Week 1 - Introducing the Bible
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Week 1 - Introducing the Bible Week 1 - Introducing the Bible Document Transcript

  • The Bible Course Get the big picture
  • Reading the Bible is likebeing asked to eat an elephant… “I don’t know where to start!”
  • Welcome to theBible CourseThe Bible Course will help you understand the Bible for yourself. Over ninesessions you will see the big picture of the Bible storyline – from Genesis toRevelation. Along the way you will pick up tools and skills to help you read itfor yourself. Each session is interactive with sections of teaching followed bya study exercise. Between sessions there are daily readings to help you formthe habit of reading the Bible. By the end of the course you will have confidenceto pick up the Bible, read it for yourself and apply it to your life. The coursehas three great aims:Learn it – understand the Bible for yourselfLive it – apply the Bible to your lifeLove it – make the Bible your priority and passionEnjoy the ride, Andrew Ollerton
  • Light & Life ChurchChurch Of ceLight & Life CentreWharfside Shopping CentrePenzanceTR18 2GBUnited KingdomT 01736 351 792E of ce@lightandlife.co.ukW www.lightandlife.co.ukCopyright © 2010 Light & Life ChurchRegistered Charity No. 290445No part of this publication may bereproduced, stored in a retrieval system ortransmitted, in any form, or by any means,electronic, mechanical, photocopying,recording or otherwise, without the priorpermission of the publisher. While everycare has been taken to ensure the accuracyof the information contained in thishandbook, Light & Life Church cannot acceptresponsibility or the consequences of anyerrors or omissions.Design Wild Associates Ltd01736 333 449kw@wildassociates.comwww.wildassociates.comPrint The Northern Whig Ltd028 9035 2233www.thewhig.co.uk
  • Contents1 Introducing the Bible 72 Genesis & Creation 273 Abraham and the Patriarchs 394 Exodus and the Promised Land 535 Judges & Kings 716 Exile & the Prophets 937 Jesus and the Gospels 1118 Acts and the Church 1279 Revelation – then and now 149 Recommended Reading 162 Glossary 164 This symbol indicates a word that is explained in the glossary 5
  • 6
  • IntroducingWEEK 1 the Bible Scripture is like a lion. Who ever heard of defending a lion? Just turn it loose; it will defend itself Charles Spurgeon (London preacher: 1834-92) 7
  • Frequently Asked Questions How? What? Why? The Bible is a unique collection of 66 books written over a period of 1600 years by authors under the direction and influence of the Holy Spirit, from every walk of life including kings, peasants, philosophers, fishermen, poets, statesmen and scholars. It was written in 3 languages (Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek) on 3 continents (Asia, Africa and Europe). It covers hundreds of controversial subjects and yet has a harmony and continuity from Genesis to Revelation. The God of the Bible is not a remote, unknowable divine force, but a caring God with whom ordinary people develop personal relationships.8
  • What is the Bible?The Bible is a library (see diagram on next page) The Bible is not a one-volume history in chronological order. The books are grouped together by style of writing.The Bible is His-story Real people in real places, meeting the real God. The Bible is not a manual. 4.1. God is all-knowing and eternal 4.2. All Bibles should be black 4.3. The Pastor should have his own parking place The Bible is the big story of creation and redemption. Skill to practiceTo read the small stories, we need to see the big storyBible overview – a framework for every passage. 9
  • GEnESIS10 ExODuS ISAIAH LEvITICuS Law JEREmIAH numBERS LAmEnTATIOnS DEuTEROnOmy EZEKIEL JOSHuA Major Prophets DAnIEL JuDGES RuTH 1 SAmuEL HOSEA 2 SAmuEL JOEL 1 KInGS AmOS 2 KInGS History OBADIAH The Bible – 66 books, many contributors but one author 1 CHROnICLES JOnAH Old Testament 2 CHROnICLES mICAH EZRA nAHum nEHEmIAH HABAKKuK Minor Prophets ESTHER ZEPHAnIAH HAGGAI JOB ZECHARIAH PSALmS mALACHI PROvERBS Poetry ECCLESIASTES SOnG OF SOLOmOn
  • ROmAnS 1 CORInTHIAnS 2 CORInTHIAnS GALATIAnS EPHESIAnS PHILIPPIAnS COLOSSIAnS 1 THESSALOnIAnS mATTHEW 2 THESSALOnIAnS mARK 1 TImOTHy LuKE Gospels 2 TImOTHy JOHn Letters TITuS PHILEmOn new Testament HEBREWS ACTS JAmES Church History 1 PETER 2 PETER 1 JOHn 2 JOHn 3 JOHn JuDE11 REvELATIOn Prophecy
  • The Bible needs interpretationDo your bestto present “Just believe it and do what it says”yourself toGod as one BUT the Bible can be abusedapproved, a Crusades, Holocaust, slave-tradeworkman Sects and heresieswho does not Satan even quotes the Bible (Matt 4:6).need to beashamed and It was written centuries ago in the Middle East culturewho correctlyhandles the To interpret the Bible means going ‘Back to the future’word of truth.2 Timothy 2:15 Eg. Does the Bible support slavery? Bible slavery vs. Afro-Caribbean slavery12
  • The Bible is accessibleYour word isa lamp to my It was written by kings and peasants;feet and a light professionals and labourers.for my path. It was written for everyone to read.Psalm 119:105 Before I became a Christian, I thought the Bible was a book written by men with sexist views and out of date ideas. I was put off by the harsh customs and confused by the cultural language used. I had lots of opinions about Christianity but I had never actually read the bible. I believe God has led me on an amazing journey and opened my eyes to how he works and to who Jesus is and what he has done. Now when I read the Bible, God’s word speaks to me and this has impacted on me and has been life changing. Roberta works as a creative arts educator and lives in Cornwall 13
  • The Bible is God’s bookAll Scripture isGod-breathedand is useful The Bible is not bottom-up religionfor teaching, but top-down revelation.rebuking, Revelationcorrectingand training inrighteousness,so that theman of God Religionmay bethoroughly Not by dictation but by design.equipped 2 Peter 1:21 ‘Men spoke from God as they werefor every carried along by the Holy Spirit’good work.2 Timothy 3:16-17 The Bible is God’s book as St Paul’s Cathedral is Sir Christopher Wren’s building. Photo: Nikopol14
  • Study exercise (20mins)Consider the following questions: If you had to put the Bible in a public library, would you put it in the fiction or fact section – why? What would be common objections to the Bible being God’s book? What has helped you to read and understand the Bible in the past? How has God spoken to you through the Bible in the past? What are you hoping to get out of the Bible Course? 15
  • How was the Bible formed? Contemporary challenges Da Vinci Code Did Jesus get Mary Magdalene pregnant (holy grail)? Did the Church change the original texts? TV documentaries Was the Old Testament (O.T.) made to look older than it is? Key Concept The Canon 66 approved books with God’s authority (39 O.T. and 27 N.T). Other books were known but not included (eg. Apocrypha , Gnostic Gospels).16
  • This is what How was the O.T. formed?the LORD, theGod of Israel, Phase 1 – God reveals Himself in wordssays: “Write in and deedsa book all thewords I have Phase 2 – God’s words are written downspoken to you”Jeremiah 30:2 10 Commandments are a model: Spoken by God, written by Moses. This pattern forms the rest of the O.T.. Phase 3 – These writings form the O.T. By 2nd Century B.C., these writings were set apart from other writings (eg. the Apocrypha ) Dead Sea Scrolls (Qumran caves) Qumran caves, Israel 17
  • Jesus quotes the O.T. with authority Luke 11:51 ‘From the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah… ’ Other sources The Rabbis separated their Talmud (commentary ) from the Scriptures. From Artaxerxes to our own times a complete history has been written but has not been deemed worthy of equal credit with the early records of the prophets Josephus (a first century Jewish historian)18
  • How was the n.T. formed? nT Phase 1 – The historic life, death and resurrection of Jesus Phase 2 – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John researched the events and wrote their accounts (the Gospels and Acts)I have much Phase 3 – The Holy Spirit inspired furthermore to say writings through the Apostlesto you, morethan you can 2 Peter 3:16 ‘Our dear brother Paul also wrote tonow bear. But you with the wisdom that God gave him. His letterswhen he, the contain some things that are hard to understand,Spirit of truth, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as theycomes, he will do the other Scriptures’guide you intoall truth.John 16:12-13a Phase 4 – The Early Church recognised the canon of the N.T. 19
  • The end of Revelation is the end of the Bible Revelation 22:18 ‘I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book’ The core of the canon was recognised by the endThe church of the first centurydidn’t give usthe canon I do not order you as did Peteranymore than and Paul; they were apostles,Newton gave and I am not Ignatius AD 110us gravity!J.I. Packer 397 AD Council of Carthage finally recognised the canon as we have it20
  • What was the selection process?Authority of Jesus – does it line up with thehistoric Jesus?Eg. Gospel of Thomas (pseudo-author)Paragraph 114 – ‘Peter said to them ‘let Mary go awayfrom us for women are not worthy of life’. Jesus said‘Lo, I shall lead her so that I may make her male… Forevery woman who makes her self male will enter theKingdom of Heaven’Authority of Apostles – is it consistent withwhat they taught?2 Timothy 1:13 ‘What you heard from me, keep as thepattern of sound teaching. Guard the good deposit thatwas entrusted to you’Authority of Churches – is it widely acceptedas Truth for all?By the 2nd C, the letters written to one church (eg.Ephesians) were being passed round to all churches. 21
  • Why do we believe the Bible is God’s book? The Bible was endorsed by Jesus When tempted: ‘It is written’ (Matthew 4) When teaching: ‘I have not come to abolish the law and prophets but to fulfill them’ (Matthew 5) The Bible has miraculous harmony Prophecies fulfilled – Jesus’ birth, betrayal, death, burial The writers were blind to the future but guided by the Holy Spirit. The Bible changes people’s lives I first got drunk when I was eight. By the time I was eleven, I had started taking drugs. When I became addicted to crack cocaine, a doctor told me I would be dead by the time I was twenty-eight. But Jesus saved me and set me free. I got baptised and started reading the Bible everyday and going to Church. I’ve taken lots of medicine in my time but now the Bible is my medicine! Danny22
  • How should we handle the Bible?Learn itRead and study the Bible for ourselves.Live itApply the Bible to how we live.Love itMake the Bible our passion and priority. 23
  • Study exercise and prayer (15mins) Read 2 Timothy 3:14-17 In what ways has this session given you more confidence in the Bible? What does it mean to say that the Bible is ‘God-breathed’? How does this make the Bible different to any other book you have read? If the Bible is God-breathed, how should that affect the way we read it and respond to it? Consider the words used in v.16; ‘teaching’, correcting’, ‘training’. How can you allow the Bible space to do all these things in your life? Pray that we would learn, live and love the Bible.24
  • Bible Readingfor the coming weekRead the passage through, carefully listening towhat it says. Then respond by praising God for thethings in the passage that show His greatness andgoodness. Then pray for the things that challenge youto live differently.Day 1 Genesis 1:1-31Day 2 Genesis 2:1-24Day 3 Genesis 3:1-24Day 4 Genesis 4:1-26Day 5 Genesis 6:1-22Day 6 Genesis 11:1-12:3 25