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A Bible Timeline And Preaching The Word Of God

In our Bible study some years ago, a lady who had been a Christian and laboured in the Church for many years, made this statement, “Yes, but Abraham had the Law and so he understood about......” (she was not referring to the pre-mosaic laws) I wonder how many Christians would actually pick up the error in this statement. Moses came about 500 years after Abraham and so it is impossibility. I have since compiled a Bible Timeline and shown her graphically the chronology of people & events.

Unfortunately, a very large number of preachers and teachers in our churches continue to preach shallow, light weight messages and their congregations barely grow in Biblical knowledge. Preachers love to give us ‘moral essays’ and ‘warming affirmations’ because supposedly, if we love people this is what we will do. Too bad if God’s people are falling through the cracks ‘for a lack of knowledge’ (revelation, oracle) as long as we are positive and loving to all, that is the main thing, it seems. The more relevant we become to the world, the less relevant we are to the world.

Recently I was teaching on the death and resurrection of Jesus, and a retired pastor and a strong preacher of the gospel, who had been in the ministry for 40 years came up and reproved me smartly over some interesting points I made and he referred to 1Ti 1:4 nor to occupy themselves with myths and endless genealogies which promote speculations rather than the divine training that is in faith;. (Revised Standard Version © 1947, 1952.) I quietly asked him if I was teaching anything of a heretical nature at all, to which he said “No”. I continued on to explain that that Scripture was not referring to exploring Scripture but to the false teachings and philosophy of Gnosticism, but he would not have it. Let me ask, how can a 40 year preacher & laborer in the gospel, not know and understand about something that possibly half the books of the New Testament refer to?

How can he understand and preach the Bible in fullness without knowing about something that was so influential in the New Testament church? And then how can the congregation hope to understand these things and be able to interpret their Bible well if they are not told?

Why do we get stuck in a rut of favorite’s topics and feel-good messages?

We preach on a text from Galatians and a passage about David from 2Samuel and a topical from Matthew and then the faith of Moses or the strength of Samson – bits from here and there, but we do not put it all together in a clear understandable, easy to remember, perspective with a good Bible TimeLine including Church History as well. Constantly we are bombarded with new books, modernist ideas, some of them dangerously leaning toward Liberal theology, when if we were to be taught the basics of Church History, we then would not be so doomed to repeat it.

Let’s us as teachers and preachers sew together the fragments of God’s Word and Plan into a seamless tapestry that our people can draw on for the rest of their lives, helping them to understand God, His Eternal Plan, the role of the Church and how to better interpret the Bible to live by.

It’s not hard to do, and it’s not boring if we are prepared to put in a bit of study with prayer and fervor, and just maybe you can use a Bible Timeline too.

John 17:17 Sanctify them in the truth: thy word is truth. (ASV)

Neil Baulch has been a lay preacher for 20 years. Bible TimeLine Site

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