The Bible is a big book. It can be hard to know where to start. Get a simple overview to help you decide more easily.
#1 HISTORIC BOOKS – The Gospels
The first four books of the Bible are called the Gospels and they tell the story of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection from the perspective of four people, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The Bible is the inspired Word of God, meaning it all comes from God, but each of these men have their own unique personality that is woven into the story as well.
- Matthew was a tax collector and if you pay attention to the stories and examples he gives, often you can tell he is a numbers guy.
- Mark this Gospel is quick moving and the shortest of the Gospels. It is also believed to be the earliest Gospel written.
- Luke was a doctor. He is detail-oriented without a lot of fluff.
- John is definitely a feeler and that comes out in the way he shares the story of Jesus. This Gospel is sometimes called the spiritual Gospel.
Choose to start with the Gospel that resonates best with your own personality and tendencies.
#2 ACTS OF THE APOSTLES
The book of Acts a wonderful bridge between the life of Jesus and the birth of the church. It is filled with the acts of the apostles and movements of the Holy Spirit as the early church was founded and spread its message. The Book of Acts is believed to be written by Luke, as it has the same literary feel as the Gospel of Luke.
The Book of Acts tells the story of Paul’s conversion and lays the groundwork beautifully for the books to come.
#3 EPISTLES – Letters from Paul
The next several books are a wonderful collection of letters Paul wrote to believers in the early church living in different regions of the world. The letters help establish a unified belief and root out any wrong thinking or misunderstanding of what Jesus taught.
- Romans – written to believers living in Rome
- 1 & 2 Corinthians – written to believers living in Corinth
- Galatians – written to believers living in Galatia
- Ephesians – written to believers living in Ephesus
- Philippians – written to believers living in Philippi
- Colossians – written to believers living in Colossae
- 1 & 2 Thessalonians – written to the early church living in Thessalonica
These letters are wonderful instruction and inspiration for anyone seeking to live a spiritual Christian life. They are even more inspiring and insightful if you spend just a little time researching the culture of the region Paul was writing to at the time.
It can be intimidating to get started reading the Bible, but you don’t have to start from the beginning. Ask Jesus to guide your decision and then participate with the Holy Spirt by choosing to start reading a book of the Bible that feels most in line with where you are spiritually at the moment.
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