Many of our modern words like genes, genetics, generations, and genealogy, come from the same root word as Genesis, meaning origin or creation.
The book of Genesis reveals our beginnings. Here we have the beginnings of the universe, of the human race, of sin; the beginning of God’s program of redemption and of the Jewish people, who were the ones through whom God would bring the Messiah into the world.
The first eleven chapters of Genesis focus on primeval history, while the rest of the book gives patriarchal history—the story of Abraham and his descendants.
Genesis 1 through 11 describes four great events:
• The Creation, • The Fall, • The Flood, and • The Tower of Babel.
While Genesis 12 through 50 tell of four great persons:
The book of Genesis sets the stage for the entire biblical story and provides foundational lessons for us.
As we read Genesis, we’re reminded that no matter what life brings or how evil intrudes, God has a plan; and His ultimate plan cannot be deterred.
Many of the events recorded in Genesis permanently affected life on earth. Yet in spite of those epic events, God’s plan remained on schedule.
We can trust His ability to make sense of our lives even if our world appears to be upside down.
When we read the book of Genesis, we’re reminded that our Creator God is sovereign and He is always in control—from beginning to end, from Genesis to Revelation.
God is the origin of all things—the universe, the earth, life, humanity, the Jewish people, and the plan of redemption.
“But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
Now therefore fear ye not: I will nourish you, and your little ones. And he comforted them, and spake kindly unto them” (Gen 50:20-21).
Remember that no matter what life brings or how evil intrudes, our Creator has a plan, His sovereignty cannot be thwarted, and His plan is right on schedule.
The Bible contains everything we need to know for time and eternity. It’s the wisdom of God distilled for human consumption.
It’s the mind of Christ between two covers; knowledge that enlightens, advice that counsels, food that feeds, milk that nourishes, honey that sweetens, gold that enriches, a sword that defends, a hammer that molds us, and a lamp that guides us.
Every word of the Bible was penned by a person like you or me, yet each word was breathed out by God as holy men of old spoke as the Spirit moved them.
The resulting Book is unique, inspired, infallible, inerrant, never-failing, ever-reviving, as old as relevant as tomorrow’s headlines, and forever established in heaven.
So why don’t we read it more? A recent survey reported that 66% of the population agrees that the Bible contains everything we need to know for a meaningful life. But according to another poll, only 19% reads the Bible daily.
Perhaps we’re overwhelmed with its contents, thinking, “I just don’t understand the Bible. It’s confusing. I don’t know how it’s put together or what it means.”
Well, here’s a resource to help, whether you’re new to God’s Word or a veteran student. The following pages provide the brief summary of each book in the Bible – Genesis to Revelation – what it means and what it means to you.
These 66 digests give you each book in a nutshell, whether you’re visiting well-known locations like John and Romans or seldom-visited sites like Jude, Obadiah, or Leviticus.
Jesus said we shouldn’t live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. He could have said, “every book,” for God has divided His lessons to us into 66 segments – none of which should be missed.
May blessings abound to you times sixty-six as you open and obey God’s Word day by day!
The literary genres of the book of Revelation are an Apocalypse, a Prophecy, and an Epistle (or Letter). The Disciple/Apostle John,who followed Jesus Christ and witnessed His crucifixion, authored it.
John wrote Revelation while a prisoner on the Island of Patmos, approximately 85-95 A.D. Its purpose is to give encouragement and hope for all Christians to continue watching for the return and triumph of the Lord Jesus Christ.
It also is to warn of the Final Judgment that nonbelievers will endure on that Last Day.
John wrote that Revelation is special because,
Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand (1:3).
Chapters 1-3 – John describes the details of the setting as he received this revelation (unveiling of truth). John was elderly and imprisoned on the Island of Patmos when he received an apocalyptic vision from an angel.
With this vision he was instructed to write to seven churches about what he had seen.
Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter (1:19).
This is the pattern that is followed by John. He describes of the seven churches their qualities and/or their weaknesses and failings (such as Sardis and Laodicea).
Chapters 4-20 – John depicts what he sees in his vision about the Spiritual Realm. He describes Jesus Christ as the “Slain Lamb” who is the only one able to open the book with 7 seals.
Aside from the 5th seal, each will bring a judgment upon the populace of the Earth. The 7th seal introduces 7 angels who each possess 7 trumpets, another series of daunting judgments.
Incredibly, after the 6th trumpet in which 1/3 of the Earth’s population is killed, John claims,
And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk(9:20).
After this, John receives visions of which include the antichrist and Satan who is aware of his looming end.
Next, John describes 7 more angles that will each carry 7 bowls of plagues to be poured onto the Earth.
Again, amazingly, while hail is raining from heaven during the 7th plague, humankind does not repent but instead,
And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great (16:21).
These fierce plagues demonstrate the wrath of God’s holy judgment upon the still wicked Earth.
John describes the eternality of Hell, the final resting place of the unbelieving.
And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone (19:20).
We also see that,
And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever (20:10).
Chapters 21-22 – John writes the last of the cannon of Scripture. Here he describes the New Heaven and the New Earth. In it is the holy city of the New Jerusalem.
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea (21:1).
There will no longer be any crying or tears, pain, mourning, or death because,
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away(21:4).
Only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life can enter this place to live eternally with Jesus Christ who sits on His throne.
And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely(22:17).
And Jesus promises that,
And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.
I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.
Blessed are they that do his commandments that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie(22:12-15).
The book of Jude is a General Epistle (Apostolic Letter). The author is Jude the brother of James, both of who are half-brothers of Jesus Christ. Jude wrote it circa 75 A.D.
The purpose of this book is to address false teachings and to illustrate a contrast between the error of heresy and the truth of Jesus Christ. Jude consists of only one chapter.
Verses 1- 16 – Jude identifies himself and quickly delves into the dilemma of false teachings.
“For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ” (vs. 4)
Heresy was obviously seeping into the region, disturbing the churches, and deceiving believers. He begins by illustrating similarities between false teachers and condemned individuals from the Old Testament citing Cain, Balaam, and Korah.
Verses 17-25 – Jude urges Christians to…
“But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ“(vs. 17).
He was referring to all of the apostles and disciples in the past, which had warned about false teachers and prophets that were coming to deceive.
His advice is to focus on Jesus Christ and to watch out for each other so that no one is misled into error.
Those who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ are secure in salvation, not by their own good deeds, because no one is good enough to do that, but believers are secure by the vicarious work of Jesus Christ on the Cross.
Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,
To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen (vs. 24-25).
The book of 3 John is a General Epistle (Apostolic Letter). It is written by the Disciple/Apostle John around 85-95 A.D.
The key personalities in this book are the Apostle John, Gaius, Diotrephes, and Demetrius. This book is the shortest book in the New Testament and was written to praise Gaius and Demetrius for their faithful service.
Verses 1-12 – John praises two teachers for “walking in truth”. He wrote that nothing gave him more joy than to see Christians walking in truth and acting faithfully,
“Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God” (vs. 11).
Next, He criticized a false teacher named Diotrephes. John tells of a previous letter (that we do not have) that he sent to the church.
However, Diotrephes rejected the letter out of pride and discouraged anyone from accepting or accommodating any of the brethren of the church.
Verses 13-15 – John brings to a close his letter with confident intentions of making a visit and discussing many topics “face to face” rather than by pen.