Chapter 2: How Is the Bible Organized?

The Bible is a book comprised of sixty-six individual books that are divided into two main sections: the Old Testament with thirty-nine books and the New Testament with twenty-seven. The word testament means covenant. Covenants are solemn agreements that have attached conditions and promises. The Old and the New Testaments constitute two connected covenants, with the old fulfilled by the new. Therefore, what begins in the Old Testament is completed in the New Testament. Both moves humanity forward towards God’s Eternal Plan and Purpose.

Although the books are not entirely in chronological order, the Old Testament begins with the creation account and then moves on through God’s covenant relationship with the community of Israel. The New Testament begins with the birth of Jesus and then moves into Jesus’s covenant relationship with the community of the church.

As a later invention, each of the sixty-six books were subdivided into chapters and verses, in order to make the large volume of material more manageable. Scripture references are noted first by the name of the book, followed by the chapter number and a colon, and lastly by the verse number, as in John 3:16.

Since God used humans to write the Bible, it was written in the language of the people. The Old Testament was written by the Jews in Hebrew with a sprinkling of Aramaic. The New Testament was written by the church in Koine Greek, which was the universal language of their Mediterranean world. Only the original texts are inspired by God. Translators do their best to transmit the message from the original languages into modern languages. Since each translator has wrestled with the text to offer his or her best efforts, it is often beneficial to consult several different translations for a more full-bodied view.

Excerpt from Incredibly Human: Community in the First Creation

Copyright© 2015 D. A. Combs

All rights reserved.

Reprinted 2017

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

 

 

 

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Chapter 2: What Is Unique about the Bible?

There are at least three unique features about the Bible that point to its divine origin. First, it gives real answers to the most important questions of life, such as:

  • Why were humans created?
  • Why does evil exist?
  • What is God doing and what will He do about evil?

Secondly, the Bible is anchored in real time and space. This is no fairy tale. Real people and places are referenced with historical accuracy, which has been confirmed through archaeological evidence. In the March/April 2014 edition of Biblical Archeology Review, fifty biblical character names are listed that were found inscribed at archaeological sites. This makes the Bible a resource for ancient history. 1

Lastly, it gives an accurate portrayal of its heroes. In fact, its display of honesty is totally foreign to any other ancient work. Usually in those accounts, the accomplishments of heroes are exaggerated, and their failures are not included in history. In contrast, biblical heroes smell human with all of the hopes and failures common to humanity. If this were purely a human work, it would have never exposed those failings.

For example, the Bible records that Peter, who was a leader among the disciples, was terrified and perplexed as he stood in the high priest’s courtyard where Jesus was on trial. Afraid for his own life, Peter denied even knowing Jesus to those around him. Yet in spite of this failure, Peter found forgiveness and went on to be a prominent leader in the church.2

 

Notes:

  1. Lawrence Mykytiuk, “Archaeology Confirms 50 Real People in the Bible.” Biblical Archaeology Review (2014 March/April).
  2. John 18:15–27.

Questions:

Why is it important that the Bible is anchored in real time and space?

 

Excerpt from Incredibly Human: Community in the First Creation

Copyright© 2015 D. A. Combs

All rights reserved.

Reprinted 2017

 

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

The Journeys of the Incredibly Human book

 

My husband, Jeff and I are trying to place a copy of Incredibly Human: Community in the First Creation in as many U.S. states and cities as possible, as well as internationally. As you vacation, would you place a book in the hotel room where you stay, leave it at a restaurant, or give it to someone you meet? This past week another copy was left in New Orleans. Remember that even though it’s just one book, God can do a lot with just a little and when He gets it into the right hands, lives are changed. It is like putting a message in a bottle, and then sending it out to sea. Consider  giving a copy with your message inside the cover and see what happens. Then, email me or post here to let me know – the city/state or city/country – so that I can track where the books are placed. So far, we have books placed in five states and eight countries. Will you join us?

2018 Denver Colorado
2015 Weston Florida
2017 Weston Florida
2018 New Orleans Louisiana
2016 Boston Massachusetts
2015 Cleveland Ohio
2015 Medina Ohio
2016 Toronto Canada
2017 Toronto Canada
2017 London England
2017 Northumberland, Felton England
2017 Berlin Germany
2016 Milan Italy
2017 Glasgow Scotland
2018 Madrid Spain
2015 Abu Dhabi United Arab Emirates
2016 Abu Dhabi United Arab Emirates
2017 Abu Dhabi United Arab Emirates
2016 ? Zimbabwe

Join us and spread the egalitarian message of God’s love and purpose for humanity.

Blessings +
Diana

Summary for Book 2 – Incredibly Human: Community Through The Fallen Creation

The series moves forward in Book 2 when the earth becomes a spiritual war zone after God’s enemy leads Adam and Eve astray. It chronicles God’s continuing love and what God has done on humanity’s behalf, as well as pointing forward to what He will do to remedy the human condition, end the war, and fulfill His Eternal Plan and Purpose.

BOOK 2 UPDATE:

Chapter 8  is completed and has been sent to the editors for comments. There are only six more chapters to complete. Then, the book will be in its last phase of development. The projected completion date is still the end of 2019.

Chapter 1: What Does It Mean That God Rested on the Seventh Day?

When God rested on the seventh day, He rested from further creating. That means, He is no longer creating new species. Although diversification within each species continues to produce wonderful variations, He has finished with creating new ones.

However, that does not mean that He is not working at all. He continues to work in fulfilling His Eternal Plan and Purpose for humanity. Jesus confirms this by saying, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working.” (John 5:17b) Neither has God abandoned His creation. He is still at work sustaining, protecting, healing, and holding it together. The Bible says, “He is before all things, and in him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17).

In addition, God is at work through the Holy Spirit who:

  • Convicts humanity about their need for God: As Jesus said, “When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment, about sin, because people do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned (John 16:8-11).
  • He reveals the truth about Jesus: Jesus also said, “When the Advocate comes, whom I will send to you from the Father—the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father—he will testify about me” (John 15:26).
  • And, He grants the new birth: The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit” (John 3:8).

 Furthermore, the Holy Spirit continues to work in humanity by filling and sanctifying them with Himself, giving them gifts of ministry, praying for them, and helping them to spiritually grow.5

5Acts 2:1–4, 1 Corinthians 12:1–11, Romans 8:26, and Galatians 5:22–23.

How has God been at work in your life?

 

Excerpt from Incredibly Human: Community in the First Creation

Copyright© 2015 D. A. Combs

All rights reserved.

Reprinted 2017

 

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.

Free Online Bible Study

This is a free online Bible Study taken from Incredibly Human: Community in the First Creation. The first lesson has already posted under the category, Incredibly Human: Community in the First Creation. Follow the blog and you will automatically be alerted to each weekly lesson as it is released usually on Mondays. Also, please feel free to join in the discussion by asking questions and commenting. I would love to hear from you.

I have been asked why the book is called Incredibly Human. Isn’t that a bit vain? Not when you consider that the reason that we are incredible is because of God who:

incredibly made us

incredibly loves us

and who has an incredible future for us.

So, what are you waiting for?

Join the study!