Genesis: The story of creation; the temptation and fall of man; Cain and Abel; the Flood; God’s covenant with Noah; the Tower of Babel; the stories of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph.
Exodus: The bondage of the Israelites in Egypt; the birth, early life, and call of Moses; the plagues, the Exodus, and the crossing of the Red Sea; the journey to Mount Sinai; the giving of the Law and the making of the covenant; various laws, the preparation of the Tabernacle, and the priestly garments.
Leviticus: Laws of sacrifice, purification, and atonement; the law of holiness; the five annual feasts; the sabbatical year; the year of jubilee; vows and tithes.
Numbers: The camp at Sinai, and the numbering and organization of the tribes; the journey from Sinai and the failure at Kadesh-barnea; the 40 years of wilderness wanderings; the brazen serpent; Balaam; sundry laws; the cities of refuge appointed; around Edom to Moab.
Deuteronomy: Three addresses of Moses in the plains of Moab, restating the law of Sinai and exhorting the people to obedience; the vision and death of Moses.
Joshua: The crossing of the Jordan; the conquest of Canaan and division of the land; the cities of refuge established; the renewal of the covenant at Shechem; death of Joshua.
Judges: Stories of Israel’s repeated apostasies, oppression by enemies, return to God, and deliverance by the judges.
Ruth: A story of famine in the land of Israel, emigration and return, village life and marriage in the time of the judges.
I Samuel: A period of transition; the lives of Samuel and Saul and the early life of David.
II Samuel: The reign of King David.
I Kings: The last days of David; the reign of Solomon and the building of the Temple, the division of the kingdom, and the history of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah to the death of Ahab; the story of Elijah.
II Kings: The story of Elisha and remaining history of the two kingdoms to the time of the Babylonian exile.
I Chronicles: A retelling of the history of Judah from the beginning, with special emphasis on the genealogies, to the death of David.
II Chronicles: A continuation of the history of Judah with special references to the Temple and priestly organization, from Solomon to the Exile.
Ezra: The return of the first exiles from Babylon under Zerubbabel; the rebuilding of the Temple; the return of the second group under Ezra and his reforms at Jerusalem.
Nehemiah: The rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem and the reforms carried out by Nehemiah as governor.
Esther: Esther’s elevation to be queen; Mordecai and Haman; Esther’s feast and the death of Haman; the institution of the Feast of Purim and the exaltation of Mordecai.
Job: A dramatic poem, with prose introduction and conclusion, dealing with the problem of divine justice in view of the suffering of the righteous; Job’s sufferings, the efforts of his friends to convince him that he is a sinner, his strong denials, and God’s reply in the whirlwind, confirming Job’s innocence but convicting him of ignorant presumption in questioning the justice of God; Job’s repentance and prayers for his friends; his wealth restored.
Psalms: The Hebrew hymnbook; five collections of 150 hymns or poems, expressing the spiritual experience and aspirations of God’s people.
Proverbs: The “words of the wise,” a collection of moral and religious maxims presenting the wisdom of long experience in the affairs of life.
Ecclesiastes: Reflections and observations of “the Preacher” in conflict with the problems of life, who finally finds the highest good in the fear of God.
Song of Solomon: A collection of love songs, allegorized to represent God and His people, and Christ and the Church.
Isaiah: Condemnation of the sins of Judah; predictions of judgement by and on the Assyrians, leading up to the captivity of Judah; visions of the ideal kingdom of the future; predictions, warnings, and promises referring to events beyond the Captivity and reaching on down through the Christian dispensation.
Jeremiah: Sermons and graphic stories of Jeremiah, the weeping prophet, in the last days of the kingdom of Judah; God’s judgments on the nations; the broken covenant and the New Covenant.
Lamentations: A sequel to the Book of Jeremiah; five dirges in the form of an acrostic, expressing the mourning and repentance of the exiles in Babylon.
Ezekiel: Messages of judgment on Israel and the nations, and visions of the restoration to Palestine and rebuilding of the Temple.
Daniel: Stories of the wise and devout Hebrew captive Daniel at the Babylonian court; his visions of the world empires, and the ultimate kingdom of God.
Hosea: Expressions of God’s suffering love for His unfaithful bride, Israel, and predictions of her punishment and final redemption; a prophecy of love and mercy.
Joel: Visions of a locust plague, a drought, and the invasion by enemies, the future outpourings of God’s Spirit; and the judgment of the nations.
Amos: A Judean shepherd proclaims God’s justice, His demand for social justice among men, and the consequent condemnations and coming doom of Israel.
Obadiah: A brief prophecy against Edom.
Jonah: A story about a prophet; Jonah’s mission to Nineveh.
Micah: Condemnation of corruption and social injustice in Judah; regeneration of the nation through suffering; a coming Davidic King, evangelization of the nations by Israel.
Nahum: Prophecy on the destruction of Nineveh.
Habakkuk: The problem of the punishment of God’s people by the more wicked Chaldeans, and the response of faith.
Zephaniah: The coming day of wrath and final redemption.
Haggai: Exhortations to the people to rebuild the Temple.
Zechariah: A series of eight symbolic visions concerning the rebuilding of the Temple, and the restoration of Judah; later visions of the future redemption of the nations.
Malachi: Condemnation of corrupt worship and life, and the promise of the messenger to precede the Lord’s coming in judgment.