An Outline of the Books of the Bible

By James H. Brookes

Chapter 1


The Pentateuch


there is a sweet simplicity in the narratives of this first book that is very attractive to little children, and there is a depth in them that lies beyond the reach of the profoundest minds. It forms the preface of the entire Bible, for it contains the germ of all subsequent revelations, until we reach the Apocalypse, which is the equally striking conclusion of the inspired Scriptures. Hence there is a remarkable correspondence between the two books; the paradise of God, the tree of life, the river, the crown of sovereignty upon man's brow seen m the former, reappearing in the latter; and the blessings lost in the first Adam restored in the last Adam in the very order in which they disappeared. Thus the Holy Ghost at once exhibits the perfect unity of His word, and teaches us not only to " search the scriptures," but to search them until Christ is revealed to the heart in all the glory of His divine person, and in all the value of His finished work.

His opening book was called by the Jews Bereshith, "In the beginning;" but by the translators of the Septuagint Version Genesis, "Generation or Origination." It gives us the only true history of man for at least 2,300 years, and it centres about seven prominent persons in pairs, as types of the whole human race. First, Adam in connection with Eve, or human nature innocent, fallen, helpless, when the Lord God clothed them with coats of skins which He made; types of Christ and the Church. Second, Cain in connection with Abel, or the religion, of culture opposed to redemption through the blood. Third, Enoch in connection with Noah, the former the type of the heavenly people translated before the judgments of the last days; the latter the type of the earthly saved remnant passing through the judgments. Fourth, Abraham in connection with Lot, or walking by faith, and walking by sight. Fifth, Ishmael and Isaac, or he that was born of the flesh persecuting him that was born of the Spirit; Isaac setting forth sonship. Sixth, Esau and Jacob, or the flesh disowned and hated, while he that was elected by God's sovereign grace represents service and discipline. Seventh, Joseph, rejected by his brethren, tells of suffering followed by glory in resurrection power, when the "Saviour of the world,'' as his Egyptian name signifies, received his Gentile bride, whose name means "Beauty.''


Called in the Hebrew canon from its initial words ve·el leh shemoth, "these are the names," but in the Greek Exit, or Departure. It embraces a period of 145 years, and treats of Redemption and the Relationship into which the redeemed are brought to God. First, the call of Moses, i.-vi. Second, judgments upon Egypt, types of judgments falling upon the world in the last days, predicted in the book of Revelation, vii.-xi. Third, Redemption through blood, xii.-xv. Fourth, Wilderness experience, xvi.-xix. Fifth, under law and the results, xx.-xxiv., xxxii., xxxiii. Sixth, the Tabernacle, (1) the ark with its tables of stone, or righteousness is the foundation of Jehovah's throne; (2) the Mercy-seat, or Christ the way of access to God; (3) the table of Shewbread, or Christ our Communion with God; (4) the golden Candlestick, or Christ and the Church the light of the world; (5) the golden altar of Incense, or Christ in His intercession; (6) the Laver, or Christ cleansing us from the defilements of the way; (7) the Brazen Altar, or Christ enduring the wrath of God in our stead, xxv.-xxvii., XXX., xxxi., xxxiv.-xl. Seventh, the garments for glory and for beauty, or Christ our high priest, xxviii., xxix. While only two chapters are occupied with the creation of the world, fourteen chapters are taken up with the tabernacle, showing the estimate God places upon the work of redemption, and that Christ is the centre and object of the Holy Spirit's revelation.


Named in the Hebrew canon vayikra, "and He called," but in the Septuagint Leviticus, because it treats of priestly service and worship in connection with the tribe of Levi. It consists almost wholly of words spoken by Jehovah from the tabernacle, and comprises the transactions of not more than a month. First, we have the offerings, (1) the burnt-offering, Eph. V. 2; (2) the meat-offering, John iv. 34; (3) the peace-offering, Eph. ii. 14; (4) the sin-offering, showing what man is, 2 Cor. v. 21; (5) the trespass-offering, showing what man does, 1 Pet. ii. 24; (6) the heave-offering, Heb. ix. 12; (7) the wave-offering, Heb. xii. 24, i.-vii. Second, priestly consecration, viii.-x. Third, separation unto the Lord, xi., xii. Fourth, Sinners cleansed and consecrated, xiii., xiv. Fifth, '' Be ye holy, for I am holy," xv.-xxii. Sixth, the feasts, (1) the Sabbath, Heb. iv. 9; (2) the Passover, 1 Cor. v. 7; (3) the First fruits, 1 Cor. xv. 23; (4) Pentecost, Acts ii., but evil present. Acts v. 1-10; (5) the Trumpets, Mark xvi. 15, 16; (6) the Atonement, Heb. ix. 22; (7) the Tabernacles, Tit. ii. 13, xxiii. Seventh^ looking on to the end, xxiv.-xxvii., the last three chapters having been spoken in Mount Sinai.


So called in the Septuagint and Vulgate from the double census of the Israelites, covering a period of 38 years. It is the wilderness book, recounting the trials, conflicts, and sins of the way, and it admits the following divisions. First, preparation for the journey, every man numbered, knowing his pedigree, having his place and work assigned, responsible to maintain holiness, separated unto the Lord, and presenting offerings, all seen in the light of the Sanctuary, and all needing: the blood of the passover, and the guidance of the cloud, i.-ix. Second, on the march, but failure at every step, first of '' the mixed multitude," then of God's people, then of the faith of Moses, then of Miriam and Aaron, then of the ten spies, then of the whole congregation, then of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, making the priesthood of Christ in resurrection fruitfulness very precious to God, x.-xviii. Third, provision for failure along the desert road, xix. Fourth, sin, the cross, and victory, xx.-xxiv. Fifth, mingling with the world and its consequences, xxv. Sixth, re-numbered, Simeon losing heavily, and directions given for the possession of the land, xxvi.-xxxiv. Seventh, the wilderness book closes with the cities of refuge and


A book to which high honor is given by the inspired prophets, the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost in the Epistles, was so named in the Septuagint, as meaning "the second,'' that is, repeated "Law." It is not, however, a mere repetition of the law, but rather an application of the principles of the law to Israel in view of their past failure, and entrance into the land, answering somewhat in general to the second Epistles of the New Testament. It embraces the history of five weeks, and may be divided as follows: First, a rehearsal of God's dealings with them during a journey of forty years, that ought to have been made in eleven days, i.-iv. Second, a rehearsal of the law, with added motives and earnest appeals to obedience, v.-xi. Third, the statutes and ordinances to be observed in the land, on all of which may be written, "Holiness to the Lord," xii.-xxv. Fourth, worship enjoined in connection with the beautiful service of offering the basket of first fruits, xxvi. Fifth, the blessings and curses to be pronounced on Gerizim and Ebal, but the blessings significantly omitted, xxvii. Sixth, temporal mercies and judgments predicted, as suited to an earthly people, with the promise of ultimate restoration, xxviii.-xxx. Seventh, farewell words, celebrating the righteousness and grace of Jehovah in the history of Israel, from the flood to the second coming of Christ, xxxi.-xxxiv.