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Reading through the Bible, One Narrative Book at a Time

Last night, Jeff was on The Journey Home on EWTN; and, while on that show, he mentioned (quite quickly) a list of books that one can use as a guide on the walk through salvation history. As many have inquired about this list, a quick over view is posted below:

The challenge we face today is reading the Bible so the basic story line of salvation history is clearly seen and understood. Because the Bible’s seventy-three books are grouped by literary style (such as history, poetry, wisdom and prophetic,) rather than chronology as most people are used to, we require assistance in making this now personal ancient story of salvation history come alive.

To understand the Bible chronologically, it is important to identify which of the seventy-three books are “narrative” in nature. The term “narrative” refers simply to those books that keep the story moving from one event to another. The narrative books provide us with continuity, giving us an ordered account of connected events from Genesis to Revelation.

There are twelve narrative books in the Old Testament (OT) and for the sake of simplicity, two narrative books in the New Testament (NT) as illustrated below:

1. Genesis

2. Exodus

3. Numbers

4. Joshua

5. Judges

6. I Samuel

7. II Samuel

8. I Kings

9. II Kings

10. Ezra

11. Nehemiah

12. I Maccabees

13. Luke

14. Acts

Besides this list, there are also some other tools that can assist you on your journey through Salvation History through the narrative books of the Bible. On tool I highly recommend is Sarah Christmyer’s new book, The Bible Timeline Guided Journal. This is an excellent personal guide through the story of salvation history that allows space for your own journaling as you read through the narrative books mentioned above. For this book and other wonderful tools including a Bible Timeline study kit which includes the Bible Timeline chart, go to click on Bible Study Resources.

Also, check out Jeff’s post on this website from Oct. 19, 2006: How Do I Read the Bible.

Hope that helps and May God bless you as your embark on the journey of a lifetime,


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