Bible notes - Old Testament
#1 - 3969 B.C.
Archbishop Usher (1581 - 1656 A.D.), in his well-known Bible chronology, places Adam and Eve's creation at 4004 B.C. Dates vary, however, among Christians and Bible scholars regarding the year when the first humans were made.
One Jewish tradition, based on the Biblical calendar, places the creation of man on Friday, September 26 in 3760 B.C. (Julian). Bible Study's research, from which these map notes are based, assumes man was created in 3969.
#2 - 2313 B.C.
The steadily worsening spiritual state of man causes God to eradicate all humans from earth and start over with eight individuals saved inside a large ship (Genesis 6 - 8). More than three billion humans lose their lives in the global floodwaters.
After 371 days in the Ark (at this time all months had 30 days, see Genesis 7:11, 24, 8:4), God commanded Noah to leave it as it rested on "the mountains of Ararat" (Genesis 8:4). In modern times, this area is located in eastern Turkey near the country's border with Iran. The highest peak in this mountainous region is Mt. Ararat at 16,854 feet (5,137 meters).
#3 - c. 2233 B.C.
Instead of filling and repopulating the earth after the flood (Genesis 9:1), man decides to migrate and concentrate his population in the land of Shinar (Babylonia). Humans foolishly, in the new city they create, begin to build a huge tower as a way of surviving another possible worldwide flooding event.
God's response to the massive building project is to change man's single language (11:1) into many. Humans, unable to communicate with each other, stop work on the tower and finally begin to scatter as was intended.
#4 - 1960 B.C.
Some of the descendants of Shem (Noah's son) settle in Ur of the Chaldees (Genesis 11:28). Terah, the eighth generation of Shem produced after the flood, is living in Ur when he produces sons Haran (the oldest), Nahor and Abram (Abraham, the youngest son). Abram is born in 1960 B.C. when his father is 130 years old!
#5 - 1890 to 1885 B.C.
Haran, when his youngest brother Abram (Abraham) is 70 years old, dies (Genesis 11:27 - 31). His death is the catalyst for Terah to take most of the family (Abram, Sarah, Haran's son Lot) out of Ur to a place called Haran (located in modern Turkey). Terah lives another five years and dies at the ripe old age of 205.
God, in 1885, calls Abram and commands him to journey to the land of Canaan, a place he is promised as an eternal inheritance (Genesis 12:1, Hebrews 11:8 - 10).
#6 - 1670 B.C.
Abraham, son Isaac, and grandson Jacob (later Israel) sojourn in the land of Canaan. Abraham lives to the age of 175 while Isaac dies at 180. Jacob (later renamed Israel), born in 1800, produces twelve sons during his lifetime who will become the patriarchs of the tribes of Israel.
Jacob's eleventh son, Joseph, is his most beloved child (Genesis 37:3). His other sons, however, sensing his favoritism, resent Joseph. They decide to sell him, when he is roughly seventeen years old, to merchants traveling to Egypt (Genesis 37). Years later, after Joseph rises to power in Egypt, a severe famine comes upon the earth (41:46 - 57). The grinding global famine motivates Jacob to take his family totaling seventy people to Egypt in 1670 (Genesis 45:28, 46:1 - 27).
#7 - 1445 B.C.
God, after allowing the Israelites to spend many years as Egyptian slaves, decides the time is right to set them free. He accomplishes this goal through ten plagues performed by Moses and Aaron (Exodus 2 - 15). The Israelites, after leaving Egypt in 1445, journey to Mount Sinai where they receive the Ten Commandments (and other laws) directly from God (Exodus 20 - 23, etc.).
#8 - 1405 B.C.
Joshua, after the Israelites wander the wilderness 40 years because of their sins (Deuteronomy 1), leads God's people into the Promised Land.
Periodically, from the time of Joshua to Saul, the first human king, the Israelites are saved from their enemies by God-inspired people known as Judges. Notable Judges include Deborah and Barak, Gideon, Jephthah, Samson and Samuel.
#9 - 723 B.C.
A united Israel is ruled by human kings from 1050 to 930 B.C. After the death of Solomon, the kingdom splits into two pieces, the Kingdom of Israel (northern ten tribes) and the Kingdom of Judah.
God allows the Kingdom of Israel, after years of refusing to repent of their sins, to be conquered by a foreign power. In 723 Assyrian King Shalmaneser V conquers Israel's capital city of Samaria and takes the vast majority of the people to Assyria as prisoners (2Kings 17).
#10 - 605 to 586 B.C.
God allows the Kingdom of Judah, after refusing to repent of her sins, to be attacked by Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar. The king attacks Judah and its capital city of Jerusalem in 605 and 597 (2Kings 24 - 25). Many Jews are taken out of the land as prisoners.
Nebuchadnezzar, in 586, battles Jerusalem for the third and final time. He destroys the city and burns Jerusalem's temple to the ground. Most of the remaining people in the land are taken captive.
#11 - 539 B.C.
The Babylonian empire is conquered by the Persians in 539 B.C. Persian King Cyrus, in the same year, allows Jewish captives to go back to Judah and rebuild Jerusalem's temple (Ezra 1). In 516 - 515 work on rebuilding the temple is completed.
Many years later in 5 B.C., in the small town of Bethlehem, Jesus is born to Mary and Joseph. His ministry will run from the fall of 26 A.D. to the spring of 30 A.D. He is crucified, buried, and then resurrected to God's right hand after being dead for three days. The New Testament church, and its commission to preach the gospel everywhere, begins on the day of Pentecost in 30 A.D.