Welcome to the start of Christian Stuff. Each part of this series will give you a 3 minute download on some of the core things we think life is all about.
There are probably a lot of places we could begin but given so much of what we will talk about comes from the Bible – that’s where we are going to start.
The Bible is the best selling book of all time. It’s hard to work out exactly how many bibles have been sold but the Bible Society estimates that over the last 150 years 6 billion copies were printed.
It’s an amazing book. It was written over a 1500 year period from 1400BC to 100AD. It was written by over 40 authors from all walks of life, covering 40 generations, written on three continents of Asia, Africa and Europe. It was originally written in three languages of Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek and has now been translated to over 2500 languages.
It contains history, poetry, songs, biographies and letters with topics on creation, relationships, love, war, money, property, music, parties, weddings and even the future as well as loads more.
Credibility of ancient writings is based on how many copies of the original manuscripts are available today. It’s kind of like a witness to an event – the more witnesses the more accurate an account will be. Now take some familiar writings like Aristotle and Caesar – we only have 5 to 10 copies of manuscripts today and are convinced of the historical accuracy of their writing. Compare this to parts of the Bible where we have 24,000…
In one part of the Bible it says (2 Tim 3:16) it has been God-breathed and has been written so that we may be equipped for life. In another part it says that it is living and active (Heb 4:12). What all this means is that we need to take this thing seriously – whenever you are reading the Bible take notice of what God is saying and what it means for your life.
Now the Bible is split into 2 parts. The Old Testament, made up of 39 books, talks about the creation of the world and the history of the nation of Israel. The New Testament, made up of 27 books, tells us about the life of Jesus and his early followers. Each one represents promises God has made and how he wants to have a relationship with us into eternity.
So how do you start reading the Bible and understanding what it’s all about?
Each time you read the Bible it is good to begin by asking God to speak to you as you read. Think about things like who the author was, what the world was like at the time they wrote and what the message was they were trying to give. Finally, make sure you think about how you can apply what you have read to your life – that’s a good thing to ask God about.
The Bible isn’t really a book that you read from the front cover to the back cover. You could start at the beginning with the book of Genesis but a good place to start is by reading through the verses that we reference in this series on Christian Stuff.
Another good place to start is with one of the books that talks about Jesus life: Matthew, Mark, Luke or John and follow that up with the book called Acts – it talks about the life of his early followers.
God didn’t intend us to do this journey of life on our own – but as a community of people who look out for each other – so if you have any questions please get in touch with us at Be The Church.
Next in the series: Creation