Have you ever wished that there was an idiots guide to the Bible that gave context to all of it's parts? The Bible is a beautiful collection of assorted types of literature but it's organization and foreignness often creates confusion. So scholars claim we live in the most biblically illiterate time in modern history. While many have theological and doctrinal opinions and views few understand the book called the Bible. 30 Days to Understanding the Bible by Max Anders is exactly the sort of "idiot proof" guide many people are looking for. Anders' uses a simple format that explains how the bible is assembled and how each parts fits within or connects to the rest of the parts. The majority of the book covers the Old Testament (due to its size) and lays out a simplistic easy to follow and retain story. Every element is broken down into smaller digestible elements which are repeated and tested throughout the chapter.
The Old Testament is divided into it's parts.
17 Historical Books
5 Poetical Books
17 Prophetical Books
The historical books are divided into smaller eras (ie Creation, Patriarchs, Exodus, etc). Every era is linked to a picture, a central character, a geographic location, and a story line summary. The story line summaries are one liners that sum up what that era is about. The reader is able to learn piece by piece each book of the Bible as he or she explores the eras. The reader is given pictures, maps, and subdivisons that aid in understanding the bigger picture of scripture and it's events. Each chapter contains simple tests right after new information is given and the tests are repeated becoming slightly more difficult as you go in the short chapters. This creates a stair step approach to learning that build new info onto slight older info. The chapters are short and can be done for about 20 minutes once a day for 30 days.
The books covers the OT, NT, and the 10 Great Doctrines of the Bible. I'd highly recommend this to someone who doesn't understand the Old Testament, how the bible is constructed, bais doctrine, new believers, older believers looking to brush up, or anyone interested in making sense of the Bible. It's a fun hearted book and simple enough for a 10 year old but never so simple an adult couldn't glean something from it. It's a great resource for churches, small groups, or missional communities. It's denominational friendly as it is generic enough to work in a variety of churches. Lot's of free teaching material is available for free online as well.
I've personally studied the Bible most of my life and I found this book to be the best I've ever seen. I'm thinking about completing this once a year. The book is also a workbook with fill in the blank questions, maps, etc. It feels a little elementary at first but I've noticed that my bible reading has benefited from a more clear understanding of chronology and geography. I've also learned several small facts here or there that filled in gaps in my own understanding after all these years. I'm excited about this resource and would definitely recommend it.