The Bible is one grand narrative; it tells ONE story. The story of redemption spans from Genesis to Revelation, featuring our great God and His plan for His creation. The Old Testament points forward to the New Testament, and the New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old Testament. As we begin to see the connections, Scripture takes on a whole new meaning. There are treasures to be discovered.
Over the next 8 weeks, we will be exploring the story of the Bible from cover to cover. As we move through the Bible chronologically, we will stop at places along the way that speak to God’s plan throughout the history of redemption. In this unfolding drama, we will meet people that God used for His purposes, places that were sacred, and events that shaped the narrative. Nothing is by accident. Every bit of Scripture is God-breathed, purposefully pointing us to the Master Storyteller and Redeemer of our souls.
11. The Cycle of Defeat
Although the Israelites settled into the Promised Land, they never fully conquered it. The next generation did not know the Lord and turned to idols. Consequently, God gave them over to their enemies. In their distress they cried out to God, and He saved them by sending a judge to deliver them. This cycle of defeat (sin, servitude, supplication, salvation) is repeated again and again in the book of Judges. We too fall into patterns of sin and bondage, but when we cry out to the Lord, He is faithful to deliver us.
12. A Prophet and a King
After a long line of judges, God sent prophets to speak to His people. Samuel was dedicated to the Lord as a small child, and he grew up in the temple under the care of Eli the priest. He led Israel as a prophet until the people demanded a king, rejecting God as their King. Saul was selected by God to be the first king of Israel, and although he was tall and handsome, his heart was not fully committed to the Lord. Samuel pointed forward to a better Prophet, whom Peter proclaimed to be Jesus.
13. A Man After God's Heart
After God rejected Saul as king, He chose a man after His heart to sit on the throne over Israel. David spent his young years as a shepherd, and is well known for slaying Goliath with a slingshot and a stone. All that time, God was training and equipping David to rule His people. When David finally ascended the throne, God promised He would establish his throne forever. And then in the opening pages of the New Testament we read that Jesus the Messiah was a direct descendant of David, the fulfillment of the Davidic Covenant.
14. A Wise King
David’s son Solomon ascended the throne after him, and when given the opportunity to ask anything from God, Solomon asked for wisdom to rule the people well. God was pleased with Solomon’s request and granted him riches and fame along with great wisdom. James tells us that when we are lacking wisdom, we too are to ask God, who gives generously. Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem - a magnificent place of worship. He led Israel during the Golden Age, but sadly his heart was led astray in later years.
15. A Divided Kingdom
Solomon’s heart was divided. He loved many foreign women who influenced him to follow other gods. So God said He would tear the kingdom away from him, yet because of the covenant He made with David, He would not do it in his lifetime. After Solomon’s death the kingdom was divided between Rehoboam (Solomon’s son) and Jeroboam, who led the nation into further idolatry. In the New Testament, Paul wrote to the church in Corinth, rebuking them for their division. The church is called to live in unity.
This 40-day Bible reading plan spans the metanarrative of the Bible from Genesis to Revelation, making stops along the way that speak to God's plan throughout the history of redemption.
Each day includes three passages of Scripture totalling 4-5 chapters of daily reading, a bit from the Old Testament, a bit from the New Testament and a psalm. Challenge yourself to look for connections as you read. Remember, the Bible is ONE story!