Are you familiar with the Bible? This unique work is by far the most widely distributed book in history. People of all cultures have found its message to be a source of comfort and hope and its advice to be practical for daily living. Yet, many today know little about the Bible. Whether you are religious or not, perhaps you are curious about it. This brochure is designed to give you an overview of the Bible.
BEFORE you pick up a Bible and start reading, it is helpful to know a few things about how this book is arranged. Also known as the Holy Scriptures, the Bible is actually a collection of 66 books, or sections, beginning with Genesis and ending with Revelation, or Apocalypse.
Who is the Bible’s author? That is an intriguing question. The fact is, the Scriptures were penned by some 40 men over a span of about 1,600 years. Remarkably, those men did not claim to be the authors of the Bible. One of the penmen wrote: “All Scripture is inspired of God.” (2 Timothy 3:16) Another of the writers said: “The spirit of Jehovah it was that spoke by me, and his word was upon my tongue.” (2 Samuel 23:2) The writers thus claimed that Jehovah God, the Supreme Ruler of the universe, is the Bible’s Author. God, the writers reveal, wants to be close to humans.
There is something else that is essential to understanding the Bible. The Scriptures have one overall theme: the vindication of God’s right to rule humankind by means of his heavenly Kingdom. On the pages that follow, you will see how this theme is a common thread running from Genesis to Revelation.
With the foregoing in mind, consider now the message found in the world’s most popular book, the Bible.
^ par. 9 There are various ways of expressing dates. In this brochure, C.E. denotes “Common Era” and B.C.E. means “Before the Common Era.” You will see this illustrated in the time line that runs along the bottom of the pages.