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What You Need to Know, When You Need to Know It The Essential Bible Companion gives you what it promises: the essentials. The most vital, absolutely indispensable information you need for reading and truly understanding God’s Word. Developed by two world-class Bible scholars and the creator of The Bible in 90 Days curriculum, this unique, easy-to-use reference guide gives you clear, crisp insights into the Bible book by book. From Genesis to Revelation, each book of the Bible has its key details laid out for you clearly and engagingly in a colorful two-page spread that includes · background information · timelines · important biblical characters Striking a balance between too little and too much information—between the brief introductions provided in a Bible and the potentially overwhelming detail of a standard reference handbook—this well-designed, extremely helpful volume condenses the most important information in a highly visual, easy-to-understand format. Ideal for use as a companion to The Bible in 90 Days curriculum, The Essential Bible Companion is also a valuable resource for any Bible study. However you use it, this richly informative volume will assist you on your journey toward a well-grounded biblical faith.
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John H. Walton (PhD, Hebrew Union College) is professor of Old Testament at Wheaton College Graduate School. He is the author or coauthor of several books, including Chronological and Background Charts of the Old Testament; Ancient Israelite Literature in Its Cultural Context; Covenant: God’s Purpose, God’s Plan; The IVP Bible Background Commentary: Old Testament; and A Survey of the Old Testament.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
The Essential Bible Companion
Copyright © 2006 by Theodore W. Cooper Jr., John H. Walton, and Mark Strauss
Requests for information should be addressed to:
Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49530
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Walton, John H., 1952–
The essential Bible companion / John H. Walton and Mark L. Strauss.—1st ed.
ISBN-13: 978-0-310-26662-4 (softcover)
1. Bible—Introductions. I. Strauss, Mark L. II. Title.
All maps and temple cutaways by Mosaic Graphics. Copyright © 2006 by the Zondervan Corporation.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible: New International Version®. NIV®. Copyright ©
1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any
means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other—except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without the prior
permission of the publisher.
Interior design by Tracey Walker
Printed in China
06 07 08 09 10 11 12 · 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
Â¦ The law is part of God’s revelation of himself;
giving it is an act of grace.
Â¦ God’s presence comes on his terms and in his time.
Â¦ Deliverance is God’s business.
Â¦ “Then you will know that I am the LORD your
Exodus–When God delivers the people of Israel from slavery in Egypt and brings them to the land he promised them.
Plagues–Ten acts of judgment against Egypt to persuade the Egyptians to let the Israelites leave.
Passover–The commemoration of the tenth plague when God punished the Egyptians with death of their firstborn
sons but spared the Israelites.
Decalogue–Another name for the Ten Commandments—the central laws that God gave to Moses on stone tablets.
Election–God’s choice of individuals or groups to serve as his people in relationship with him.
I AM–The name God gives himself at the burning bush. It is from the same verb (“to be”) as the name “Yahweh” and
identifies God not only as the one who is but also as the one who “causes to be.”
Burning Bush–The place where God revealed himself to Moses, identified himself, and explained his plan and
Moses’s role in it.
Pharaoh–The title of the supreme ruler of Egypt. No name is given in Exodus, so we do not know which pharaoh let
the Israelites leave.
Tabernacle–The portable tent sanctuary constructed by Israel according to God’s instructions.
Ark of the Covenant–A chest made of wood overlaid with gold that contained important signs of God’s favor,
including the stone tablets of the covenant. It was the most sacred object of Israel, as it represented the footstool of
the invisible throne of the invisible God. The cherubim adorning the cover were guardians of the throne of God.
Holy of Holies–The central area of the sanctuary where the ark was kept and where God’s presence dwelt. The only
access was by the high priest once a year.
© Dr. James C. Martin
_Replica of the ark of the covenant.
When Exodus opens, the Israelites
are near the end of their time
in Egypt.They had spent more
than four centuries in Egypt and had
become slaves in a foreign land. God is
nowhere in evidence.Their covenant with
God appears to be in disarray. They no
longer enjoy the benefits of having connections
in high places as when they first
arrived, and with no land of their own,their
survival is in jeopardy.When Pharaoh orders
their baby boys to be cast into the Nile
River, one mother creatively does so using
a basket of reeds to protect her son.
Pharaoh’s daughter finds him afloat, names
him Moses, and raises him as her own.
We are not told the extent to which
Moses was aware of the plight of his people
as he was growing up. But when he saw an
Egyptian beating one of the Israelite slaves,
he killed the Egyptian. Fleeing for his life,
he took refuge in the wilderness among the
people of Midian, where he met a tribal
chieftain (Jethro), met the woman who
would become his wife (Jethro’s daughter
Zipporah), and met his God. Seeing a bush
ablaze but not consumed, Moses went to
investigate and received the commission
God had been preparing him to take up all
his life—as the deliverer of Israel.
The purpose of Exodus is to explain
how God revealed his presence and his
power to his chosen people through the
plagues and in their deliverance from
Egypt. Just as in Genesis God overcame
obstacles in establishing Abraham’s family
as his chosen people, in Exodus he overcomes
obstacles that prevented him from
dwelling in the midst of his people.
God guided and protected the
Israelites through the wilderness and provided
for them.At Sinai he told them how
they needed to live so that his presence
could dwell among them.Through the law,
they learned how they were to honor and
imitate his holiness. He told them how to
build the tabernacle and how the priesthood
was to prepare so that God could
take up residence with them. God had
chosen the Israelites to be his people and
he intended to reveal himself to them and
to the world by living in their midst.
People to Know
_The Israelites passed through the Sinai Mountains
on their way to the Promised Land.
© Dr. James C. Martin
Ex. 3:14: “I AM WHO I AM.”
Ex. 14:31: “The Israelites
saw the great power the
Ex. 19:5–6: “If you obey
me fully and keep my
covenant, then out of all
the nations you will be my
Ex. 40:34–35: “The glory
of the LORD filled the
G u l f o f S u e z
G u l f o f A q a b a
M e d i t e r r a n e a n S e a
G O S H E N
Key Teachings about God
Â¦ God demonstrates his power for his people and the world to see.
Â¦ God desires to live among his people.
Â¦ God delivers his people, and his ability to do so is without limit.
Â¦ God expects obedience from his people.
Â¦ God does not leave his people to guess what he expects of them.
Â¦ God chooses certain individuals and groups for special work.
_FROM EGYPT TO MOUNT SINAI
0 - sea level
© 2005 Zondervan
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