Thread Introduction

INTRODUCTION

The stale book in the hotel drawer: the Holy Bible.

The gold-leafed book featured prominently on grandma’s mantel: the Word.

The sentences screaming from posters at pride rallies: the Law.

The Torah. The Message. The Good News. The Living Water. The Gospel.

The collection of sixty-six books, poems, prophecies, and letters that we’ve come to know as the Bible is the foundation of Christianity. Sometimes it can be daunting to open it up and know what’s what and how a poem of anger or personal letter to someone else can have an impact on our lives.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness. – 2 Timothy 3:16

Our goal with this book is to help you understand the Bible both as individual books and as a whole. The stories in the Old Testament point to the character of God and foreshadow the coming of Jesus. The genealogies teach us about God’s grace and mercy as He holds true to His promises despite people being jacked up.

Again and again the entirety of Scripture points to a wholeness that is available for a bunch of broken people (that includes you and me by the way). It’s really just a ton of little pieces of literature that point like neon flashing arrows to the person and work of Christ.

We want you to know this, not because we said so, but because you’ve come to see it as true. If we ever twist the truth of Scripture, call us out, for we want to hold firm the weight and power of the Bible as we submit our lives to it’s authority. As followers of Christ, the Word must influence and guide us. It changes lives, just ask someone in your Life Group or in the chair next to you. There’s a story behind that face that points to the power of Scripture.

These next sixty-six weeks are going to be a journey together as we follow Jesus through all of the Bible. Write down your questions as we hit books you’ve never cracked open. Bring a story to Life Group that you came across in your reading for the first time. If you only know the Bible for the numbers “3:16” written on some athlete’s face or you’ve recited the books of the Bible in order since you were six, please join us on this (admittedly kinda crazy) literary journey over the next sixteen months.

In this book we will walk through each genre of the Bible and how to read it normally. We’ve included summaries for each individual book with foreshadowings of Jesus pointed out, a few verses that really capture its core message, and other info to help in your study. At the back you’ll find four reading plan options. They vary in intensity, but all of them are a challenge to set aside intentional time each week to get into the Word.

At the end of the day this isn’t about learning history, memorizing names, or even reading through the whole Bible in a string of consecutive days. Our prayer is that we would point ourselves and others to the person and work of Jesus.

The whole of Scripture does just that.


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