OVERVIEW OF THE ENTIRE BIBLE IN 17 MINUTES!
30 Days to Understanding the Bible. Max Anders. Thomas Nelson, 2004.
The Entire Bible in 90 Minutes! Bill Meiter. Arizona Community Church, 2012.
The MacArthur Study Bible. John MacArthur. Thomas Nelson, 2006.
English Standard Version Study Bible. Crossway, 2008.
Tower of Babel. Answers in Genesis. https://answersingenesis.org/tower-of-babel
Facts About Israel: History. Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs. https://mfa.gov.il/mfa/aboutisrael/history/pages/facts%20about%20israel-%20history.aspx
Bible: The Old Testament. SparkNotes.com. https://www.sparknotes.com/lit/oldtestament/summary
The Kings of Israel & Judah. ProvidenceAcademy.org. https://www.providenceacademy.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Chart-of-the-Kings-of-Israel-and-Judah.pdf
Map of the Assyrian and Babylonian Captivity of Israel and Judah. Conforming to Jesus. https://www.conformingtojesus.com/charts-maps/en/assyrian-babylonian_captivity_map.htm
What was the Old Covenant? GotQuestions.Org. https://www.gotquestions.org/old-covenant.html
Why the Law Was Given. John Piper. DesiringGod.Org, 1981. https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/why-the-law-was-given
Why did God give us four Gospels? GotQuestions.Org. https://www.gotquestions.org/four-Gospels.html
In addition to the sources above, there are more than 200 Bible verse references shown in the right corner of the screen throughout the video.
OVERVIEW OF THE ENTIRE BIBLE IN 15 MINUTES!
Hello everyone! Welcome to another Christianity Engaged video. My name is David Erhart and in our last video, I shared the secret combination to help you navigate through the Bible and understand its structure. Today, we’re going to walk through the entire Bible in a few short minutes so that together we can better comprehend the greatest story ever told.
The Bible may be comprised of 66 different books, but it is a single, cohesive story about a God who made us to love us, and his eternal plan to save us. The main story arc of the Bible goes something like this: we have creation, the fall of man, the global flood, the Tower of Babel, the story of the nation of Israel (which comprises most of the Old Testament), Jesus Christ and the cross, who ushered in a new covenant, the current Church age we are in, and the final eternal state with a new heaven and a new earth.
Are you ready? Let’s walk through the Bible starting with creation.
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth, and He crowned His masterpiece by making human beings in His image. Everything He made was good. In fact, God would walk in the garden in the coolness of the day because there was nothing separating Him from His beloved creation. Man’s space and God’s space, at least here on earth, were one and the same.
This all changed when sin entered the world. Adam and Eve disobeyed God and as a result, mankind experienced separation from God for the first time. And because all of us have sinned, all of us have experienced this separation.
God knew beforehand that this would happen. In fact, before the foundation of the world, God made a plan to reconcile humanity and restore our relationship with Him by allowing His one and only Son to pay the penalty for our sin on our behalf.
And we actually see a glimpse of this plan unfolding back in the Garden of Eden. When God was announcing the changes that would take place to all of creation as a consequence of sin, our loving Heavenly Father promised to one day send us a Savior, one of Eve’s descendants, who would defeat the Evil One once and for all.
Once sin entered the world, things got messy. Generations later, God decided to start over with humanity because mankind had become significantly wicked. The Bible says, “Every inclination of the thoughts of their minds was only evil all the time.” [Genesis 6:5b NET]
“But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” [Genesis 6:8 NASB] God told Noah to build an ark, a massive ship, that would save his family and every kind of land animal from the impending global flood. The Lord brought to Noah two of every kind, not two of every species. This would significantly reduce the number of animals that were on the ark, which was about 450 feet long and had a lower, middle, and upper deck. On the ark was a single door, and all who entered through it were saved from destruction.
After the floodgates of heaven were opened and it rained for 40 days and 40 nights, the waters eventually subsided, and God blessed Noah and his family. He told them to multiply and fill the earth, and He made a covenant promise to never again destroy the earth with a flood.
[TOWER OF BABEL]
Generations later, the descendants of Noah multiplied, assembled together and decided to build a tower that would stretch to the heavens. This sounds innocent enough, but it was a deviation from God’s instructions to fill the earth and not stay all together in one place.
So, God confused the language of the people and dispersed them all over the planet. Perhaps He was preventing the human race from falling under the grip of a single, absolute tyrant. Whatever His reasons were, people live all over the world and speak a multitude of languages because of what happened at the Tower of Babel.
[NATION OF ISRAEL]
God never forgot the promise He made in the Garden, and He decided to create a people, a nation, and a royal lineage from which our Savior would eventually come.
This leads us to the story of the nation of Israel, which comprises most of the Old Testament and has a story arc of its own, which includes the period of the patriarchs, the deliverance from Egypt, the giving of the Law, the conquest of Canaan, the period of judges, the period of kings, the division of the kingdom, the exile to Babylon, and the return to Jerusalem where they rebuilt the temple.
Starting with the patriarchs, God revealed Himself to a man we know as Abraham, and He promised him that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky. This happened when Abraham was 75 years old and both he and his wife were well past the age of childbearing. The Bible says Abraham believed God and God credited his faith to him as righteousness.
About 10 years later, Abraham and Sarah became impatient and at Sarah’s request, Abraham married and slept with their Egyptian servant, Hagar. Hagar bore a son named Ishmael who is said to be the ancestor of Muhammad and several prominent Arab tribes.
When Abraham was 100 years old, his wife, Sarah, miraculously gave birth to a son named Isaac. Isaac was the father of Jacob. Jacob wrestled with God and was given the name Israel. And his twelve sons became the twelve tribes of Israel, of which the Messiah would come from the tribe of Judah.
So, as a brief side note, you can see that Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all trace their lineage through Abraham—Christians and Jews through the promised son, Isaac, born of Abraham’s wife, Sarah, and Muslims through Ishmael, Abraham’s son by Sarah’s servant, Hagar.
A famine forced the Israelites to migrate to Egypt where they were eventually enslaved for over 400 years. Interestingly enough, Genesis 15 reveals that God actually told Abraham this would happen centuries before it came to be.
The Lord chose a man named Moses to deliver the Israelites from slavery by bringing ten plagues and performing astonishing miracles to convince Pharaoh to let his people go. During the final plague, every household whose door was marked with the blood of a Passover lamb was spared from disaster.
Moses led his people out of Egypt, across the Red Sea which parted before them, and to Mount Sinai, where the Israelites established an agreement with the Lord known today as the Old Covenant. God promised to give the Israelites a land and make them His treasured possession IF they obeyed His more than 600 moral, religious—even dietary—commands found within the Old Testament Law, which you can read in Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy. This was a performance-based system that was never intended to last forever. In fact, the New Testament authors explain the purpose of the Law was to reveal our need for a savior.
The Israelites rebelled against God and spent 40 years wandering in the wilderness, after which Joshua led the people in their conquest of Canaan, the land God promised to Abraham. Unfortunately, the Israelites failed to completely drive out the Canaanites from their territory and as a result, the nation of Israel would have enemies from around and within for generations to come.
After the death of Joshua, the Israelites gave in to some of these influences and began to worship other gods, so the Lord withdrew His protection and allowed them to be overtaken by other nations. The Lord never forgot His promise to His people, and He would raise up judges to lead the nation and save them from their enemies. He would grant them victory and the people would repent and walk in the ways of their fathers. And then that judge would die, and the people would turn aside and become even more corrupt. This vicious cycle lasted several hundred years and included notable judges such as Deborah, Gideon, Samson and Samuel.
Samuel was also a prophet and when he was old, the Israelites pleaded with him to give them a king. The Lord warned the people of a king’s corrupting power and influence, but in the end, consented to their request, even though it meant, in essence, they were rejecting Him as their King.
Saul was the first king of the new monarchy. He disobeyed the Lord on multiple occasions and as a result, God handed the kingdom over to David, a man after God’s own heart. David was far from perfect, but he was a good king and the Lord promised to make his dynasty last forever. In fact, the Messiah would be called the Son of David.
David was succeeded by his son, Solomon, who built the first temple in Jerusalem. Solomon was a wise and prosperous king, but in his later years he turned against the Lord and worshiped other gods.
[The Divided Kingdom]
As a result, the kingdom was split upon Solomon’s death. The ten northern tribes formed the Kingdom of Israel and the two southern tribes, Judah and Benjamin, became the independent Kingdom of Judah.
The Kingdom of Israel had 19 kings—none of which were good. Because of Israel’s accumulating sin, Assyria conquered the kingdom and scattered the people. The northern kingdom of Israel was never restored, resulting in what you may have heard as the “Lost Ten Tribes of Israel”.
The Kingdom of Judah had 20 kings—only a few of which were good—before it was conquered by the Babylonians, who previously conquered Assyria. King Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem and the temple and took many of the citizens into captivity in Babylon.
[Return/Rebuilding of Temple]
The Babylonians were later conquered by Persia, led by Cyrus the Great, who allowed the Israelites to return to Jerusalem, rebuild the temple, and restore their religious heritage based on the Old Testament Law, though things would never be the same. The previous lands of Israel were now called Samaria, and the previous lands of Judah were now called Judea. And that’s the story of the nation of Israel, which you can read in the first 17 books of the Old Testament.
Throughout Israel’s history, God sent many prophets, or messengers, to call the people back to Him and proclaim the coming Messiah. Some of them prophesied to Israel, others to Judah, some to Assyria and one to Edom. Most of the prophets were pre-exile but some prophesied from Babylon and some to Jerusalem after their return from captivity.
Just as the Israelites spent over 400 years in Egypt before God delivered them with a mighty hand, there was a 400-plus-year gap between the last Old Testament prophet and the beginning of the New Testament. During this time, Alexander the Great conquered Persia and established Greek culture and language in the region, which was then conquered by the Roman Empire. Also, prominent religious groups such as the Pharisees and Sadducees emerged within the Jewish community and gained considerable power and influence with the people.
[CHRIST AND THE CROSS]
The New Testament begins with the story of Jesus of Nazareth, who is the Messiah God promised back in the Garden of Eden and through all of the Old Testament Prophets. He is the fulfillment of God’s plan to reconcile humanity and restore our relationship with Him. He is the Door that anyone can enter through to be saved. He is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. He is a descendent of David, and all who believe in Him are spiritual offspring of Abraham.
Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He is the Son of God and the Son of man, fully God and fully man. He is the only mediator between God and man. The Bible says Jesus was present at creation, all things were created through him and in him all things hold together. He is the exact representation of God in bodily form. So, if you want to know what God the Father is like, look no further than Jesus Christ, His beloved Son.
When Jesus was about 30 years old, he started his public ministry, teaching and preaching with authority and performing astonishing miracles. He turned water into wine, restored sight to the blind, healed the sick, and even raised the dead. His fame spread throughout the region and eventually the people wanted to make him king, but he didn’t come to establish an earthly kingdom, nor did he come to be served—he came himself to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.
Jesus faced strong opposition from the religious leaders of his day, who were threatened by his popularity and authority. They plotted against him, falsely accused him, and handed him over to be executed by Roman crucifixion. Though Jesus had the power to save himself from the cross, for the joy set before him, knowing that his sacrifice would reconcile people back to his Father, he suffered at the hands of men and willingly laid down his life for you and me.
Unbeknownst to his enemies, his death would not silence him or his message because the story comes to a powerful climax when Jesus of Nazareth rises from the grave on the third day! Jesus spent 40 days with his followers after his resurrection where he was seen by more than 500 people before He visibly ascended into heaven.
Jesus obeyed the will of the Father every second of his life on earth. He lived the perfect life that you and I never could. He truly was the perfect Lamb without blemish or defect, sacrificed for you and me.
At the cross, the sin of the world was placed on him and paid for in full. Jesus paid a debt you never could pay, and he offers complete reconciliation in your relationship with the Father, something you could never achieve on your own, no matter how many good works you perform.
Just as Abraham believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness, so it is for everyone that believes in Jesus and receives him as Lord and Savior. Not only are our sins completely forgiven and not counted against us, the Bible says that the righteousness of Jesus Christ himself is credited to us by faith, so that when God sees you, He doesn’t see your sin. He sees the perfect righteousness of His Son. Just as God raised Jesus from the dead, so also the righteous in Christ will be raised to eternal life. That’s the Christian hope for all who believe.
Most religions are about a list of rules that you need to follow in order to work your way to God. Christianity is the ONLY religion in which God, in His love and mercy, worked His way to you, in and though the person of Jesus Christ, who ushered in a new agreement between God and man where God is the initiator and unconditional source of salvation and blessing to all who believes and receives His unmerited grace. Under the New Covenant, we are free from the Old Testament Law, we don’t need to offer sacrifices for our sins, and our relationship with God doesn’t depend on our performance, but His. We don’t obey in order to receive the blessing anymore. We already have the blessing, which we receive by grace through faith, and our understanding of God’s unconditional love and mercy compels us to obey his commands, which are written on our heart.
Before ascending to the Father, Jesus commissioned his disciples to take this message of salvation to the ends of the earth and he promised to send the Holy Spirit, which happened at Pentecost. This brings us to the Church Age, which is the era we are still in today.
Because of what Jesus accomplished on the cross, those who believe in him are declared righteous, and filled with the transforming power of God’s love through the Holy Spirit, who guides us and gifts us to build up the church and advance the message of salvation.
And that’s exactly what happened to the first Christians. They fearlessly preached the gospel even in the face of intense persecution, which actually ended up scattering the believers and further advancing Christianity outside of Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria. The Apostle Paul, who once persecuted Christians himself, became a prominent follower of Jesus and on three missionary journeys he advanced the gospel message all the way to the capital of the Roman Empire. He was eventually imprisoned and beheaded for his faith.
After the Gospels and the Book of Acts, the New Testament concludes with 13 letters written by the Apostle Paul and 9 letters written by men like Peter, James and John. These letters help us understand what it means to be a Christian and how to live the Christian Life, which is less about trying harder to achieve holiness in our own strength and more about trusting in Jesus, allowing him to exhibit his good qualities in and through us, to the glory of his name.
[FINAL ETERNAL STATE]
The Bible promises that Jesus will come back one day, the same way he ascended. Those who receive his grace by faith and have a relationship with him will be with him forever and those who choose to reject him, will not. God will create a new heaven and a new earth for all who believe. Man’s space and God’s space will be the same space and for all eternity and there will be no more sin, no more separation, no more crying or death or pain, for the old order of things will pass away.
And that’s the story of the Bible—over 30,000 verses summarized in a short video just for you. I hope this video is a blessing to you and encourages you to read the Bible for yourself. Thanks, and God bless!