Have you ever made a goal to read the whole Bible and failed at Leviticus? The Bible is such a thick and deep book to chew on. Many people have tried by themselves and failed to get the big picture of what it talks about. The purpose of this article is to help you go through the whole Bible with 21 pictures. These pictures line up according to the order from Genesis to Revelation. So when you finish them, you will have a clue what the Bible is about. Let’s start with Genesis!
According to the first verse of the Bible, we know that God created two locations: HEAVEN and EARTH. We tend to spend a lot of time caring about our earthly life and ignore what heaven is for, or if it would have something to do with us?
God created the first man Adam and his wife. After creation, everything was good. God told Adam to dominion on earth and multiply. Sadly, Adam disobeyed God by eating the forbidden fruit. Sin entered the world. The dominion of humans on earth became unrighteous.
Men got more evil in Genesis. God decided to judge the evil. God told a faithful man Noah to build an ark. Limited animals and Noah’s families got on the ark. God made a flood that destroyed everything except the life on the ark. After the flood, God told Noah to dominion over the earth and multiply. After Noah died, men were not content with the earth. They tried to build the babel tower to reach heaven. Men disobeyed God, and their dominion on earth was not getting better.
God chose a faithful man Abraham and promised him that a kingdom from him will dominion over the earth. By God’s miracle, 99-year-old Abraham begat Issac, Issac begat Jacob, and Jacob begat 12 sons. God changed Jacob’s name to ISRAEL. His 12 sons multiplied and their children become the 12 tribes of Israel.
Anyone who is not from Israel is called GENTILE. In Genesis, God said if any gentile bless Abraham and his children would get blessed, otherwise, would get cursed. In a word, the way for gentiles to get blessings was though Israel.
Moses was born from the Levi tribe. God graved his law to 2 tables of stone and gave them to Moses. God said if the children of Israel obey his law, they will get blessed; if they don’t, they will get cursed. The children of Israel agreed. This agreement between God and Israel is called the OLD COVENANT. Sadly, Israel was not able to keep God’s law. They consistently disobeyed God by worshipping idols and rejecting God.
David was the second king of Israel. He disobeyed God by committing adultery. God showed grace to him by not killing him and promised a righteous king will be born in his family. Under this righteous king, Israel will dominion on earth forever.
Jesus was born in King David’s family. He is the prophesied king. So far, God has promised Israel a land with honey and milk, children as many as stars, and an eternal righteous king; he also gave Israel the law. They are the four criteria political elements to build a nation and they were ready. Jesus told the children of Israel that the kingdom is at hand. As the promised king, Jesus only came for Israel, not for gentiles. Check Matthew 15:22-28 and see how Jesus rejected a gentile woman.
Sadly, Israel rejected their king by crucifying Jesus on the cross. The book of Isaiah and Psalm prophecies the death and resurrection of this king. Jesus fulfilled those prophecies and proved that he is the promised one.
At Pentecost, Jesus gave the holy spirit to those who didn’t reject him in Israel, like Peter and the other disciples. These people are called the remnants of Israel. Jeremiah prophecies that the holy spirit will put God’s law in the hearts of the remnants, and they will get a new spirit that will help them to obey God’s law. This is called the NEW COVENANT.
According to prophecy, when the new covenant is fulfilled, Israel should get their promised kingdom, and all other nations will go to Israel to learn God’s law and get blessed. But we didn’t see it happen right away after the remnants got the holy spirit.
Because before the kingdom comes, there will be tribulation to test human hearts and Jesus will come back to judge the evils.
We knew the Pentecost has passed for two thousand years and we still don’t see the tribulation and judgment happening. What happened? Israel persecuted the remnants. So far, Israel has rejected God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. God put Israel aside and revealed the MYSTERY which explained the purpose of creating heaven.
Let’s look into the mystery. Even though the eternal king of Israel was prophesied, how this king can save Israel or all men from sin was a mystery. In a word, “who” is prophesied, but “how” was a mystery.
How? The punishment of sin is death, but Jesus took our punishment and died on the cross; he resurrected and imputed his righteousness to those who believe in his death, burial, and resurrection.
The mystery teaches that “you are not under the law”(Rom 6:14), which would be blasphemy in the old testament or when Jesus was still on earth. The mystery explained that Israel’s whole history proved that no one can obey the law. If God doesn’t show grace to us when we fail, no one can achieve any blessings. When Jesus died for unworthy us, G.R.A.C.E magnified: God’s Riches At Christ’s Expenses.
Hebrews said faith is the evidence of things not seen. Noah didn’t see the flood, but he believed it would happen and built the ark; Abraham didn’t see his children as many as stars when he was 99 years old, but he believed God would make it happen in some way. These are faithful examples. Now it comes to you: you never see Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection, but if you believe his suffering was for your sin, that will be your faith! And what does the Bible say? “We are saved by grace through FAITH“!
The old and the new covenants never involve the gentiles. We were separated from Israel and called the “foreigners” of covenants. When the mystery was revealed, the covenants and the special position of Israel were temporarily put aside. All people are the same, all are sinners, and all can be saved the same way.
You can not find “BODY OF CHRIST” this term in the old testament. It was never prophesied. You can’t find this term in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John either, because it was not revealed before Jesus’ resurrection. It is a new creature. Saved Christians are the body of Christ, and Christ is the head. Unbelieving Israel will be cut off like bad olive branches, but the weak brother will not be cut off from the body of Christ. Because no one cut off his body parts when they are weak, but to show more care to the weak ones.
You can’t find “body of Christ” this term in Hebrew to Revelation either, because “body of Christ” is not designed for the earthly kingdom or new covenant. It will be caught up to heaven before tribulation and judgment happen on earth. The body of Christ will live in heaven with Jesus. When God created HEAVEN, he already “mysteriously” planned this.
So… Who is the messenger preaching the gospel according to the mystery? PAUL. Paul was from Israel. According to the covenant, he should be separated from gentiles, but he claimed himself as the minister of gentiles while the 12 disciples of Jesus were ministering to Israel. He was ministering to gentile nations in his majority of life, like Roman, Greek… Only in his books, from Romans to Titus, you can find the teaching of the body of Christ.
We are living under the DISPENSATION of mystery. Saved Christians should look forward to their eternal life in heaven. However, it doesn’t mean God failed at his promise to Israel. The Bible said God will gather heaven and earth together in Christ eventually. At that time, with Jesus Christ being our head and Israel’s king, the dominion both in HEAVEN and on EARTH will be righteous.
You finished the 21 pictures! I hope you have a big picture of the Bible now. It will be beneficiary to you if you read the Bible reference in each picture. Let God’s words be your authority.