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STUDY ELEVEN

Bible Timelines

A Study in Scriptural Integrity:

Genesis Through Revelations

Biblical Context and development: Key readings summarizing the History of the Christian Faith


It is often necessary to look at the broader purpose of Scripture to understand the nuances.

In this study we will attempt to paint a brief picture of the general timeline of Biblical events.

Comparing Genesis 1:1&2 to Isaiah 45:18, we established that prior to the Creation of Adam and Eve, the earth itself and the content of the heavens had been created and inhabited. Science today estimates the age of Creation at around eleven billion years. This may indeed be somewhat accurate.

This is why the fossil records and “Creation Science” are hard pressed to agree. This is why giant prehistoric life existed in an oxygen-rich environment unlike that which Man and contemporary life have known.

What was then did not “evolve” into what is now. It thrived in its own right.

But something acted to destroy the order of God's Creation, and the earth then was "without form and void."

So God then reformed the earth, creating Man to rule.

"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

"So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

"And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth." Gen. 1:26-28

Man ruled, but Man fell, and was cast from the Garden of Eden.

"And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

"Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.

"So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life." Gen. 3:22-24

After Man was driven from the garden, strong men ruled, patriarchs of clans and the lords of towns and cities. This era was filled with sin and violence and ended with a great Flood. Little is revealed of the standards by which God revealed Himself to Man during this time. But he saved Noah, Noah's wife and two of their sons with their wives.

"There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.

"And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

"And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

"And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

"But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD." Gen. 6:4-8

And to Noah was given the promise of a Redeemer, the Covenant.

"And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you." Gen. 9:9

After the floods receded, the children of Noah spread across earth as had the descendants of his ancestor Adam. For a time, all mankind traveled together. This ended at Babel, and Man was separated into nations.

"And the whole earth was of one language, and of one speech.

"And it came to pass, as they journeyed from the east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar; and they dwelt there.

"And they said one to another, Go to, let us make brick, and burn them thoroughly. And they had brick for stone, and slime had they for morter.

"And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.

"And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded.

"And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.

"Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech.

"So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.

"Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the LORD did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the LORD scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth." Gen. 11:1-9

The nations were scattered. From among these nations, God separates to Himself Abram the Hebrew to form a chosen nation of priests, from whom Christ will arise. (Note another promise to all Mankind, that "all nations will be blessed in him.") The Covenant is now with Abram, who He will rename "Abraham."

"Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:

"And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:

"And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed." Gen.12: 1-3

This nation is then chosen from the grandson of Abraham, Israel, to whom is given the land of Canaan.

 "And God appeared unto Jacob again, when he came out of Padanaram, and blessed him.

"And God said unto him, Thy name is Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel.

"And God said unto him, I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins;

"And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land." Gen. 35: 9-12

But the children of Israel do not enter this promised land until after a four hundred year period of living in Egypt, the latter part as slaves of Egypt.

"And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage.

"And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob.

"And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them." Exodus 2: 23-25

So the time comes for the descendants of Jacob, to inherit the land, but the children of Israel doubt God and the man who God sends, who is Moses. Therefore while Israel is saved from slavery in Egypt, the generation of Israel that doubts so much perishes in a forty year trek through a wilderness land that could be traversed in a few weeks.

"And the LORD said, I have pardoned according to thy word:

"But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD.

"Because all those men which have seen my glory, and my miracles, which I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and have tempted me now these ten times, and have not hearkened to my voice;

"Surely they shall not see the land which I sware unto their fathers, neither shall any of them that provoked me see it:" Numbers 14: 20-23

At this time God enacts the "Law" to prevent the pride of the nation of Israel from destroying itself. This Law is also a preview of the Righteous Judge, Jesus the Christ, and a standard for Israel to do well in.

The "preamble" of this Law is what we call the "Ten Commandments," given by God Himself on tablets of stone, but there are scores of commandments and ordinances for Israel to abide by. Some say over nine hundred ordinances exist.

Leviticus by itself is an entire book of ordinances for Israel to abide by. The last verse reads,

Lev. 27: 34: "These are the commandments, which the Lord commanded Moses for the children of Israel in mount Sinai."

During the first years in Israel, God establishes Judges to rule according to the Law. These Judges lead Israel into Canaan, the Promised Land, and act as judges over the people.

"Now after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD it came to pass, that the LORD spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' minister, saying,

"Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel.

"Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses." Josh. 1: 1-3

But Israel eventually rejects these judges, and God as their King, and demands a human king.

"Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah,

"And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.

"But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD.

"And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them." I Sam. 8:4-7

Saul is first chosen as king but turns from God. The throne that will bring forth Christ is therefore ultimately established in David of the Israelite tribe of Judah. This is the same as he which slew Goliath.

"Then came all the tribes of Israel to David unto Hebron, and spake, saying, Behold, we are thy bone and thy flesh.

"Also in time past, when Saul was king over us, thou wast he that leddest out and broughtest in Israel: and the LORD said to thee, Thou shalt feed my people Israel, and thou shalt be a captain over Israel.

"So all the elders of Israel came to the king to Hebron; and king David made a league with them in Hebron before the LORD: and they anointed David king over Israel." 2 Sam. 5:1-3

David's son Solomon establishes the Temple of God at Jerusalem and at first serves God well.

"And it came to pass in the four hundred and eightieth year after the children of Israel were come out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon's reign over Israel, in the month Zif, which is the second month, that he began to build the house of the LORD."

"And in the eleventh year, in the month Bul, which is the eighth month, was the house finished throughout all the parts thereof, and according to all the fashion of it. So was he seven years in building it." I Kings 6: 1 & 38

But Solomon turns from God and during the rule of Solomon's son Rehoboam all Israel but the tribes Judah and Benjamin break away and form the Kingdom of Israel.

"But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites:

"Of the nations concerning which the LORD said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love.

"And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.

"For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father." I Kings 11:1-4

You see how he was turned away.

"And he said to Jeroboam, Take thee ten pieces: for thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, Behold, I will rend the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give ten tribes to thee:

"(But he shall have one tribe for my servant David's sake, and for Jerusalem's sake, the city which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel:)

"Because that they have forsaken me, and have worshipped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon, and have not walked in my ways, to do that which is right in mine eyes, and to keep my statutes and my judgments, as did David his father." I Kings 11:31-33

But under first the rule of Jeroboam and then under other kings and dynasties Israel as a nation turns from God until its conquest and captivity centuries later by Assyria.

"And it came to pass in the fourth year of king Hezekiah, which was the seventh year of Hoshea son of Elah king of Israel, that Shalmaneser king of Assyria came up against Samaria, and besieged it.

"And at the end of three years they took it: even in the sixth year of Hezekiah, that is in the ninth year of Hoshea king of Israel, Samaria (capitol of Israel) was taken.

"And the king of Assyria did carry away Israel unto Assyria, and put them in Halah and in Habor by the river of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes:

"Because they obeyed not the voice of the LORD their God, but transgressed his covenant, and all that Moses the servant of the LORD commanded, and would not hear them, nor do them." II Kings 18: 9-12

The Kingdom of Judah during this time  was ruled by Solomon's descendents until the conquest and captivity by Babylon. This was a few years after Israel, i.e. the other ten tribes, were conquered by Assyria.

Some of the kings of Judah believed God, some did not. Finally, when Judah became worse than Israel, God gave Judah and Jerusalem to Nebuchadnezzer king of Babylon.

"Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign, and reigned eleven years in Jerusalem.

"And he did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD his God, and humbled not himself before Jeremiah the prophet speaking from the mouth of the LORD.

"And he also rebelled against king Nebuchadnezzar, who had made him swear by God: but he stiffened his neck, and hardened his heart from turning unto the LORD God of Israel.

"Moreover all the chief of the priests, and the people, transgressed very much after all the abominations of the heathen; and polluted the house of the LORD which he had hallowed in Jerusalem.

"And the LORD God of their fathers sent to them by his messengers, rising up betimes, and sending; because he had compassion on his people, and on his dwelling place:

"But they mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his prophets, until the wrath of the LORD arose against his people, till there was no remedy.

"Therefore he brought upon them the king of the Chaldees, who slew their young men with the sword in the house of their sanctuary, and had no compassion upon young man or maiden, old man, or him that stooped for age: he gave them all into his hand." II Chronicles 36:11-17

But Babylon itself, land of the Chaldees, would soon itself be conquered. After the fall of Babylon to Persia and the Medes, a remnant of the people of Israel return to Judah.

"Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, All the kingdoms of the earth hath the LORD God of heaven given me; and he hath charged me to build him an house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? The LORD his God be with him, and let him go up." II Chronicles 36:23

Except for independence under the Kingdom of the Macabees, Israel is through the remainder of the Bible period either dispersed across nations or ruled by foreign powers including Persians, Greeks, Syrians and Romans.

It is under Roman and Roman proxy rule (the Herodians) that Israel brings forth Christ, the Promised Seed of Eve, Abraham, Jacob and David. He is born into the House of David through his mother, Mary, and is raised by a "stepfather," Joseph, who also is a descendant of David.

"Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost.

"Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily.

"But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

"And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

"Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,

"Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

"Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

"And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS." Matthew 1:18-25:

This Jesus is Son of God.

But after fulfilling the Law given to Moses, the Son of God Jesus is rejected by Israel and is handed to the Roman rulers to be crucified.

"When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death:

"And when they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor." Matthew 27:1&2

Christ resurrects, and ascends to heaven. This puts his earthly ministry "on hold."

"And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;

"Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." Acts 1:10 & 11

During this "on hold" period, Christ leaves apostles and ministers to minister to the Christian Church, which is different from any other period of God's people primarily because of the gift of holy spirit.

"And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.

"And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.

"And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.

"And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance…

"…Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

"Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?

"Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." Acts 2:1-4, 36-38:

The Christian Church continues until Christians living and dead will be called together into the clouds to ever be with the Lord.

"But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

"For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

"For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

"For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

"Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

"Wherefore comfort one another with these words." I Thess. 4:13-18

There will then be a Bema Judgment for this Church, when the works of Christians will be rewarded or held of no account.

"Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;

"Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is." I Cor. 3:13 & 14

This departure of the Church will closely enjoin, shortly before or during the first parts of the period we refer to as the "Tribulation" period.

"Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,

"That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.

"Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

"Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

"Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

"And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.

"For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.

"And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:" I Thess. 2:1-8:

"He (who) be taken out of the way" so that "that Wicked be revealed" refers to those "gathered together" in verse one. We know from what we read before that this takes place in the air, to "ever be with the Lord."

Then Christ with the faithful of this Church will return to reign over Israel and the world. This ends the ministry of Christ being put "on hold."

"And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;

"Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." Acts 1:10 & 11

"And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever." Rev. 11:15

"And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name written in their foreheads." Rev. 14:1

Many drastic and tragic upheavals will take place during this time.

This establishment of the reign of Christ will be resisted violently by a world-governance rooted in pagan theosophy and will be accompanied by a severe "tribulation" period during which the majority of the world's inhabitants will perish.

"And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk:

"Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts." Rev. 9:20 & 21

"And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations." Rev. 13:7

Christ will suppress the armies warring against his people. He will then establish a thousand year reign of peace and global prosperity. The first "resurrection," (for the gathering together of the Christian Church is not called a resurrection) will take place just prior to this reign.

"And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.

"And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,

"And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

"And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

"But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.

"Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years." Rev. 20:1-6:

Satan will be in prison for a thousand years. At the end of a thousand years, Satan will be released, but will lead a rebellion.

At the end of this rebellion, he will be permanently defeated.

"And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,

"And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog, and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.

"And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.

"And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever." Rev. 20:7-10:

Then this heaven and earth will pass away. As heaven and earth pass away God will resurrect the nations. God judges Jews and Gentiles according to their works.

"And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

"And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

"And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

"And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

"And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire." Rev. 20:11-15

Afterward He will reform a third heaven and earth, filled with permanent peace and with the presence of God.

"And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

"And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

"And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." Rev. 21:1-4

This has been a basic summary of Scriptural times. The Scriptures are far too elaborate for the many thousands of commentaries written to do them justice, let alone this humble summary.

However, this gives a basic outline of Scripture that one can use for a frame on which to hang the many revealed events. Thus one can begin to place the various elements of Scripture in the proper timeline.

 

Accompanying Tables:

Go To: Adam's Line To Jesus

Go To: Kings of Israel & Judah

Go To: Bible Dispensations

Go To: Revelation Timeline

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