Saturday, April 9, 2011

BOOKS OF THE BIBLE AND THEIR THEME

OLD TESTAMENT
Genesis
To record God's creation of the world and his desire to have a people set apart to worship him.
Exodus
To record events of Israel's deliverance from Egypt and development as a nation.
Leviticus
A handbook for the Levites outlining their priestly duties in worship: a guidebook of holy living for the Hebrews.
Numbers
To tell the story of how Israel prepared to enter the Promised Land, how they sinned and were punished, and how they prepared to try again.
Deuteronomy
To remind the people of what God has done and encourage them to rededicate their lives to him.
Joshua
To give the history of Israel's conquest of the Promised Land.
Judges
To show that God's judgment again sin is certain, and his forgiveness of sin and restoration of fellowship is just as certain for those who call on him.
Ruth
To show how three people remained strong in character and true to God even when the people around them chose to be disobedient.
1 Samuel
To record the life of Samuel, Israel's last judge; the reign and decline of Saul, Israel's first king; and the choice and preparation of David, Israel's greatest king.
2 Samuel
To record the history of David's reign.  To demonstrate effective leadership under God.  To reveal that one person can make a difference.  To show the personal qualities that please God.  To depict David as an ideal leader of an imperfect kingdom.  To foreshadow Christ, who will be the ideal leader of a new and perfect kingdom.
1 Kings
To contrast the lives of those who live for God and the lives of those who refuse to do so, using the history of the kings of Israel and Judah
2 Kings
To demonstrate the consequences that await all who refuse to make God their true leader.
1 Chronicles
To unify God's people, to trace the Davidic line, and to teach that genuine worship ought to be the center of individual and national life.
2 Chronicles
To unify the nation around true worship of God by showing his standard for judging kings.
Ezra
To show God's faithfulness as he kept his promise to restore his people to their land.
Nehemiah
The last of the Old Testament historical books records the history of the third return to Jerusalem after captivity, telling how the walls were rebuilt and the renewal of faith of the former exiles. 
Esther
To demonstrate God's sovereignty and his concerns for his people.
Job
To demonstrate God's sovereignty and the meaning of true faith.  It addresses the question, Why does God allow bad things happen to good people?
Psalms
To provide a collection of songs expressing praise, thanksgiving and confession to God.
Proverbs
To teach people how to be understanding, just and fair in everything they do.
Ecclesiastes
To spare future generations the bitterness of learning through their own experience that life is meaningless apart from God.
Song of Songs
To tell of the love between a bridegroom (King Solomon) and his bride, to affirm the value of marriage, and to picture God's love for his people.
Isaiah
To call Judah back to God and to tell of God's salvation through the Messiah.
Jeremiah
To urge God's people to turn from their sins and to turn back to God.
Lamentations
To teach people that to disobey God is to invite disaster and to show that God suffers when his people suffer.
Ezekiel
To announce God's judgment and to foretell the salvation of God's people.
Daniel
To give a historical account of the faithful Jews who lived in captivity and to show how God is in control of heaven and earth.
Hosea
To illustrate God's love for his sinful people.
Joel
To warn Judah of God's impending judgment because of their sins and to urge them to turn back to God.
Amos
To show God's judgment on Israel for their idolatry and oppression of the poor.
Obadiah
To show that God judges those who have harmed his people.
Jonah
To show the extent of God's grace -the message of salvation is for all people.
Micah
To warn God's people that judgment is coming and to offer forgiveness to those who seek it.
Nahum
To pronounce God's judgment on Assyria and to comfort Judah with this truth.
Habakkuk
To show that God is still in control of the world despite the apparent triumph of evil.
Zephaniah
To shake the people of Judah out of their complacency and urge them to return to God.
Haggai
To encourage the returning exiles to complete the rebuilding of the Temple.
Zechariah
To give hope to God's people by revealing God's future deliverance through the Messiah.
Malachi
To confront the people with their sins and to restore their relationship with God.

NEW TESTAMENT
Matthew
To prove that Jesus is the Messiah, the eternal King.
Mark
To present Jesus' person, work and teachings.
Luke
To present an accurate account of the life of Christ and to present Christ as the perfect man and Savior.
John
To prove conclusively that Jesus is the Son of God and that all who believe in him will have eternal life.
Acts
To give an accurate account of the birth and growth of the Christian church.
Romans
To introduce Paul to the Romans and to give a sample of his message before he arrived in Rome.
1 Corinthians
To identify problems in the Corinthian church, to offer solutions, and to teach the believers how to live for Christ in a corrupt society.
2 Corinthians
To affirm Paul's own ministry, defend his authority as an apostle, and to disprove the false teachers in Corinth.
Galatians
To contradict the Judaizers (who taught that Gentile believers must obey the Jewish law to be saved), and to remind Christians about faith and freedom in Christ.
Ephesians
To strengthen the faith of the believers in Ephesus by explaining the nature and purpose of the church - the body of Christ.
Philippians
To thank the Philippians and to encourage them in the belief that true joy comes from Jesus Christ.
Colossians
To combat errors in the church and to show that believers have everything they need in Christ.
1 Thessalonians
To strengthen the faith of Christians in Thessalonica and to pass on the assurance of Christ's return.
2 Thessalonians
To clear up the confusion about the second coming of Christ.
1 Timothy
To encourage and instruct Timothy.
2 Timothy
To give final instructions and encouragement to Timothy, a leader of the church at Ephesus.
Titus
To advise Titus in his responsibility of supervising the churches on the island of Crete.
Philemon
To convince Philemon to forgive and accept as a brother in faith, his runaway slave, Onesimus
Hebrews
To present Christ's superiority to angels and the great prophets of the Old Testament.
James
To expose unethical practices and to teach right Christian behavior.
1 Peter
To offer encouragement to suffering Christians.
2 Peter
To warn Christians about false teachers and to encourage them to grow in their faith and knowledge of Christ.
1 John
To reassure Christians in their faith and to encounter false teachings.
2 John
To emphasize the basics of following Christ, truth and love, and to warn against the false teachers that had infiltrated the church.
3 John
To commend Gaius for his hospitality and to encourage him in his Christian life.
Jude
To remind the church of the need for constant vigilance in order to keep strong in the faith and to defend it against false ideas about God and Scriptures.
Revelation
To reveal the full identity of Christ and to warn and provide hope for believers.