"Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect." [1 Peter 3:15]

Q . What stated simply is the new teachings of Jesus that mark his ministry?

A .Simplifying and ordering scripture was important to Jesus. For example, on the Tuesday of Holy Week, he was challenged in the temple by Jewish leaders. As the story unfolds, in Matthew 22, Jesus had just silenced one group of dissenters, the Sadducees. The Pharisees, (another Jewish group) gathered together to question him. One of the Pharisees, being an expert in the Law, tested Jesus with a question:

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the law? (Matthew 22:36)."

There were more than 600 rabbinical laws at the time. Jesus had to take care in bringing simplicity, accuracy, and focus to his answer. He replied,

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All of the law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments (Matthew 22:37-40).”

The author considers these love commandments to be the Heart of the Bible. Later in the Upper Room on Thursday evening Jesus shared with his followers;

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another (John 13:34-35)."

Love is at the heart of the central message of Jesus Christ. In the author’s two previous books the emphasis was on providing an outline and overview of the Life of Jesus. A Biography of Jesus is available in two editions; one a 32 event study guide for small groups and churches to utilize led by either Pastors or lay teachers. A second edition is a quick read of the same 32 events that does not require Bible study. Remember the Heart of the Bible connects to the author’s previous works in that it provides a framework summary and overview. Remember the Heart of the Bible differs from the previous works in at least two areas:

  • 1. It covers the whole Bible, rather than only the Gospel record of Jesus’ life
  • 2. The emphasis is placed on love of God and love of neighbor vs. the events from the life of Jesus.