Encountering the New Testament, 4th Edition

A Historical and Theological Survey

series: Encountering Biblical Studies


8. Man from Galilee

Chapter Intro Video

Chapter Objectives

  • Write an account of Jesus’s life using content from the Gospels
  • Enumerate the highlights of Jesus’s birth, childhood, and youth
  • Trace the locations of Jesus’s ministry
  • Outline the final days of Jesus on earth, including the crucifixion
  • Discuss the true meaning of Jesus

Chapter Summary

  1. The New Testament Gospels provide the primary source of information about Jesus.

  2. The story of Jesus’s birth is presented in the Gospels, but only one incident about his childhood is recorded.

  3. Jesus is linked with the ministry of John the Baptist in all of the Gospels.

  4. Jesus’s ministry in Galilee lasted a year and a half, and more than seventy events from it are recorded in the Gospels.

  5. Jesus trained his followers for the future by setting an example for them, by gathering disciples with twelve apostles to lead them, by sending them on preaching missions to gain experience, by sending them out with his own power, and by teaching them things they needed to know.

  6. Jesus presented himself as the Messiah to the city of Jerusalem on the Sunday before Passover in April AD 30.

  7. Jesus was sent to Pilate, Herod Antipas, and back to Pilate before he was taken to Golgotha to be crucified.

  8. After the resurrection, on the first Easter, Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalene, the other women, two followers on the road to Emmaus, Peter, and the apostles who were assembled in Jerusalem.

  9. The story of Jesus is uniquely supernatural; it challenges us to believe and commands us to follow him, and it teaches us that death is not the end but rather the beginning of a new existence.

Study Questions

  1. Look up the references related to the chronology of Jesus’s life and work out for yourself what you think it should be.

  2. Reconstruct for yourself the events that preceded and surrounded the birth and early years of Jesus.

  3. Discuss the ministry of John the Baptist as Jesus’s forerunner.

  4. How did Jesus prepare his followers to continue after he was gone?

  5. What are the major elements of Jesus’s ministry in the north (Galilee and travels outside Galilee)?

  6. Discuss Jesus’s Perean and Judean ministry.

  7. Recount in detail the events of Jesus’s last thirty-six hours on Earth.

  8. Work out a sequence of events from Jesus’s burial to his ascension.

  9. Write a brief essay on the supernatural events of Jesus’s life (miracles, healings, expulsion of demons).

  10. What do you think is Jesus’s true significance?