I once heard the Bible described like an onion with multiple layers waiting to be unraveled. God’s Word is the most amazing book ever written. Not only is it given by the Creator of the world to creation, but it is a literary masterpiece. The more I learn the more I am amazed by its depths. It was not intended to be merely skimmed along the surface, but to dive into a world filled with color and delight. The purpose of this blog is simply to peel back some of the many layers we find within.
As a congregation, we are a couple of days away from beginning a plan to read through the Bible this year. This blog is meant to assist you along the way. You will find posts about the sections we are reading. These are not intended to be long thoughts, but emphasis of the writers along the way. Things that make us stop and be in awe of the Almighty God. We might even add some charts and pictures. I’m not exactly sure how it will go, but the purpose is set – peel back the layers of Scripture.
So we begin with the Pentateuch, which is a fancy word for “five-part book.” It is made up of the first five books of the Bible – Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. They were intended to be read as one book. Most agree it was written by Moses, which means it was written during the time of the Exodus and leading up to the conquest of the Promised Land. It was important they learned about Adam and Eve, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, etc. They needed to hear to stories of creation, the Fall, the Flood, deliverance, etc. They will discover the covenant made with Abraham (Gen. 12), to make a great nation from his descendants. Not only will they be blessed, but they will pave the way for the nations of the earth to be blessed through a special offspring – “seed.” Moses is writing to a people who had failed. They are breaking God’s laws faster than they can be chiseled into stone. They needed to know more about what happened to them as a people. They needed to get a greater grasp of the One they now call Yahweh. They were a special people. They needed to know about the covenant promises made to them. They needed to understand how God wanted to love and bless them more than they could imagine. This book was written to a people who spent 430 in Egypt, and most of that time as slaves. They needed this… we need this. All of these stories have significance. This was much more than a history book. Through narratives and poetry, the author emphasises links to a deeper understanding.
So, as you open up the first page of Scripture, imagine yourself along the borders of the land God promised His people centuries ago. Preparations are being made. Many discussions have taken place. Anticipation has set in about this powerful God who will lead the way. There are many gods and idols in the land you are about to enter. Why is my God special? Who is He really? Why has He taken interests in me and my people? Why should I trust this God? Now begin reading…