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Timeline Of The Bible PDF

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In order to understand this complex history, it’s helpful to break it down into smaller chunks:

The timeline of the bible is a long and complicated one. It spans from the creation of the world, through thousands of years of history, to the birth and death of Jesus Christ. It includes major events like Noah’s flood and Moses’ exodus from Egypt, as well as lesser-known but still important moments such as the conversion of Saul on his way to Damascus.

Creation to Abraham (4000 BCE – 2000 BCE): This period begins with God creating Adam and Eve in Eden and ends with Abraham leaving Ur of Chaldees at age 75 with his father Terah and uncle Lot.

Abraham to Moses (2000 BCE – 1400 BCE): This period begins with Abraham being promised by God that he will become a great nation (Genesis 12:2) and ends with Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt after centuries of slavery there under Pharaoh Ramses II.

Moses to David (1400 BCE – 1000 BCE): This period begins with Moses receiving Ten Commandments from God on Mount Sinai.

A BIBLE TIME LINE
Approximate
Date BCE/CE Event Biblical Source
About 1850 BCE Abraham leaves northern Mesopotamia and journeys to Gen. 12
Canaan.
About 1020 Samuel anoints Saul king of Israel over a united twelve- 1 Sam. 10
tribe kingdom.
About 1000-961 David creates an Israelite empire, makes Jerusalem the 2 Sam. 2-21;
national capital. J written down? 1 Kings 2
About 961-922 King Solomon rules, builds the First Temple at Jerusalem. 1 Kings 3-11
922 Kingdom split into Israel, a ten-tribe northern state, and 1 Kings 12
Judah, a two-tribe southern state.
721 Assyria conquers Israel, destroys its capital, Samaria; 2 Kings 17
deports the population. E and J combined? Thus Samaritans
= Jews who remained in Israel and assimilated with Assyrians.
701 Sennacherib besieges Jerusalem, Assyrians withdraw. Isa. 36-37;
2 Kings 18-19
622 or 621 Book of Deuteronomy “discovered”; Josiah reforms 2 Kings 22-23;
Judah’s religion. Approx. time D added to JE? 2 Chron. 34-35
598/597 Nebuchadnezzar sacks Jerusalem; first deportation of Jewish
captives.
587 Nebuchadnezzar destroys Jerusalem, burns Solomon’s 2 Kings 24
Temple, takes Jews Babylon as captives. Approx.
time of writing of P?
539 Cyrus the Great of Persia captures Babylon.
538 Much of Jewish remnant returns to Jerusalem, but some do not
(= Diaspora). Ezra 1
520-515 The Second Temple is built and dedicated; Ezra 6
Judah becomes a province of the Persian Empire. Hag. 2
486-465 Xerxes I (=Ahasuerus in Book of Esther) rules in Persia. Esther
445ff. Ezra and Nehemia religious reforms; Torah Neh. 8
promulgated as canon.
About 332 Alexander the Great includes Palestine in his empire. 1 Macc. 1
323-197 The Ptolemys of Egypt rule Palestine (Hellenistic period).
2
About 250 Septuagint begun; completed by 1st century CE.
About 200 Former and latter prophets added to canon.
About 200 Earliest Dead Sea scrolls written.
197-142 Seleucid dynasty of Syria rules Palestine. 2 Macc. 4
167-164 Antiochus IV attempts to force Hellenistic religion on the 1 Macc.;
Jews, pollutes the Second Temple. Dan. 11:30
164 The Maccabean revolt is successful, Second Temple is Dan. 7:25;
cleaned and rededicated. 8:14; 9:27; 12:7
About 150 Writings (Ketuvim) added to canon.
142-63 Jews expel the Seleucids; Judea becomes an independent 1 Macc.
kingdom under the Hasmonean dynasty.
63 General Pompey makes Palestine part of the Roman Empire,
partitions Judaea.
50-62 CE Paul’s epistles written. (Last epistle to be written is 2 Peter, ca. 120)
66-73 Jewish revolt against Rome.
70 Romans destroy Jerusalem and the Second Temple.
70-100 Gospels written. (“New testament” begins to be used in 100’s CE)
About 150 Epistles of Paul considered canonical. 2 Pet. 3:15-16
367 Christian canon in modern form, with Revelation as last book admitted.
About 400 Vulgate Bible in Latin; becomes standard Christian Bible until the
Protestant Reformation, after which it is the standard Catholic bible.
700-800 Masoretic text of Hebrew Bible finalized.
About 1400 John Wyclif’s followers translate parts of Bible into English.
1543 Martin Luther translates Old Testament into German.
1560 Geneva Bible (known to Shakespeare).
1611 Authorized or King James Version; becomes standard Protestant Bible
in English.
1947 Dead Sea Scrolls discovered in Qumran near the Dead Sea.
1948 Modern state of Israel created.
3
• J = Yahwist texts from Judah, the southern kingdom of ancient Israel; God is identified by His
personal name Yahweh (explained in Ex. 3:13-18), with Adonai (“the Lord”) written over it in
manuscripts; includes part of Primeval History (Gen. 1-11) and other narratives in Genesis, Exodus,
and Numbers)
• E = Elohistic texts from Ephraim in the northern kingdom of ancient Israel: God is identified by
His title Elohim (lit. “gods,” plural, using the traditional form for referring to a deity or royalty);
includes some early narratives in Genesis.
• D = Deuteronomistic texts found in the Temple in Jerusalem in 622/621 BCE: Books of
Deuteronomy and Deuteronomistic History from Joshua through Kings; also interested in laws,
ritual practices, and prophecy.
• P = Priestly texts possibly assembled during the Babylonian Captivity: Parts of Primeval History
and Exodus, all of Leviticus, parts of Numbers; also interested in genealogy and ritual practices.
SOURCES:

Studying the Bible is essential because of how important God is.

We should give our full attention to the Bible since it contains God’s message to humanity. We need to get in touch with him. Since we aim to take his words to heart, we will be giving them our full and undivided attention.

What a priceless piece of advice! A biblical passage describes them as “more to be desired than gold, even much fine gold; also sweeter than honey and drippings of the honeycomb” (Psalm 19:10). More than the biggest joys that our world wants—money and food—the Bible satisfies us.

Paul told young pastor Timothy that “all Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). As you speak, God “breathes out” each individual word in the Bible. It is absolutely original in this respect. That statement is true of the Bible but not of any other literature.

Reading the Bible is not the same as studying it.

The Bible is just another document, therefore we read it as quickly as possible. In contrast, we don’t rush through Bible study. We search for answers to the world’s mysteries as we attempt to make sense of it. What they say is given serious consideration.

Ephesians 1:1-14 can be read in 30 seconds, yet the lessons it contains will last you a lifetime. The Gospel of John can be read in its entirety in roughly two hours. But its complexity ensures that you’ll never get bored exploring it.


• Brown, Raymond E. An Introduction to the New Testament. 1997; rpt. New Haven: Yale University Press,
2010.
• Harris, Stephen L.. Understanding the Bible. 3rd ed. London/Toronto: Mayfield, 1992.
• Jeffrey, David L., ed. Dictionary of Biblical Tradition in English Literature. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1992.
• Gabel, John B., Charles B. Wheeler, Anthony D. York, and David Citino. The Bible as Literature: An
Introduction. 5th ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006

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