The New Testament
- Jesus is born.
- His birth was "in the
days of Herod the king" (Matthew 2:1), and
scholars tell us that Herod died in 4 BC. As these
two commentaries point out, Jesus is believed to have been born in the
last year of Herod's reign, which puts His birth at around 4 BC.
|AD 30 ?
- Jesus is crucified.
- In Luke 3:23 we are told that Jesus was about 30
years old when He began His ministry, and scholars
tell us that His ministry probably lasted about three
and a half years. So
Jesus died somewhere around 30 AD.
- The Church is born.
- Jesus was in the tomb on the Passover
Sabbath, and the day of Pentecost always fell on the
fiftieth day counting from the day after the Passover
Sabbath. Acts 2:1-4
tells us that on the day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit filled the original
disciples, along with manifestations such as the sound as of a mighty
wind, visible tongues of fire, speaking in tongues, and
the first preaching of the Gospel (in which a harvest
of souls began to be gathered in). This event is often
regarded as signaling the birth of the Church.
|AD 45-48 ?
- The book of James is written.
|AD 48-50 ?
- Paul is in Antioch and he writes his first
letter, which we call the book of Galatians. This
is during the time period of Acts 15:25-35.
AD 50 ?
AD 51/52 ?
- Paul writes 1 and 2 Thessalonians from Corinth
(Silas and Timothy are listed as co-authors of these
books. See 1 Thessalonians 1:1 and 2 Thessalonians 1:1).
This is during the time period of Acts 18:1-11.
AD 55-57 ?
- Paul writes 1 and 2 Corinthians
- Paul spends roughly 3 years in Ephesus
(from 53 to 55 AD), where he writes his second letter
to the church at Corinth (his first letter to them
has been lost). We call this second letter the book
of 1 Corinthians (Sosthenes is listed as a co-author
of this book. See 1 Corinthians 1:1). This is during
the time period of Acts 19:1-41.
- Paul writes his fourth letter to the church at
Corinth from Macedonia (his third letter to them
has been lost). We call this fourth letter
the book of 2 Corinthians (Timothy is listed as a
co-author of this book. See 2
Corinthians 1:1). This
is during the time period of Acts 20:1-2.
AD 57-58 ?
- Paul writes Romans
- Paul writes his letter to the Romans
(Tertius is listed as the one who actually wrote
this letter, so he was probably taking dictation
from Paul. See Romans 16:22. Other
passages indicate that Paul may have frequently dictated
his letters to someone else, and that he preferred
to write the concluding remarks himself. See 1
Corinthians 16:21, Galatians 6:11, Colossians 4:18, 2
Thessalonians 3:17, and Philemon 1:19, for example). This is during
the time period of Acts 20:2-6.
|AD 58-59 ?
- John Mark writes Mark
- The early church fathers believed that this Gospel
was written by Mark, an associate of the apostle Peter
and the one who is referred to as "John, also called
Mark" in Acts 12:12.
AD 60-63 ?
- Paul writes Ephesians
- Paul writes Colossians
- Paul writes Philemon
- Paul is under house arrest in Rome for four years.
He writes the book of Ephesians around 60
AD, Colossians around 60-61 AD (Timothy
is listed as a co-author of this book. See Colossians 1:1), Philippians around
61-62 AD (Timothy is listed as a co-author of this
book. See Philippians 1:1), and Philemon around
the summer of 62 AD (Timothy is listed as a co-author
of this book. See Philemon 1:1). This is
during the time period of Acts 28:14-31.
AD 60's ?
- James writes James
- Peter writes 1 Peter
AD 61 ?
AD 63 ?
- Luke writes Acts
- The book of Acts is written by Luke (see Colossians 4:14), Paul's part-time traveling
companion and the author of the Gospel of Luke.
|AD mid-60's ?
- John writes 1, 2, and 3 John
AD 63/64 ?
- Paul writes Titus
- Paul writes 1 and 2 Timothy
- Paul writes these from Macedonia.
|AD 67 ?
- Peter writes 2 Peter
- This is the last New Testament book that Peter
will write. He is believed to have been martyred
in late AD 67 or early AD 68
|AD 67-80 ?
- Jude writes Jude
- Jude calls himself a brother
of James. There are several men named Jude
in the New Testament, but for a number of reasons
many scholars believe that Jude was one of the
half-brothers of Jesus.
|AD 68-69 ?
- Paul (?) writes Hebrews
- An unknown person writes the book of
Hebrews. Some scholars believe that the apostle
Paul wrote Hebrews.
Many other scholars believe that there is strong
evidence that Barnabas wrote Hebrews. Barnabas (who is mentioned
a number of times in Acts chapter 11 through
chapter 15) was the apostle Paul's traveling companion,
so he would have picked up many of Paul's phrases and
expressions from hearing Paul preach so much. This
may be why Hebrews sounds similar to Paul's
writings, even though it does not say that it was written
by Paul (Paul's letters all say that they were written
by him) and it does not have Paul's usual greeting.
- Some scholars believe that Hebrews may have
been a homily by an Early Church leader to renew the
strength and commitment of persecuted Christians.
AD 70's ?
- Luke writes Luke
- Luke was a physician who sometimes traveled with
the apostle Paul, and he is also the author of the
book of Acts.
AD 80's ?
- John writes John
- Many scholars believe that John was written by
students of John's school
AD 95-96 ?
- John writes Revelation
- John writes the book of Revelation while
in exile on the island of Patmos. This is
the last New Testament book that John will write. At
this point he is the last surviving member of the
Twelve Apostles and perhaps the only Apostle to
have died a natural death. The other ten
of the original Twelve Apostles were martyred (not
counting Judas Iscariot, who hanged himself):
- Andrew: Crucified.
- Bartholomew: Crucified.
- James, son of Alphaeus: Crucified.
- James, son of Zebedee: Death
by the sword.
- Matthew: Death by the sword.
- Peter: Crucified upside-down
at his own request (he did not
feel worthy to be crucified in
the same manner as Jesus).
- Philip: Crucified.
- Simon the Zealot: Crucified.
- Thaddaeus: Death by arrows.
- Thomas: Death by a spear thrust.
- The first formal list of the books of the
New Testament is generally believed to have been published
- The complete New Testament canon (as we know
it) is approved at the Council of Carthage.
- The books of
Hebrews, James, 2 Peter, 2 & 3 John, and Jude are
included in the canon for the first time, and other
disputed books are officially excluded from the New
Testament canon, such as "The Shepherd of Hermas," "Letter
of Barnabas," "Gospel
of the Hebrews," "Revelation of Peter," "Acts of Peter," "Didache," "Teaching
of Twelve," and "Apostles".