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What is the New Testament?

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”

Romans 1:16-17
What is the New Testament? Book Cover

Who is Jesus? What was it like to follow in his footsteps? What was his message? To whom was it given? Who believed? What is the connection between the narrative and prophecy of the Old Testament and the gospel (good news) of the New Testament?

The New Testament, twenty-seven books written in Greek between AD 50 and 100, reveals the fulfillment of the Old Testament’s promise of a savior—Jesus. Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John use eye-witness accounts of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus as the fulfillment of the Old Testament’s promise of the one who would save us from sin and death. And the rest of the New Testament chronicles the spread of Christianity in the first-century world. Together, the Gospels and letters of the New Testament offer wisdom and hope for Christ-followers living in a broken world. And that hope will be fully realized when Jesus returns, as promised in the final book of Revelation.

The ministry of Jesus isn’t just something to be observed. There is a call to action found throughout the New Testament. Jesus called his followers to go into the all the world, making disciples (Matthew 28:19–20). The book of Acts records those first missionary journeys and church plants. Led by Paul and Peter, the earliest believers in Jesus as Messiah set out to share the good news of salvation and to equip local groups of Christians with truth for living transformed by Jesus.

And so, the church was born.

As we know well, throwing off the sin that so easily entangles us and running with Jesus is hard. We get tripped up by tradition. Beset by bad habits. Discouraged by doubts. Caught up in comparison. Worn down by worldliness. And the early church did too; we see it played out all through the New Testament.

Paul and the first evangelists didn’t just covert Christians and move on. They continued to equip and encourage. The letters that follow the Gospels were written to specific groups of Christ-followers within the first hundred years after Jesus’s life and resurrection. In them, we see that the Christian life is only successfully lived when it is empowered by the Holy Spirit and lived within the context of community. In these letters, we find the answers to questions we should never stop asking. What is church life supposed to look like? How are we supposed to engage with unbelievers? How do we admonish the wayward brother or sister in Christ? In what do we place our hope? What awaits us in eternity?

The fulfillment of this last question is breathtakingly displayed in the Bible’s final book, Revelation. In it, God promises that one day there will be no more sin and sorrow, only light and life—Revelation gives us the hope we need to press on.

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How to Read Your Bible

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Understanding the Bible

Daily Question

What steps can you take so that your engagement with God’s Word leads to ever-increasing spiritual maturity?

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Comments (10)

Being consistent in my walk with Christ. Taking my quiet in my day to read and study God’s word and continuing to live out my day with what God has taught me each day.

Make it a priority to be in His Word daily; be quiet and listen. My word for the year is direction. I want to seek His direction daily so that I stay on the path He is showing me.

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questions one can ask oneself is this: Is this post important for business? For many, it is, however, for others; it’s a non-issue. When we are asked to define what is important for business, we often wince and say, "Umm, well, I don’t know. What’s important to me is getting the word out there that I exist!"

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One of the most important questions one can ask oneself is this: Is this post important for business? For many, it is, however, for others; it’s a non-issue. When we are asked to define what is important for business, we often wince and say, "Umm, well, I don’t know. What’s important to me is getting the word out there that I exist!"

To be more mindful and apply what I am reading to my everyday lift, rather than just checking off the box "have I read my Bible today?". I think I will try journaling. I have not done that before but I find if I write something down I have more of a chance of using it, remembering it.

I want to read the bible most days and I want to join a bible study when the pandemic is over. I feel that my spiritual growth will be the strongest when I am reading, studying and learning alongside others.

I need to set time aside daily, in a quiet place, clear my mind. Start with prayer asking God to open His Words to me so I can understand what He is teaching me.
I think using the three steps of Inductive study will help me. Journaling would increase my understanding and help me take time to reflect on what I read. Also writing it helps me remember and apply it to my life. Most I need to allow time, be still to listen to the Holy Spirit.
Joining with others in Bible study groups.

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