To understand the Old Testament fully, you need to understand it within the context of the entire Bible. Here is a summary of the story of the Bible.
Old Testament Sections
- Creation – God created the world out of nothing.
- Fall – Mankind rebelled against God.
- Flood – God punished sin.
- Covenant – God made a covenant with Abraham’s family.
- Placement – God placed Joseph and his family in Egypt.
- Exodus – God rescued the Israelites from bondage.
- Commandments – God gave commandments to His rescued people.
- Wanderings – Israel’s rebellion caused delay arriving in the Promised Land.
- Canaan – God gave the Promised Land to the Israelites.
- Cycle – Israel got stuck in an idolatrous cycle.
- Rejection – Israel rejected God and desired a man to lead them.
- Kingdom – David and Solomon led Israel to become a powerful kingdom.
- Division – The people’s sin created a division between Israel and Judah.
- Exile – Pagan nations defeated God’s people and sent them into exile.
- Return – A faithful remnant returns to Israel attempting to rebuild again.
New Testament Sections
- Incarnation – God in the flesh comes to earth on a rescue mission.
- Preparation – John the Baptist prepares the way for the Messiah.
- Ministry – Jesus teaches and acts with authority.
- Disciples – Jesus calls and equips a group to follow him.
- Associations – Jesus rebukes the prideful and welcomes the humble.
- Crucifixion – Jesus volunteers to take the place for us upon the cross.
- Resurrection – Jesus defeats sin, death, and the powers of hell on Resurrection Sunday.
- Commission – Jesus sends out his disciples to make more disciples.
- Pentecost – The Holy Spirit empowers the disciples to continue the work of Jesus.
- Persecution – Persecution of the disciples causes the mission to spread further.
- Damascus – Paul is converted and leads the missionary movement.
- Council – The Church leaders affirm the gospel doors are open to all people.
- Church – Leaders are equipped and churches are planted.
- Instructions – Letters are written to clarify beliefs and behaviors among the churches.
- Re-Creation – Jesus is coming back to make all things new.
The Bible Summarized
God created the heavens and the earth
Mankind rebelled trying to prove their worth
Sin escalated to the shedding of blood
God’s wrath displayed in the form of a flood
Yet one was blessed to be a blessing
A nation promised, a Messiah coming
A people rescued out from slavery
The Law given to show their inability
Finally settled into the Promised Land
Yet the cycle of sin punished again and again
A kingdom established, kings took up the crown
Yet the greatest of men still let the people down
A nation divided while prophets warned in the streets
Until godless enemies came and administered defeats
A people in exile suffering with their guilt
A remnant returns, a city rebuilt
The people feared if they’d been left on their own
400 silent years before the answer was known
Glory to God and peace upon the earth
A Savior was given, a virgin gave birth
God in the flesh lived free from sin
Jesus conveyed grace and truth from within
Recognized as teaching with authority
Despised and rejected by the Pharisees
Christ crucified on the hill of Calvary
Exchanged righteousness for our depravity
Yet on the third day, the Savior would rise
Commissioned the disciples in his ascent to the sky
The Holy Spirit empowered, the gospel unashamed
The Church established, giving everything away
No amount of persecution could keep the message back
Paul was converted, proclaimed the faith he attacked
Among the nations, churches were multiplied
Letters were sent, doctrine and practice clarified
A revelation was given for though the future seems grim
Christ will return and we will be with him
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.