II Timothy 2:15, 3:13-17
Often heard in talking with Christians are statements like, " I don’t understand anything I read in the Bible",
or "It’s all Greek to me!", or " I don’t know how to study the Bible". In this lesson, we hope to stir your desire
to search the holy writ and also, to give you some insight into the beauty that it contains.
We read in our opening scripture that we are to study to show ourselves approved of God. This Greek word means to use speed,
to make effort, to give diligence. In other words, study calls for discipline. Casually picking up the Bible and reading a
verse here or there, skipping from thought to thought, or just not paying attention to what you are reading are all poor habits.
It is true that in order to produce you have to plant; which takes time.
The Bible contains 66 books, 39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament.
There are 1189 chapters--31,173 verses--773,692 words in the Bible.
There are 36 authors, writing from 3 continents, and spread over 1500 years.
The Old Testament was written in Hebrew, while the New Testament was written in Greek.
When the printing press was invented in 1450, the Bible was the first book printed. Previously, it was only written by
In 1250 A. D., Cardinal Hugo divided the Bible into chapters. And in 1551, Sir Robert Stephens divided the Bible into verses.
A good way to remember the number of books in the Bible is: Old has 3 letters and Testament has 9. That’s the number
of books in the Old Testament; 39. New also has 3 letters and Testament still has 9 so we should try something new. How about
multiplying? 3 times 9 is 27; the number of books in the New Testament!
Bible comes from a Greek word BIBLIA, which means books. All 66 books together make up THE BOOK. So Bible is an appropriate
name for the inspired Word of God. Scripture comes from a Latin word meaning "The Writings". God often told men to "write"
as they were moved upon by the Holy Ghost (Exodus 17:14, Revelation 1:11, Luke 1:1-4)
II Timothy 3:16 says, "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for
correction, for instruction in righteousness."
God’s word for mankind has been carefully and painstakingly preserved. Many miracles can be directly attributed to
Yeah, you’re right! There are a bunch of translations of the Bible. Many different formats, many different sizes
and many different types. They range from tiny to huge, from condensed to highly commented, and from very old to recent. We
recommend that you study a King James Version. Not because it has all the pretty sounding "thees and thous" and such. But,
because it is widely accepted and it will be used in the pulpit of our church.
Read other translations. Read them for reference. Keep your King James Version with you and handy. Many of the newer translations,
while trying to be helpful in clarifying some difficult words in the original text, actually wind up destroying meaningful
and powerful verses. Some don’t even claim to be translations, but simply paraphrases. Any of us can do that! The King
James Version has not been modernized or watered down.
Is the Bible complete?
If you are ever asked about the "Lost books of the Bible", remember that there are several of them.
The wars of the Lord – Numbers 21:14
Book of Jasher – Joshua 10:13
Acts of Solomon – I Kings 11:41
Book of Nathan the prophet – I Chronicles 29:29
Prophecy of Ahijah the Shilonite – II Chronicles 9:29
And at least five others
I Chronicles 29:29 (Book of Gad)
II Chronicles 9:29 (Book of Nathan, Vision of Iddo)
II Chronicles 12:15 (Book of Shemaiah, and Iddo the Seer)
II Chronicles 20:34 (Book of Jehu)
These different writings are mentioned in the Bible, but are not part of the Bible. But, this doesn’t mean that the
Bible is incomplete. The Apocrypha is a group of books that is found in the Catholic Bible by direction of the Pope in 1546
at the council of Trent. However, we do not believe that these books are inspired. In the New Testament there are 263 direct
quotations and 360 allusions to passages in the Old Testament. But there is not one reference to any of the books of the Apocrypha.
Because these books may be historical doesn’t mean they should be part of the Bible. Josephus wrote many historically
right things in his work, but they are not included in the Bible. Remember that God’s word is sufficient for us!
Divisions of the Bible
The Bible may be divided into categories to help you remember where everything is. The Old Testament is divided like this:
Pentateuch History Poetry Prophets Prophets
Genesis Joshua Job Isaiah Hosea
Exodus Judges Psalms Jeremiah Joel
Leviticus Ruth Proverbs Lamentations Amos
Numbers I Samuel Ecclesiastes Ezekiel Obadiah
Deuteronomy II Samuel Song of Solomon Daniel Jonah
I Kings Micah
II Kings Nahum
I Chronicles Habbakuk
II Chronicles Zephaniah
The New Testament may be divided like this:
Biography History Epistles Prophecy
Matthew Acts Romans Revelation
Mark I/II Corinthians
Titles of the Bible
The Bible has many titles. Here are some:
- The Scripture (II Timothy 3:16)
- The Oracles of God (Romans 3:2)
- The Law of the Lord (Psalms 1:2)
- The Books (Revelation 20:12)
- The Word of God (Hebrews 4:12)
- The Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17)
- The Covenants (Hebrews 8:6, 7)
- The Word of Life (Philippians 2:16)
- The Word of Truth (II Timothy 2:15)
- The Word of Faith (Romans 10:8)
Symbols of the Bible
Symbols in the Bible are used to describe what the Bible is like. Learn some of these symbols and it will help you when
the Bible is preached.
- A lamp and a light (Psalms 119:105, 130) to see
- A mirror (James 1:25). to reflect
- Food (Job 23:12) to sustain
Milk (I Corinthians 3:2)
Bread (Deuteronomy 8:3)
Meat (Hebrews 5:12-14)
Honey (Psalms 19:10)
- Gold (Psalms 19:10) to purchase and invest
- Fire (Jeremiah 20:9) to cleanse
- Hammer (Jeremiah 23:29) to build
- Sword (Ephesians 6:17) to defend
- Seed (Luke 8:11) to grow
- Rain and snow (Isaiah 55:10-11) to refresh
- A Laver (Ephesians 5:26) to wash
The Power of the Word of God
The Word of God is a powerful force. No word or phrase devised by man could aptly describe the power of the written word.
Here are a few examples of what the Word can do for you:
- Defeat Satan – Jesus used the Word in His temptation (Matthew 4:1-11). Three times Jesus said "It
is written". The word of God is your most powerful ally (Deuteronomy 8:3)
- Withstand Evil – In our own lives as well as in the world, Satan wants to destroy your walk with God as well
as kill you. But God upholds all things by the Word of His Power. (Hebrews 1:3)
- Worlds were formed by the Word of God (Hebrews 11:3)
- The flood of Noah’s day was by the Word of God. (Genesis 6 & 7)
- The world as we know it; is being held by the Word of God. (Hebrews 1:3)
- When the end of the world is come, God will destroy this world by His Word. (II Peter 3:7)
- Change you – David gives us a powerful testimony of how God’s word can change us (Psalms 19:7-11)
- A weapon - The Bible is God’s thoughts and ways expressed. It is the only visible part of our armor.
- Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17)
- Weapons of our warfare (II Corinthians 10:4,5)
- Sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12)
- Instructs us what to think on (Philippians 4:8)
God’s Purpose for giving us the Word
- It authenticates the Deity of Jesus Christ.
(John 20:31, & I John 5:13)
- It is an instruction manual for spiritual discernment (understanding), and for
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living a holy, successful life before God. (II Timothy 3:16, 17)
Doctrine---Instruction for the seeking
Reproof---Proof for the questioning
Correction---Direction for the straying
Instruction in Righteousness---Training for the disciple