I have a new passion recently for the Bible. A thirst, really. I wish I could remember everything as well as I would like. That’s why I record notes. I have a Life Application Study Bible, so I think it is useful to share some of the verses and the notes provided by my Bible (New Living Translation).
Study bibles are incredibly helpful whether or not you are a new Christian. They include history as well as pointing out how to apply verses to our lives.
If you are opening the Bible for the first time, start in the book of John, in the New Testament. Do NOT start in the Old Testament. I’ll include a piece of John during each posting while I work my way through it.
The Book of JOHN
Author: John the apostle, not John the Baptist
Audience: New Christians and searching non-Christians
Purpose: John’s gospel is not a biography, but more a presentation of evidence that Jesus is God’s Son and offers eternal life.
Location in Bible: This is the fourth book of the New Testament –the last of the four gospels.
Key Passages (actual Scripture in italics)
1 In the beginning the Word already existed.
The Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
2 He existed in the beginning with God.
3 God created everything through him,
and nothing was created except through him.
4 The Word gave life to everything that was created and his life brought light to everyone. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.
6 God sent a man, John the Baptist,[c] 7 to tell about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony. 8 John himself was not the light; he was simply a witness to tell about the light. 9 The one who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.
The Word was a term used by theologians and philosophers. In Hebrew scripture it was an agent of creation, in Hebrew thought, an alternate term for God, in Greek philosophy a principle of reason that governed the world. John makes it clear he is talking about Jesus.
(4-5) In the light,we see ourselves as we really are – sinners in need of a Savior. When we follow the Light, we do not walk blindly and fall into sin. He lights our path so we can see how to live.
(6-8) We merely reflect the light, as did John the Baptist. We point the way.
(4,5) Let Christ guide your life, and you’ll never need to stumble in the darkness.
(6-8) Live according to the teachings of Jesus. Be a light for someone else. Let your life, your words, reflect Jesus. Point the way by the way you live.