The Bible is divided into two parts- the Old Testament where we learn the history of God’s people the Israelites, and the New Testament, which is centered on Jesus, God’s Son. Here are just a few little-known facts about the New Testament:
- How many Wise Men came and visited Israel’s newborn King? We always think there were three- in fact, we even sing about the Three Kings, but the Bible never tells us how many Wise Men there were. The only thing we know for sure is that there were more than one. I think we assume there were three because they brought three gifts to the Christ Child. Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh.
- Jesus was born in the small town of Bethlehem. Its name means City of Bread and was also the childhood home of King David. Later in Jesus’s ministry He referred to Himself as the Bread of Life.
- When the shepherds visited Mary and Joseph on the night that Jesus was born, they served an important purpose for Mary. They affirmed what the angel had told her nine months earlier that the child she’d just given birth to was indeed God’s Son.
- Since Luke, the writer of the Gospel of Luke was a physician he uses more medical terms than any of the other three gospels.
- One of the great things Jesus did while He was here was heal people. But it seems like He never healed people in the same way twice. Here are some of the different ways that Jesus healed:
Rubbed mud in a man’s eyes
Touched the man with leprosy
Lifted a woman by the hand
Honored the faith of the four guys who brought their paralyzed friend to Jesus
Called Lazarus out of the tomb
Spoke a word
Raised a widow’s son
- Jesus broke His own laws of nature by walking on water in order to reach His disciples in the middle of the Sea of Galilee.
- Jesus met some interesting people as He traveled through Israel. One was a short little tax collector named Zacchaeus. The Bible says he was rich which probably meant that he cheated his fellow Jews by adding to their tax bill. For example, if you owed $100 to Rome, good old Zacchaeus might charge you two or three hundred dollars and keep the difference for himself. No wonder he wasn’t very popular. When he encountered Jesus however his life changed, and he promised to give back the money he’d stolen.
- When Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday the people shouted “Hosanna” which means “Save Now!” They were probably quoting from Psalm 118:25 and were hoping Jesus would deliver them from the Romans who occupied their land at the time. But Jesus knew the people needed to be saved from their sins, which was what He was about to do.
- Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem on a donkey had been foretold by the prophet Zechariah more than 400 years earlier. Check it out in Zechariah 9:9.
- Jesus believed the Old Testament. And He told people they should believe everything the prophets had said. (Luke 24:25) Jesus and the other writers of the New Testament quote the Old Testament about 600 times.
- In New Testament times men would fish at night. They would go out in their boats with torches. The light from the torches would draw the fish up to the surface and they’d get caught in the net.
- Jesus came for two reasons- one, to show us what God was like and two, to take the punishment for all our sins (the bad stuff we do). He died on the cross and was separated from the Father so that we never have to be. That’s good news! BTW The word Gospel means “good news”.
- The Roman Empire was known for many innovations in warfare, architecture and building aqueducts. But they also created a road system that stretched throughout their entire empire- from Rome all the way to the middle east. God’s missionaries used these advanced roads to help spread His Gospel throughout the whole known world.
- On most Roman roads there were milepost signs to show how far you’d travelled. But in those days a Roman soldier could command you to carry his load for one mile. Jesus said that if someone asks you to carry his load one mile, you should carry it two.