The word literal is complicated. According to one of the first definitions in the dictionary, literal means: “adhering...to the ordinary construction of primary meaning of a term or expression.” In other words, being literal can just mean saying what you mean to say, giving primary importance in the moment to...
Here is a list that offers a snapshot of all 27 New Testament books of the Bible. I hope you see Jesus Christ is at the center of each book. And, I hope you grow in worship of our Lord and Savior.
The first of all the new testament books of the Bible. The first of four gospels. It begins with a genealogy proving Jesus is the promised Messiah, and contains the beatitudes and the Sermon on the Mount
The second of four gospels—and the shortest read stretching only 16 chapters. Mark describes many of Jesus’s miracles and healings.
The third of the four gospels. Luke was a doctor and so his account of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection is very precise, often using higher vocabulary words and sometimes giving more detailed depictions of events.
The final gospel. John’s gospel offers an intimate portrait of Jesus’s life, and how much he loves us, something also seen in all New Testament books of the Bible. Here you will find Jesus’s 7 “I Am” statements.
Written by Luke, Acts is a detailed history of believers and the early church after Christ’s ascension into heaven. Not only does this book include the story of the Pentecost
Of all the New Testament books of the Bible Paul wrote, Romans letter to believers in Rome is perhaps his most comprehensive. Paul says all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). As a result of this truth, salvation comes by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ.
A letter from Paul to the church in Corinth which experienced some spiritual immaturity. Having a heart for the church, Paul wrote this letter to address church conduct and other topics to spur them on to a greater faithfulness in Jesus Christ.
A second letter from Paul to the Corinthian church, in which Paul speaks of his communication with them, his changing itinerary, and his plans to come visit them.
A letter from Paul to the church in Galatia rebuking them for “quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and… turning to a different gospel” (1:6). They had been listening to false teachers claiming their salvation in Christ was dependent on their fulfillment of certain rituals and law. Paul uses this letter to remind everyone that:
“A person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ.” (2:16)
This letter from Paul is a loving encouragement “to the saints who are in Ephesus, and are faithful in Christ Jesus” (1:1). Paul explains how we are unified in Christ, discusses the “mystery of the Gospel” (3:1-13), and talks about how we live in light of putting on the “new self” (4:24).
All of Paul’s letters proclaim the gospel of Jesus and this one is no different. Paul discusses his own suffering in detail, and he does this to show how Christ’s name has been proclaimed through it. Paul says his famous line:
“For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (1:21).
A response to heretical teaching threatening the church at Colossae, Paul’s letter warns the Colossians against several things such as the worship of angels and asceticism. Paul encourages believers again to put away all sinfulness and instead put on the new self that comes as a result of faith in Jesus (3:1-17).
This second letter came as further encouragement to the church of the Thessalonians, writing to encourage those who were afflicted with persecution due to their faith in Jesus (1:5-12) and to remind believers about the importance of work (3:6-15).
A letter from Paul to Timothy, saying that he should stay at the church of Ephesus to guard the church against false teaching. Paul wanted the church to know that Christ came to saves sinners, not righteous people.
Paul’s letter to Timothy displays his close friendship with Timothy, hoping to encourage him in the Gospel work he had been doing. This letter contains one of the most famous lines about the nature of Scripture:
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.” (3:16)
A letter from Paul to Titus, who Paul placed in Crete for the Gospel of Jesus to spread there. This letter provides instructions for him on how to fulfill his duty in the Lord Jesus.
Paul writes to Philemon to thank him for the love he showed him. He also writes that he is sending Onesimus to them, who though was once “was useless” is now “indeed useful” (v. 11) to all including Christ Jesus.
Like many other New Testament books of the Bible, Hebrews deals directly with Old Testament passages, showing the unity of Scripture. One of the main goals of the book is to depict Christ Jesus as our Great High Priest. Jesus is greater than Moses (Ch. 3) and greater than Melchizedek (Ch. 7).
Like Paul’s repeated encouragement to put on the new self that comes with faith in Jesus, James reminds his readers that faith in Jesus Christ produces great usefulness and fruitfulness!
Peter writes to the “elect exiles” (1:1), the believers in Christ who are spread throughout the region. He seeks to encourage them as they face trials of various kinds. He says that these trials will bring glory to Jesus as they produce a “tested genuineness of [their] faith” (1:7). Peter urges believers to strive after holiness.
Peter writes in this letter to encourage believers to “make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue” (1:5). And he writes for them to be cautious of false teachers (Ch. 2), and to remind them about the teaching concerning Christ’s coming (Ch. 3).
John writes here to encourage believers to walk in the light. He speaks to how Christ is our Advocate (Ch. 2), and that we demonstrate God’s love through our love for others.
John, in what may be the shortest of all the New Testament books of the Bible, wonderfully connects following Christ’s commandments with loving another: “And this is love, that we walk according to his commandments” (v. 6).
John writes: “Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God” (v. 11)
Jude writes in response to false teachers spreading an enticing lie. This lie said Jesus’s grace provides greater opportunity to live a sinful life. Jude writes that these are teachers “for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever” (v. 13).
Compared to other New Testament books of the Bible, Revelation apocalyptic nature relies more heavily on symbolic language. John’s vision may not give us every fact we could want. But, it does gives us the full truth we need: Jesus is Lord forever and ever!