A SIMPLE OUTLINE OF THE BIBLE
Genesis Chapter I to Chapter 11 :
The creation of the world
••• sin enters the human race
••• God promises Eve that through her
would come the One to destroy Satan
•••• the world becomes populated
••• the wickedness of man increases
Fallen angels intermingle with the daughters of men.
••• God destroys the earth with a flood
and saves 8 people (Noah and his family)
••• the descendants of Noah are no better •••
(Read Romans 1:18-32).
Genesis Chapter 12
(about 2000 years after the creation):
God "gives up" the world and chooses one man, Abraham,
and promises that through his seed would come a nation that
would be a blessing to the whole world (the Jewish nation)
••• Abraham believes God
•••• God kept His promise and in his old age Abraham and Sarah have a son, Isaac.
From Isaac came Jacob and from Jacob came the 12 sons who became the 12 tribes of Israel.
All through the rest of Genesis to the end of the Old Testament
the Bible is centered on the Hebrew nation.
Also Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and the first 8 chapters of Acts
is centered upon the Hebrew nation.
Israel was to bring the truth of the true God to the rest of the world
and from them the Saviour of the world, the Messiah,
was to come and rule over the world in righteousness in a kingdom
set up here on earth in Jerusalem.
To make a long story short, Israel failed to obey and believe God.
The Old Testament tells about their sad history.
Then when Christ appeared, the nation did not recognize Him as the Messiah,
and said "we will not have this man to rule over us:" They put Him to death.
But He rose again and appeared to many.
*** You would think that now
the nation of Israel would believe
but they did not.***
In the Book of Acts we see in Chapters 1-8 that Israel as a nation
refused to believe in the risen Christ
and had His followers murdered.
Now, rather than God bringing in judgment
(which was prophesied in the Old Testament)
upon Israel for their rebellion and unbelief, God did a wonderful thing ~
He saved Saul of Tarsus, the leader of the rebellion
against Christ and turned him into the Apostle Paul (read it in Acts 9).
God revealed to Paul that Israel as a nation would be spiritually "blinded" for a while
(see Romans 11:25-26).
That "blindness” has been going on for almost 2000 years!
You see, God revealed to Paul a secret,
(a "mystery” as the Bible calls it).
God made Paul the apostle to the whole world (Gentile and Jew).
We read in Paul's writings that the death of Christ brought "reconciliation" to the whole world
(read II Corinthians 5:19).
In other words, God has made it possible for anyone to be reconciled (or saved)
not by Israel and their message of the Kingdom,
but by the death of Christ on the cross for the sins of the world, and by His resurrection.
This truth was revealed to Paul, not to the 12 apostles.
Paul is the apostle of this time which the Bible calls
the "Dispensation of the Grace of God".
That is why Paul's writings are for us today.
After this dispensation of grace is over,
then God will begin to deal with Israel as a nation again.
God has not forgotten His promises to them!
But before Israel will accept Christ as their Messiah
they will have to go through a terrible time of Tribulation,
which will last seven years, after which they will realize that
Christ is indeed their Messiah and will believe on Him.
(This Tribulation time is spoken of in the Old Testament prophets,
in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and especially in the book of Revelation.
Also Peter and James and John talk about it).
So you see, the Bible is all for us, but it is not all to or about us.
We are not part of the Jewish Kingdom which will be set up with Christ as the King,
when the Gentile nations will be blessed also,
but we are part of the "Mystery" which was revealed to Paul.
We are members of the "Body of Christ" and our future is in Heaven.
Today all people can be saved by grace,
through faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross of Calvary,
not by good works,
because it is the gift of God
(read Ephesians 2:8,9).
Believe and trust in Christ alone,
and be saved for all eternity.
1 Corinthians 15:1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you,
which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;
1 Corinthians 15:2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you,
unless ye have believed in vain.
1 Corinthians 15:3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received,
how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
1 Corinthians 15:4 And that he was buried,
and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
I trust this helps in your understanding of the Bible.
God’s Plan for the Ages
An Outline for the Timeline/Chart
1:1 – God made 2 places: Heaven & Earth
• Over 80% of our Bible talks about God’s plan for the EARTH.
• We learn very early on what God wanted man to do: multiply & have dominion over the
EARTH (1:28, 9:1, see also Psa 115:16)
11:1, 4-8 – When man tried to get to Heaven, God reminded them that He didn’t want them in
Heaven, but “upon the face of all the EARTH.”
12:1-3 – God separated Abraham from all the people in order to make a great nation through
which God would deal with the world.
• God promised Abraham some things: one of the most important of which is LAND (see 12:7,
13:14-15, 15:18, 17:5-8)
• These promises would be passed down to Abraham’s descendants, but not ALL descendants
would receive them – only part (see 15:18, 16:15, 17:19-21). This theme continues (see
26:1-5, 25:24-28, 28:13-16).
32:28 – God renames Abraham’s grandson, Jacob, to ISRAEL.
46:2-3 – God sends Jacob and his 12 sons to Egypt to become a GREAT NATION.
EXODUS - DEUTERONOMY
Exo 1:1-7 – What began as a large family of 70, God made a GREAT NATION in Egypt, but they had
become slaves. When they cried to God, He remembered what He had promised (see also Exo
Exo 6:2-8 – God calls Moses to be the leader and administrator of God’s plans and instructions for the
nation of Israel (see also Exo 3:10-15).
Exo 13:17-18 – Moses leads Israel form Egypt and across the Red Sea (Exo 14:21-22, 29-31).
Exo 19:3, 5-6 – God offers Israel a deal: the First Covenant (or Old Testament – see Heb 8:13 & 9:15).
• This is an IF/THEN covenant (see Exo 19:5) also known as the Mosaic Law or the
Commandments and is found in the books of Exodus through Deuteronomy.
• Israel AGREED to the deal (Exo 19:8) and were promised to become a HOLY Nation and a
Kingdom of PRIESTS (Exo 19:6).
• Israel could be found right (righteous) in God’s eyes by doing these commandments (see
JOSHUA – ESTHER
• These books are a chronological history of the nation of Israel from the death of Moses until the births
of Jesus Christ and John the Baptist.
• During this time God only deals with mankind through Israel focusing on Israel becoming a mighty
nation ruling the world from their promised LAND.
• God communicated to the nation of Israel during this time primarily through the PROPHETS.
The book of Job is thought to be one of the earliest in the Bible, chronologically. Most place Job after
the flood (see Job 22:15-17) but before Moses since there is no indication that Job was an Israelite or under the
Mosaic Law. So he would have lived sometime between Genesis 10 and Exodus 1.
PSALMS – MALACHI
• These books are the writings of the leaders and prophets of Israel during the same time period as the
books of Joshua through Esther, above.
• In these books are the things God spoke to Israel at that time through the prophets.
• During this time, God made many promises to Israel called PROPHECIES.
• We will discuss 5 major prophecies that should help us more clearly understand God’s plan laid out in
FIVE PROMISES GOD MAKES TO ISRAEL
1. A KING – Israel is promised a King that will reign forever and shall be God’s Son (2 Sam 7:12-
The sign to be shown is told in Isa 7:14
2. A KINGDOM – Israel is promised an ever-lasting Kingdom (Psa 145:13)
The sign to be shown is told in Isa 35:4-6
3. A NEW COVENANT – Israel was promised a NEW deal with God to replace the old one from Exo
19. In this New Covenant with Israel, God’s laws will be written in their hearts, and He will put
His spirit in them to CAUSE them to keep His commandments (Jer 31:31-33, Eze 36:26-28)
The sign to be shown is told in Joel 2:28
4. GOD’S WRATH – God will pour out His anger and punish unbelieving Israel and the heathen
(non-Israel) (see Isa 13:11&13 and Isa 66:15)
The sign to be shown is told in Psa 7:6
5. A REMNANT – The believing part of Israel will be saved from God’s wrath in order to survive into
the Kingdom (Isa 11:11-12 and Isa 37:32)
The sign to be shown is told in Jer 9:13-16
MATTHEW – JOHN
• These books are a continuation of Israel’s history where the History books (Joshua-Esther) and the
Prophecy books (Psalms-Malachi) left off.
• Each book contains the life of Jesus Christ from a different perspective.
• Nothing new begins with these books:
o God is still dealing with mankind only through Israel (Mat 10:5-6, John 4:22)
o Israel is still expecting God to fulfill the promises He previously made them, and indeed those
promises began to be fulfilled during these books (see below).
o God had not changed His deal, the Old Covenant, with Israel, and it is plain to see that Jesus’
teachings were consistent with that Old Testament/Mosaic Law (Mat 5:17-18 & Mat 23:2-3).
• Even when Jesus began to teach that He would die then rise again, His own disciples had no idea what
He was talking about (see Mat 17:23, Mark 9:9-10 & 31-32, Luke 18:34, John 9:20).
• The prophecies and promises made to Israel began to come to pass:
o 1. A KING – Mat 1:18-23 (Remember the sign? Isa 35:4-6)
o 2. A KINGDOM – Mat 4:23-24 (Remember the sign? Isa 35:4-6)
• Jesus was crucified, but this is not taught as good news. After His resurrection, Jesus then commands
the disciples to continue the program they had already started (Mat 28:20). After all, there were still
several promises yet to be fulfilled.
• The book of Acts is still a continuation of Israel’s history picking up where the previous four books left
• More prophecies and promises to Israel continue to come to pass:
o 3. A NEW COVENANT – Acts 2:4, 14-21 (Remember the sign? Joel 2:28)
o 4. GOD’S WRATH – Acts 7:51-57 (Remember the sign? Psa 7:6 – see also Mark 16:19)
o 5. A REMNANT – Acts 8:1-4 (Remember the sign? Jer 9:13-16)
• By chapter 8 of the book of Acts, the nation Israel had rejected God the Father through His Prophets,
God the Son through Jesus Christ, and God the Spirit through Peter, the Disciples, and their fellow
• The next thing to happen according to Israel’s prophetic timeline would be for God to punish the world
and unbelieving Israel for their complete rejection of God, then He would set up Israel’s promised
Kingdom in the promised LAND for Jesus, the King, to rule the EARTH with Israel serving as His priests to
the rest of the world. BUT IT NEVER HAPPENED! WHY? When every other promise God had made had
come to pass, why wasn’t the rest of Israel’s program fulfilled? Since Adam’s fall from the Garden of
Eden, everything God said would happen has happened, but for the last 2000 years, it seems to most
that God has become much harder to figure out. WHY?
• BECAUSE: In Acts chapter 9, God interrupted His prophesied plan with Israel and saved Saul (Acts 9:3-9)
in order to start a different program. Saul, later named Paul, is the man through whom God would
administer His plans and instructions for the Body of Christ. (Read Paul’s own account of his conversion
in Acts 26:12-18).
• Though we read much about Paul in the remainder of the book of Acts, the theme of the book is still
about ISRAEL. Chapters 9-28, consequently, are about Israel’s fall and the putting on hold of their
Kingdom Dispensation from the Jewish perspective (see Acts 22:17-18 & 28:28).
• By the end of Acts, God’s plan for Israel had been temporarily set aside in order for God to institute His
plan for the Body of Christ through the Apostle Paul.
ROMANS – PHILEMON
• These 13 books are all of Paul’s letters.
• Paul was given a message distinct from any other plan God has instituted with mankind. He calls that
program the “Dispensation of Grace” (Eph 3:2) and the “Mystery” (Eph 3:3).
• For the first time we learn of God’s plan for HEAVEN through Paul’s letters. Remember, God created 2
places: Heaven & Earth. The entire Bible, until Paul, has described God’s plan for the EARTH, BUT NOW
God reveals His plan for HEAVEN. Israel’s promised domain is the promised Kingdom on EARTH,
whereas the Body of Christ will occupy HEAVEN
(1 Thes 4:17, Phi 3:20, 1 Cor 15:51-52, Col 3:1-4, Eph 1:3
& 2:6, Col 1:5).
• Paul was given instructions straight from God to be the pattern for all believers in the Body of Christ
( 1Tim 1:16).
• The information Paul received from Christ for the church today is different from information given to
Israel. Peter says the information given to Israel has been KNOWN since the world began (Acts 3:19-21),
but Paul says the information given to the Body of Christ through
him had been kept SECRET since the
world began (Rom 16:25).
• Instructions for the church today, then, are found in Paul’s letters, and God expects us to heed them
( 1 Cor 11:1 & 4:16, Phi 3:17 & 4:9, 2 Thes 2:15).
• There are many aspects of the Mystery program as given to Paul, but the most prominent is that anyone
can be saved by the blood of Christ apart from earning it or proving it with their works, but solely by the
belief that Jesus paid the full price for their sins
(Eph 2:8-9, Rom 4:5, Titus 3:5-7, Eph 1:7 & 13, Rom 3:24-
25, 1 Cor 15:1-4).
• The end of the Dispensation of Grace is marked by the receiving of the Body of Christ into Heaven
( 1 Thes 4:13-18). Then God will resume His promised earthly program with Israel
(Rom 11:11, 15,
HEBREWS – JUDE
• These books are referred to as the Hebrew epistles written by believing Jews during the Acts period.
The following verses help us to understand that these were written, not to the Body of Christ, but to
o HEBREWS – If the title of the book isn’t enough, see Heb 2:3-4.
o JAMES – See Jam 1:1 (cross reference with Acts 8:4 & 11:19)
o 1 PETER – See 1 Pet 1:1 (cross reference Acts 8:1)
o 2 PETER – See 2 Pet 3:1 (cross reference 1 Pet 1:1)
o 1 JOHN – See 1 JN 2:3-7
o 2 JOHN – See verse 6
o 3 JOHN – See verse 7
o JUDE – See verses 1 & 5
• Let us not forget that Peter, James, and John were ministers of the circumcision, otherwise known as
Israel (Gal 2:7-9)
• These books are properly placed AFTER Paul’s letters because the teachings in them will be applicable
and necessary to the REMNANT OF ISRAEL that will be in place when God resumes His plan with Israel
AFTER the Dispensation of Grace has ended (Rom 11:2, 5, 25-27).
• Written by John (a Jew), is a foretelling (prophecy) of the portion of Israel’s program yet to come after
the Dispensation of Grace.
• Revelation 1:5-6 further indicate that this is a book themed on the completion and fulfillment of God’s
plan for Israel on the EARTH (see also Rev 1:9).
• Of the 5 promises we looked at earlier, we see their complete fulfillment in Revelation still yet to come:
o 5. A REMNANT: Rev 7:1-4, 5-8, 13-15 (cross reference Mat 24:31 & Isa 1:12)
o 4. GOD’S WRATH: Revelation chapters 6, 8, & 13
o 3. A NEW COVENANT: Rev 22:14
o 2. A KINGDOM: Rev 21:2-3
o 1. A KING: Rev 19:11-16
• Information for the Body of Christ is not found in Revelation as it is written regarding God’s future plans
for the EARTH. Besides, Paul was God’s administrator and dispenser of the previously hidden mystery
information for the church today, they Body of Christ (Acts 26:16-17, 1 Cor 9:17, Eph 3:2, 1 Tim 1:16).
• In conclusion, while ALL scripture is truth and for our benefit (2 Tim 3:16), we must properly understand
God’s plans for both the HEAVEN and EARTH. He has two different plans for two different places.
Learning how to rightly-divide the Word of God helps us to better understand God’s plan for us in
Heavenly places (2 Tim 2:15, Eph 2:6).
• Earlier it was mentioned that over 80% of our Bible talks about God’s plan for the EARTH. Hopefully, this
study has shown that Genesis through Acts and Hebrews through Revelation contain vital information
for God’s plan for the EARTH, while the books of Romans through Philemon contain the once hidden
mystery about God’s plans for His HEAVENLY people—the members of the Body of Christ—now revealed