)

Ruth later married Boaz, and it was through this lineage that Christ was born.

1 and 2 SAMUEL - These books tell the story of God's people under the leadership of Eli and Samuel. Samuel was the last judge.

The people became dissatisfied and wanted a king like other nations. So, as God directed, Samuel anointed Saul as the first king of Israel. After Saul's death, David became the next king. David was a man "after God's own heart." These two books cover the life of David.

1 and 2 KINGS - These two books continue the history of the people of Israel, the crowning of Solomon as king, and the carrying away of the people into captivity. They tell about the dividing of the kingdom: the northern kingdom which was Israel and the southern kingdom which was Judah. Israel and Judah were captured and taken from their land into foreign captivity. Later the tribes of Benjamin and Judah were restored to their Promised Land.

1 and 2 CHRONICLES - These two books give basically the same account of the history found in 1 and 2 Kings.

EZRA - This book tells about the Israelite people in Babylon as they return to Jerusalem, and the rebuilding of the temple. The rebuilding of the temple was hampered by the spiritual condition of the people.

NEHEMIAH - Nehemiah was a cupbearer to King Artaxerxes. He gives more history of this time period of restoration. He was a strong leader and under his leadership, important religious and social reforms were accomplished.

ESTHER - This book tells about what was happening to the Jews (people of Judah) during their exile. It is about a Jewish girl who later became queen of the Persian empire. The book of Esther is read with much interest. It shows the providence of God.

Books of Poetry

Job
Psalms
Proverbs
Ecclesiastes
Song of Solomon

JOB - This book tells of the great suffering of a righteous man. Job was a man who endured much in the loss of his children and his possessions. He was smitten by Satan with sore boils which caused him extreme pain and humiliation. Job, being the righteous man that he was, endured the suffering. In the end, God greatly blessed him.

PSALMS - The book of Psalms is made up of poems and songs, which praise Jehovah and commemorate events in the history of Israel. About 70 of the Psalms are credited to David. Many of our hymns today are taken from the Psalms. The book consists of 150 Psalms. Some of the favorites are: Psalms 1, 19, 22, 23, 90, 100, and 103.

PSALM 23


The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me
     beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul; He leadeth me in the paths of
     righteousness for His name's sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of
     death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me, Thy rod
     and Thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine
     enemies: Thou anointest my head with oil; my cup
     runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of
     my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
 

PROVERBS - Proverbs (written by Solomon) is a collection of wise sayings with moral truth. The message of Proverbs is that wisdom comes from God.

Solomon's Description of a Virtuous Woman

Proverbs 31: 10-31

10 

Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.

11 

The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.

12 

She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.

13 

She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.

14 

She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.

15 

She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.

16 

She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.

17 

She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.

18 

She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.

19 

She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.

20 

She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.

21 

She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.

22 

She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.

23 

Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.

24 

She maketh fine linen, and selleth it, and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.

25 

Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.

26 

She openeth her mouth with wisdom: and in her tongue is the law of kindness.

27 

She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.

28 

Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.

29 

Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.

30 

Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.

31 

Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her own works praise her in the gates.

ECCLESIASTES - Ecclesiastes means "preacher" or "speaker." This book was written by Solomon probably in his later years. He mentions vanity several times. He says that material things do not give permanent satisfaction. In the last chapter of Ecclesiastes, Solomon says:

"Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them." (Chapter 12:1)

"Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil." (Chapter 12:13, 14)

SONG OF SOLOMON - It is also known as "Song of Songs" which means the "greatest of songs." Solomon is given credit as the author. Solomon writes of the beauty and sacredness of the love and devotion between a husband and wife. Some scholars believe it symbolizes the great love of God for His people, which is the church, the bride of Christ.

Books of Major Prophets

Isaiah
Jeremiah
Lamentations
Ezekiel
Daniel

A prophet is a special messenger from God. There are five major prophet books but only four prophets. These books are called "Major" only because they are longer in length. Every prophet who wrote one or more of these books can be placed in the history of Israel, which is covered by the twelve books of history.

ISAIAH - This book was written during the reigns of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah. Isaiah predicted the captivity of Israel and Judah by Babylon. He prophesied the return of the exiles and the coming of the Messiah. We find stirring descriptions of Christ and His kingdom in chapters 9, 11, and 53. Isaiah is sometimes referred to as the "Messianic Prophet."

JEREMIAH - Jeremiah was prominent at the time Jerusalem fell to the Chaldeans. During Jeremiah's day, the people of the Southern Kingdom (Judah) were carried by Babylon into captivity. He wrote about the judgment of God upon a sinful people and the greatness of His love.

LAMENTATIONS - This book also was written by Jeremiah soon after Jerusalem fell. It contains a series of laments over the destruction of Jerusalem.

EZEKIEL - This book contains the messages of God as prophesied by Ezekiel. He was taken captive from Judah before the destruction of Jerusalem. He was devoted to God's word. He prophesied the destruction of Jerusalem, judgment upon the people, and the return of the exiles and a great future for Israel.

DANIEL - The prophecy of Daniel is probably one of the most interesting books of the Bible. Daniel foretold many events by interpreting the dreams of King Nebuchadnezzar. He interpreted the meaning of the strange handwriting on the wall of Belshazzar. He refers to the Messianic rule of the kingdom of Christ in chapter 9.

Books of the Minor Prophets


Hosea

   

Jonah

   

Zephaniah

Joel

   

Micah

   

Haggai

Amos

   

Nahum

   

Zechariah

Obadiah

   

Habakkuk

   

Malachi

HOSEA - The prophet Hosea addressed his message primarily to Israel. He talks about his own troubles. The book contains denunciations of the people for their idolatry and other sins.

JOEL - In Acts 2:16-21, the apostle Peter quotes the prophet Joel. Among other things, Joel prophesied that whosoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. Peter stated on the day of Pentecost that the pouring out of the Spirit fulfills Joel's statement in Joel 2:28-32.

AMOS - Amos prophesied that God loves mercy and not formal sacrifices. His prophecies were directed to the Northern Kingdom (Israel).

OBADIAH - He was God's messenger who prophesied the doom of the Edomites (descendants of Esau), who were happy over Judah's downfall. He also prophesied that the Jews would rule over all the lands formerly under David's control.

JONAH - Jonah was reluctant to obey God when he was told to go preach to the wicked city of Nineveh. Because of this, God punished him by causing a great fish to swallow him. He was in the belly of the great fish for three days and three nights. Jesus refers to this incident in Matthew 12:38-41.

MICAH - Micah lived during the time of Isaiah. He also preached against the sins and against the oppression of the poor by the rich. He prophesied about the destruction of Judah and Israel.

NAHUM - Very little is known about Nahum. He prophesied about the destruction of Nineveh.

HABAKKUK - Habakkuk prophesied during the reign of Jehoiakim. He tells about the wickedness of Israel and their impending defeat by the Chaldeans. This book ends as he affirms his faith in God.

ZEPHANIAH - He lived at the same time as Habakkuk, Jeremiah, and Nahum. He preached against the sins of the people. He prophesied judgment upon Judah as well as blessings for the restoration of Jerusalem.

HAGGAI - God used Haggai to encourage the people to set new goals, trust in Him, and receive His blessing.

ZECHARIAH - He prophesied about the restoration of the temple and the kingdom of Christ.

MALACHI - He lived after the temple had been restored. The people were slipping back into sin and he rebuked them. He prophesied about the coming of the Messiah.

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Compiled by Richard and Jane Hardy
Copyright 1999
All Rights Reserved

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