The Bible Summaries

 THE BOOK OF GENESIS

Genesis, the first Book of the bible, is a narrative about the Cosmogony, it speaks about the life of the first Human beings, and the beginning of God’s covenant with the forefathers of  his Chosen people. In the beginning, God made everything out of nothing, He created the world in 6 days and rested on the 7th day. God also created humanity in his image. He made a Man and named him Adam and a Woman who he named Eve. Adam and Eve sinned against God by Disobeying his order not to eat of the fruit of knowledge and  in the process brought the pain of death  to themselves  and their posterity. They were cast out of Paradise because of this act. They had sons and daughters born to them to fill the world with their population. It came to pass that each generation was inferior to the present one, Man’s wickedness  increased steadily in the world until there was only one family  that God found deserving of his love. This family is the family of Noah.

God told Noah that he would send a Flood to wipe out the wickedness of men. He told Noah to build an ark to house his family and a mating pair of all living creatures, to preserve them against the rampage of the flood. The flood destroyed everything except the beings inside the Ark of Noah. After the flood, Noah became the father of the second generation of men. Humanity began again to increase their numbers  and spread themselves throughout the world. From this multitude of Men, God chose Abraham to follow him. He made a covenant with Abraham, promising  that his descendants shall be numerous and would be known as God’s chosen people. The covenant  with God was renewed also with Abraham’s son Isaac, and also to Isaac’s son Jacob. Jacob had twelve sons who were to become the progenitors of the twelve tribes of Israel.  God further showed his greatness by contriving  Jacob’s son, Joseph to be sent to

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Egypt as a slave through the wicked actions of his 10 elder brothers. This act indirectly caused Joseph to be appointed as the governor of Egypt responsible for saving many people including his own family from the devastation of the 7 year famine. In the end, Joseph requested on his deathbed that  his bones be carried and buried  on the Land promised by God to his people once his people gets the land.

THE BOOK OF EXODUS

The book of Exodus is a narrative about the relationship between God and his chosen people at a time prior to the fulfillment of God’s promise that he would lead them to the promised land. It focuses its theme on  the love and commitment manifested by God to his chosen people, the Israelites. The book of Exodus starts with an account of the deploring  condition of the Israelites, who were enslaved and oppressed terribly by the Egyptians.

The cries of his chosen people reached God. God called  on  Moses to deliver his brethren. Moses and Aaron, his brother presented himself to the Pharaoh with a request to free the Hebrews from bondage. The Pharaoh hardened his resolve against this and made him and his people the recipient of the 10 plagues that God brought upon Egypt. One terrible plague after another took its toll on Pharaoh’s resolve not to release the Hebrews. In the end he allowed them to leave but when a few days have passed after the departure of his slaves, he  changed his mind. He followed the Israelites and was defeated when his armies were engulfed by the Red sea.   After a brief time of wandering in the desert, the Israelites complained to Moses and God about their misery.

It was during this period when God  further  showed  his  power  and  commitment  to  the  Hebrews  by  miraculously providing them with food in the form of Manna and Quail. But even though He gave them these graces, and victory over some Amorite clans  who plotted to  destroy them, The Hebrews continued to be unappreciative and continued to sin against God. The Israelites continued on their wandering until they reached Mount Sinai. Moses was ordered by God to go up to Mount Sinai so that he may receive the written form of  the laws mandated by God. He stayed there for 40 days and nights.

Moses  received the ten commandments and proceeded to go back to the Israeli encampment. However, upon his return to Camp, he discovered the sacrilegious acts performed by the Israelites during his absence. He shatters the stone tablets in anger and orders the massacre of the unfaithful. He then returns to the summit of Mt. Sinai to get another set of the ten commandments from God.  Moses then assembles the Israelites and tells them of  the commandments that he received from God. The last part of this book  gives an account of the  construction of the Ark of the Covenant.

THE BOOK  OF  LEVITICUS

    The book of Leviticus is a book  that centralizes its theme on God’s demand that his chosen people should be holy because he himself is holy. The book also reiterates frequently that God prefers unwavering loyalty and obedience to frequent sacrifice”. This book   sets the standard to be followed by Israelites regarding the  proper rituals  that needs to be observed  to maintain the sanctity and Holiness of God’s worship. The book of Leviticus can be divided into two parts. The first part contains the following: Laws governing Offerings, rules governing Priests, Laws of maintaining Purity,  Laws  that concern Holiness, Punishment inflicted on the Disobedient, as well as  the laws governing making vows before the Lord.  The first part illustrates  the possible consequences that may take place when the manner of worship is done incorrectly or not in accordance to God’s preference.

As illustrated in the demise of Nadab and Abihu, who were  sons of Aaron the priest. They were killed by God when they used “unholy fire” in lighting their censers. They did not follow the rule that the fire to be used should be “holy fire” not ordinary fire to light the holy censers, Hence,  they paid  with their lives due to their disobedience.  This book also prohibited the consumption of blood, giving rationale that since blood is the source of life, any person should not eat it or else he would be considered unclean. The following things are also prohibited: adultery, any and all forms of sexual immorality (i.e incest, adultery and homosexuality), idolatry and occult practices like sorcery or witchcraft. The said book also encourages the Israelites to be respectful of their elders, their parents (10 commandments), to be holy and to observe the Sabbath (10 commandments).

THE BOOK OF NUMBERS

The main theme emphasized by the book is the importance of having faith on God’s will and to follow him without any question or condition. The book  of  Numbers speaks of the continuance of the journey of God’s chosen people. Moses plans to start a census of potential Israelite soldiers that  would  initiate  the action  to secure the land promised by God against its present inhabitants.  The book  mentions the bravery of both Caleb and Joshua during the time when the two of them along  with 10 other tribe representatives went out to spy on the nations presently occupying Canaan. Out of the 12 spies, only Joshua and Caleb gave positive responses, the other 10 gave negative feedback  saying that the cities were occupied by the Giant sons of Anak. This greatly discouraged the rest of the Israelites.  The Israelites complained bitterly to God, even accusing him of bringing them to the desert so that they would be totally exterminated. This greatly angered God, who told Moses that the present generation of  Israelites, except  for Caleb and Joshua, would  die before the  Promised land could be totally secured. An account was given of how the  Israelites laid low the Amorite kingdoms of King Og and King Sihon as well as the story of  Balaam, a prophet of God. He was summoned by Balak, an Amorite king to curse the Israelites. He was ordered by God to come only when the messengers asks him again  after an initial request was made. He disobeyed this taboo when he went with them without being asked twice.

He was  almost killed by God’s angel on his way to met Balak, but was saved three times by his Donkey who repeatedly swerved  from the Angel who was invisible to the eyes of Balaam. Balaam beat and cursed the beast 3 times, but during the third beating, the donkey was given the power of speech. The Donkey asked Balaam why he was beaten instead of thanked when he saved the prophet’s life 3 times from the sword of the Angel of God, after which the angel became visible to the eyes of Balaam and admonishes him for beating his donkey. He then proceeds to the place where he and Balak are supposed to  meet and gave the Israelites a blessing instead of a curse. He did this thing three times, to the consternation of Balak.

THE BOOK  OF  DEUTERONOMY

                   The fellowship of the Covenant, is the major emphasis of this book. The Israelites are mandated to take into heart 4 things namely: God’s faithfulness, God’s holiness, God’s blessings, and God’s warnings. The Hebrews are mandated to strictly adhere to the laws of God in order to avoid any form of divine punishment. God’s chosen people are ordered not  to  forsake  and  forget  the  God of  their Ancestors  when  they have already  come to  occupy  the  land promised to them, otherwise they are all going to suffer  utterly. The book of Deuteronomy  can be divided into two parts. The first part  is focused on the Order of God to the  Israelites  to maintain their faithfulness to his commandments by being  religiously pure and ideologically distinctive in contrast to their Neighbors, the idolatrous Canaanites. In order to maintain this blessed state of  pureness and distinctive ideologies, God himself commanded his people to eliminate all of the inhabitants who are occupying the land that he promised  them.

God ordered the total extermination of these unholy inhabitants in such a manner that even babies, children and animals are not to be spared.  Genocide is the sole word that could best describe the actions of the Israelites during this invasion. Along with the command to exterminate is the mandate to destroy all places of idolatrous worship. The second part speaks of additional laws that need to be followed in order to maintain their relationship with God. These laws are enunciated during three sermons given by Moses to the Israelites. Moses wrote down these laws and instructs the Priests to read it before all Israel every seven years, during the Feast of Booths.

These decrees pertain to social religious aspects of Hebrew life of which the most noted are: (1)The creation  of three cities that could harbor  people  who killed others by “accident”, (2)A law concerning the crime of rape that governs  and recommends  various conditions and penalties (3) A law that  decrees the absolute prohibition regarding the practice of Idolatry and other despicable acts related to it, (4)  A law that regulates  Slavery, decreeing that it cannot last more than 6 years if the individual enslaved is  a Hebrew man, or  woman.”,  (5) Laws that govern the mandatory observance of Hebrew religious festivals—including Passover, Shavuot, and Sukkot, (6) Laws that govern marriages and divorce between Hebrew couples, and (7) Laws concerning dietary restrictions. This book also gives an account about how Moses renewed the covenant between God and his chosen people, How he appointed Joshua as his successor who would lead the people of Israel into Canaan and a brief narrative  of  his death on Mount Nebu.

THE BOOK OF JOSHUA

The book of Joshua is a narrative  about the wars fought by the children of Israel to to conquer the land area that God had promised their forefathers. This book focuses on the importance of serving the Lord without fail and without any question. The book begins with Moses sending  twelve spies to survey the land of Canaan. The twelve spies reported that the land was abundant with fertile fields and vineyards, but was inhabited by the Giant sons of Anak. Caleb and Joshua, two of the twelve spies, declared  it is possible to conquer the said land, the others  gave such discouraging assessments that  brought down the morale of the people.  The Israelites proceeded to  stone both Caleb and Joshua  and also proceeded to complain bitterly against God.

This brought about  the anger of God, who rebuked them and declared that only Caleb and Joshua among the present generation of Hebrews would live to see the Israelites claim their posterity because of their loyalty to God. The existing generation of Israelites wandered in the desert for forty years until that generation died out. Moses appointed Joshua as his successor.  Joshua led the Israelites  towards the Jordan river. The Israelites witnessed the  miraculous drying up of the Jordan river, allowing the Ark and the Israelites to cross the dried up river. The Israelites then renew their covenant with God by   getting   circumcised   at   Gibeath-Haaraloth.   They   then proceeded to lay siege on the city of Jericho, they conquered the said city by circumnavigating it 7 times after which they blew their trumpets causing the walled city to collapse.

They spared no one except Rehab and her household in gratitude for her help in hiding two Israelite spies. A curse against the rebuilding the city was uttered as well. After the conquest of Jericho, The Israelites went up against the city of Ai. The Israelites were initially defeated in a skirmish against the men of Ai, because one of them sinned against God when he took an item from Jericho that is supposed to be consecrated to the Temple. After the perpetrator has been punished, the Israelites then utterly defeated Ai. The Israelites then proceeded to conquer the other Amorite tribes but were tricked by the Gibeonites, a Hivite tribe, by getting the Israelites to enter into   a non-aggression treaty with them.

The Hebrews eventually  discovered this trickery and made the Gibeonites into servants who chop wood and carry water for them. This Non-aggression treaty with Israel, stirred the other Amorite tribes against the Gibeonites. Five kings united against them, prompting them to call on Joshua and the Israelites for aid. The Hebrews defeated their enemies and put to death the 5 Amorite kings that went against them. It was during this war that Joshua requested God to make the Sun and the moon stand still, so that they may utterly defeat their enemies. Joshua and the Israelites also defeated other Amorite kings. According to this book, Joshua defeated  a total of  31 Amorite kings during the conquest of Canaan. Before his death, he nearly conquered all of the allotted land promised by God to his Chosen people.

THE BOOK OF JUDGES

The book of Judges  centralizes its theme on the importance of staying true to the worship of God as well as the consequences that would arise if his power and glory is scorned. The book of Judges has three major parts. The first part tells of the exploits of the tribe of Judah and Simeon against the Canaanites who occupy the land allotted to them by God,   the exploits of Othniel and Caleb, as well as the failure of the Israelites to totally eradicate the remaining Amorites. This was the main reason why the Israelites turned to Idolatry and sinned against God.

The first part also explains the reason why there are remnants of the  Amorite tribes, the reason being given is that they would serve as a test of Israel’s devotion to God as well as to familiarize the younger generation of Israelites with War. The second part of this book narrates how Israel repeatedly sinned against God, their  enslavement  by different  enemies, and how God, upon hearing the voice of his oppressed people, forgave them each time and repeatedly sent someone to help them in their time of suffering. God sent  a total of 12 heroic men and one woman to help them against their oppressor.

The most noted among these are Jepthah, Samson, Deborah, Barak, and Gideon.  All of these individuals were righteous and God fearing people all their lives, except for Samson, who only did the will of God before his death. The last part tells of the war between the tribe of Benjamin and the 11 other tribes of Israel because of a abominable deed committed by members of the tribe of Benjamin against a Levite and his concubine. The men of Benjamin molested the Levite’s concubine from evening until morning. The Concubine died from the molestation. The Levite, realizing that his concubine is already dead, proceeded to cut her into twelve parts and sent a piece to each tribe of Israel.  The war ended with the near extermination of the Benjaminites, who were aided by the other tribes to replenish their numbers. The book repeatedly mentions that the Israelites did as they please during those times because there is no King to tell them what  needs to be done. Everyone does as he sees fit.

THE BOOK OF RUTH

The Book of Ruth is a story that focuses on the virtues of loyalty, respect and obedience. It also teaches that  genuine love at times may require uncompromising sacrifice. This book tells of the virtuous life of Ruth, a widowed moabitess, a foreign woman who left her family to  follow and take care of Naomi,  her Israelite mother-in-law. According to the holy book, she and her sister in law Orpah were married to the sons of Naomi and a man named Elimelech. Naomi and her Husband went to the land of Moab to avoid a great drought that was plaguing the land of Israel during those times.

Her sons, Mahlon and Chillon took Moabite maidens for wives. After 10 years of living in Moab, Ruth, Orpah and Naomi became widows. Naomi, after having lost her husband and two sons, opted to return to the land of Israel to live out the rest of her old life. Both Ruth and Orpah wanted to accompany Naomi back to the land of Israel, however Naomi asked them to remain in Moab and continue on with their young lives.

Orpah relented and went back to her parents, while Ruth stayed on thereby showing her absolute devotion and loyalty to her mother in law. Upon their arrival into the land of Israel, it was the time of the Barley harvest. Ruth, went on to work on the harvest  and was treated well by a man called Boaz. Boaz is one of the closest male relatives of Elimelech, Naomi’s husband. Naomi, upon hearing that Boaz treated Ruth well, instructed Ruth to  “remove the shoes  of the sleeping Boaz. Ruth follows the bidding of  Naomi and upon the awakening of  Boaz, reminds him of his obligation as one of the closest male relative  of Ruth’s dead husband  to fulfill  the right to redeem.

Boaz, did not refuse  the said obligation but informs Ruth that  He needs to discuss this first with his kinsmen because there is another male relative who has the option to exercise the right  to redeem Ruth in marriage. Boaz then proceeds to convene with this male relative by asking him whether if he would be willing to purchase the property of Ruth’s dead husband. The kinsmen was willing to purchase the said land but was reminded that with the said property comes the necessity of marrying the dead man’s wife to continue the line of his posterity. This prompted the man to relinquish his claim to Boaz, who promptly marries Ruth and was the father of Obed, who was the father of Jesse who was the father of David the greatest king of Israel.

THE BOOK OF SAMUEL  I

The book of Samuel is a narrative about the life of Samuel, a great prophet who followed God faithfully all his life. The book initially gives an account of how Samuel was dedicated to the service of the lord by his mother, Hannah. Hannah was a woman who wanted to bore children to her husband, but was unable to do so because her womb was closed by God. She prayed fervently until Eli the priest noticed her crying and reprimanded her because he thought that Hannah might be drunk. Hannah explained to Eli what her problem was. Eli  blessed her and told her that may she get what she is petitioning the lord for. Hannah, in turn,  promised to dedicate her first child to God if she would be given one. A year later, she bore a son to his husband, and she called him Samuel.

Samuel was then given to the tutelage of Eli to fulfill Hannah’s promise to God. Eli grew old and was beset by the wicked deeds of his two sons Hophni and Phinehas. God told Eli through Samuel, that his sons would die because of their wickedness. Samuel grew and was blessed by God with his spirit.  The Israelites were in a constant war with their foe, the Philistinnes, during these wars, the two sons of Eli fell.  The Ark of the covenant was captured by the Philistines and put into the temple of their god, Dagon. God punished them by sending a plague that killed many of their people. The Philistines then returned the Ark to Israel with gifts  to appease God. Samuel lead his people and became a judge of Israel until his old age weakened him.

At his old age, he delegated some of his tasks to his sons, who were not honorable like Samuel. The men of Israel noticed this and beseeched him to choose a king for them. Samuel disliked the idea of doing so, but was overruled by God, saying that it was not Samuel that was rejected but God. Samuel chose Saul  the son of Kish from the tribe of Benjamin to be the first king of Israel. He did what was pleasing to lord at the beginning of his reign but fell into disrepute when he did not follow all of God’s orders by heart. This angered God and he told Saul through Samuel that his kingdom shall not be established permanently and that he would be replaced by someone who would follow God with all his heart.

Samuel secretly anointed David the son of Jesse as king of Israel.  The spirit of God was with David and he did a lot of noble exploits for his people. He defeated Goliath of Gath with a sling and a stone, and became a good friend of Jonathan, King Saul’s son. His greatness fueled the jealousy of King Saul, who did anything in his power to kill his potential rival, but was repeatedly saved by his loyal friend, Jonathan. This hatred,  was the reason why David opted  to live in hiding and remained to do so during the remaining days of Saul as king of Israel.  Saul was eventually killed along with Jonathan and his other sons during a battle with the Philistines.

THE BOOK OF SAMUEL  II

The book revolves around its theme on the concept of the Imperfection of Man that sometimes lead him to do wicked things and the willingness of God to forgive man as long as he is repentant. The second book of Samuel, is a narrative about  the reign of King David over the kingdom of Israel. David became fully entrenched as the King of all Israel  after the death of Ishboseth, a son of King Saul. He defended Israel against their many enemies, performed a lot of  exploits with his men by glorious feats of arms and even extended the territory of the Israelites by defeating and subjugating his enemies.  However, during the apex of his rule as king, he faltered and sinned against God. He coveted the wife of his soldier, Uriah.

The woman, named Bathseba was very beautiful that the king lusted after her. King David was the indirect cause of the death of Uriah. During those times, David was at war with the Ammonites. David took advantage of this to hide his sin from God and his people. He ordered his army commander, Joab, to put him into a spot where the battle was at  its fiercest to have his enemies rid David of Uriah, so that he may possess his wife.

David sincerely repented when the prophet, Nathan reprimanded him  for doing  this unholy act before God, and was told that his kingdom would be insecure and troubled for the remaining years of his reign but would still thrive on. Trouble stirred when Absalom, one of King David’s son openly revolted against him. David was unable to personally fend Absalom’s attacks because he loves his son and does not want to hurt him in any manner.  Absalom was eventually killed by Joab, who disobeys King David’s command to refrain from  hurting Absalom. It was in this manner that King David was able to regain the control over his kingdom. The second book of Samuel ended with an account of The Census being conducted by David and the death of a lot of his people caused by the Angel of Death. David repented of his foolishness and asked for forgiveness, so that the Angel would cease killing his people off. The prayer was heard  and the killings stopped.

THE BOOK OF KINGS I

The first  book of kings is a narrative about the early kings of Israel. The main theme being emphasized by the book is the need for Man to continually follow the righteous path set forth  by God otherwise he is bound to be led astray and would be destroyed by his own wickedness. The story starts with the final deathbed instructions of King David. David chose Solomon to inherit the throne and instructed him to kill Joab, his army commander, for the crimes he committed against Abner and Amasa, and Shimei for cursing David while he was fleeing from his son, Absalom.

These  wishes were carried out. Solomon also had his half-brother, Adonijah killed because of a  highly impudent request. At the beginning of his reign, God visited Solomon in a dream, and asked him what he wanted to have on his reign, with the promise that he shall have it. Solomon then asked God to imbue him with great wisdom so that he would be able to govern Israel properly. God was pleased with Solomon’s answer and promised to give him riches, power and fame in addition to great wisdom because he put the proper governance and welfare of  his subjects first.

This wisdom was exhibited when he judged and identified the real mother of an infant in a hotly contested  claim made by two women.  He also impressed the Queen of Sheba when she came to Israel to test the wisdom of King Solomon.  This book also made mention of how King Solomon constructed the temple of God in the stead of King David, who wanted to do this undertaking but was stopped because of his bloodstained hands when he lead Israel to wars.

King Solomon married 700 princesses from different kingdoms and had 300 concubines. This caused him to sin against God, because his foreign wives brought with them their idolatrous worship and made him partake of the pagan worship of these foreign gods and idols. Upon his death, he was replaced by his son Rehoboam. During the reign of Rehoboam, the Kingdom of Israel became separated into two, the Northern (Israel) and the Southern kingdom (Judah).  The Southern kingdom had  Rehoboam as their king. He was supported by the tribe of Judah and Benjamin, while the Northern Kingdom, had Jerobaom as king, he was supported by the other 10 tribes of Israel. The Northern Kingdom became unfaithful to God and turned to Idol worship. The Southern Kingdom, on the other hand remained faithful to God. The Northern Kingdom became wicked before the eyes of God.

The evil was at  its peak during the reign of King  Ahab and Queen Jezebel, who were devout worshippers of Baal. God sent Elijah to Israel to tell them to mend their ways and go back to worshipping God. However, Ahab and his subjects refused to listen. Elijah tried to turn the Israelites back to the worship of Jehovah by challenging the priests of Baal to pray to their god and ask him to make fire come from heaven to consume their sacrifice, Elijah would also do the same. Whoever makes fire come from heaven would be deemed the prophet of the true and living God. Elijah won on this showdown. He immediately called for the execution of the priests of Baal. This action angered Queen Jezebel, who sought to murder Elijah. Elijah escaped and communed with God on Mount Horeb. Elijah prophesied about the ghastly end of the House of Ahab as well as the death of Queen Jezebel. After he finished with the tasks God gives him he passes on his position to Elisha, and was taken up into Heaven by a fiery chariot.

References:

  • The Book of Genesis. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org.  Retrieved on May 26, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The Book of Exodus. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 25, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The Book of Leviticus. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org.  Retrieved on May 25, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The book of Deuteronomy. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 26, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The book of Numbers. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 27, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The book of Judges. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 27, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The book of Joshua. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 28, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The book of Ruth. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 26, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The first book of Samuel. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 26, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The second book of Samuel. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 26, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/
  • The first book of Kings. 2008 – 2010 KingJamesBibleOnline.org. Retrieved on May 26, 2010 from the world wide web: http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/

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