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Home > Reading Thru the Bible > Chronological > Old Testament

Chronological Old Testament

The Old Testament is a collection of thirty-nine books. They were written to disclose the Covenant God of Israel as he revealed himself and how he acts toward his children. From its beginning pages the Old Testament presents itself to the reader as a book that describes the relationship of God and his people. It is not known with precision when the Old Testament was first assembled into one volume. The first section of the Old Testament often called the Law was canonized (accepted as divinely inspired and authorized) between 450-300 B.C. The Prophets, another section of alike books, were received as canon about 200 B.C. The Writings, largely the poetry book, were accepted sometime in the second century B.C. One must remember that the faith of Israel existed independently of any inspired books for hundreds of years. This should give us pause to bear in mind that we can worship the God of the Bible without having to worship Scripture itself. This does not mean that Scripture is not important in the daily expression of our Christian life. It does mean that we should remember that Scripture is God's tool to express how he will act toward us in our life situations. It is a means to an end, not the end in itself. This is not to say that Scripture is not important. It is saying that the God of Scripture is more important than the words of Scripture.

| Creation | Patriarchal | Exodus | Covenant | Conquest | Judges |
| United Kingdom | Divided Kingdom | Restoration |

Creation Stage (Genesis 1.1-11.26)

Creation

Fall

Flood

Babel/Nations

  • Going Higher and Loosing Communication: Gen 11.1-9

Patriarchal Stage (Job 1.1-42.17; Genesis 12.1-50.26)

Abraham: (the Promise of a Son): Genesis 11.27-20.18

  • The Journey to Canaan and Egypt (Promise of Descendents and Land): Gen 11.27-12-20
  • Abraham and Lot (Separation and Rescue): Gen 13.1-14.24
  • The Promise of God to Abraham: Gen 15.1-21
  • Hagar and Ishmael: Gen 16.1-16
  • God's Covenant with Abraham (Name changed, circumcision instituted, promise of a son given again, Abraham and Ishmael circumcised) Gen 17.1-27
  • The Promise of God for a Son (Sarah laughs): Gen 18.1-15
  • Abraham, Lot, Sodom and Gomorrah: Gen 18.16-19.38
  • Abraham and Abimelech (Abraham lies about Sarah in Gerar and God protects her): Gen 20.1-18

Isaac (Strife between Older and Younger Brothers): Genesis 21.1-27.40

  • The Birth of Isaac: Gen 21.1-7
  • Hagar and Ishmael: Gen 21.8-21
  • Abraham Offers Isaac to God: Gen 22.1-19
  • Sarah's Death: Gen 23.1-20
  • Isaac and Rebekah: Gen 24.1-67
  • Abraham Dies: Gen 25.1-10
  • Jacob and Esau's Birth: Gen 25.19-34
  • Strife over Abraham's Wells: Gen 26.1-33
  • God Chooses Jacob: Gen 27.1-40

Jacob: (Exile and God's Protection and Blessing): Genesis 27.41-37.1

  • Jacob Flees to Laban: Gen 27.41-28.9
  • Jacob's Dream at Bethel: Gen 28.10-22
  • Jacob's Marriage: Gen 29.1-30.24
  • Jacob's First Scheme: Gen 30.25-43
  • Jacob and Laban: Gen 31.1-55
  • Jacob Prepares to Meet Esau, wrestles with God, meets Esau: Gen 32.1-33.20
  • Dinah and the Shechemites: Gen 34.1-31
  • Returning to Bethel: Gen 35.1-15
  • The Death of Rachel and Isaac: Gen 35.16-29

Joseph (Relationship with Brothers): Genesis 37.2-50.26

  • Joseph the Dreamer (sold by his brothers): Gen 37.2-36
  • Judah and Tamar: Gen 38.1-30
  • The Wife of Potiphar: Gen 39.1-23
  • Joseph Interprets Dreams: Gen 40.1-41.57
  • The Brother's of Joseph Journey to Egypt: Gen 42.1-47.12
  • Joseph Ascends in Egypt: Gen 47.13-31
  • Manasseh, Ephraim: Gen 48.1-22
  • Jacob Blesses his Sons and Dies: Gen 49.1-50.14
  • Joseph Reassures his brothers and dies: Gen 50.15-26

Exodus Stage (Exodus 1.1-19.2)

Exodus from Egypt: 1.1-13.16

  • Israel Oppressed and the Birth of Moses: Ex 1.1-2.10
  • Moses Leaves Israel: Ex 2.11-25
  • Moses meets God: Ex 3.1-4.17
  • Moses Returns to Egypt: Ex 4.18-31
  • Moses and Pharaoh: Ex 5.1-7.13
  • Plagues in Egypt: Ex 7.14-11.10
  • The Passover and Redemption: Ex 12.1-13.16

Journey into the Wilderness: 13.17-19.2

  • Departure from Egypt: Ex 13.17-15.27
  • Water, Manna, and Quail: Ex 15.22-17.7
  • Amalekites and Arrival: 18.1-19.2

Covenant Stage (Exodus 19.3-Deuteronomy 34.12)

The Lord-Servant Treaty (Exodus 19.3-Numbers 10.10

This section of the Pentateuch is self-contained at describes some of the teachings that Israel needed on their way to the promise land. It covers the period from Israel's arrival at Mt. Sinai (Exodus 19.3) to their departure (Numbers 10.10). The time period is about one year in the life of Israel.

  • Theophany on Sinai: 19.3-20.21 (10 commandments 20.1-17)
  • God has no form: 20.22-24.11 (judicial laws: 21.1-23.33)
  • Instructions for building Tabernacle and dedicating priest: 24.12-18-34.28 (laws given: 25.2-31.17
  • Tabernacle building: 34.29-40.28 (laws followed 35.1-40.33)
    Regulations about Sacrifices: Leviticus 1-10
    [Regulations about Purity: 11-18]
    Sacrificial laws and priest dedication: Lev. 1-10 (laws of sacrifice (1.2-9.24; purity laws 11-18)
  • Marching orders: Lev. 19.1-Num. 10.10 (holiness laws (Lev 19.4-Num 9.14; marching orders: Num. 9.15-10.10)

Journey to the Promised Land (Numbers 10.11-Deuteronomy 34)

Wilderness Journey: 10.11-21.20

  • Leaving Sinai and Complaining: Num 10.11-11-35
  • God's Punishment of Miriam and Aaron: Num 12.1-16
  • Kadesh Rebellion: Num 13.1-14.45
    [Regulations: Num 15.1-36]
  • Korah's Revolt: Num 15.37-16.50
  • Aaron: Num 17.1-18.32
  • Kadesh Rebellion: Num 20.1-21
  • Aaron's Death, Complaining, Arrival at Moab: 20.22-21.20

Victory in Moab: Numbers 21.21-Deuteronomy 3.29

  • From Sihon to Sihon: Num 21.21-Deut 2.3.29
    [Obey God: Deut 4-11 An Exhortation to Israel to obey God]
    [Various Stipulations: Deut 12-26 Stipulations to keep in the new land]

Moses' Final Words: Deut 27-34

  • Moses gives final Instructions: 29.1-20
  • Joshua and the twelve tribes: 31.1-33.29
  • The Death of Moses: 34.1-12

Conquest Stage (Joshua 1-24)

The Conquest of Canaan: Joshua 1-12

  • Joshua becomes Israel's Leader: Joshua 1.1-18
  • Rahab hides spies: Joshua 2.1-24
  • Crossing into the Promised Land: Joshua 3.1-5.12
  • Walls of Jericho fall down: Joshua 5.13-6.27
  • Achan's Sin: Joshua 7.1-8.29
  • Covenant and Deception: Joshua 8.30-9.27
  • War in Canaan: Joshua 10.1-11-23
    [List of conquered kings: 12.1-24]
  • God's challenge to Joshua: 13.1-7
    [Allocation of Land: 13.8-22.34]
  • Me and my house: 23.1-24.33

Judges Stage (Judges 1-24; Ruth 1-4)

  • Israel's forgets God (theological explanation): Judges 1.1-3.6

The Judges: Judges 3.7-16.31

  • Othniel and Ehud: Judges 3.7-30
  • Deborah and Barak: Judges 4.1-5.31
  • Gideon: Judges 6.1-8.32
  • Abimelech: Judges 8.33-9.57
  • Jephthah: Judges 10.6-12.7
  • Samson: Judges 13.1-16.31

Various Concluding Stories: Judges 17-21

  • The grandson of Moses runs an idolatrous cult in Dan Judges: 17-19
  • The rape of a concubine and a war of retribution: Judges 19-21

Ruth (Ruth 1-4)

  • Family lose, Ruth's conversion and arrival in Bethlehem: Ruth 1.1-22
  • Ruth and Boaz meet: Ruth 2.1-23
  • Ruth's proposal to Boaz: Ruth 3.1-18
  • Kinsman-Redeemer: Ruth 4.1-22

United Kingdom Stage (1 Samuel 1.1-1 Kings 11.43)

Samuel (1 Samuel 1-7)

  • The Birth of Samuel (Hannah's Prayer): 1 Sam 1.1-2.11
  • The Wicked Sons of Eli: 1 Sam 2.12-2.36
  • The Call of Samuel by God: 1 Sam 3.1-4.1a
  • The Ark is Lost: 1 Sam 4.1-7.1
  • Samuel Rules: 1 Sam 7.2-17

Saul (1 Samuel 8-15)

  • Saul Becomes King: 1 Sam 8.1-11.15
  • Samuel says Goodbye: 1 Sam 12.1-25
  • The Philistines: 1 Sam 13.1-14.52
  • God Rejects Saul: 1 Sam 15.1-35

David (1 Samuel 16-1. 1 Kings 2.12)

  • David anointed and serves Saul: 1 Sam 16.1-23
  • David and Goliath: 1 Sam 17.1-58
  • David on the Run (Success and Jealousy): 1 Sam 18.1-27.12
    [Psalm 11: Possibly set against 1 Sam 18.8-19.7]
    [Psalm 7: Possibly set against 1 Sam 18.10-24]
    [Psalm 59: David's prays for God's strength as Solomon chases him 1 Sam 19.10-11]
    [Psalm 57: When David had fled from Saul into the cave 1 Sam 21]
    [Psalm 142: When David had fled from Saul into the cave 1 Sam 21]
    [Psalm 34: Set against 1 Samuel 21]
    [Psalm 56: Set against 1 Samuel 21.1015]
    [Psalm 17: Possibly set against 1 Sam 23.25ff.]
  • Saul and the spirit of Samuel (the witch at Endor): 1 Kings 28.1-25
  • Saul and his sons die: 1 Sam 29.1-31.13
  • David, Saul's Killer, Laments: 2 Sam 1.1-27
  • David the King of Judah: 2 Sam 2.1-4.12
  • David the King of Israel (philistines and dancing before God: 2 Sam 5.1-6.23
    [Psalm 24: Set against 2 Samuel 6 (the restoration of the ark)]
    [Psalm 68: Set against 2 Samuel 6.12-16]
  • God's Covenant with David and his Response: 2 Sam 7.1-29
    [Psalm 2: Rooted in 2 Samuel 7, the promise to David of a supreme name]
  • David the Warrior: 2 Sam 8.1-10.19
  • David and Bathsheba: 2 Sam 11.1-27
  • Nathan's Rebuke of David's Sin: 2 Sam 12.1-31
    [Psalm 51: David's Repentance of the Bathsheba Affair]
  • The Consequences of David's Sin: 2 Sam 13.1-20.26
    [Psalm 3: Set against 2 Sam 15.13-17.24]
    [Psalm 4: Set against David's fleeing from Absalom]
    [Psalm 5: Set against David's fleeing from Absalom]
    [Psalm 6: Set against David's fleeing from Absalom]
    [Psalm 63: Set against David's fleeing from Absalom]
  • David's Rule Ends: 2 Sam 2 Sam 21.1-1 Kings 2.12

Solomon (1 Kings 2.13-11.43)

  • Solomon Becomes King: 1 Kings 2.13-46
  • Solomon's Wisdom: 1 Kings 3.1-28
    [Government Overview: 1 Kings 4.1-28]
  • The Temple for God: 1 Kings 5.1-9.9
  • Government Overview: 1 Kings 9.15-28]
  • The Queen of Sheba and Great Wealth: 1 Kings 10.1-29
  • Solomon Breaks Covenant (marriage to foreign women): 1 Kings 11.1-43
    [Proverbs: A collection of practical bits of Wisdom by Solomon and others]
    [The Song of Songs: May or may not be by Solomon, A poetic portrayal of the reomatic relationship between a young man and a young woman]
    [Ecclesiastes: Addresses the issue of the meaning of Live: may or may not be by Solomon]

Divided Kingdom Stage (1 Kings 12.1-2 Kings 25.30)

Northern Kingdom (1st seven kings): 1 Kings12.1-16.34

  • Rehoboam, Jeroboam, and the Splitting of the Kingdom: 1 Kings 12.1-24
  • Jeroboam (N): 1 Kings 12.25-14-20
  • Three Judean Kings (Jeroboam, Abijah, Asa [S]): 14.21-15.24
  • Nadab, Baasha, Elah, Zimri, Omri, Ahab (N): 1 Kings 15.2516.34

Elijah Stories: 1 Kings 17.1-2 Kings 2.12a

  • Elijah and Ahab: 17.1-18.46
  • God encourages Elijah: 19.1-21
    [Israel and Aram at war: 22.1-40]
  • Naboth's vineyard: 21.1-29
  • Jehoshaphat: 22.41-50
    [Psalm 83: Set against the reign of Jehoshaphat (2 Chronicles 20)]
  • Elijah and Ahaziah: 1 Kings 22.51-2 Kings 1.18
  • Elijah goes to heaven: 2 Kings 2.1-12a

Elisha Stories: 2 Kings 2.12b-8.6

  • The Company of Prophets: 2 Kings 12b-18
  • Water, Mocking, Water. Poison, Loaves: 2 Kings 2.19-4.44
  • Naaman Healed: 2 Kings 5.1-27
  • Axhead, Blinding, Provision, Healing: 2 Kings 6.1-8.6

More Kings: 2 Kings 8.7-13.35

  • Elisha and Hazael: 2 Kings 8.7-15
  • Jehoram and Ahaziah (S): 2 Kings 8.16-29
  • Jehu and the Death of Jezebel and Ahab (N): 2 Kings 9.1-10.35
  • Joash (S): 2 Kings 11.1-12.21
    [Joel (Southern Prophet) A prophesy against Judah: Joel 1.1-3.21]
  • Jehoahez and Jehoash (N): 2 Kings 13.1-35

[Jonah (Northern Prophet) Prophecy to Ninevah]

  • God's Call, Jonah's Response: 1.1-17
  • From the Fish: Jonah 2.1-10
  • God Calls Again: 3.1-10
  • Jonah's Resentment: 4.1-11

Northern Kingdom (final years): 2 Kings 14.1-17.41

  • Amaziah (S): 2 Kings 14.1-22
    [Joel (Southern Prophet) A prophesy against Judah: Joel 1.1-3.21]
  • Jeroboam II (N) 14.23-29
    [Amos (Northern Prophet) A prophesy against Israel: Amos 1.1-9.15]
  • Uzziah (Judah): 15.1-7
    [Isaiah and Micah (Southern Prophets) Prophecies against Judah]
  • Zechariah, Shallum, Menahem, Pekahiah Pekah: (N): 2 Kings 15.8-31
    [Hosea (Northern Prophet) A prophesy against Israel (N): Hosea 1.1-14.9]
  • Jotham and Ahaz (S): 2 Kings 15.32-16.20
    [Isaiah and Micah (Southern Prophets) Prophecies against Judah]
  • Hoshea (fall of northern kingdom): 17.1-41
    [Hosea (Northern Prophet) A prophesy against Israel (N): Hosea 1.1-14.9]

Southern Kingdom (final years): 2 Kings 18.1-25.30

  • Hezekiah (S): 18.1-20.21
    [Psalm 75: Set against 2 Kings 18-19]
    [Psalm 76: Set against 2 Kings 18-19]
    [Isaiah and Micah (Southern Prophets) Prophecies against Judah]
  • Manasseh: 21.1-18
  • Amon (S): 21.19-26
    [Nahum and Zephaniah (Southern Prophets) Prophecies against Judah]
  • Josiah, Jehoahaz, Johoiakim, Jehoiachin (S): 22.1-24.18
    [Jeremiah (Southern Prophets) Prophecies against Judah]
  • Zedekiah (S): 24.18-25.30
    [Psalm 74: Set against the events of 2 Kings 24-25]
    [Jeremiah and Ezekiel (Southern Prophets) Prophecies against Judah]
    [Habakkuk (Southern Prophet) The just live because of the Faithfulness of God]

Captivity (not covered by any one book)

[Jeremiah and Ezekiel (Southern Prophets) Prophecies in Exile]
[Lamentations: A eulogy of mourning of the fall of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.

Daniel (1-6)

  • Daniel and his three friends: 1
  • Nebuchadnezzar's dream: 2
  • Fiery furnace: 3
  • Nebuchadnezzar's insanity: 4
  • Handwriting on the wall: 5
  • The lions' den: 6
    [Obadiah (Exile Prophet) Edom's mistreatment of Judeans during the Babylonia destruction of Jerusalem]

Restoration (Ezra; Nehemiah; Esther)

Ezra

  • Zerubbabel Return and Temple Building Begins: Ezra 1.1-4-24
  • Prophets Encouragement: 5.1-12
    [Haggai and Zechariah (Restoration Prophets) Prophecies about building the Temple]
  • Temple Completed: Ezra 3-6.22
  • Ezra Returns: Ezra 7.1-8.22
    [List of people: 7.27-8.21]
  • Ezra's deals with intermarriage: Ezra 9-10

Nehemiah

  • Nehemiah's Return: Nehemiah 1-2
  • Rebuilding Walls, Opposition, Plot: 3.1-4.23
  • Helping Poor, Plot, Opposition, Walls Completed: 5.1-7.3
    [List of returnees; 7.4-73]
  • Ezra assembles people, Reforms: Nehemiah 8.1-10.39
    [List of names: 11.1-36]
  • Nehemiah assembles People, Reforms: Nehemiah 12.27-13.31
    [Malachi (Restoration Prophet) Prophecies about robbing God]
    [1 and 2 Chronicles: A retelling spin of the story of 1 & 2 Kings for the sake of the people of the restoration]

Esther

  • The King and the Queen: Esther 1.1-2.23
  • Haman's and Mordecai: Esther 3.1-4.17
  • Esther's Banquets: 5.1-7.10
  • Haman's Plot Foiled, Jews Saved: Esther 8.1-9.10
  • Esther, Susa, Feast of Purim: 9.11-10.3

Copyright © 2001 Winn Griffin, D. Min. All rights reserved.

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