Part 3: The New Testament
What is the New Testament*?
The New Testament* is also a collection of books. These books are in groups by the kinds of writing in the books. These books tell us that the promises of the prophets* have now come true. God did send a saviour*, the Messiah*. He is Jesus. The promise of a ‘new covenant*’ is now here. This new ‘testament*’ began when Jesus died and rose again. The books of the Old Testament* are God’s words. Now, the words of the New Testament* are also from God.
Each of the first four books is a ‘gospel*’. The word gospel* means ‘good news’. Each gospel* tells about events in the life of Jesus. They record his words and many of the surprising things he did. The books do not tell everything that Jesus said or did. But they tell us who Jesus is. They show how Jesus’ life and death answered the promises of the Old Testament*. And they tell how God raised Jesus from death.
THE BOOKS OF GOSPELS*
We call the next book ‘the Acts’. Acts is a book of history. The book tells the story of how the people who believed in Jesus spread the good news. They told the entire ancient world the good news about Jesus. Many of the Jews* in that day did not accept this message. Acts tells how the Gentiles* welcomed the good news. This book tells the stories of how that happened.
THE BOOK OF HISTORY
The next part of the New Testament* is ‘the epistles*’. The word epistles* means ‘letters’. This section has 21 letters in it. The leaders of the new church* wrote these letters. A man named Paul wrote most of them. Peter, James, and John wrote most of the other letters. These letters tell the readers how to live as God’s people. The letters remind them that God will keep his promises. They warn people about false teachers. They tell them that they might suffer because of what they believe. Many of the letters tell them that Jesus is coming back. He will judge the world and he will make everything right again. The letters tell people how to live as they wait for him.
THE LETTERS OF PAUL
THE GENERAL LETTERS
The last book of the New Testament* is a book of prophecy*. Like the Old Testament* books of the prophets*, this book talks about the future. It tells the story about a man named John. He had a dream, or a revelation*, from God. God showed John many strange things. So John wrote them down. His book tells about the time that Jesus will return to the earth. It shows us that Jesus will win over evil*. It tells of a new heaven* and a new earth. In that place, there will be no tears. No one will be sad and there will be no pain. God will be there and Jesus will be king.