New Testament Introduction for Children

Before my family reads through a book in the Bible, we read a brief introduction of the book.

Below is a simple introduction to all the New Testament books. This NT introduction is written at a 3rd grade level so our younger children can understand.

Matthew

Matthew is one of the four Gospels. Gospel means “good news.” Matthew tells the good news that Jesus Christ has come. Many years earlier, the prophets had said he would come. God had promised to send someone to save people from their sins. The Jews called that person the Messiah. Matthew wrote to the Jews to tell them that Jesus is the Messiah. Matthew quoted many Old Testament verses. He said they came true in Jesus’ life.

Jesus is also a great teacher. Matthew wrote down many of the things Jesus said. Jesus told people about his kingdom. He taught people how to live in his kingdom.

Mark

Mark wrote this Gospel. Although he wasn’t one of the twelve disciples, he was a follower of Jesus. Mark worked with Paul and Barnabas on their missionary trips. He learned Jesus’ stories from Peter. He wrote those stories in this book.

Mark wrote to tell people who Jesus was. Jesus did many things to prove he is the Son of God. He did many miracles to help people. He also died to save people from their sin. Mark told why Jesus had to die. Mark also told that Jesus rose from the dead.

Luke

Luke wrote the third Gospel. He was a doctor who traveled with Paul. He wrote this book for a man named Theophilus. Luke and Theophilus were not Jews by birth. Luke wanted him to know that the things he had heard about Jesus were true. Luke wanted people to know that the good news was for everyone, not just the Jews.

Jesus loved all kinds of people. Luke’s Gospel helps people see this. Jesus loved those who were treated badly. He cared for the poor. He loved people of different races. He welcomed children. And he was kind to women.

Luke tells about the joy Jesus brought to people. Jesus’ birth brought great joy to Mary and the shepherds. Jesus brought joy to his followers when he rose from the dead. Jesus brings joy to all who trust in him and follow him.

John

John was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples. Jesus loved John very much. John wrote this Gospel so people would believe in Jesus.

John tells about miracles Jesus did. John called them signs. These signs give proof that Jesus is God. John also shows that Jesus was human. Jesus could get hungry, tired or even sad.

Acts

Acts is the second book that Luke wrote. Acts tells about the start of the Christian church. Jesus told his followers to tell others about him. As Jesus’ followers did this, the church grew.

Peter and Paul are two important people in Acts. Peter helped start the church in Jerusalem. Paul was one of the first missionaries. He took many trips. Paul told people in many places about Jesus.

Some people hated the church. The leaders of the Jews did not want people to follow Jesus. Paul was one of these leaders until he learned who Jesus was. Before Paul trusted Jesus, he was called Saul. The more people tried to stop the church, the more it grew.

Romans

Romans is one of Paul’s letters. Paul liked to send letters to churches. Paul wrote letters to teach people. He also wrote letters to cheer them up and give them hope. Sometimes Paul wrote to correct false teaching.

Paul wrote this letter to teach people about being right with God. Paul said that all people are sinners. No one can be right with God by keeping God’s law. All of us break God’s law, so the law only shows us how sinful we are.

God loves us, so he made a way for us to be right with him. Jesus came and died for our sins. Jesus is the only person who never sinned. He died on the cross to free others from their sin. When we put our faith in Jesus we are made right with God. Jesus takes away our sin and gives us new life. He takes away the power of sin so we can live for him. Paul wanted God’s children to live lives that are pleasing to God.

1 Corinthians

Paul wrote this letter to the church in Corinth. He wrote it while he was staying in Ephesus. Paul had heard sad news about his friends in Corinth.

Corinth was a wicked city. The church there was new, and it was hard for the Christians not to act like their neighbors. The people in the church were fighting with each other. Some were living very bad lives. Paul wrote this letter to scold them and teach them how Christians should act. He wanted the people to know right from wrong and do what was right.

Paul’s letter teaches us about love, gifts of the Holy Spirit and the Lord’s Supper. It also tells that since Jesus rose from the dead, Christians will also rise from the dead.

2 Corinthians

Paul’s first letter to his friends in Corinth taught them what was right and wrong. Some people were angry about that letter. They didn’t think Paul had any right to tell them how to act. They would not change the way they lived. Other people felt sorry when they read Paul’s letter. They wanted to change the way they lived.

Paul wrote this letter in two parts. He wrote the first part for his friends who changed and lived the way God wanted. He wrote the second part to the angry people in the church. They had said untrue things about Paul and God. Paul wanted them to know the truth.

Galatians

Galatia was a part of the land we now call Turkey. Paul wrote this letter to the churches there. The churches were being taught by false teachers. These teachers said wrong things about the good news of Jesus Christ. They taught that people were saved by doing what the Jewish law says.

Paul said people are made right with God by believing in Jesus. No one has ever been made right with God by doing what the law says. Paul said that all who depend on the law instead of faith in Jesus are under a curse.

Paul wanted people to have faith in Jesus. This is the only way to be a child of God. Children of God live by the Holy Spirit, not the law. Paul said those led by the Holy Spirit show the fruit of the Spirit. The fruit the Holy Spirit produces is love, joy and peace. It is being patient, kind and good. It is being faithful and gentle and having control of oneself.

Ephesians

Paul wrote this letter from Rome. He was in prison. Paul wrote to his friends in Ephesus. Ephesus was a big city. There were many Christians in the church at Ephesus. There were many other churches near the city too. This letter was passed around to all of them. Paul wrote this letter about the church. He said the church is a family. God gives his children new life through Jesus. All God’s children are part of the same family.

Paul said God’s children must love each other. He also said we must let God make us strong so we can fight the devil. We are life soldiers, but we do not use guns or swords. We must put on all of God’s armor. We must trust God for help.

Philippians

Paul wrote this letter from Rome. He wrote to his friends in Philippi. Paul was in prison at the time. His friends in Philippi sent him gift. A man from Philippi named Epaphroditus brought it to Paul. Epaphroditus became very sick while visiting Paul. Paul wrote this letter to tell his friends that Epaphroditus was feeling better. Paul also thanked his friends for the gift.

This letter is full of joy. Paul knew his fiends at Philippi loved him. They helped him when they could. He was glad that he could work for the Lord. It did not matter that he was in prison. He could still tell people about Jesus.

Paul told his friends in Philippi to love each other. He told them not to be selfish. Paul wanted his friends to be like Jesus.

Colossians

Paul wrote this letter from a Roman prison. Paul wrote this letter because of false teachers at Colosse. They said Jesus was not really God. The false teachers followed special rules. They worshiped angels too.

Paul wrote the book of Colossians to tell people the truth. Paul taught that Jesus is God. Only Jesus can save us from our sins. We depend on him, not on human rules, to make us right with God.

1 Thessalonians

Paul started a church in Thessalonica on one of his missionary trips. Some Jews became angry at Paul’s teaching. He had to leave after only a short time. He wrote this letter to cheer up the friends he left behind. He wanted to teach them more about Jesus.

The Christians in this city were treated badly. Paul said that they must not give up faith in Jesus. Paul also taught them that Jesus would come again sometime. When he comes back, all Christians will go to live with him. We must work hard until then.

2 Thessalonians

Paul wrote this letter to the Thessalonians soon after he wrote the first one. They had not done what Paul wanted them to do. They thought Jesus was coming back very soon. They had stopped working and were just waiting for Jesus. Paul wrote to them again. He told them to keep working and not be lazy.

Paul told them about the second coming of Jesus. Paul called it the day of the Lord. Paul told the people to work hard until Jesus came back.

1 Timothy

Timothy was Paul’s friend. He went on missionary trips with Paul. Paul gave Timothy the job of leading the church in Ephesus. Paul wrote this letter while Timothy was there.

Timothy was a young man. Being the church leader was an important job. Paul gave Timothy some advice for his work. He told Timothy how people in a church should act. Paul also wrote about the church leaders. He told how they should act too.

2 Timothy

Paul wrote this second letter to Timothy. Paul was in prison in Rome again. He knew he was going to die soon. He wrote this letter to cheer Timothy up. Paul also wrote to give Timothy advice. Paul gave Timothy commands to help lead the church. He told Timothy to teach the truth. Paul wanted Timothy to be faithful to Jesus.

Titus

Paul wrote this letter to a man named Titus. Titus was Paul’s friend and helper. The two of them visited the island of Crete. Paul had Titus stay there to be the leader of the church.

This letter is like the two letters Paul wrote to Timothy. Paul wanted Titus to know how to lead the church. He told Titus how the church should act. Paul also told Titus what a leader should do. He gave Titus some good advice.

Philemon

Paul wrote this letter to a man named Philemon. Philemon was Paul’s friend. He had a slave named Onesimus. Onesimus stole money from Philemon and ran away. Then he met Paul and became a Christian.

Paul told Onesimus to go home. Paul asked Philemon to forgive Onesimus. He asked Philemon to treat Onesimus like a brother and not like a slave. Paul said he would pay back Philemon for what Onesimus had stolen.

Hebrews

The book of Hebrews was written to cheer up some Jewish Christians. They had been treated badly. Sometimes they were made fun of in front of others. Some even had their property taken away. Many of these Jewish Christians were scared. They thought about giving up their faith in Jesus. It was hard to be a Christian.

This book tells that believing in Jesus is good. Jesus is from God, and he is God. He is better than the angels. Jesus is better than Moses and Joshua. He is better than any priest. Jesus paid for our sin. Jesus is the only sacrifice for sin.

The book of Hebrews tells of many people who had faith in God. They are our examples. We must believe and trust God too. We must have faith even when it is not easy. We must have faith when people treat us badly.

James

James wrote this letter. James was Jesus’ brother. Jesus’ brother did not believe in him before he died. They became Christians after he rose from the dead. James lived in Jerusalem. He was a church leader there.

James taught people how to live as Christians. He said we show real faith in how we act. If we only talk like Christians our faith is no good. We must live like Christians too. James wanted us to love rich people and poor people the same. He wanted us to watch what we say. James did not want people to be proud. He wanted us to be patient, even in hard times.

1 Peter

Peter was one of Jesus’ disciples. He wrote this letter. The Christians he wrote were being hurt for believing in Jesus. Peter wrote to cheer them up.

Peter wanted the people to be brave. He reminded them that Jesus had been hurt too. Jesus was brave. He trusted God. We must trust God too. We are special to God. We must live the way God wants us to live.

2 Peter

This is Peter’s second letter to Christians in the modern country of Turkey. He had told them to be brave when they were being hurt. Now they were in trouble again. False teachers gave them bad advice. Peter wanted the people to know the truth.

Peter wanted the Christians to have faith. He told them much about God. He told them how God wanted them to act. Peter wanted them to live a holy life. Peter said God would get rid of the false teachers. He also said Jesus would come again.

1 John

John wrote this letter. He also wrote the next two letters in the Bible. He wrote the Gospel called John too.

This letter warned about false teachers. The false teachers said Jesus was not God. They said that God did not become human. John wanted Christians to know the truth about Jesus. John said we must know that Jesus is God. We must also know that Jesus was a human being.

John said we must do what God says. We must love each other. We must walk in the light too. This means that we live by the truth and do what is good. If we do these things then we know that we are God’s children.

2 John

John wrote many letters. He said it was for the chosen lady and her children. This meant either a Christian woman and her family or a church and its members.

John said some important things. He said Christians should love each other. He said we must do what God says. If we love God we will do what he says. John also wrote about false teachers. The false teachers did not believe the truth about Jesus. John told Christians to stay away from the false teachers.

3 John

John wrote this letter to Gaius. Gains was John’s friend. He was a leader in the church. Gains was kind to other Christians. Another leader in the church was not acting like a friend. His name was Diotrephes. Diotrephes said bad things about John. He was not kind to other Christians.

John wrote to thank Gaius. John also wrote to scold Diotrephes. John said he hoped to visit soon.

Jude

Jesus had two brothers. One was James, and the other was Jude. Jude wrote this short letter. He wrote to warn Christians about false teachers. These people taught the same kind of false teaching that Peter wrote about in 2 Peter. Jude reminded Christians about the truth of God’s salvation. He told them to stand up for the faith.

The false teachers said Jesus was not God. They said people could live sinful lives. Jude said God would punish the false teachers. God would destroy them.

Revelation

John wrote the book of Revelation. The Roman rulers did not like John. They made him leave his home. They put him on an island called Patmos. Jesus gave John a vision while he was living on the island. It was about the battle between God and Satan. John wrote about the vision in the book of Revelation.

John knew it was hard to be a Christian. He wanted Christians to trust God. That is why John wrote this book about his vision. Some things in this book are hard to understand. John makes one thing very clear. John said God takes care of everything on earth. Jesus is in control. He will judge and punish evil. God will also make a new home for his children. They will live with him forever.

This New Testament Introduction for children comes from the New International Reader’s Version Bible published by Zondervan.

 

Bible Basics

Part 1Old Testament Introduction
Part 2New Testament Introduction
Part 3Read the New Testament in 8 Weeks

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