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5 New Testament Summaries You Can Use


The book of Matthew is Narrative. Key figure is Jesus. Major personalities include Mary and Joseph, Twelve Disciples, John the Baptist and other leaders. Key purpose was to show Jesus as the Messiah from line of David. Attempt to convince the Jews that Jesus was the long-awaited King. Major events start with the virgin birth. There isn’t much noted about Jesus’ childhood. John the Baptist prepares the way and baptizes Jesus. Jesus overcame the devils temptation. The ministry of Jesus launched with his preaching. The calling of the first disciples occurs. Jesus’ famous Sermon on the Mount, many miracles, and priceless teachings, parables and lessons to any that would listen. Jesus feeding the 5000 was the height of his popularity. Jesus predicted his death, rode triumphal into Jerusalem and had the last supper. Jesus betrayal, tried illegally and sentenced to die. Jesus’ crucifixion occurred, buried and rose on the third day. Jesus appeared to his followers and gave the Great Commission.


The book of Acts is narrative. Key personalities are Peter, Paul, John, James, Stephen, Barnabas, Timothy, Lydia, Silas, and Apollos. Luke is the author. Key purpose is to tell how the Holy Spirit commissioned believers, how the founding of the church occurred, act as a model for the future church and tell about the spread of Christianity. Major events start with Jesus taken up into Heaven. The Holy Spirit comes at Pentecost. The stoning of Stephen. Evangelism of the gentiles begins. Saul becomes a passionate follower of Christ and preaches the Gospel. The apostles share the gospel with the Gentiles in a region outside Jerusalem. The Gospel message then heads west in the Gentile European regions. Paul (formerly Saul) continues to preach and has three missionary journeys. As Acts winds down you see Paul’s travel and arrest at Jerusalem. Then his difficult journey to Rome. Paul arrives in Rome, placed in-house arrest and the book of Acts ends suddenly without describing Paul’s trial before Caesar.


The book of James is an epistle. The author is likely Jesus’s half brother James. James wrote the epistle to believers. Key purpose is to give wisdom in practical ways to live as a Christian. Encouragement to persevere and live bold lives of followers of Jesus. Major issues start with trials and temptations. Believers can take joy in preserving. Listening and doing is important. That once you have the gift of faith your actions will show the level of your belief. Favoritism is forbidden. James repeats the theme of faith and deeds. Controlling your tongue and the words that come from your heart is important. James addresses types of wisdom: One from the devil and the other type from Heaven. James reminds the believer to submit to God. Pride opposed and humility rewarded with grace. James concludes with a warning about boasting about tomorrow and rich oppressors. The end is a reminder to stay patient and pray in faith.

Second Peter

The book of Second Peter is an epistle. The author is Peter. Peter wrote the epistle to believers. Key purpose is warning believers about false information and false teachers who were infiltrating the Christian community. Major issues start with making one’s calling and election sure. Peter encouraged believers to always grow in love. Reinforce preaching the Gospel of Jesus is important. Peter taught that false prophets would meet destruction. The end of the book teaches on the day of the Lord. Unbelievers will come out in droves during the last days. Peter gives a reminder that the Lord is a patient God. The Lord desires all to come to repentance. Peter tells of a new Heaven and a new Earth. There is encouragement to believers to make the effort to do their best. Things of the Lord are hard to understand. Peter’s final warning is to stay on guard. Grow in the knowledge of Jesus.


The book of Revelation is an Apocalypse. The author is John. Key purpose is to give encouragement and hope for believers. Revelations judgment of the Last Day is a warning. Revelation has reminders to live a good and holy life. Major issues start with John’s writing that those who read and hear Revelation will get blessed. He goes on to write to the seven churches. Telling the truth of his vision. The unleashing series of amazing judgments upon the Earth. Wiping out great numbers of unrepentant people occurs. John describes the final resting place (Hell) for unbelievers. There is a one thousand-year reign of Christ. The devil tossed into the lake of fire. John writes of the new Heaven and new Earth. Crying or tears, pain, mourning, or death has ended. The old order has passed away. The end of times makes everything new. Jesus’ coming is the promise made. His free gift is available to all.



Quest Study Bible 2003 Zondervan

How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth Fee and Stuart

The Promise and The Blessing Michael A. Harbin


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