The Story of the Old Testament

Based on Dr. Paul Benware’s book, Survey of the Old Testament, I taught a nine-week class on “Old Testament Survey” for Oak Tree Community Church‘s Learning Center. In this class I showed that only 11 out of the 39 books of the Old Testament actually carry the “big story” forward. The rest add details, but do not really drive the story.

As a part of my preparation for the class, I wrote “The Story of the Old Testament.” In about 20 pages, I give a summary of those 11 books plus a few charts to help put them into perspective. I also included three articles I wrote:

  • “The Abrahamic Covenant” – why God’s promises to Abraham are central to understanding the Old Testament correctly
  • “The Mosaic Covenant” – why God does not expect us to obey the Old Testament Law
  • “Is God a Genocidal Murderer?” – how we are to respond to God’s command for Israel to annihilate various nations and tribes in ancient Canaan
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A study in Hebrews 6, Part 1

This is a multi-post study on Hebrews 6:1-8, a passage that many people have found confusing and concerning. Our goal in this series is to “handle the word of truth accurately” (2 Timothy 2:15) in order to come to the correct understanding of the passage. You can follow the whole series here.

Passage summary

With the beginning of chapter six, the author moved on to a topic that he realized would be difficult to understand. He prefaced this in 5:11-14 with a scolding that his readers should have been past basic truths in their spiritual maturity, and he intended to help them get there (6:1-3).

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A study in Hebrews 6

Photo used under Creative Commons from phil_h

I have written before about the graduate degree I am working toward. Right now I’m taking a class in Advanced Bible Interpretation, and our main homework project is an in-depth paper on one of the difficult passages in Scripture. I chose one that people ask me about frequently, Hebrews 6:1-8, a passage that has instigated many a late-night-discussion among Bible students and scholars alike.

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