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Guide To New Testament

Discussion in 'Christian Theology Forum' started by Christina, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. Christina

    Christina New Member

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    The Bible is comprised of 2 testaments, 66 different books, 1189 chapters, 31173 verses, and 773692 words.
    The different books of the Bible cover different topics and were addressed to different audiences.
    The books of the Bible were written by approximately 40 different men over a period of approximately 1500 years.At the same time, the Holy Spirit was the "inspiring" author of the Bible. God "breathed out"

    His Word and used the prophets and apostles to write His Word down (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:21). Further, all those who have placed their faith in Jesus Christ have the Holy Spirit indwelling them (Romans 8:9; 1 Corinthians 12:13).
    The Holy Spirit desires to help us to understand the Bible (1 Corinthians 2:10-16).



    Author: This gospel is known as the Gospel of Matthew because it was written by the apostle of the same name. The style of the book is exactly what would be expected of a man who was once a tax collector. Matthew has a keen interest in accounting (18:23-24; 25:14-15).
    The book is very orderly and concise. Rather than write in chronological order, Matthew arranges this Gospel through six discussions.As a tax collector, Matthew possessed a skill that makes his writing all the more exciting for Christians.
    Tax collectors were expected to be able to write in a form of shorthand, which essentially meant that Matthew could record a person’s words as they spoke, word for word. This ability means that the words of Matthew are not only inspired by the Holy Spirit, but should represent an actual transcript of some of Christ’s sermons. For example, the Sermon on the Mount, as recorded in chapters 5-7, is almost certainly a perfect recording of that great message.

    Date of Writing: As an apostle, Matthew wrote this book in the early period of the church, probably around 50 AD.
    This was a time when most Christians were Jewish converts, so Matthew’s focus on Jewish perspective in this gospel is understandable.Purpose of Writing: Matthew intends to prove to the Jews that Jesus Christ is the promised Messiah. More than any other gospel, Matthew quotes the Old Testament to show how Jesus fulfilled the words of the Jewish prophets. Matthew describes in detail the lineage of Jesus from David, and uses many forms of speech that Jews would have been comfortable with. Matthew’s love and concern for his people is apparent through his meticulous approach to telling the gospel story.

    Brief Summary: Matthew discusses the lineage, birth, and early life of Christ in the first two chapters. From there, the book discusses the ministry of Jesus. The descriptions of Christ’s teachings are arranged around “discourses”, such as the Sermon on the Mount in chapters 5 through 7.
    Chapter 10 involves the mission and purpose of the disciples; chapter 13 is a collection of parables; chapter 18 discusses the church; chapter 23 begins a discourse about hypocrisy and the future.
    Chapters 21 through 27 discuss the arrest, torture, and execution of Jesus. The final chapter describes the resurrection and the Great Commission.

    Practical Application: The Gospel of Matthew is an excellent introduction to the core teachings of Christianity. The logical outline style makes it easy to locate discussion of various topics. Matthew is especially useful for understanding how the life of Christ was the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies.Interestingly, Matthew is the 40th book of the Bible. In scripture, 40 is the number of testing. The flood lasted 40 days and 40 nights. The freed Israelites wandered 40 years in the desert under Moses. Jesus was tempted by Satan for 40 days in the wilderness. The book of Matthew is written for the Jewish people, God’s own chosen nation. Will they recognize the fulfillment of prophecy and believe in Christ? This gospel, written for the people who should have recognized the Son of God first, becomes a test of their faith.............................

    Author: Although the Gospel of Mark does not name its author, it is the unanimous testimony of early church fathers that Mark was the author. He was an associate of the Apostle Peter, and evidently his spiritual son (1 Peter 5:13). From Peter he received first-hand information of the events and teachings of the Lord, and preserved the information in written form.It is generally agreed that Mark is the John Mark of the New Testament (Acts 12:12). His mother was a wealthy and prominent Christian in the Jerusalem church, and probably the church met in her home.

    Mark joined Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey, but not on the second because of a strong disagreement between the two men (Acts 15:37-38). However, near the end of Paul’s life he called for Mark to be with him (2 Timothy 4:11).

    Date of Writing: The Gospel of Mark was likely one of the first books written in the New Testament, probably in 57-59 A.D.Purpose of Writing: Mark wrote as a pastor to Christians who previously had heard and believed the Gospel (Romans 1:8). He desired that they have a biographical story of Jesus Christ as Servant of the Lord and Savior of the world in order to strengthen their faith in the face of severe persecution, and also teach them what it meant to be His disciples.

    Brief Summary: This Gospel is unique among the Gospels because it emphasizes Jesus’ actions more than His teaching. (One of his oft-repeated words is immediately.) It is simply written, moving quickly from one episode in His life to another.
    It does not begin with a genealogy as in Matthew, because Gentiles would not be interested in His lineage. After the introduction of Jesus at His baptism, Jesus began His public ministry in Galilee and called the first four of His 12 disciples. What follows is the record of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.

    Mark’s account is not just a collection of stories, but written with the purpose of revealing that Jesus is the Messiah, not only for the Jews, but for the Gentiles as well. In a dynamic profession, the disciples, led by Peter, acknowledged their faith in Him (Mark 8:29-30). However, they failed to understand fully His Messiahship until after His resurrection.As we follow His journeys through Galilee, surrounding areas, and then to Judea, we realize what a rapid pace He kept.
    He touched the lives of many people, but left an indelible mark on His disciples. At the transfiguration (Mark 9:1-9), He gave three of them a preview of His future return in power and glory, and again it was revealed to them who
    He was.
    However, in the days leading to His final trip to Jerusalem, we see them amazed, fearful and doubting. At Jesus’ arrest, He stood alone after they fled. In the following hours of the mock trials, Jesus boldly proclaimed that He is the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One, and that He would be triumphant at His return (Mark 14:61-62). The climatic events surrounding the crucifixion, death, burial and resurrection were not witnessed by most of His disciples. But several faithful women bravely witnessed His passion. After the Sabbath, early in the morning of the first day of the week, they went to the tomb with burial spices. Whey they saw the stone had been rolled away, they entered the tomb. It was not the body of Jesus they saw, but an angel robed in white! The joyful message they received was, “He is risen!” Women were the first evangelists, as they spread the good news of His resurrection. This same message has been broadcast throughout the following centuries and we are its recipients today.

    Practical Application: We are privileged to have this written record of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit to teach us its meaning. Those who have placed our faith in Him must be people of action and obey His last command, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation” (Mark 16:15). The disciples obeyed (as recorded in the Book of the Acts), and so must we. At His return we will bow before Him in worship and praise.....................

    Author: The Gospel of Luke does not specifically identify its author. From Luke 1:1-4 and Acts 1:1-3, it is clear that the same author wrote both Luke and Acts. The tradition from the earliest days of the church has been that Luke, a companion of the Apostle Paul, wrote both Luke and Acts (Colossians 4:14; 2 Timothy 4:11).

    Date of Writing: The Gospel of Luke was likely written between 58 and 65 A.D.Purpose of Writing: Luke's is the longest and most thorough of the four Gospels. Luke, a Gentile physician, writes both this Gospel and the book of Acts to aid a new Christian named Theophilus. The name "Theophilus" means "loved by God" or "lover of God." It is unclear whether Theophilus refers to a specific person of that name, or to believers in Christ in general. As a missionary companion of the Apostle Paul, Luke is able to present a detailed historical account of Jesus' life.
    Luke presents Jesus' humanity more than any of the other Gospels.

    Brief Summary: Called the most beautiful book ever written, Luke begins by telling us about Jesus' parents; the birth of His cousin, John the Baptist; Mary and Joseph's journey to Bethlehem, where Jesus is born in a manger; and the genealogy of Christ through Mary. Jesus' public ministry reveals His perfect compassion and forgiveness through the stories of the prodigal son, the rich man and Lazarus, and the good Samaritan. While many believe in this unprejudiced love that surpasses all human limits, many others challenge and oppose the claims of Jesus.
    Christ's followers are encouraged to count the cost of discipleship, while His enemies seek His death on the Cross. Finally, Jesus is betrayed, tried, sentenced and crucified. But the grave cannot hold Him! His Resurrection assures the continuation of His ministry of seeking and saving the lost.

    Practical Application: Jesus understands our weaknesses and temptations and our trials. Luke, with the skill of a surgeon, probed for the truth so he could tell this exact truth to his friend, Theophilus. Did Luke have any idea that millions of us would benefit from his study? Probably not! He was only sharing Jesus' understanding and love with a friend. Can you imagine what would happen if we all did the same?........................

    Author: John 21:20-24 describes the author as "the disciple whom Jesus loved," and for both historical as well as internal reasons this is understood to be John the Apostle, one of the sons of Zebedee (Luke 5:10).

    Date of Writing: Discovery of certain papyrus fragments dated around A.D. 135 require the book to have been written, copied, and circulated before then. And while some think it was written before Jerusalem was destroyed (A.D. 70), A.D. 85-90 is a more accepted time for its writing.Purpose of Writing: John 20:31 cites the purpose as follows: "but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name." John was not only seeking to strengthen the faith of second-generation believers as well as bring about faith in others but also sought to correct a false teaching that was spreading.

    John emphasized Jesus Christ as "the Son of God," fully God and fully man, contrary to that false doctrine which saw the "Christ-spirit" as coming upon the human, Jesus, at His baptism and leaving him at the crucifixion.

    Brief Summary: The Gospel of John selects only seven miracles as signs to demonstrate the deity of Christ and to illustrate His ministry. Some of these signs and stories are found only in John. His Gospel is the most theological of the four Gospels and often gives the reason behind events mentioned in the other Gospels. He shares much about the approaching ministry of the Holy Spirit after His ascension.
    There are certain words or phrases that John frequently uses that show the repeating themes of his Gospel: believe, witness, Comforter, life - death, light - darkness, I am... (as in Jesus is the "I Am"), and love.John's Gospel introduces Christ, not from His birth, but from "the beginning" as "the Word" (Logos) Who as Deity is involved in every aspect of creation (1:1-3) and Who later becomes flesh (1:14) in order that He might take away our sins as the spotless, sacrificial Lamb (John 1:29). John selects spiritual conversations that show that Jesus is the Messiah (4:26) and to explain how one is saved by His vicarious death on the cross (3:14-16).
    He repeatedly angers the Jewish leaders by correcting them (2:13-16); healing on the Sabbath, and claiming characteristics belonging to God (5:18; 8:56-59; 9:6,16; 10:33). Jesus prepares His disciples for His coming death and for their ministry after His resurrection and ascension (John 14-17). He then willingly dies on the cross in our place (10:15-18), paying our sin debt in full (19:30) so that whoever trusts in Him as their Savior from sin will be saved (John 3:14-16). He then rises from the dead, convincing even the most doubting of His disciples that He is God and Master (20:24-29).

    Practical Application: John's Gospel continues to fulfill its purpose of containing much useful information for evangelism (John 3:16 is likely the best known verse, even if not properly understood by many) and is often used in evangelistic Bible studies. In the recorded encounters between Jesus and Nicodemus and the woman at the well (chapters 3-4), we can learn much from His modeling of personal evangelism. His comforting words to His disciples before His death (14:1-6,16, 16:33) are still of great comfort in the times death claims our loved ones in Christ. And, John's teachings concerning the deity of Christ (1:1-3,14; 5:22-23; 8:58; 14:8-9; 20:28, etc.) are very helpful in countering the false teachings of some of the cults who see Jesus as being less than fully God........................

    Date of Writing: The Book of Acts was likely written between 61-64 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The Book of Acts was written to provide a history of the early church. Acts emphasis the importance of the day of Pentecost and being empowered to be effective witnesses for Jesus Christ. Acts sheds light on the ministry gift of the Holy Spirit, which empowers, guides, teaches, and serves as our Counselor. When reading the Book of Acts many of the readers will be enlightened and encouraged by the many miracles that were being performed during this time by the disciples Peter, John, and Paul.

    The Book of Acts emphasizes the importance of obedience to God’s Word and the transformation that occurs as a result of knowing Christ. There are also many references to those that rejected the truth that the disciples preached about in Jesus Christ. Power, greed, and many other vices of the devil or evidenced in the book of Acts. Acts 1:8 serves as a good summary of the Book of Acts. Acts records the apostles being Christ's witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the rest of the surrounding world.Brief Summary: The book of Acts has a total of twenty-eight chapters and it’s primary purpose was to give the history of the Christian church and thereby to equip the church to reach people for Christ. Many faithful servants carried out the work of God in the earth. Although many faithful servants were used to preach and teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, Saul, whose name was changed to Paul, was the most influential. Before he was converted, Paul took great pleasure in persecuting and killing Christians. After his conversion he went to the ultimate extreme of loving God and preaching his word with power, fervency and the Spirit of the true and living God. In this book the main emphasis was in Acts 1:8, when the disciples were told by Jesus to wait until they had been empowered by the Holy Spirit from on high to be his witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.

    Acts chapters 1-7 record the apostles being Christ's witnesses in Jerusalem and Judea. Acts chapter 8 records the apostles being Christ's witnesses in Samaria. Acts chapters 9-28 record the apostles being Christ's witnesses "to the ends of the earth."

    Practical Application: God can do amazing things through ordinary people. God essentially took a group of fisherman and turned the world upside down (Acts 17:6). God took a Christian-hating murderer and changed him into the greatest Christian evangelist, the author of almost half the books of the New Testament. God used persecution to cause the quickest expansion of a "new faith" in the history of the world. God can and will do the same through us if we fully submit ourselves to Him................

    Author: Romans 1:1 identifies the author of the Book of Romans as the Apostle Paul.
    Romans 16:22 indicates that Paul used a man name Tertius to transcribe his words.

    Date of Writing: The Book of Romans was likely written between 56-58 A.D.Purpose of Writing: Paul was excited about being able to at last minister in this church, everyone was well aware of that fact (Romans 1:8-15). It was written from Corinth just prior to Paul’s trip to Jerusalem to deliver the alms that had been given for the poor there. He had intended to go to Rome and then on to Spain (Romans 15:24). His plans were interrupted when he was arrested in Jerusalem.
    He would eventually get to Rome as a prisoner. Phoebe who was a member of the church at Cenchrea near Corinth (Romans 16:1) most likely carried the letter to Rome

    .Brief Summary: The Book of Romans can be divided into four sections: Righteousness Needed, 1:18 - 3:20; Righteousness Provided, 3:21 - 8:39; Righteousness Vindicated, 9:1 - 11:36; Righteousness Practiced, 12:1 - 15:13. The main theme of this letter is obvious of course, it is Righteousness. Guided by the Holy Spirit Paul first condemns all men of their sinfulness.

    He expresses his desire to Preach the truth of God’s Word to those in Rome. It was his hope to have assurance that they were staying on the right path. He strongly points out that he is not ashamed of the Gospel, because it is what every one need to direct them to Salvation.Paul points out again that God did not demand that men have their lives straightened out before coming to Christ. Because, it is a fact that while we were still sinners He, Christ died on a cross for our sins.
    When we turn our lives over to Jesus Christ, we are no longer controlled by our sin nature, but we are controlled by the Spirit. If we make confession that Jesus is Lord, and believe that He is raised from the dead, we are saved, born - again. We need to live our lives offered to God as a living sacrifice to Him. Because, that should be our highest desire to worship Him so. We cannot please Him by living according to this world and its pleasures. We need to keep our eyes on Jesus at all times.Never seek to take revenge on anyone because it is God’s place to repay, and we need to leave it Him.

    We need to feed the hungry and quench their thirst. Nothing is ever accomplished if we are overcome by evil, but evil, we need to overcome evil with good. May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you m ay overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

    Practical Application: It is very difficult to summarize the Book of Romans. It is so full of truth! The Book of Romans tells us about God, who He is and what He has done. It tells us of Jesus Christ, what His death accomplished. It tells us about ourselves, what we were like without Christ and who we are after trusting in Christ. Perhaps the best application of Romans would be to apply Romans 1:16 and not be ashamed of the Gospel. Instead, let us all be faithful in proclaiming it!.................

    Author: 1 Corinthians 1:1 identifies the author of the Book of 1 Corinthians as the Apostle Paul.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 1 Corinthians was written in approximately 55 A.D.Purpose of Writing: The Apostle Paul started the church in Corinth. A few years after leaving the church, the Apostle Paul heard some disturbing reports about the Corinthians church.
    The church was full of pride, the church was excusing sexual immorality, spiritual gifts were being used improperly, and there was rampant misunderstanding of key Christian doctrines.

    The Apostle Paul wrote 1 Corinthians in an attempt to restore the Corinthian church to its foundation – Jesus Christ.Brief Summary: The Corinthian church was plagued by divisions.
    The believers in Corinth were dividing into groups loyal to certain spiritual leaders (1 Corinthians 1:12; 3:1-6). Paul exhorted the Corinthian believers to be united because of devotion to Christ (1 Corinthians 3:21-23). The Corinthian believers were essentially approving of an immoral relationship (1 Corinthians 5:1-2). Paul commanded them to expel the wicked man from the church (1 Corinthians 5:13). The Corinthian believers were taking each other to court (1 Corinthians 6:1-2). Paul taught the Corinthians that it would be better to be taken advantage of than to damage your Christian testimony (1 Corinthians 6:3-8).Paul gave the Corinthian church instructions on marriage and celibacy (1 Corinthians chapter 7), food sacrificed to idols (1 Corinthians chapters 8 and 10), Christian freedom (1 Corinthians chapter 9), the veiling of women (1 Corinthians 11:1-16), the Lord’s Supper (1 Corinthians 11:17-34), spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians chapters 12-14), and the Resurrection (1 Corinthians chapter 15).

    Paul organized the Book of 1 Corinthians by answering questions the Corinthian believers had asked him and by responding to improper conduct and beliefs the Corinthian believers had accepted.Practical Application: Many of the problems and questions the Corinthian church was dealing with are still present in the church today.

    Churches today still struggle with divisions, with immorality, and with spiritual gifts. The Book of 1 Corinthians very well could have been written to the church today. Despite all the rebukes and corrections, 1 Corinthians brings our focus back to where it should be. Genuine Christian love is the answer to many problems (1 Corinthians chapter 13). A proper understanding of the resurrection of Christ, and thereby a proper understand of our own resurrection – is the cure for what divides and defeats us (1 Corinthians chapter 15)............

    Author: 2 Corinthians chapter 1, verse 1 identifies the author of the Book of 2 Corinthians as the Apostle Paul, possibly along with Timothy.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 2 Corinthians was very likely written between 55-57 A.D.Purpose of Writing: In his second letter to the Corinthians, Paul returns to many of the same themes covered in his early letter. These include:- Continued immorality between a brother and his step mother (1 Corinthians 5:1-6; 2 Corinthians 2:5-11)- Paul's plans for a future visit (2 Corinthians 1:15--2:4)- The giving of the Macedonians (2 Corinthians 8:1-6)- Divisions in the church created by Judaizers who attacked Paul’s authority (2 Corinthians 10:10-12).Positively, Paul found the Corinthians had well received his “severe” letter.
    The Apostle encourages them for this in an expression of Paul’s genuine love (2 Corinthians 7:3-16). Paul also sought to vindicate his apostleship, as some in the church had likely questioned his authority (2 Corinthians 13:3).

    Brief Summary: The church in Corinth began in 52 A.D., when Paul visited there on his second missionary journey. It was then that he stayed one and a half years, the first time he was allowed to stay in one place as long as he wished. A record of this visit and the establishment of the church is found in Acts 18:1-18.This second letter of Paul to the Corinthian church was occasioned by the report brought back by Titus, who informed Paul of their reception of the first letter, and how they received the rebuke that letter contained (2 Corinthians 2:12-13; 7:5-9).Titus' report was encouraging, but evidently it also brought troubling news that some at Corinth were questioning Paul's authority as an apostle. This doubt may have planted by "Judaizing teachers" who seemed to follow Paul and attempted to undermine his teaching concerning the Law. They appear to have questioned his veracity (2 Corinthians 1:15-17), his speaking ability (2 Corinthians 10:10; 11:6), and his unwillingness to accept support from the church at Corinth (2 Corinthians 11:7-9; 12:13).

    There were also some people who had not repented of their licentious behavior (2 Corinthians 12:20-21).He hopes that by writing in advance of his visit he can get all of the necessary rebuke out of the way (2 Corinthians 1:23-2:3; 13:10). He also uses the opportunity to encourage them to have the collection for the needy saints in Jerusalem ready when he comes (2 Corinthians 9:1-5; cf. 1 Corinthians 16:1-2).

    Practical Application: This letter is the most biographical and least doctrinal of Paul's epistles. It tells us more about Paul as a person and as a minister than any of the others. That being said, there are a few things we can take from this letter and applies to our lives today. The first thing is stewardship. Not only of money, but of your time as well. The Macedonians not only gave generously, but “they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God's will” (2 Corinthians 8:5). In the same way, we should dedicate, not only all we have to the Lord, but all that we are. He really doesn't NEED our money. He is omnipotent! He WANTS our heart, one that longs to serve and please and love. Stewardship. Giving to God. It is more than just money. Yes, God does want us to tithe part of our income, and He promises to bless us when we give to Him. There is more though. God wants 100%. He wants us to give Him our all. Everything we are. We should spend our lives, living to serve our Father. We should not only give to God from our paycheck, but our very lives should be a reflection of Him. We should give ourselves first to the Lord, then give to the church...............

    Author: Galatians 1:1 clearly identifies the Apostle Paul as the writer of the Epistle to the Galatians.

    Date of Writing: Depending on where exactly the Book of Galatians was sent and during which missionary journey Paul started the churches in that area - the Book of Galatians was written somewhere between 48 and 55 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The churches in Galatia were formed partly of converted Jews, and partly of Gentile converts, as was generally the case. Paul asserts his apostolic character and the doctrines he taught, that he might confirm the Galatian churches in the faith of Christ, especially with respect to the important point of justification by faith alone.
    Thus the subject is mainly the same as that which is discussed in the epistle to the Romans, that is, justification by faith alone. In this epistle, however, attention is particularly directed to the point, that men are justified by faith without the works of the Law of Moses.

    Galatians was not written as an essay in contemporary history. It was a protest against corruption of the gospel of Christ. The essential truth of justification by faith rather than by the works of the law had been obscured by the Judaizers’ insistence that believers in Christ must keep the law if they expected to be perfect before God. When Paul learned that this teaching had begun to penetrate the Galatian churches and that it had alienated them from their heritage of liberty, he wrote the impassioned remonstrance contained in this epistle.

    Brief Summary: The result of justification by grace through faith is spiritual freedom. Paul appealed to the Galatians to stand fast in their freedom, and not get "entangled again with a yoke of bondage (that is, the Mosaic law)" (Galatians 5:1). Christian freedom is not an excuse to gratify one's lower nature; rather, it is an opportunity to love one another (Galatians 5:13; 6:7-10). Such freedom does not insulate one from life's struggles. Indeed, it may intensify the battle between the Spirit and the flesh. Nevertheless, the flesh (the lower nature) has been crucified with Christ (Galatians 2:20); and, as a consequence, the Spirit will bear its fruit such as love, joy, and peace in the life of the believer (Galatians 5:22-23).

    The letter to the Galatians was written in a spirit of inspired agitation. For Paul, the issue was not whether a person was circumcised, but whether he had become "a new creation" (Galatians 6:15). If Paul had not been successful in his argument for justification by faith alone, Christianity would have remained a sect within Judaism, rather than becoming the universal way of salvation. Galatians, therefore, is not only Luther's epistle; it is the epistle of every believer who confesses with Paul: "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me" (Galatians 2:20).

    The books of James and Galatians illustrate two aspects of Christianity that from the very beginning have seemed to be in conflict, though in reality they are supplementary. James insists on the ethic of Christ, a demand that faith prove its existence by its fruits. Nevertheless James, no less than Paul, emphasizes the need of the transformation of the individual by the grace of God (James 1:18). Galatians stresses the dynamic of the gospel that produces ethic (Galatians 3:13-14). Nor was Paul less concerned than James about the ethical life (Galatians 5:13). Like the two sides of a coin, these two aspects of Christian truth must always accompany each other.Practical Application: As with all books, parts, sections, and verses of the Bible, the word(s) speak of a life style, life style living that all believers should continually strive to increase. I do not say achieve because even if anyone was to memorize every word, do everything it says, without Christ in our hearts guiding every foot step we still will never be complete (done), and won’t be till Christ returns. The Bible helps non-believers and believers change their life, live their life on a continual basis making it greater than just a guide.
    On Christmas when we are putting together our kids bike with the instruction guide, we follow it step by step. Once the bike is together and operating correctly, the guide gets put away.The Bible helps change lives and start living lives as a guide, but it goes further building life styles and relationship with God. Once a life is changed, once a life is living in the word, now we consider doing something out of love for anyone (commonly referred to as works). You cannot help after changing your life to want to tell someone, do something, or help someone (works) out of love of God that is in you.
    Some have believed that the work they do for God is all they need to get into heaven when Christ returns. Without Christ in their hearts, and the love of God driving their work, their living, and their life style, they won’t. That is the message of Galatians, and that is how we should mold the Galatians into our life, lifestyle.......................

    Author: Ephesians 1:1 identifies the author of the Book of Ephesians as the Apostle Paul

    .Date of Writing: The Book of Ephesians was very likely written between 60-63 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: Paul intended all those that long for Christ-like maturity to receive this writing. Enclosed within the Book of Ephesians is the discipline needed to develop into true sons of God.
    Furthermore, a study in Ephesians will help to fortify and to establish the believer so he can fulfill the purpose and calling God has given. The aim of this epistle is to confirm and to equip a maturing church. It presents a balanced view of the body of Christ and its importance in God's economy

    .Brief Summary: Doctrine occupies the greatest portion of the Book of Ephesians. Half of the teaching in this epistle relates to our standing, and the remainder of it affects our condition. All too often those who teach from this book bypass all the foundational instruction and go directly to the closing chapter. It is this chapter that emphasizes the warfare or the struggle of the saints.
    However, to benefit fully from the contents of this epistle, one must begin at the beginning of Paul's instruction in this letter.First, the follower of Christ must fully understand who God declares him to be. He must also become grounded in the knowledge of God's accomplishment for all humanity. Next, our present existence and walk must become exercised and strengthened. This must continue until we no longer totter or stagger back and forth with every spirit of teaching and subtlety of men.Paul’s writing breaks down into three main segments. (1) Chapters one through three introduce principles with respect to God's accomplishment. (2) Chapters four and five put forth principles regarding our present existence. (3) Chapter six presents principles concerning our daily struggle.

    Practical Application: Perhaps more than any other book of the Bible, the Book of Ephesians emphasizes the connection between sound doctrine and right practice. Far too many people ignore "theology" and instead want to only discuss things that are "practical." In Ephesians, Paul argues that theology is practical. In order to live out God's will for us in our lives practically - we must first understand who we are in Christ doctrinally...............

    Author: Philippians 1:1 identifies the author of the Book of Philippians as the Apostle Paul, likely along with the help of Timothy.

    Date of Writing: The Book of Philippians was written in approximately 61 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The Epistle to the Philippians, one of Paul’s prison epistles, was written in Rome. It was at Philippi, which the apostle visited on his second missionary journey (Acts 16:12), that Lydia and the Philippians jailer and his family were converted to Christ. Now, some few years later, the church was well established, as may be inferred from its address which includes “bishops (elders) and deacons” (Philippians 1:1).Paul was Nero’s prisoner, yet the Epistle fairly shouts with triumph, the words “joy” and “rejoice” appearing frequently (Philippians 1:4, 18, 25, 26; 2:2, 28; Philippians 3:1, 4:1, 4, 10). Right Christian experience is the outworking, whatever our circumstances may be, of the life, nature, and mind of Christ living in us (Philippians 1:6, 11; 2:5, 13).
    Philippians reaches its pinnacle at 2:5-11 with the glorious and profound declaration regarding the humiliation and exaltation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    Brief Summary: The occasion of the Epistle was to acknowledge a gift of money from the church at Philippi, brought to the apostle by Epaphroditus, one of its members (Philippians 4:10-18). This is a tender letter to a group of Christians who were especially close to the heart of Paul (2 Corinthians 8:1-6), and comparatively little is said about doctrinal error.Philippians can be called “Resources through Suffering.” The book is about Christ in our life, Christ in our mind, Christ as our goal, Christ as our strength, and joy through suffering. It was written during Paul’s imprisonment in Rome, about thirty years after the Ascension and about ten years after he first preached at Philippi.

    Philippians may be divided as follows:Introduction, 1:1-7I. Christ the Christian’s Life: Rejoicing in Spite of Suffering, 1:8-30II. Christ the Christian’s Pattern: Rejoicing in Lowly Service, 2:1-30III. Christ, Object of the Christian’s Faith, Desire, and Expectation, 3:1-21IV. Christ The Christian’s Strength: Rejoicing through Anxiety, 4:1-9Conclusion, 4:20-23

    Practical Application: This is Paul’s happiest letter. And the happiness is infectious. Before we’ve read a dozen lines, we begin to feel the joy ourselves – the dance of words and the exclamations of delight have a way of getting inside us.But happiness is not a word we can understand by looking it up in the dictionary. In fact, none of the qualities of the Christian life can be learned out of a book.
    Something more like apprenticeship is required, being around someone who out of years of devoted discipline shows us, by his or her entire behavior, what it is. Moments of verbal instruction will certainly occur, but mostly an apprentice acquires skill by daily and intimate association with a “master,” picking up subtle but absolutely essential things, such as timing, and rhythm and touch.When we read what Paul wrote to the Christian believers in the city of Philippi, we find ourselves in the company of just such a master. Paul doesn't tell us that we can be happy, or how to be happy. He simply and unmistakably is happy.

    None of his circumstances contribute to his joy: He wrote from a jail cell, his work was under attack by competitors, and after twenty years or so of hard traveling in the service of Jesus, he was tired and would have welcomed some relief.But circumstances are incidental compared to the life of Jesus, the Messiah, that Paul experiences from the inside. For it is a life that not only happened at a certain point in history, but continues to happen, spilling out into the lives of those who receive Him, and then continues to spill out all over the place. Christ is, among much else, the revelation that God cannot be contained or hoarded. It is this “spilling out” quality of Christ’s life that accounts for the happiness of Christians, for joy is life in excess, the overflow of what cannot be contained within any one person...................

    Author: The Apostle Paul was the primary writer of the Book of Colossians (Colossians 1:13). Timothy is also given some credit (Colossians 1:1)

    .Date of Writing: The Book of Colossians was likely written between 58-62 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The Book of Colossians is a mini-ethics course, addressing every area of Christian life.
    Paul progresses from the individual life to the home and family; from work to way we should treat others. The entire theme of this book is the sufficiency of our Lord, Jesus Christ, in meeting our needs in every area.Brief Summary: Colossians was written explicitly to defeat heresy that had arisen in Colosse, which endangered the existence of the church.
    While we do not know what was told Paul, this epistle is his response.We can surmise based on Paul’s response that he was dealing with a defective view of Christ. (His real and true humanity and further not accepting His full deity.) Paul appears also to dispute the “Jewish” emphasis on circumcision and traditions (Colossians 2:8-11; 3:11).

    The heresy addressed appears to be either a Jewish-Gnosticism or a mix between Jewish asceticism and Greek (Stoic?) philosophy. He does a remarkable job in pointing us to the sufficiency of Christ.Practical Application: Although Paul addresses many areas, the basic application for us today is the total and complete sufficiency of Christ for our lives, our sanctification and our salvation. We must know and understand the Gospel so as not to be lead astray by subtle forms of legalism and heresy. We must be on guard for any deviation that would diminish Christ’s centrality as Lord and Savior. Any “religion” that tries to equate themselves using books that supposedly stand on equal authority of the Bible, or combine human efforts in reaching for God’s favor or freedom from sin must be avoided. Other religions cannot be combined, mixed in or added to Christianity.
    Christ gives us absolute standards of moral conduct. Christianity is a family, a way of life, a relationship not a religion. Good deeds, astrology, occultism and horoscopes do not show us God’s ways, but Christ does. His will is revealed in His word, His love letter to you and I, we must get to know it!...............

    Author: 1 Thessalonians 1:1 indicates that the Book of 1 Thessalonians was written by the Apostle Paul, probably along with Silas and Timothy.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 1 Thessalonians was written in approximately 50 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: In the church of Thessalonica there were some misunderstandings about the return of Christ. Paul desired to clear them up in his letter.

    He also writes it as an instruction of holy living.Brief Summary: The first three chapters are about Paul longing to visit the church in Thessalonica but not being able to because Satan stopped them (1 Thessalonians 2:18). And how Paul cared for them and was encouraged to hear how they have been. Paul then prays for them (1 Thessalonians 3:11-13). In chapter 4, Paul is instructing them on how to live in Christ Jesus, a holy life (1 Thessalonians 4:1-12). Paul goes on to instruct them of a misconception they had.

    He tells them that the people who have died in Christ Jesus will also go to heaven when He comes back (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 5:1-11). Then the book ends with final instructions of living the Christian life.

    Practical Application: This book can be applied to many life situations. It gives us the confidence as Christians that dead or alive when Christ comes back we will all be together (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). It assures us as Christians we won’t receive God’s wrath (1 Thessalonians 5:8-9). It instructs us how to walk the Christian life daily (1 Thessalonians 4-5)...........................

    Author: 2 Thessalonians 1:1 indicates that the Book of 2 Thessalonians was written by the Apostle Paul, probably along with Silas and Timothy.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 2 Thessalonians was likely written in 51-52 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The church in Thessalonica still had some misconceptions of the Day of the Lord. They thought it had come already so they stopped with their work.

    They were being persecuted badly. Paul wrote to clear up misconceptions and to comfort them.

    Key Verses: 2 Thessalonians 1:6-7, “God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with powerful angels.”2 Thessalonians 2:13, “But we ought always thank God for you, brothers loved by the Lord, because from the beginning God chose you to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.”2 Thessalonians 3:3, “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.”2 Thessalonians 3:10, “For even when we were with you we gave you this rule: If a man will not work, he shall not eat.”

    Brief Summary: Paul greets them and encourages them by what he hears they are doing in the Lord. He prays for them (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12). In chapter 2, Paul explains what will happen in the Day of the Lord (2 Thessalonians 2:1-12). Paul then encourages them to stand firm. Paul instructs them to keep away from idle men who don’t live by the gospel (2 Thessalonians 3:6).

    Practical Application: The Book of 2 Thessalonians is filled with information that explains the end times. It also gives us instruction to not be idle and work for what we have. There are also some great prayers in 2 Thessalonians that can be an example for us on how to pray for other believers today..............

    Author: The Book of 1 Timothy was written by the Apostle Paul (1 Timothy 1:1).

    Date of Writing: The Book of 1 Timothy was written between 62-66 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: Paul wrote to Timothy to encourage him in his responsibility for overseeing the work of the Ephesian church and possibly the other churches in the province of Asia (1 Timothy 1:3). This letter lays the foundation for ordaining elders (1 Timothy 3:1-7), and provides guidance for ordaining people into offices of the church (1 Timothy 3:8-13).
    In essence, 1 Timothy is a leadership manual for church organization and administration.

    Brief Summary:
    This is the first letter Paul wrote to Timothy, a young pastor who had been a help of Paul in his work. Timothy was a Greek. His mother was a Jewess and his father was Greek. Paul was more than just a mentor and leader to Timothy, he was like a father to him and Timothy was like a son to Paul (1 Timothy 1:2). Paul begins the letter by urging Timothy to be on the guard for false teachers and false doctrine.
    However, much of the letter deals with pastoral conduct. Paul instructs Timothy in worship (1 Timothy 2) and developing mature leaders for the Church (1 Timothy 3). Most of the letter deals with pastoral conduct and that of their families as well.

    All throughout the letter, Paul encourages Timothy to stand firm, to persevere, and to remain true to his calling.Practical Application: Jesus Christ is present by Paul as the mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5), and is the Savior to all who believe in Him.
    He is Lord of the Church, and Timothy serves Him by pasturing His Church. Thus, we find the main application of Paul’s first letter to his “son in the faith.” Paul instructs Timothy on matters of Church doctrine, Church leadership, and Church administration. We can use those same instructions in governing our local assembly today.

    Likewise, the work and ministry of a pastor, the qualifications for an elder, and the qualifications of a deacon are just as important and pertinent today as they were in Timothy’s day. Paul’s first letter to Timothy amounts to an instruction book on leading, administrating and pasturing the local church. The instructions laid out in this letter apply to any leader of prospective leader of Christ’s church are laid out in a clear, concise manner and are equally relevant today, tomorrow or any day, as they were in Paul’s day.
    For those not called into a “leadership” role in their church, the book is still for you. Every follower must contend for the faith. Every follower must stand firm and persevere. Finally, every follower of Christ must remain true to our Savior and that which we have been called to do: “Go out and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19)...................

    Author: 2 Timothy 1:1 identifies the author of the Book of 2 Timothy as the Apostle Paul.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 2 Timothy was written in approximately 67 A.D., shortly before the Apostle Paul was put to death

    .Purpose of Writing: Imprisoned yet again, the Apostle Paul felt lonely and abandoned. Paul recognized that his earthly life was likely coming to a soon end. The Book of 2 Timothy is essentially Paul’s “last words.” Paul looked past his own circumstances to express concern for the churches and specifically for Timothy.
    Paul wanted to use his last words to encourage Timothy, and all other believers, to persevere in faith (2 Timothy 3:14) and proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ (2 Timothy 4:2).

    Brief Summary: Paul encourages Timothy to remain passionate for Christ and to remain firm in sound doctrine (2 Timothy 1:1-2:13). Paul reminds Timothy to avoid ungodly beliefs and practices and to flee from anything immoral (2 Timothy 2:14-26). In the end times there will be both intense persecution and apostasy from the Christian faith (2 Timothy 3:1-17).
    Paul closes with an intense plea for believers to stand firm in the faith and to finish the race strong (2 Timothy 4:1-8).Practical Application: It is easy to get side-tracked in the Christian life. We have to keep our eyes on the prize – being rewarded in Heaven by Jesus Christ (2 Timothy 4:8). We must strive to avoid both false doctrine and ungodly practices. This can only be accomplished by being grounded in our knowledge of God’s Word and firm in our refusal to accept anything that is unbiblical............................

    Author: Titus 1:1 identifies the Apostle Paul as the author of the Book of Titus.

    Date of Writing: The Epistle to Titus was written by Paul in approximately 66 A.D. Paul’s many journeys are well documented and show that he wrote to Titus from Nicopolis in Epirus. In some Bibles a subscription to the epistle may show that Paul wrote from Nicopolis in Macedonia. However, there is no such place known and subscriptions have no authority as they are not authentic.

    Purpose of Writing: The Epistle to Titus is known as one of the Pastoral Epistles as are the two letters to Timothy. This epistle was written by the Apostle Paul to encourage his brother of faith, Titus, whom he had left in Crete to lead the church which Paul had established on one of his missionary journeys (Titus 1:5).
    This letter advises Titus in what qualifications to look for in seeking leaders for the church as he warns Titus of the reputations of those living on the island of Crete (Titus 1:12).In addition to instructing Titus in what to look for in a leader of the church Paul also encouraged Titus to return to Nicopolis for a visit. Paul suggested Titus bring with him two others from the church “that nothing be lacking unto them.” In other words, Paul continued to disciple Titus and others as they grew in the grace of the Lord (Titus 3:13).Brief Summary: How wonderful it must have been when Titus received a letter from his mentor, the Apostle Paul.
    Paul was a much honored man, and rightly so, after establishing several churches throughout the eastern world.
    This famous introduction from the Apostle would have been read by Titus, “to Titus, my true child according to a common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Savior” (Titus 1:4).The island of Crete where Titus was left by Paul to lead the church was inhabited by natives of the island and Jews who did not know the truth of Jesus Christ (Titus 1:12-14). Paul felt it to be his responsibility to follow through with Titus to instruct and encourage him in developing leaders within the church at Crete.

    As the Apostle Paul directed Titus in his search for leaders Paul also suggested how Titus would instruct the leaders so that they could grow in their faith in Christ. To help Titus continue in his faith in Christ Paul suggested Titus come to Nicopolis and bring with him two other members of the church (Titus 3:12-13).

    Practical Application: The Apostle Paul deserves our attention as we look to the Bible for instruction on how to live a life that will be pleasing to our Lord. We can learn of that which we should avoid as well as that which we are to strive to imitate.
    Paul suggests we seek to be pure as we avoid the things of life which will defile our minds and conscience. And then the Apostle Paul makes a statement which should be on our minds every moment of every day; “They profess that they know God, but by their works they deny him, being abominable, disobedient, and unfit for any good work” (Titus 1:16).Along with the warning Paul gave us he also gave us the answer to teach us how to avoid denying God; “he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, which he poured out on us richly, through Jesus Christ our Savior.” By seeking a daily renewal of our minds by the Holy Spirit we can develop into Christians that honor God by the way we live.......................

    Author: The author of the Book of Philemon was the Apostle Paul (Philemon 1:1).

    Date of Writing: The Book of Philemon was written in approximately 60 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The letter to Philemon is the shortest of all Paul's writings and deals with the practice of slavery.
    The letter suggest that Paul was in prison at the time of the writing. Philemon was a slave-owner who also hosted a church in his home. During the time of Paul's ministry in Ephesus, Philemon had likely journeyed to the city, heard Paul's preaching and became a Christian.
    The slave Onesimus robbed his master, Philemon, and ran away, made his way to Rome and to Paul.
    Onesimus was still the property of Philemon and Paul wrote to smooth the way for his return to his master. Onesimus had become a Christian and Paul wanted Philemon to accept Onesimus as a brother in Christ and not merely as a slave.

    Brief Summary: Paul had warned slave-owners that they had a responsibility towards their slaves and showed slaves as responsible moral beings who were to fear God. In Philemon, Paul did not condemn slavery but he presented Onesimus as a Christian brother instead of a slave. When an owner can refer to a slave as a brother, the slave has reached a position in which the legal title of slave is meaningless.
    The early church did not attack slavery directly but it laid the foundation for a new relationship between owner and slave. Paul attempted to unite both Philemon and Onesimus with Christian love so that emancipation would become necessary. After exposure to the light of the gospel the institution of slavery could only die.Practical Application: Employers, political leaders, corporation executives and parents can follow the spirit of Paul's teaching by treating Christian employees, co-workers and family members as members of Christ's Body.
    Christians in modern society must not view helpers as stepping stones to help them achieve their ambitions but as Christian brothers and sisters who must receive gracious treatment. In addition, all Christian leaders must recognize that God holds them accountable for the treatment of those who work for them, whether the helpers are Christians or not. They must eventually answer to God for their actions (Colossians 4:1)....................

    Author: Although some include the Book of Hebrews among the Apostle Paul's writings, the certain identity of the author remains an enigma. Missing is Paul's customary salutation so common to his other works and, too, the suggestion that the writer of this epistle relied upon knowledge and information provided by others who were actual eye-witnesses of Christ Jesus (2: 3) makes Pauline authorship doubtful.
    Some attribute Luke as its writer; others suggest Hebrews may have been written by Apollos, Barnabas, Silas, Philip, or Aquila and Priscilla. Regardless of the human hand that held the pen, the Holy Spirit of God is the divine author of all Scripture, therefore, Hebrews speaks with the same canonical authority as the other sixty-five books of the Bible.

    Date of Writing: The early church father Clement quoted from the Book of Hebrews in 95 A.D., however, internal evidence such as the fact that Timothy was alive at the time to epistle was written and the absence of any evidence showing the end of the Old Testament sacrificial system that occurred with Jerusalem's destruction in 70 A.D. indicates the book was written around 65 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: The late Dr. Walter Martin, founder of the Christian Research Institute and writer of the best selling Kingdom of the Cults, quipped in his usual tongue-in-cheek manner that the Book of Hebrews was written by a Hebrew to other Hebrews telling the Hebrews to stop acting like Hebrews. In truth, many of the early Jewish believers were slipping back into the rites and rituals of Judaism in order to escape the mounting persecution. This letter, then, is an exhortation for these persecuted believers to continue in the grace of Jesus Christ.

    Brief Summary: The writer of Hebrews continually makes mention of the superiority of Christ in both His personage and in His ministering work. In the writings of the Old Testament, we understand the rituals and ceremonies of Judaism symbolically pointed to the coming of Messiah--in other words, the rites of Judaism were but shadows of things to come. Hebrews tells us that Christ Jesus is better than anything mere religion has to offer. All the pomp and circumstance of religion pales in comparison to the person, work, and ministry of Christ Jesus. It is the superiority of our Lord Jesus, then, that remains the theme of this eloquently written letter.

    Practical Application: Rich in foundational Christian doctrine, the Epistle to the Hebrews also gives us encouraging examples of God's "faith heroes" who persevered in spite of great difficulties and adverse circumstances (Hebrews 11). These members of God's Hall of Faith provide overwhelming evidence as to the unconditional surety and absolute reliability of God. Likewise, we can maintain perfect confidence in God's rich promises, regardless of our circumstances, by meditating upon the rock-solid faithfulness of God's workings in the lives of His Old Testament saints.The writer of Hebrews gives ample encouragement to believers, but there are five solemn warnings we must heed: There is the danger of neglect (Hebrews 2:1-4), the danger of unbelief (Hebrews 3:7-4,13), the danger of spiritual immaturity (Hebrews 5:11-6,20), the danger of failing to endure (Hebrews 10:26-39), and the inherent danger of refusing God (Hebrews 12:25-29). And so we find in this crowning masterpiece a great wealth of doctrine, a refreshing spring of encouragement, and a source of sound, practical warnings against slothfulness in our Christian walk.
    But there is still more, for in Hebrews we find a magnificently rendered portrait of our Lord Jesus Christ--the Author and Finisher of our great salvation (Hebrews 12:2)...........................

    Author: The author of this epistle (letter) is James, also called James The Just, who is thought to be the brother of Jesus Christ (Matthew 13:55, Mark 6:3). James was not a believer (John 7:3-5) until after the resurrection (Acts 1:14, 1 Corinthians 15:7, Galatians 1:19).
    He became the head of the Jerusalem church, and is mentioned first as a pillar of the Church (Galatians 2:9).

    Date of Writing: The Book of James is probably the oldest book of the New Testament, written perhaps as early as A.D. 45, before the first council of Jerusalem in A.D. 50. James was martyred in approximately 62 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: Some think that this epistle was written in response to an overzealous interpretation of Paul’s teaching that was never intended. This extreme view, called antinomianism, held that through faith in Christ one is completely free from all Old Testament law, all legalism, all secular law, and all the morality of a society. James was felt to be intensely Jewish and this epistle is directed to Jewish Christians scattered among all the nations. In this context the dissonance with Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles, and his teachings fade. Martin Luther, who detested this letter and called it “the epistle of straw,” failed to recognize this very important context. While Pauline teachings concentrate on our justification with God, James’ teachings concentrate on our discourse and justification amongst each other. James was writing to Jews to encourage them in their continued growth in this new Christian faith.
    James emphasizes that good actions will naturally flow from those who are filled with the spirit and questions whether someone may or may not have a saving faith if the fruits of the spirit cannot be seen, much as Paul describes in Galatians 5:22-23.Key Verses: "Whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy.
    For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow" (James 1:2-3)."Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry" (James 1:19)."It isn’t enough just to have faith. Faith that doesn’t show itself by good deeds is not faith at all—it is dead and useless. Now someone may argue, 'Some people have faith; others have good deeds.' I say, 'I can’t see your faith if you don’t have good deeds, but I will show you my faith through my good deeds'” (James 2:17-18)."The tongue is a small thing, but what enormous damage it can do" (James 3:5)."The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results" (James 5:16).Brief Summary:

    The Book of James outlines the faith walk through Genuine Religion (1:1-27), Genuine Faith (2:1-3:12) and Genuine Wisdom (3:13-5:20). This book contains a remarkable parallel to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7. James begins in the first chapter by describing the overall traits of the faith walk. In chapter two and the beginning of chapter three he discusses social justice and a discourse on faith in action.
    He then compares and contrasts the difference between worldly and Godly wisdom and asks us to turn away from evil and draw close to God. James gives a particularly severe rebuke to the rich who hoard and those who are self-reliant. Finally he ends, albeit abruptly, upbeat with encouragement to be patient in suffering, praying and caring for one another and bolstering our faith through fellowship.

    Practical Application: We see in the Book of James a challenge to “walk the walk” and “talk the talk” of a faithful follower of Jesus Christ. While our faith walk, to be certain, requires a growth of knowledge about the word, James exhorts us to not stop there.
    Many Christians will find this reading challenging as James presents us with 60 obligations in only 108 verses. It is hard-hitting as he asks us in verse 1:23 to look at ourselves in the mirror and then straighten ourselves up. He focuses on the truths of Jesus’ words in the Sermon on the Mount and motivates us to act upon what He taught.An unknown author has stated, “Faith is not believing in spite of the evidence; faith is obeying in spite of the consequences.” Read James and go forth with a faith rooted in love, and evidenced by action.............

    1 PETER
    Author: 1 Peter 1:1 identifies the author of the Book of 1 Peter as the Apostle Peter.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 1 Peter was likely written between 60 and 65 A.D.

    Purpose of Writing: Peter understood persecution. He was beaten, threatened, punished and jailed for preaching the Word of God. He knew what it took to stand strong.
    This knowledge of living hope in Jesus was the message and Christ's example was the one to follow. Peter handed down rules for wives, husbands, slaves, elders and just all people in general.Key Verses: 1 Peter 1:3, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead."1 Peter 2:9, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."1 Peter 2:24, "He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed."1 Peter 5:8-9, "Be self-controlled and alert.
    Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

    "Brief Summary: This time of persecution is despairing, but Peter reveals that this is actually a time to rejoice. He says to count it a privilege to suffer for the sake of Christ as their Savior suffered for them. This letter of Peter's makes reference to his personal experiences with Jesus and his sermons from the book of Acts. Peter confirms Satan as the great enemy of every Christian but the assurance of Christ's future return gives the incentive of hope.Practical Application: The assurance of eternal life is given to all Christians. One way to identify with Christ is to share in His suffering. To us that would be to endure insults and slurs from those who call us "goodie two shoes" or "holier than thou." This is so minor compared to what Christ suffered for us on the Cross. Stand up for what you know and believe is right and rejoice when the world and Satan aim to hurt you..................

    2 Peter
    Author: 2 Peter 1:1 specifically states that the apostle Peter was the author of 2 Peter. Peter’s authorship of 2 Peter has been challenged more than that of any other book in the New Testament. However, the early church fathers found no good reason to reject it. We find no good reason to reject Peter's authorship of 2 Peter.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 2 Peter was written toward the end of Peter’s life. Since Peter was martyred in Rome during the reign of Nero, his death must have occurred prior to A.D. 68. He very likely wrote 2 Peter between A.D. 65 and 68.

    Purpose of Writing: Peter was alarmed that false teachers were beginning to infiltrate the churches. He called on Christians to grow and become strong in their faith so that they could detect and combat the spreading apostasy. He strongly stressed the authenticity of the Word of God and the sure return of the Lord Jesus.

    Key Verses: 2 Peter 1:3-4, “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness. Through these He has given us His very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”
    2 Peter 3:9: “The Lord is not slow in keeping His promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”
    2 Peter 3:18: But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be glory both now and forever! Amen.”
    The key word is "knowledge," with its related words, occurring at least 13 times in the Book of 2 Peter.

    Brief Summary: Knowing that his time was short (2 Peter 1:13-15) and these churches faced immediate danger (2 Peter 2:1-3), Peter called upon the readers to refresh their memories (2 Peter 1:13) and stimulate their thinking (2 Peter 3:1-2) so that they would remember his teaching (2 Peter 1:15). He challenged the believers to become more mature in their faith by adding to it specific Christians virtues, thereby becoming effective and productive in their knowledge of Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:5-9). The Old and New Testament writers were set forth as their authority for their faith (2 Peter 1:12-21, 3:2, 3:15-16). Peter desired they become strong in their faith to withstand the false teachers that had crept in and adversely affected the churches. In his denunciation of them, he described their conduct, their condemnation, and their characteristics (2 Peter chapter 2), and also that they ridiculed the Lord’s Second Coming (2 Peter 3:3-7). For the Christians, Peter taught that the Second Coming is the incentive for holy living (2 Peter 3:14). After a final warning, Peter again encouraged them to grow in the grace and knowledge of their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He concluded with a word of praise to his Lord and Savior (2 Peter 3:18).

    Connections: In his denunciation of false prophets, Peter repeats a prevalent Old Testament theme that must have been very familiar to his readers. Many of the early Christians were converted Jews who had been well taught in the law and the prophets. When Peter referred to the “word of the prophets” of the Old Testament in 2 Peter 1:19-21, he at one time denounced false prophets and affirmed that true prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit who spoke through them (2 Samuel 23:2). Jeremiah was equally forceful in his criticism of false prophets, asking, “How long will this continue in the hearts of these lying prophets, who prophesy the delusions of their own minds?” (Jeremiah 23:26). Clearly, the same deluded false teachers who plagued God’s people in both the Old and New Testaments are still with us, making Peter’s second epistle as relevant today as it was 2000 years ago.

    Practical Application: Certainly, as Christians in the 21st century, we are nearer our Lord’s return than the first-century Christians to whom this epistle was written. Through television and other means of mass communications, mature Christians are aware that many charlatans are parading as true Christian leaders, and that immature Christians have been “taken in” by their quackery and false interpretation of Scriptures. It behooves all born-again Christians to be so grounded in the Word that we will be able to discern truth from error.

    The same prescription for growth in faith that Peter gave (2 Peter 1:5-11), when applied to our lives, will assure us also a rich reward “into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:10-11). The foundation for our faith is and always will be the same Word of God that Peter preached.

    1 JohnAuthor: 1, 2, and 3 John have from earliest times been attributed to the apostle John, who also wrote the Gospel of John. The content, style, and vocabulary seem to warrant the conclusion that these three epistles were addressed to the same readers as the Gospel of John.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 1 John was likely written between A.D. 85-95.

    Purpose of Writing: The Book of 1 John seems to be a summary that assumes the readers' knowledge of the gospel as written by John and offers certainty for their faith in Christ. The first epistle indicates that the readers were confronted with the error of gnosticism, which became a more serious problem in the second century. As a philosophy of religion it held that matter is evil and spirit is good. The solution to the tension between these two was knowledge, or gnosis, through which man rose from the mundane to the spiritual. In the gospel message, this led to two false theories concerning the person of Christ, Docetism—regarding the human Jesus as a ghost—and Cerinthianism—making Jesus a dual personality, at times human and at times divine. The key purpose of 1 John is to set boundaries on the content of faith and to give believers assurance of their salvation.

    Key Verses: 1 John 1:9, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."

    1 John 3:6, "No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him."

    1 John 4:4, "You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world."

    1 John 5:13, "I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life."

    The key word is "knowledge," with its related words, occurring at least 13 times in the Book of 1 John.

    Brief Summary: False spiritual teachers were a big problem in the early church. Because there was not a complete New Testament that believers could refer to, many churches fell prey to pretenders who taught their own ideas and advanced themselves as leaders. John wrote this letter to set the record straight on some important issues, particularly concerning the identity of Jesus Christ.

    Because John's letter was about the basics of faith in Christ, it helped his readers reflect honestly on their faith. It helped them answer the question, Are we true believers? John told them that they could tell by looking at their actions. If they loved one another, that was evidence of God's presence in their lives. But if they bickered and fought all the time or were selfish and did not look out for one another, they were betraying that they, in fact, did not know God.

    That did not mean they had to be perfect. In fact, John also recognized that believing involved admitting our sins and seeking God's forgiveness. Depending on God for cleansing from guilt, along with admitting our wrongs against others and making amends, was another important part of getting to know God.

    Connections: One of the most often-quoted passages regarding sin is found in 1 John 2:16. In this passage, John describes the three aspects of sin that recall the first and most earth-shattering temptations in all of Scripture. The first sin—the disobedience of Eve—was the result of her yielding to the same three temptations as we find in Genesis 3:6: the lust of the flesh (“good for food”); the lust of the eyes (“pleasing to the eye”); and the pride of life (“desirable for gaining wisdom”).

    Practical Application: The Book of 1 John is a book of love and joy. It explains the fellowship we have with others and with Jesus Christ. It differentiates between happiness, which is temporary and fleeting, and true joy, which 1 John tells us how to achieve. If we take the words written by John and we apply them to our daily lives, the true love, commitment, fellowship, and joy we long for will be ours.

    The apostle John knew Christ well. He is telling us that we can all have that close, intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. We have the witness of men who had direct and personal contact with Him. The Gospel writers present their solidly based testimony on a historical reality. Now, how does that apply to our lives? It explains to us that Jesus came here as the Son of God to create a union with us based on His grace, mercy, love, and acceptance. So many times people think Jesus is off in some faraway place and that He doesn't really concern Himself with our daily struggles, issues, and concerns. But John is telling us that Jesus is right here with us in both the simple, mundane parts of our lives and in the complex, soul-wrenching parts as well. John testifies as a witness of his personal experiences that God became flesh and lived among men. That means Christ came here to live with us and He still lives with us. As He walked the earth alongside John, so does He walk through each and every day with us. We need to apply this truth to our lives and live as if Jesus were standing right next to us every second of the day. If we put this truth into practice, Christ will add holiness to our lives, making us more and more like Him.

    2 John
    Author: The Book of 2 John does not directly name its author. The tradition from the earliest days of the church states that the author was the apostle John. There have been various conjectures over the years that another disciple of Christ named John may have been responsible for this letter. However, all the evidence points to the author as John the beloved disciple who also wrote the Gospel of John.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 2 John would most likely have been written at about the same time as John's other letters, 1 and 3 John, between A.D. 85-95.

    Purpose of Writing: The Book of 2 John is an urgent plea that the readers of John's letter should show their love for God and His son Jesus by obeying the commandment to love each other and live their lives in obedience to the Scriptures. The Book of 2 John is also a strong warning to be on the lookout for deceivers who were going about saying that Christ had not actually risen in the flesh.

    Key Verses: 2 John 6: "And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love."

    2 John 8-9: "Watch out that you do not lose what you have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. Anyone who runs ahead and does not continue in the teaching of Christ does not have God; whoever continues in the teaching has both the Father and the Son."

    Brief Summary: The Book of 2 John is addressed to "the chosen lady and her children." This could either have been a lady of important standing in the church or a code which refers to the local church and its congregation. In those days when Christians were being persecuted such coded salutations were often used.

    The Book of 2 John is largely concerned with an urgent warning concerning deceivers who were not teaching the exact doctrine of Christ and who maintained that Jesus did not actually rise in the flesh but only spiritually. John is very anxious that true believers should be aware of these false teachers and have nothing to do with them.

    Connections: John describes love not as an emotion or feeling, but as obedience to the commandments of God. Jesus reiterated the importance of the commandments, especially the “first and greatest commandment,” love for God (Deuteronomy 6:5), and the second, love for one another (Matthew 22:37-40; Leviticus 19:18). Far from abolishing the Old Testament law of God, Jesus came to fulfill it by providing the means of its fulfillment in Himself.

    Practical Application: It is extremely important that we check everything we see, hear, and read that claims to be “Christian” with the Scriptures. This cannot be too strongly emphasized because one of Satan’s greatest weapons is deceit. It is very easy to be taken in by a new and exciting doctrine that appears to be based on Scripture but which, if examined closely, is in fact a departure from the Word of God. If what appears to be happening does not line up explicitly with Scripture, then this is false and not of the Spirit, and we should have nothing to do with it.

    3 John
    Author: The Book of 3 John does not directly name its author. The tradition from the earliest days of the church has been that the apostle John is the author. There have been occasional doubts raised by those who thought it possible that this was written by another disciple of the Lord named John, but all the evidence points to the author being John.

    Date of Writing: The Book of 3 John would most likely have been written at about the same time as John's other letters, 1 and 2 John, between A.D. 85-95.

    Purpose of Writing: John’s purpose in writing this third epistle is threefold. First, he writes to commend and encourage his beloved co-worker, Gaius, in his ministry of hospitality to the itinerant messengers who were going from place to place to preach the Gospel of Christ. Second, he indirectly warns and condemns the behavior of one Diotrephes, a dictatorial leader who had taken over one of the churches in the province of Asia, and whose behavior was directly opposed to all that the apostle and his Gospel stood for. Third, he commends the example of Demetrius who was reported as having a good testimony from all.

    Key Verses: 3 John 4: "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth."

    3 John 11: "Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God."

    Brief Summary: John is writing with his usual strong emphasis on truth to this much-loved brother in Christ, Gaius, a layman of some wealth and distinction in a city near Ephesus. He highly commends Gaius' care and hospitality to his messengers whose mission was to take the Gospel from place to place, whether they were known to him or were strangers. John exhorts him to continue to to do good and not to imitate evil, as in the example of Diotrephes. This man had taken over the leadership of a church in Asia and not only refused to recognize John's authority as an apostle but also to receive his letters and submit to his directions. He also circulated malicious slanders against John and excommunicated members who showed support and hospitality to John's messengers. Before John concludes his letter he also commends the example of Demetrius, of whom he has heard excellent reports.

    Connections: The concept of offering hospitality to strangers has plenty of precedent in the Old Testament. Acts of hospitality in Israel included the humble and gracious reception of aliens into the home for food, lodging and protection (Genesis 18:2-8, 19:1-8; Job 31:16-23, 31-32). In addition, Old Testament teaching portrays the Israelites as alienated people who are dependent on God’s hospitality (Psalm 39:12) and God as the One who graciously meets their needs, redeeming them from Egypt and feeding and clothing them in the wilderness (Exodus 16; Deuteronomy 8:2-5).

    Practical Application: John, as always, emphasizes the importance of walking in the truth of the Gospel. Hospitality, support and encouragement for our fellow Christians are some of the main precepts of the teachings of Jesus, and Gaius was obviously an outstanding example of this ministry. We should do the same whenever we can, welcoming visiting missionaries, preachers and strangers (as long as we are sure that they are true believers) not only to our churches but also to our homes, and offer them whatever support and encouragement they need.

    We also need to be careful always to follow only the example of those whose words and actions are in line with the Gospel, and to be discerning enough to be aware of those such as Diotrephes whose behavior is far from being like that which Jesus taught.

    Author: Jude 1 identifies the author of the Book of Jude as Jude, a brother of James. This likely refers to Jesus' half-brother Jude, as Jesus also had a half-brother named James (Matthew 13:55). Jude likely does not identify himself as a brother of Jesus out of humility and reverence for Christ.

    Date of Writing: The Book of Jude is closely related to the book of 2 Peter. The date of authorship for Jude depends on whether Jude used content from 2 Peter, or Peter used content from Jude when writing 2 Peter. The Book of Jude was written somewhere between A.D. 60 and 80.

    Purpose of Writing: The Book of Jude is an important book for us today because it is written for the end times, for the end of the church age. The church age began at the Day of Pentecost. Jude is the only book given entirely to the great apostasy. Jude writes that evil works are the evidence of apostasy. He admonishes us to contend for the faith, for there are tares among the wheat. False prophets are in the church and the saints are in danger. Jude is a small but important book worthy of study, written for the Christian of today.

    Key Verses: Jude 3: “Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.”

    Jude 17-19: "But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, ‘In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.’ These are the men who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit.”

    Jude 24-25: “To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy—to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.”

    Brief Summary: According to verse 3, Jude was anxious to write about our salvation; however, he changed topics to address contending for the faith. This faith embodies the complete body of Christian doctrine taught by Christ, later passed on to the apostles. After Jude warns of false teachers (verses 4-16), he advises us on how we can succeed in spiritual warfare (verses 20-21). Here is wisdom we would do well to accept and adhere to as we go through these days of the end times.

    Connections: The Book of Jude is filled with references to the Old Testament, including the Exodus (v. 5); Satan’s rebellion (v. 6); Sodom and Gomorrah (v. 7); Moses’ death (v. 9); Cain (v. 11); Balaam (v. 11); Korah (v. 11); Enoch (vv. 14,15); and Adam (v. 14). Jude’s use of the well-known historical illustrations of Sodom and Gomorrah, Cain, Balaam, and Korah reminded the Jewish Christians of the necessity of true faith and obedience.

    Practical Application: We live in a unique time in history and this little book can help equip us for the untold challenges of living in the end times. Today’s Christian must be on guard for false doctrines which can so easily deceive us if we are not well versed in the Word. We need to know the Gospel—to protect and defend it—and accept the Lordship of Christ, which is evidenced by a life-change. Authentic faith always reflects Christ-like behavior. Our life in Christ should reflect our very own heart-knowledge that rests on the authority of the Almighty Creator and Father who puts faith into practice. We need that personal relationship with Him; only then will we know His voice so well that we will follow no other.


    Author: Revelation 1:1,4,9 and 22:8 specifically identify the author of the Book of Revelation as the apostle John.

    Date of Writing: The Book of Revelation was likely written between A.D. 90 and 95.

    Purpose of Writing: The Revelation of Jesus Christ was given to John by God “to show his servants what must soon take place.” This book is filled with mysteries about things to come. It is the final warning that the world will surely end and judgment will be certain. It gives us a tiny glimpse of heaven and all of the glories awaiting those who keep their robes white. Revelation takes us through the great tribulation with all its woes and the final fire that all unbelievers will face for eternity. The book reiterates the fall of Satan and the doom he and his angels are bound for. We are shown the duties of all creatures and angels of heaven and the promises of the saints that will live forever with Jesus in the New Jerusalem. Like John, we find it hard to describe what we read in the book of Revelation.

    Key Verses: Revelation 1:19, "Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later."

    Revelation 13:16-17, "He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name."

    Revelation 19:11, "I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war."

    Revelation 20:11, "Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them."

    Revelation 21:1, "Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea."

    Brief Summary: The Revelation is lavish in colorful descriptions of the visions which proclaim for us the last days before Christ’s return and the ushering in of the new heaven and new earth. The Revelation begins with letters to the seven churches of Asia Minor, then goes on to reveal the series of devastations poured out upon the earth; the mark of the beast, “666”; the climactic battle of Armageddon; the binding of Satan; the reign of the Lord; the Great White Throne Judgment; and the nature of the eternal city of God. Prophecies concerning Jesus Christ are fulfilled and a concluding call to His Lordship assures us that He will soon return.

    Connections: The Book of Revelation is the culmination of the prophecies about the end times, beginning with the Old Testament. The description of the antichrist mentioned in Daniel 9:27 is developed fully in chapter 13 of Revelation. Outside of Revelation, examples of apocalyptic literature in the Bible are Daniel chapters 7-12, Isaiah chapters 24-27, Ezekiel chapters 37-41, and Zechariah chapters 9-12. All these prophecies come together in the Book of Revelation.

    Practical Application: Have you accepted Christ as your Savior? If so, you have nothing to fear from God’s judgment of the world as described in the Book of Revelation. The Judge is on our side. Before the final judgment begins, we must witness to friends and neighbors about God’s offer of eternal life in Christ. The events in this book are real. We must live our lives like we believe it so that others will notice our joy about our future and want to join us in that new and glorious city.
  2. Samuel Pickens

    Samuel Pickens New Member

    Likes Received:
    Good work Christina.

    The KJV is slightly different than your version though. But, I think you'll enjoy the data below.

    A Bible in the University of Gottingen is written on 2,470 palm leaves.

    According to statistics from Wycliffe International, the Society of
    Gideons, and the International Bible Society, the number of new Bibles
    that are sold, given away, or otherwise distributed in the United
    States is about 168,000 per day.

    The Bible can be read aloud in 70 hours.

    There are 8,674 different Hebrew words in the Bible, 5,624 different
    Greek words, and 12,143 different English words in the King James Version.

    A number of verses in the Bible (KJV) contain all but 1 letter of the
    alphabet: Ezra 7:21 contains all but the letter j; Joshua 7:24,
    1 Kings 1:9, 1 Chronicles 12:40, 2 Chronicles 36:10, Ezekiel 28:13,
    Daniel 4:37, and Haggai 1:1 contain all but q; 2 Kings 16:15 and
    1 Chronicles 4:10 contain all but z; and Galatians 1:14 contains all
    but k.

    Number of books in the Bible: 66
    Chapters: 1,189
    Verses: 31,101
    Words: 783,137
    Letters: 3,566,480
    Number of promises given in the Bible: 1,260
    Commands: 6,468
    Predictions: over 8,000
    Fulfilled prophecy: 3,268 verses
    Unfulfilled prophecy: 3,140
    Number of questions: 3,294
    Longest name: Mahershalalhashbaz (Isaiah 8:1)
    Longest verse: Esther 8:9 (78 words)
    Shortest verse: John 11:35 (2 words: "Jesus wept").
    Middle books: Micah and Nahum
    Middle verse: Psalm 118:8
    Middle chapter: Psalm 117
    Shortest chapter (by number of words): Psalm 117 (by number of words)
    Longest book: Psalms (150 chapters)
    Shortest book (by number of words): 3 John
    Longest chapter: Psalm 119 (176 verses)
    Number of times the word "God" appears: 3,358
    Number of times the word "Lord" appears: 7,736
    Number of different authors: 40
    Number of languages the Bible has been translated into: over 1,200
    Number of books: 39
    Chapters: 929
    Verses: 23,114
    Words: 602,585
    Letters: 2,278,100
    Middle book: Proverbs
    Middle chapter: Job 20
    Middle verses: 2 Chronicles 20:17,18
    Smallest book: Obadiah
    Shortest verse: 1 Chronicles 1:25
    Longest verse: Esther 8:9
    Longest chapter: Psalms 119
    Largest book: Psalms
    Number of books: 27
    Chapters: 260
    Verses: 7,957
    Words: 180,552
    Letters: 838,380
    Middle book: 2 Thessalonians
    Middle chapters: Romans 8, 9
    Middle verse: Acts 27:17
    Smallest book: 3 John
    Shortest verse: John 11:35
    Longest verse: Revelation 20:4
    Longest chapter: Luke 1
    Largest book: Luke
  3. Samuel Pickens

    Samuel Pickens New Member

    Likes Received:
    Gotta read this completely --- it is great!

    H. L. Mencken (1880-1956), of all people, the agnostic Baltimore Sun reporter and literary critic who covered the Scopes trial gave eloquent testimony to the superiority of the KJV. Mencken's quote I give in full from the preface to Gustavus Paine's The Learned Men (the KJV translators):

    It is the most beautiful of all the translations of the Bible; indeed, it is probably the most beautiful piece of writing in all the literature of the world. Many attempts have been made to purge it of its errors and obscurities. An English Revised Version was published in 1885 and an American Revised Version in 1901, and since then many learned but misguided men have sought to produce translations that should be mathematically accurate, and in the plain speech of everyday. But the Authorized Version has never yielded to any of them, for it is palpably and overwhelmingly better than they are, just as it is better than the Greek New Testament, or the Vulgate, or the Septuagint. Its English is extraordinarily simple, pure, eloquent, lovely. It is a mine of lordly and incomparable poetry, at once the most stirring and the most touching ever heard of.”

    Of course the KJB has no errors or true obscurities, but overall such a statement from H. L. Mencken is astounding. For us today the KJV is better than the Greek New Testament and is the most beautiful writing in all literature. The greatest Greek scholars among us do not think in Koine Greek, and the priesthood of the believer requires that those in the pews have faithful vernacular translations.

    Since Gustavus Paine did not give the location of this quote of Mencken's I called Mr. Fitzpatrick, curator of the Mencken Collection at the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, and asked him whether he had seen the Paine quote. He had not, but he said it certainly sounded like Mencken. He sent me some other newspaper and magazine articles written by Mencken. They are just as strong as the Paine quote. If any man thinks KJV only people are rough on liberal theologians and text critics that man should look at the last sentence of an article entitled “The Book.” There Mencken said, obviously in jest, but a jest that was made as a commentary on modern translations, that the 300th anniversary of the KJV in 1911 should be celebrated by the “wholesale hanging of so-called biblical scholars.”

    In an article from the American Mercury of December, 1931 Mencken defends J. Gresham Machen against the modernists at Princeton who had just tried and fired him and even seems to take Machen's side. Machen graduated as valedictorian from Johns Hopkins University. Mencken and Machen were both in Baltimore at the same time, but Mencken never met Machen. Nevertheless, he wrote several stories about Machen's trial by the Presbyterian General Assembly which showed quite a bit of respect for him and took his side. Machen was the first man tried by a liberal university for being orthodox. But though he was a believer he favored the critical text. Soon after he was fired from Princeton he founded Westminster Theological Seminary, and in turn it became the birthplace of the NIV..

    Mencken did meet many times with Howard A. Kelly, M.D., the great and famous fundamentalist physician who founded and headed the Department of Ob-Gyn at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore from its beginning in 1889 until 1933. Kelly was one of the great “four doctors” who were present from the beginning of the Hospital. Their famous group portrait hangs today in the rotunda of the Hopkins Hospital. They were Sir William Osler, medicine, William Halstead, surgery, William Welch, pathology, and Howard Kelly, obstetrics and gynecology. Kelly was the only fundamentalist of the four. But Mencken, as one would expect, showed considerably less respect for Kelly than for Machen, because Kelly was a soul winner who believed in the any moment second coming and a literal 6 day creation. Kelly was also a prohibitionist and very dry while Machen, according to Mencken's newspaper articles was “a wet” and “may have voted for Al Smith in the 1928 election.” Mencken called Kelly's views simian. So the differences, in Mencken's mind, between Machen and Kelly were creationism, prohibition, and eschatology. But it is striking that Menken preferred the English Bible, the KJV, to Machen's critical Greek text. Mencken was courageous enough to defend Machen aganinst the liberal Princeton academics and also courageous enough to admit the superiority of the KJV. At least in these instances Mencken was right.