I live by the axiom, “If you’re through learning, you’re through.” So I try to learn something new every day.
I just finished a class called New Testament Survey — a quick overview of the 27 books that compromise the New Testament of the Bible. Here’s a couple of interesting factoids I picked up from my studies:
- The earliest-written book was James. Interesting since at one point James thought Jesus (his half-brother) was nuts.
- Only Matthew uses the term kingdom of heaven; all of the other writers use kingdom of God.
- Mark uses the word immediately more times than anyone else. Perhaps because his source (Peter) was always doing things so quickly… sort of a ready, FIRE!, aim kinda of guy.
- Luke wrote what is called “the global gospel” for everyone, so he included 45 teachings/events that no one else records.
- John doesn’t record any of Jesus’ parables.
- John uses the word believe nearly 100 times… more than any other writer.
- Luke talks about the Holy Spirit nearly 60 times in the 28 chapters of Acts.
- Romans is the longest of Paul’s epistles with 7101 words; Philemon is the shortest with just 355 words.
- With the exception of the pastoral epistles (1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, Titus) Paul’s letters are arranged in the Bible from longest to shortest.
- In 1 & 2 Thessalonians (only 136 verses) Paul refers to God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, or a combination thereof more than 150 times.
- Paul gives Timothy seven word pictures to describe the kind of pastor he should be: son, soldier, athlete, farmer, workman, instrument, and servant.
- Hebrews is called “the book of better things” so better is used 13 times. This word is only used six times in the remaining 26 books of the New Testament.
- James wrote 108 verses but issues 50+ direct commands.
- In John’s three short epistles he uses the word know 33 times, and the word dear ten times.
Keep on learning! There’s a lot of good stuff out there. What have you learned lately?