Understanding Your Bible

Review the Rewards

Learn to USE your Bible - Week Two - Part One 💕

No one can please God without faith,
for whoever comes to God
must have faith that God exists
and rewards those who seek him.
_Hebrews 11:6

|| Personal NOTE || Sometimes I think preparing a Bible study for a group of strangers is a lot like serving fresh artichokes at a dinner party. Now I personally love fresh artichokes, they are one of my favorite foods and I serve them often when they are in season. But some people simply do not like artichokes. My mother, for example, thought they were too expensive, too much trouble to prepare and flatly stated, “They’re just not worth the effort.” I once prepared fresh artichokes to serve some folks who believed they understood everything there was to know about artichokes because they enjoyed the pickled variety from a jar they bought at the grocery store. When we served whole, freshly cooked artichokes, those folks wouldn’t admit their lack of knowledge – to us or to themselves. So… instead of eating the flesh of the leaves, discarding the “choke” and then enjoying the heart of the thing, they ate the whole globe – choke and all!

People can be like that about God’s Word, too. For some it’s just not worth the effort. Others already know everything they want to know and aren’t interested in enjoying the meat or the heart as it was intended. They just choke it all down once and wonder why it isn’t useful to them. Oh well…to each his own I guess. I believe in order to really get the most out of anything you must believe there will be a reward if you’re willing to look for it ||

Your Bible

Depending upon your interests your Bible can be an Archaeological record, a Chronological History, a Spiritual Guide or your Personal Owner’s Manual. The Bible can be all of these things and so much more. However, many times the Bible promises are conditional. Over and over God’s Word says ‘IF’ you will do this or that, then I (God) will do this or that in return.

In Joshua 1:8 it is written:

This Book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall deal wisely and have good success.

The IF here is implied…’IF’ you will speak My Word day and night, do My Word, and live your life based on My Word…then, you will make your way prosperous, deal wisely and have good success.’ Notice it does not say God will do these things for you? It says if you will then you will make…

It is important to note here too: the word meditate in English means to ponder, but in Hebrew, the language of the Old Testament, it is the word hagah, which means to utter or mutter under your breath. When you meditate on God’s Word speak it out instead of simply giving it mental assent. When God’s Word is spoken you will make your way prosperous and have good success. God watches over His Word to perform it. (Jere.1:12) The Hosts of Heaven act on God’s Word. (Heb. 1:14) God’s Word {spoken} always accomplishes God’s purpose (Isaiah 55:11)

Another point to be made: you may have memorized all the Books of Your Bible, but what do you know about them? With these things in mind, take time today for

A Quick Review

In week one you worked on indexing your Bible to help you find things more quickly and USE it more effectively. Today add something about each book to your knowledge. Remember, too, practically every Bible available will have some information you can add to your Bible knowledge…if you are interested.
Writing this collected information in your Bible, or in your Journal, will help you if, or when, someone asks you a question about the Bible.

The books of Moses are: GENESIS, EXODUS, LEVITICUS, NUMBERS, DEUTERONOMY – These first five books together constitute a unit in themselves and the group was known to the Jews as the torah, or the ‘Law’. The earliest and most reliable witness to this title is found in the book of Ecclesiastics, and when the Christian era opened the term was already in common use, as in the New Testaments, Matthew 5:17, Luke 10:26 and Luke 24:44

The book of JOSHUA is the history of the Israelite invasion and conquest of Canaan, the land God promised Abraham – a land flowing with milk and honey. (Genesis 24:7)

JUDGES & RUTH record stories from Israel’s lawless period that extended from the end of the conquest around 1400 B.C., until Saul was anointed king in approximately 1050 B.C. Generations of Israelis who read this book after the time of the Judges were reminded of their ancestors’ rebellion against God and of their own need for his divine deliverance.

First and Second SAMUEL, First and Second KINGS, & First and Second CHRONICLES record the history of Israel from the time of the Judges to the fall of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.

EZRA and NEHEMIAH follow the previous history books in chronological order and act as a sequel to them. Both are thought to have been written by Ezra, the priest who returned to Jerusalem with a group of Babylonian exiles in 458 B.C. Ezra clearly wanted his readers to recognize, in various historical events, the power and love God demonstrated toward his chosen people.

ESTHER is an account of God protecting his chosen people from extermination, probably around the time of Ezra in 460 B.C., thus preserving the Davidic line through which the Messiah would descend.

JOB is anonymous. The author’s name is not given. Jewish tradition states that it was written by Moses, but there is nothing in the book itself to suggest Mosaic authorship. The book of Job sets up the problem of God’s righteous followers suffering sickness, disasters and lack. The conventional answer given in Solomon’s day to the question of why God’s people suffer was, “they are being punished for their own sins or those of their forebears.” This is the very answer Job’s friends propose. Ancient readers of the text must have been astonished when they arrived at God’s final answer to Job’s questions. Thinking hasn’t changed much in religious circles today. Many are still surprised to find out God is not a tyrant who punishes with sickness, disaster and lack.

PSALMS is the “Book of Praises” a collection, or more precisely, a series of collections composed over a period of almost 1,000 years. Many were written by David. Some were written in the time of Moses (Psalm 90), others were probably written during Israel’s wilderness wanderings. Several were penned by Asaph, the recorder in the court of Hezekiah King of Judah.

PROVERBS, ECCLESIASTES, and SONG OF SONGS are the writings of David’s son, King Solomon.

The writings of THE PROPHETS, which make up the rest of the Old Testament, are spread throughout the centuries before the birth of Christ. If you’re looking for something that’s not found in the New Testament, or one of the books we’ve just talked about look between ISAIAH and MALACHI.

There is a period of about 400 SILENT years between the Old and New Testaments.