Welcome to the Bible: A Thick Book With Lots of Authors — An Overview of Who Wrote the Bible

Welcome to the Bible: A Thick Book With Lots of Authors — An Overview of Who Wrote the Bible

In the Beginning . . .

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). And thus began the story of the Bible.

It took God only six days to create the world but about 1,500+ years to complete the Bible.   

In my first post in the Welcome to the Bible series, I introduced the Big Picture and mentioned it helps us understand the more confusing smaller pieces of the Bible. We’ll talk about that more. Later.

First, I’d like to address the Bible as an actual book. A thick book — unless you have a copy with tissue-thin pages and tiny type — written by lots of authors.

So Many Authors — So Many Backgrounds

God inspired about 40 different authors from three different continents (Africa, Asia, and Europe) who wrote in three different languages (Hebrews, Aramaic, and Greek) to write down in 66 books what He wanted us to know.

All without contradiction.

All point to Jesus.

And all without error.

In the original language, the Bible is infallible.

The exact number of authors is in question because we’re not completely certain who wrote some of the books. Judges, Job, and Hebrews, to name a few.

Seeming contradictions in the Bible become agreements when we set them into context, consider the original language, and/or understand the specific audience and intent of the author.

The original form of the Bible varied greatly from the kind of books we know with bindings and splashy covers. These authors wrote onto materials like scrolls — and a couple of stone tablets.

Many authors were prophets (special spokesmen for God). Others were shepherds, kings, and fishermen. Some wrote in palaces. Others from prison.

But all were inspired by God.

All Scripture is inspired by God…
~ 2 Timothy 3:16

It’s All Greek to Me — or Not

Most of the Old Testament was written in Hebrew somewhere between 1400 B.C. —  400 B.C.

Part of Ezra and Daniel and one verse in Jeremiah were written in Aramaic.

The New Testament was written in Greek between A.D. 44 and A.D. 96.

Many books of the New Testament are actually letters written to specific churches or individuals.

The apostle Paul wrote 13 letters — 14 if you believe he wrote Hebrews.

I personally don’t know.

Paul wrote most of the letters to various churches he’d visited. Galatians, Ephesians, Colossians, and Philippians for example.

He also wrote to individuals such as Timothy, Titus, and Philemon.

No one seems to know when the book of Job was written, except for perhaps Job, and we can’t ask him. Yet.

Every known author of the Bible was Jewish except one. Luke. He wrote the Gospel of Lukeno surprise there — and was a Gentile doctor

A Gentile is anyone who’s not Jewish.

From First to Last

Moses wrote the first book of the Bible — Genesis

Moses also wrote the next four books: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, to be exact. He wrote five books and one Psalm in all. 

John wrote the last book of the Bible — Revelation.

John also wrote four other books: The Gospel of John, 1 John, 2 John, and 3 John.

Genesis is fairly easy to understand. Revelation is not. 

But the right teacher can help us understand much of Revelation. By the way, the Holy Spirit is the best teacher. More on that later.

After Jesus returns and everything that must take place in Revelation has taken place, we’ll finally be able to say, “Oh! Now I get it.” Until then some of it will remain a mystery — and who doesn’t like a good mystery?

Revelation is the written account of the revelation given to John from Jesus. It is the final revelation. That means everything God wants us to know has been written down between Genesis 1:1 and Revelation 22:21.

There’s no new revelation, no matter what any pastor may proclaim.  

The Fabulous Four

Four of the most well-known authors are Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Their books together are known as the Gospels of Jesus Christ.

“The Gospels of Jesus Christ” is the written record of Jesus’ life and teaching in the first four books of the New Testament.

The Gospel” is the good news that Jesus paid the penalty for sin on the cross through His death and resurrection and that whoever trusts in Him will be saved. (Romans 5:8; Romans 10:9-10) 

These four fabulous authors kick off the New Testament and tell of Jesus’ time on earth but from different viewpoints and to different audiences.

A friend of mine didn’t know this fact when he first started reading through the New Testament. He began to think every book in the New Testament was the same story. 

They’re not. 

Matthew was a Galilean Jew who wrote to the Jews to prove Jesus was the promised Messiah.

Mark was a Jew who wrote to Romans. He revealed Jesus as the Suffering Servant.

Luke was a Gentile doctor who wrote to Greeks. He focused on Jesus’ humanity and presented Jesus as the Son of Man.

John was a Jew who wrote to Christians and highlighted Jesus’ divinity as the Son of God.

Many Authors. One Lord.

Many authors wrote the Bible, but they all pointed to our One Lord, Jesus Christ. He is the living Word and the visible image of the invisible God.  

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
~John 1:1

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.
~ Colossians 1:15

Why Is This So Important?

Why should we care about all the details — the languages, continents, authors, perspectives, years, and one consistent message?

We should care because it reveals that the Bible is a supernaturally written book, unlike any other in history.

And it reveals that Christianity is a unique faith because God revealed Christianity to the world through this incomparable book– the Holy Word of God — written by numerous authors all pointing to one Lord.

Next Time

Books, and Chapters, and Verses. Oh, My!

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Welcome to The Bible: So Much to Confuse and So Little to Understand — Wait a Minute. Strike That. Reverse It. — See the Big Picture to Increase Understanding and Reverse Confusion

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Welcome to the Bible Tour — And Willy Wonka

I’m starting the New Year with a Bible Tour blog series: The Welcome to the Bible series. And naturally, I’m introducing the series with Willy Wonka. 

Ok, maybe not so naturally. In fact, this may be the first article you’ve ever read about the Bible and Willy Wonka. 

In case you’re not familiar with Willy Wonka, he’s a crazy character in a book and two movies, which tell about his bizarre search for a new owner of his chocolate factory. He gives out golden tickets to lucky winners to tour his factory where they meet Oompa Loompas, geese that lay golden eggs, and other oddities. 

Fans of the original Willy Wonka movie may recognize this Wonka line that inspired today’s title:

Willy Wonka: We have so much time and so little to see. Wait a minute. Strike that. Reverse it. Thank you.

The Bible can often make us feel like we’re on a Willy Wonka tour — overwhelmed and confused.

A burning bush? A talking donkey? A crucified Savior? (How can a dead Savior save?)

The book of Revelation alone will leave you wide-eyed and scratching your head. 

It can be confusing and surreal. Until we see the Big Picture. 

The Big Picture reverses our confusion, turns it into clarity, and leaves us amazed at God and His unfathomable ways.

What’s the Big Picture?

The Big Picture is both a Who and a what. 

God reveals the Big Picture throughout the Bible, but most famously in John 3:16: 

For God so loved the world,
that He gave His only begotten Son,
that whoever believes in Him
shall not perish, but have eternal life.

The Big Picture is that God created man so we may come to know and enjoy Him forever, which was only made possible through the death and life of His Son Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit.

In short, the Big Picture is Jesus Christ, who is our salvation. 

From first to last, it’s all about Christ.

The Red Thread

I often refer to the Big Picture as The Red Thread

The Red Thread of Jesus runs through the entire Bible from the first book — Genesis — to the last — Revelation. 

It reveals God’s mysterious plan to restore man to Himself through Jesus.

How we’re able to know Jesus personally and receive His salvation is the heart of the Bible and will be an important part of our tour. 

Join the Tour

We’ll get started on our tour in the next post by looking at some Bible basics and how the Big Picture drives these basics.

By the end of our tour, my hope is that you’ll feel confident in being able to approach the Bible with more understanding. And I pray you’ll know Jesus Christ. 

You have made us for Yourself and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in Thee.
St. Augustine 

From our first cry to our final breath, Jesus is our greatest longing. He’s everything we’ve always wanted.

Willy Wonka: But Charlie, don’t forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he always wanted.

Charlie: What happened?

Willy Wonka: He lived happily ever after.


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Enoch Walked With God & Had a Methuselah Moment — You Can, Too! (Part 2)

Enoch walked with God & had a Methuselah Moment (You Can, Too) Part 2 via www.JeanWilund.com

My Methuselah Moment

Ever had a Magic Moment, the kind that the Drifters sing about?

I have. But even better than a Magic Moment is a Methuselah Moment a moment in time when your walk with God changes forever. 

By that I mean, you walk with God. If you walk away from God, that moment would more likely be considered a Gomer Moment. I’ll have to write about that another time.

My first Methuselah Moment came when I first heard the Gospel message. I’d grown up hearing about Jesus. I celebrated His birthday every December and His resurrection every spring. I loved Him because every time we celebrated something for Him, I was the one who got presents.

Finally, in 1973, God drew me to Himself and led me to a summer youth camp where I heard the Gospel for the first time. I embraced it and began walking with God.

My next Methuselah Moment came when I saw The Red Thread — the presence of Jesus and/or His Work woven from eternity past into eternity future. 

The moment I saw a timeline showing Jesus woven through God’s Word from Genesis to Revelation, I was stunned. It was like I’d found the missing piece of Christianity that made Christianity stop seeming so hard. It changed my walk with God. Forever.

I saw God in a new light. Actually, in more light — as if a veil had lifted. I saw His heartbeat — Jesus.

I saw that Christianity isn’t about living a certain way and then going to heaven. It’s about Jesus. Everything from eternity past into eternity future is about Jesus Christ and His amazing love for the Father and the world. It all starts and ends with Jesus.

When I say it’s all about Jesus, don’t think I’m leaving out God or the Holy Spirit. They’re the inseparable three-in-one.

From first to last, it’s all about Christ, who lives to glorify God and is revealed by the Spirit.

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.
~ Revelation 22:13

Enoch’s Methuselah Moment

We don’t know what God said to Enoch, but I wonder if his Methuselah Moment came when he saw The Red Thread. There’s no written record that he “saw Jesus threaded through God’s plan for the world,” but we know from Jude 14-15 that he prophesized about Jesus’ Second Coming. And we know Enoch’s ancestors and descendants saw The Red Thread, even though the full reality of Jesus’ first coming remained a mystery.

Adam and Eve received the promise that Jesus would come to save the world from sin (Genesis 3:15).

Abel discovered the importance of the right sacrifice, which points to Jesus, the perfect and final sacrifice (Genesis 4:3-7; Hebrews 11:4).

After Enoch, his grandson Noah experienced the joy of being saved due to being counted as righteous through faith (Genesis 7:1; Hebrews 11:7).

Surely, as Enoch walked with God for 300 years, he came to know God’s heartbeat — that God would bring everything into unity under Christ (Ephesians 1:9-10) and give Him first place in everything (Colossians 1:18).

Walk Like Enoch

Enoch had a unique relationship with God in those days, but we have something he didn’t. We have God’s Word in written form — God’s Word, the Bible.

If we dig into God’s Word — and let it dig into us — it will change us.

To walk with God like Enoch, we must walk with the Word.

One of the best ways I’ve found to walk with the Word is The Red Thread Way.

I’ll post about that next, so please check back. 

Share this post and check back for our next look at Enoch’s Walk with God & Methuselah Moment. If you missed Part 1, Click Here.

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Enoch Walked With God and Had a Methuselah Moment — You Can Too (Part 1)

Enoch walked with God & had a Methuselah Moment (You Can, Too) Part 1 via www.JeanWilund.comEnoch Walked with God

I’m so glad Enoch walked with God instead of ran. I don’t run.

Unless someone is chasing me or there’s only one serving left of the Mint Moose Tracks ice cream. Or Hurricane Irma comes knocking on our door. I’m running then! Otherwise, I’ll stick to walking.

Besides, walking is biblical.

“Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.”
(Genesis 5:24 NASB)

Enoch walked with God, and then God just took him away. He didn’t have to experience death like the rest of us. Of course it took him 300 years of walking to get there. I wonder how many miles he racked up.


Enoch “obtained the witness” that he was “pleasing to God.”
(Hebrews 11:5 NASB)

Enoch walked with God and made it into the Hall of Faith chapter of Hebrews.

There you have it. Walking is biblical.

Yes, I know the Bible tells us to “run the race.” But I don’t want to talk about that now. Let’s learn to walk first.

Let’s discover the secret to how a Methuselah Moment led Enoch to such a close walk with God that, after 300 years, God said, “Enoch, We’re closer to My home now than we are to yours. Let’s just walk on home to Mine.”

Ok, God didn’t really say that. (At least it’s not recorded anywhere.)

But Enoch did walk with God in such a remarkable way, God made sure we noticed.

Who is this Enoch?

Enoch first appears in Genesis 5 in “the book of the generations of Adam” (Genesis 5:1-7).

As we read through the generations, a pattern emerges:

“When so-and-so had lived blank years, he fathered blah blah blah. So-and-so lived after he fathered blah blah blahblank years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of so-and-so were blank years, and he died.

The pattern repeats itself until we get to verses 21-24.

“When Enoch had lived 65 years, he fathered Methuselah. Enoch walked with God after he fathered Methuselah300 years and had other sons and daughters. Thus all the days of Enoch were 365 years. Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.

Now you see him, now you don’t because Enoch walked with God.

Enoch lived 365 years — a year of years — but he walked with God for 300 of them.

What happened during those other 65 years?

Who was Enoch walking with then? Did he walk alone? Or with his dog?

All we know is when Enoch was 65 years old he became the father of Methuselah, and it was at that point he began to walk with God.

Enoch had a Methuselah Moment. He had — a moment in time that marked his life between when he walked without God and when he walked with God.

What was so special about Methuselah?

Most people who know Methuselah, know one thing. He lived longer than any other human — 969 years.

Few of us probably know the meaning of his name, though.

Biblical scholars of old say Methuselah’s name most likely comes from the Hebrew word meaning “man of the dart” or “man of the sword.” Its full meaning might be, “When he dies, it will come.”

Sort of the original Field of Dreams except this dream would be a nightmare because the year Methuselah died, God sent the Flood.

Not every Bible scholar is as quick to connect Methuselah’s name to a prophecy of the flood. But honestly, it doesn’t matter.

What matters is that after Methuselah was born, Enoch walked with God. Not before, but after.

Something changed in Enoch’s heart after Methuselah was born. Something so big he had a Methuselah Moment.

Enoch’s Methuselah Moment set him off on a journey with the Lord — a journey he never left. And one we should take.

What happened in that moment?

What did Enoch learn as he walked with God that we need to know? 

And how can we have our own Methuselah Moment?

We’ll look at these questions in tomorrow’s post.

Until then, read more about Enoch in Genesis 5, Hebrews 11, and Jude 14-15.

Share this post and check back for tomorrow’s look at Enoch’s Walk with God & Methuselah Moment.

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Wait. What? — Need Help Understanding the Bible?

Leiann Walther and Strong Hands Enterprises Helps You Understand the Bible via www.JeanWilund.com

“I’ve tried to read the Bible before, but I just don’t understand it.” 

How many times have you heard that? Or said it?

I get it. An IKEA instruction manual can sometimes make more sense than the Bible.


But never fear. God has not left us to decipher it by ourselves. Not only does He send His Holy Spirit to guide us in understanding, He’s also gifted many men and women with the ability to teach.

It’s important to note, however, that not every teacher out there has been gifted by God. Some teaching is just plain wrong. (Think Prosperity Gospel–Word of Faith teaching.)

But there are many wonderful teachers as well. Websites and podcasts can be our friends. Your local pastor can be even better. And a solid Bible study teacher is the cherry on top.

Let me introduce you to one of my favorite Bible teachers, Leiann Walther. Actually, I’ve already featured her before: 

So You Need to Teach A Bible Study but You Have No Idea How?
“Able to Teach” to the Rescue!

I’m featuring Leiann again because she’s recently updated her website, Strong Hands Enterprises, with even more great resources to help you understand the Bible.   

On Strong Hands Enterprises, Leiann offers

Audio teachings
Downloadable studies
Resource suggestions
And much more

Great resources for both us learners and teachers. Check it out:

Strong Hands Enterprises

Leiann Walther with Strong Hands Enterprises via www.JeanWilund.comLeiann Walther is the author of many Bible studies and devotions. 

She received a Bachelors degree in Education & Bible and her Masters in Curriculum & Instruction from Columbia International University. She’s taught the Bible for over 30 years. 

For more information about additional seminars by Leainn Walther and Strong Hands Enterprises, click this link: Strong Hands Enterprises.


Help others understand the Bible, too, by sharing this post. Thanks!

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Understanding The Incomprehensible God — What?!

Understanding The Incomprehensible God (The Never-Ending, Ever-Growing List of the Character Traits of God series) via www.JeanWilund.com


There’s much I don’t understand. You’re shocked, right?

For instance, I’ll never understand how I can sit on my porch in South Carolina and talk into a small handheld box filled with pieces of metal that transmit a living image of me to a satellite in space which shoots that image to my daughter’s phone in a taro field in Hawaii that sends her image back to the satellite and into my phone so we can casually, instantly, seamlessly chat for an hour. 


I don’t understand any of that — except the part where she’s sitting in a taro field in Hawaii and I’m on my back porch in South Carolina. And I barely understand that. Especially the taro field part.

Oh, and the talking part. I get that, too, sort of. Ok, not really. How do our brains tell our vocal chords what vibrations to make? And how do our bodies turn them into words other people understand?

If I can’t understand all the wonders of the world God created, how do I begin to understand Him?

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God is Incomprehensible

Incomprehensible — the inability to be understood. 

We, women, get accused of being incomprehensible all the time, but we understand each other just fine. God, on the other hand, is beyond our ability to understand fully.

We can understand much of God, but not all of Him.

If we combined all the brilliant minds in history into one super brain, it wouldn’t be enough to comprehend all God is. 

For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God.
~ I Corinthians 2:11

God is unique unto Himself. No one and nothing is like Him.Two Laws of Human Enlightenment. 1. There's a God. 2. You're not Him. via www.JeanWilund.com

Consider the Trinity. Who can fully understand a God who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit — 3 Who’s in 1 What? God said, “Let us make man in our image.” 

When God said, “Let us make man in our image” He was referring to the Trinity.  

Yes, He made us in His image, but He didn’t make us exactly like Him. He didn’t create man and become “the Cube.” He remains the Trinity. 

We’re not exactly like God, and we’re not God — no matter what some of us like to think. 

When we try to explain what He’s like, we have to grab images we can understand to explain the God we never can. 

But beware. Many try to reduce God to an image they not only can understand but also one they think they can control. 

Words like “appearance” and “like” pop up whenever we try to explain God. Even in the Bible.

God is like the sun in all its glory, except more. Much more.

As the appearance of the rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the surrounding radiance. Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell on my face and heard a voice speaking.
Ezekiel 1:28

If We Can’t Comprehend God, Should We Even Try?

Absolutely, we should try.

The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever.
~Deuteronomy 29:29

God only keeps some things secret. 

We should seek to understand God as much as He’ll reveal Himself to us and then accept the rest as “the secret things” that “belong to the Lord.”

God wants us to know Him. He even gave us a thick Book to teach us about Him.  

Understanding God is Incomprehensible Makes a Difference in Our Lives Today

Like all of God’s character traits, understanding that He can’t be understood makes a difference in our lives today. For some, it’s a stumbling block. For others, it’s a path to peace.

Stumbling Block or Springboard?

Some people refuse to believe what they can’t understand. That was my husband at first.

When friends first introduced Larry to Christ, he battled trusting in Him because too much of the Bible seemed incomprehensible. He refused to trust what he couldn’t understand. For years.

Then one of those friends, Karen, shared a verse with him:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.
~ Proverbs 3:5-6

Understanding The Incomprehensible God (The Never-Ending, Ever-Growing List of the Character Traits of God series) via www.JeanWilund.comThis verse helped Larry realize that his finite ability to understand an infinite God would always be limited.

He recognized that if God were small enough to be understood, He wouldn’t be big enough to be God.

After thinking on Proverbs 3:5-6, Larry knelt down on his knees in his bedroom and placed his faith in Jesus Christ.

He’d found a God he couldn’t comprehend but could fully trust.

Don’t let God’s incomprehensibility be a stumbling block. Let it be a springboard to a life of faith.

When we rest in what we know and don’t fight over what we don’t, we can experience peace in normal everyday life as well as in the midst of heart-wrenching trials.

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I don’t have to understand why God wants my oldest daughter to live 4,766 miles away right now. I only have to trust Him. 

He knows my heart and how I miss her while she’s in Hawaii. And He cares.

He’s with her always. He can reach her no matter where she goes.

And He knows how all this fits into His bigger picture for our good and His glory — even if I don’t.
If #God were small enough to be understood, He wouldn't be big enough to be God. #GodIsIncomprehensible Click To Tweet

I don’t have to understand why God has allowed my friend’s child to suffer unrelieved pain for months. I only have to trust Him.

He knows what’s wrong and how to heal him.

He knows the desperate desire my friend feels every moment to see her son enjoy life again. And He cares.

And He knows how all this fits into His bigger picture for our good and His glory — even if they don’t.

God gives us what we need to know when we need to know it.

Let’s not confuse wants and needs

We want all the answers, but we don’t need them.

We need to trust in the One who understands all. 

God’s Word on His Incomprehensibleness

All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.
~ Matthew 11:27 NASB

Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!
~ Romans 11:33 NASB

Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised, And His greatness is unsearchable.
~ Psalm 145:3 NASB

“Can you discover the depths of God?
Can you [by searching] discover the limits of the Almighty [ascend to His heights, extend to His widths, and comprehend His infinite perfection]?
His wisdom is as high as the heights of heaven. What can you do?
It is deeper than Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead). What can you know?
“It is longer in measure [and scope] than the earth,
And broader than the sea.
~ Job 11:7-9 AMP

“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways
And My thoughts than your thoughts.
~ Isaiah 55:9 NASB

God may be incomprehensible, but He’s not unapproachable.

Seek God with all your heart. When you come to know Him as He reveals Himself in each of His character traits, He’ll make your life more than you could’ve hoped it to be.

Only God knows what that will look like, but you can trust Him, even if you can’t comprehend Him. 

Listen to the following song, “Who” by the Newsboys. It’s one of their crazy, fun songs that has a powerful message about this God we can’t contain or comprehend.

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